2013 Trends You Can Trust Part 3

Hello again. In 2013 Trends You Can Trust Part 1, we defined three industry trends, and in 2013 Trends You Can Trust Part 2, we took a look at three design trends. In part three we are going to make some predictions for 2013, enjoy!

This past year has lead to 4 Industry Predictions

1. Death of the slideshow

The slideshow, also known as a slider, is a quality interactive tool in the web designers toolbox. Initially, it was created to allow multiple images to be shown in the easiest manner possible. Over time it has become a tool to show layers of content as opposed to merely images.

This is poor UX and an incorrect use of this interactive tool. When using a slideshow, content is hidden a portion of the time. For example, pretend you have a slider with four slides, but the user is only interested in the content on one of your slides. This means that 75% of the time, the most important content is hidden from the user. Also, using slideshows forces the user to either wait, or click through the slideshow to find what they are looking for. If the content inside of the slider is relevant, there should be a way to place the information directly on the page, instead of a slider; this way the user has no additional chance of missing the content.

Designers will realize this interactive tool is best used to showcase multiple photos; however, one could argue a grid view is a better solution, depending on the type of project. In the coming year, we are sure to see less slideshows used for displaying major content.

2. Specificity

In 2013, content will be delivered at specific points for specific uses. The attention span of a user has vastly diminished with the constant use of the internet. Creating websites and applications with specific content delivered at exact moments allows the user to make the most of their time and experience.

An example of specificity in design would be a dynamic form. When a user is answering questions in a form, they may get a different set of questions than others who answered questions differently.

Adding dynamic advertisements or search results based on users interactions with the site, is another example of specificity. For example, we will pretend a user is searching for a mouse pad. After the user has viewed the first search result, the site could give an alternate search result which relates to the original search of mouse pads. Additionally, the site could display advertisements relating to the product and/or industry.

Both of these examples make the most of the users time and make their experience as personal and useful as possible.

3. Typography Based Designs

Images and motion graphics have pushed typography to the back seat of digital screen design. We have all heard the saying a picture is worth 1,000 words. However, with the plethora of screen resolutions and devices, images and motion graphics can become detrimental to the user experience. They can:

  • Increase load times due to huge file sizes
  • Increase the chance of error because various images are being delivered based on display resolutions
  • Increase the difficulty of finding an image compatible with mobile devices and large desktops

So now you’re probably wondering how to avoid this problem? The answer is simple; typography is a great solution for avoiding these types of issues. Instead of expressing emotions through imagery, designers can use well written copy in a beautiful typeface. There are many web font tools, such as Google web fonts, which allow designers to break away from the mundane fonts of the past and create visual interest with typography.

4. SVG Graphics and Icon Fonts

SVG graphics are a great alternative for simple backgrounds or icons. Icon fonts are also a great alternative to using images for icons. Due to the fact that both of these options allow for truly responsive icons we will see plenty of more SVG/icon font icons.

Below is a list of resources for SVG graphics and icon fonts:

Well there you have it; the industries trends and predictions for 2013. I look forward to the new year and where it will take our ever expanding design world. Happy New Year!


Written by James

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