Designers are a contagious bunch. Once one web design style takes off, you’ll start to see it everywhere. In 2023, we noticed some great trends in web design, and we think they’ll be sticking around for a while.
Whether you’re looking for inspiration for your next web design project or just looking to be inspired creatively, these catchy web design trends from 2023 will get your creative juices flowing.
Minimalism in web design offers a clean and clear space when users enter a website. Due to there being less on the page, a minimalist web page needs a clean and sharp UI and no mistakes in design.
A minimalist web page will often be one color or even monochrome, with bold typography and minimal images. It will usually be built to a grid—which is one of the golden rules of graphic and UX/UI design.
If the web page does use imagery, it might use one large image either as a full-page background or placed neatly within its grid system. Bold and easily readable text with not too many words is another great representation of minimalist design.
Gentle gradients are another feature we’ve found across many minimalist web designs. While gradients feature multiple colors, the subtle change between them along with bold, dark typography is gentle and calming for the viewer.
Y2K fashion trends have sprung up from everywhere in recent years, and the same can be said for web design. Y2K is the 2000s, known in the fashion world for flared pants, hip huggers, and pops of color. But how does this relate to web design?
The nostalgic trend has hit web design running. Not only with throwbacks to the 2000s but even aspects of 90s computer styles and pattern designs from 80s and 90s TV like Saved by the Bell.
We’ve seen this trend in pixelated design and bubble font styles—often hand-drawn, too. You might find websites that, although made in 2023, present like a Windows 98 design. This retro feeling is fun and still functional based on modern UX/UI standards.
3. Better Accessibility
Inclusive web design shouldn’t be a trend, and we’re hoping that better accessibility in web design is here to stay for the long haul. We’ve noticed many more accessible features and design elements in 2023 compared to previous years.
From high-contrast color palettes that fit the WCAG ratio for accessible web design to inclusive tools like integrated screen readers, captions and subtitles, and alt text—there’s nothing better than inviting everyone to engage with your web pages.
The use of minimalism in design is helpful for accessible features, too, as typically a minimalist web page features large, bold fonts that are easy to read. A minimalist page doesn’t have too many menus or complicated ways to navigate the website.
4. 3D Elements
3D elements are trending in graphic design and UX/UI design; this resurgence evokes nostalgia for the early 2000s, reminiscent of popular designs like bubble backpacks and blow-up sofas. Many web pages have 3D elements or layered elements that suggest depth.
Adding depth and layers with shadows and textures is a great way to add a 3D vibe to your web designs. You don’t even need to use 3D elements to achieve the effect, although adding 3D features will help.
There are plenty of places to build your own 3D elements to include in your web design, such as Spline or Blender, and you can paint imported 3D models in Procreate. You can also render 3D objects for web design using a React application to jump onto this trend.
5. Responsive Design
With most people accessing the internet from a mobile device—according to Exploding Topics—it’s as important as ever to ensure your web designs are responsive.
Responsive design is not only trending but also imperative to engage your users. There might be many reasons your website isn’t responsive, but they don’t all relate solely to visual web design. If you’re a web designer, ensure you work with a great web developer to get the best responsive web-to-mobile transitions.
6. Gamified Design
Google has been ahead of this trend for years already, but we’re seeing more gamified elements within web design elsewhere, too. Small just-for-fun interactions that serve no other purpose except user engagement—which is an important purpose in itself!
These fun elements give web users something to remember about your web page, potentially calling them back again to engage further with the site. Anything that prolongs user engagement is helpful.
7. Kinetic Typography
While kinetic typography music videos were all the rage on YouTube, there’s a kinetic typography trend in the web design sphere. Adding movement to your web design allows for more information to be displayed in small areas and engages your audience for longer.
Kinetic typography can save space on your webpage, allowing for multiple informed messages in the same area without being crowded. Working with technical or UX writers can help display snippets of text that animate to display more information.
Using kinetic typography in web design can be seen as hover states or rollover states in text, part of your hero image when users first open the page, or integrated with parallax scrolling for a layered experience through your website.
8. One-Page Websites and Parallax Scrolling
This trend features many elements of the trends we’ve discussed so far. One-page websites are helpful for small businesses, especially since you can make your own one-page website using Canva.
Single-page style of web design is best for simple websites that don’t need multiple menus or anything too complex on the screen. You can add more information easily with a longer scroll, but it isn’t complex to decipher the interface.
To coincide with one-page web designs, we’ve also noticed lots of parallax scrolling—you might have experienced it without knowing its name. You’ll see it on websites that move elements at different speeds and in different layers as you scroll down—or up—the page.
This effect adds animation without too much distraction. It can be replicated easily with a responsive design, as phone pages often have to be scrolled through. It offers a gamified nature too, since things move or fade in or out as you scroll, and you can revert them by scrolling back.
These Web Design Trends Might Be Here to Stay
While designers are often not encouraged to include trending designs in pieces that should have longevity, these eight web design trends hold strong. Some may be fickle and not last longer than a year or two—such as nostalgic trends of the early 2000s—but including better accessibility, infinite scroll, and responsive designs are probably all here to stay for the best of the internet.
If you’re looking for inspiration, these trends are great to include in your web designs in 2023 and beyond.