web design trends 2016

Like new styles on a runway, web design trends emerge every year, quickly blanket businesses' websites and those who utilize them most often reap the benefits. But before your company jumps on the bandwagon, I recommend exploring the origin for each trend and asking yourself if it makes sense with your business and customers before implementing anything new.

hamburger menu

For the sake of this post, I want to focus on one at a time as I'm suggesting you do when analyzing each trend. From the overly used front-page carousels, to hamburger menus, both vertical and parallax scrolling, hero images, loading animations, galleries, flat design, typography, and illustrations, I wanted to start with my favorite, video hero banners, which barely beat out Material Design.

trend setting god

So who is behind the latest greatest? There is more than one culprit with technology being the most obvious of them all. In this case, increased bandwidth and superior plugins make front-end video banners possible.

trendosphere

But even when technology dominates, its hard to force an element into the trendosphere without you, the user. Similar to the supply and demand principle, consumer intuition pulls rank in the digital space. Infact, MarketingSherpa recently released overwhelming statistics that videos attract 300% more traffic and nurture leads. Movement, sound and time to name a few create a stronger connection and feeling when compared to a still image, thus the power of video!

circle of creative life

Lastly, there are also other creative fields like fashion to credit for new web trends. Creatives are always inspired by other creatives so it's quite reasonable that a potter could inspire a painter, a painter inspire a fashion designer, a fashion designer inspire a graphic designer, a graphic designer inspire a videographer and a videographer inspire a web developer to create the plugin needed to execute video hero banners....see the connection? It's the beautiful circle of life for creative/tech types at least.

Now that we know how and where the video trend emerged from, next is to determine if it serves a purpose that makes strategic sense to your website and customer base. Let's take social media for example. We all swiftly graduated to the use of images to accompany our social media posts when views overwhelmingly outnumbered stand alone text. This was quickly followed by the increased use of gif images and cinemagraphs which ultimately ended with videos.

Reflect on the platform of your choice and if you have posted a video there, compare it's success to other high performing, non-video posts. Did it crush the image/text duo with jaw dropping metrics? Probably, unless your customers are in assisted living and I mean that with all respect. My grandmother is in one and she cannot hear them, figure out how to start them and she sure cannot process the video content as quickly as needed within the small time window social platforms allow for.

Prime video candidates would be companies who have a surplus of convoluted or difficult to understand information that can be easily presented via video or a business with a strong, emotional story to raise money for a cause.

toni's dancing school video hero banner example

A video hero banner made perfect sense for a recent client of mine, Toni's Dancing School. Because dance is movement, the site should simply move! Anyone smiles when they see uncoordinated ballerina toddlers bump into one another as they walk on stage. People of all ages are impressed when a dancer is lifted over head with effortless grace. I still ask myself how dancers spin on one toe multiple times without getting dizzy or losing balance. Seeing all of these examples in action brings a warm, excited and intriguing feeling that only a video can render. Watch for yourself on Toni's new website here.

If your business is a prime candidate for a video banner, fill out the below form for a free assessment and I'll be in touch within one business day.

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