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2015 has already proven to be an exciting year for web designers and developers across the globe. With new trends arising and innovative technologies being established, the web design world has been exposed to the introduction of many new skills, as well as the return of some old.

Read on to find out some of the ever-growing techniques that could be considered the biggest trends to take 2015 by storm so far:

Parallax scrolling
For many designers, the increasing appeal of having a one page website came in conjunction with the rising demand for parallax scrolling. Web designers first integrated parallax scrolling in 2011, creating a far more interactive experience for its users. This has noticeably exploded in popularity throughout the year. Parallax works by applying multiple layers to a page and moving them around at relative speeds and perspectives dependent upon their position. This creates a 3D-like illusion and gives the page a depth-of-field. The continued adaption of parallax has been adapted onto mobile platform, with companies such as Apple incorporating it into their user interface to produce a more sleek and visual experience.

Rimmel London demonstrates a well-pioneered design structure in their award-winning parallax scrolling website. http://uk.rimmellondon.com

Full Width Websites
This year has certainly seen the return of full width sites. With viewports coming in different shapes and sizes the emphasis of not having to set particular widths to a site has triumphed at last. This makes a site much more aesthetically appealing across many platforms. This ties extremely closely with a website’s responsiveness as discussed below.
A fine example of a well structured full-width website can be seen on Lush’s website. Their user interface is easily readable at all screen sizes and it excels with its excellent responsive design. https://www.lush.co.uk

Responsiveness
It has become common knowledge that many websites developed solely with desktop optimization in mind are beginning to suffer. With potential customers becoming increasingly impatient with unresponsive websites, companies have started to notice a dramatic downturn in the number of hits, or time spent, on their website due to the lack of responsiveness. Small and unreadable text, alongside fiddly links, creates a negative user experience. This pushes those who have visited the website on a mobile platform to retract and visit a more easily usable and visually appealing website.

As of April 21st 2015 Google unleashed what the Guardian described simply as ‘mobilegeddon’. By implementing a completely mobile-focused algorithm, websites that are not perceived to be cross-platform friendly have been greatly penalized. By placing non mobile-friendly websites further down a Google search, with the devastating possibility of being pushed back a page, the chance of a customer visiting their site immediately declines. For many developers, this news cannot be ignored, highlighting the ever-growing importance of implementing a responsive design.

WebGL
WebGL (Web Graphics Library) has opened up a whole new meaning to interaction in web design by colliding the worlds of web and 3D together. Now compatible with most browsers, WebGL has revolutionized user experience and interactivity within a website. Plug-in and royalty free, there is hardly any limits to implementing this API.
Commonly used as a gaming development tool, WebGL has now branched out to other areas of web including architectural visualization and music videos. This field is still growing, with competition emerging including the introduction of similar APIs such as Direct3D, developed by Microsoft.

A great example of how WebGL can optimize a web page can be seen at: http://carvisualizer.plus360degrees.com/threejs. This was created using three.js, a cross-browser JavaScript API that draws upon WebGL.

What about 2016?
Web design has come along way the past couple of years and 2015 has been no exception. Three important words come to mind when reflecting upon the year so far: accessibility, interactivity and responsiveness, each as vital as the next. It is becoming more crucial that you are able to access a companiy’s website whether it be on the go with a mobile or whilst sitting in the comfort of your own home at the computer.

Overall, 2015 has been witness to a surge of innovative technologies, maximising sales for businesses by easing user experience. However, the journey does not stop there. With further predicted trends round the corner, we could soon be seeing further emphasis on the execution of flat design and designers turning their attention to different typography styles.

 

 

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