I’m making this up as I go along… it’s a good start to the future because that is precisely what we are all collectively doing. We adopt trends and work off the best examples of our recent past, but essentially we making it up and constantly progressing as we go along.
So what future traits in Website Design should be be looking considering?
Big Screen Images
I think the days of the revolving Banner are over, misused, infrequently updated and ineffectual on Mobile, they have had their day, to replace people still want to see a big photo, but it will/should have more meaning. We recommend having a random full screen photo quite often, this gives the website the appearance of lovely fresh content for a user while retaining the core concept of having fewer distractions on the website.
Categories and Products
It’s a complete bind to think of products in terms of categories. The truth is a product means different things to different people, so we will see more situations were ‘tags’ are used instead. A bunch of flowers could be suitable for weddings, birthdays or funerals or a piece of Garden Twine could be used indoors or outdoors. Categories either mean duplicating content or limiting the users choice.
In terms of website design too, we will see more mixing up of categories, tags and products on the same page. If you are looking at Garden Twine you might well be interested in balls of string in general. This applies to service based websites as well if you are looking for web design you might well be looking for hosting as well.
News and Blogs
If you run an eCommerce website, there is a demand for fresh content all the time, but you have your products and that’s what you want to be selling… there is in your opinion no need for News and Blogs and other distractions to your core business. Unfortunately Google thinks otherwise, Google wants your website to be new and vibrant and ever changing, putting pressure on resources as they constantly have to think of new ways to add information to a website.
W will see less of News and Blogs as website owners become more aware of giving value to customers. Think of it this way, now that the website is up and running and the products are all on the site, and selling, a significant part of hard work is done. It’s time to enhance – instruction manuals, video clips, customer reviews, more photos… things that actually help a customer to make the right purchasing decision.
So less News and Blogs emphasis and more emphasis on improving product or service presentation. If your products don’t change that often – make them better online.
Checkout and Passwords
With the huge emphasis on security things are going to get tighter around user accounts and credit cards. Increasing you will see two-step authentication, where you insert your username, click next and then insert your password.
Captcha – those annoying little letters and number that you need to fill in are soon going to be history as ways to verify you will become invisible.
But the real shift is going to be towards one page checkouts, where you fill in all your details in one place, rather than going from screen to screen. In the real future though things like your Mobile will know you’re checking out and finger print recognition is probably all you will need.
Checking out – will become much much easier.
It didn’t take long in coming. I remember harping on about Mobile in 2007, but it took until about 2012 to get clients to take this seriously, now roughly 2/3rds of the web is on Mobile – the trend and emphasis continues.
For Wesbite Design the killer question is what can be done to make things easier.
And in this context we are seeing and will see more consolidation. Listing your products and services in more convenient places for people to find them. On Facebook, Amazon, eBay, those are the big ones, but the essence is that if you want people to buy your products, then you need to allow them to be placed everywhere and anywhere on the Internet.
Think of it this way – that tube of toothpaste is available in all supermarkets, chemists and most post offices and seven elevens. That is not an accident, that is who things work. If you want your widgets to sell then be prepared to share them around the web and embrace the fact many websites will list them for free or a small percentage. For you it is more product out of the door even if it means a slightly narrower margin.
People will gravitate, especially on mobile, towards the websites they prefer. I do it, we all do it, how often have you looked for something, found it on a website and just paid Amazon that little bit extra because you ‘trust’ them.
I could probably add a hundred more ‘things’ that will guess at the future of Website Design, right now this is all probably best summed up as more of the same with many gentle changes or enhancements to come.
The principal over-riding fact however is that websites have been built, starting with a clean sheet is less frequent, but today we are looking at websites evolving, enhancing and getting better, rather than being started from scratch. Most businesses that want a website have one and if you are starting up a business – we are just the people you want to be talking to.