Sometimes, it is hard to tell which web design trends will be fleeting ̵ as the word “trend” itself implies ̵ and which will become established practices. Happily, there is a place for both kinds of trends, and they often work together to keep websites fresh, interesting and constantly improving in functionality. Some trends reflect current tastes in aesthetic appeal and visual interest, but others mark a technological evolution in the tools and delivery of high quality websites.
Typically, graphics are not the first thing to spring to mind, when CSS3 is mentioned in relation to web design. However, this is becoming more common. Nowadays, designers can use CSS3 to create and present graphics in a remarkable way. Bold and striking graphics that make a website memorable are a current aesthetic trend. Thoughtfully incorporated, large graphics and even background video can make a powerful statement. Some of the graphics that designers can devise now with CSS3 could be mistaken for creations crafted in Photoshop.
The integration of microinteractions on a website can make a significant impact on the user experience. Rather than just being impressive to view, a site is at its best when users can enjoy a degree of engagement and interaction. The individual interactions must feel natural to website users. They must meet the needs of users too. CSS3 is helping designers to subtly integrate microinteractions, which create an enjoyable user experience that does not feel forced. Users can interact seamlessly, without feeling as though they have been asked to complete a chore.
User Engagement via Storytelling
One application of microinteractions is with the storytelling trend in the use of CSS3. In this design approach, a website actively engages users by telling a story, via the site design and subtle microinteractions. With clever design tools and ideas, a designer can present content in a way that makes meaningful connections to the users. Effective storytelling can evoke responses in site users, making their visits memorable. An imaginative designer can create a compelling setting, characters and storyline using the tools available with CSS3.
Since the emergence of the Internet to the wider public, motion has fascinated web designers and website visitors alike. Some of the earliest attempts to animate site elements were flashy and often painful to view. They were a novelty, but the true potential for visual interest meant that web designers continued to try. Fortunately, technology has advanced significantly over the years, and it is now easier for designers to create visual interest and motion, which is subtle and appropriate for the site being designed. Today, CSS3 represents a powerful tool designers can use to infuse motion that is elegant and sophisticated.
Mobility and Responsive Design
More than just a current buzzword, responsive design is a whole new approach to serving content to mobile users. Until recently, one of the common approaches was to create a separate mobile website from the primary version meant for desktop or laptop users. The intention was to create an experience that catered to mobile users, and provided what it was assumed they needed. Some attempts were more successful than others, but separate designs for mobile users are no longer necessary. With a responsive design, the site adapts itself to the user visiting. CSS3 media queries make it possible for a page to use different style rules, which are applicable to the device being used. Tailoring the experience to each user is built into the design in this way.
A responsive design approach is clearly one of those trends that will have staying power, as long as Internet users surf the web on a variety of devices. More than a trend, it represents an approach to site design that welcomes the broadest possible visitor base. Inevitably, other design choices will gain and lose popularity, as other trends take hold. Conveniently, tools such as style sheet languages