How long does it take to snap your fingers? How about blink your eyes? About 50 milliseconds (or 0.05 seconds). That’s all it takes for you to snap your fingers or blink your eyes.


That’s also how long it takes for users to decide if they like your website. True, these are snap judgments, and you should never judge a book by its cover.


But quick decisions like these occur all the time in life and in business, and the first impression one comes away with about something can last for years.


So, you want the first impression users get about your site to be dynamic. It could be the difference between them doing business with you or with someone else.


Design Still Matters


The question is: Does website design still matter when it comes to creating first impressions? Yes, it does. And, Stanford Web Credibility Research agrees.


Its research shows that 75 percent of users admit to making judgments about a company’s credibility based on their website’s design.


Employing the latest web design trends can help a site—and a company—stand out from the crowd and build credibility with users.


Below are five website design trends in 2018:


  • Material design (mobile)

  • Illustrations

  • Serif designs

  • Natural color palettes

  • Broken grid layouts


The technology landscape is different than it was just a few years ago and one of the biggest changes is the switch to mobile devices.


In fact, a recent study from IDC estimates that 2 billion of the 3.2 billion people on earth that accessed the Internet in 2016 did so from a mobile device. And this trend is making a big difference in site design.


The design trends discussed below are make a favorable impact on users, keeping in mind the majority are accessing them from mobile devices:


  • Material design – Material design is one mobile design trend that’s gaining traction in 2018. It dramatically improves the UX experience on mobile devices. Material design uses techniques like gradients, shadows, and other subtle, 3D effects to make websites pop on mobile phones.


  • Illustrations – Hero images, which fill the entire top of a page before the scroll, have dominated web design for years. But that’s changing—thanks to the demand for lighter, faster pages. Custom illustrations are driving website design in 2018. Look for designers to continue to use them to capture interest and personality, as in this site below:

2018 Web Design Trends - Illustration

  • Serif Fonts – Sans-serif fonts like Futura, Maven Pro, and Helvetica Neue, were once all the rage. No longer. Serif fonts are making a comeback. Web designers are using them in a wide variety of setting, from formal and classic to fun and modernized. Some say this is an outgrowth of their use in other mediums, like the movies. Whatever, the case they’re in as a design element, so expect to see more use of them going forward.
  • Natural Color Palettes – More and more designers are adopting natural and neutral tone palettes for their sites. These colors started making their mark in 2016 and are becoming increasingly popular. For example, one new Pantone color palette called Greenery—which the company says symbolizes new beginnings—was its Color of the Year in 2017. Of course, you’ll still see some designers still using bold and bright colors just not as much.
  • Broken Grid Layouts – Many designers rely on grid designs to bring qualities like harmony and logic to a site. But in the quest for ever-more engaging websites, many designers are employing broken grid designs. They allow images and text to drift into and across the gutter and serve as hard stops, and images and text boxes to overlap and converge. This trend often results in “beautifully unexpected juxtapositions of bitmap and letterform,” as it does below:

Web Design Trends 2018 - Broken Grid Layouts

The Last Word

These five emerging web design trends in 2018 are helping businesses build credibility with users and stand out from the crowd. Incorporating them into your site’s design can do the same for you by creating a positive first impression.


Remember, you don’t get a second chance to make a dynamic first impression. So, make it a good one that can help you convert users from prospects to customers.


If your website is a driving force in your marketing effort, you need to stay abreast of the latest trends in website design or work with consultants that do.

Web design still matters, and if your site’s design turns visitors off, you risk losing them to the competition.

Thanks for reading,