Web Design Trends 2016: Simple Navigation, Minimalism & Personalization

Torben Simon Meier Last updated 15.01.2020
5 Min.
web design trends 2016

Innovative web designs are beautiful to look at, but for most websites they are terribly impractical. Today I will tell you which design trends will be important in 2016 from my point of view – and which web design trends promise more and easier conversion for your business.

At the turn of the year, the web design trends of the coming year are regularly looked at. Minimalism - as in flat design or material design - plays an important role in 2016 as well. Today I'll show you how you can design your navigation, your conversion area and your content in such a way that you'll be fully in line with the trend in 2016 and can also optimize your conversion rate. And that without having to go into the specifications of certain design directions.

Web design trend 1: Goal-oriented navigation

If you give the user too many choices, he is quickly overwhelmed. Although people can store an average of 5-7 objects in their short-term memory without any problems, anything above this level is difficult for the average user to remember. More than 7 navigation points are therefore unnecessary and reduce the interaction with your site . With unnecessary I mean in this case all navigation points, behind which no conversion is hidden or which distract from this. Such menu items can therefore be removed from the navigation and combined, for example, in a so-called burger. The user can then only choose between a few options, all of which are conversion-relevant. The visitor can navigate to all other subpages as before, but must click on the burger to do so.

Web Design Trends 2016: Simple Navigation, Minimalism & Personalization

UBER has an exemplary minimalistic navigation: The user has only the option to register or to open the further points of the navigation.

It is important to really only put those sites in the burger that are not relevant for the conversion. Because all navigation points in this menu - originally developed for small screens - run the risk of not being seen and thus being accessed less frequently.

Card design – visualization and compression

A card design can also streamline the navigation bar and guide your visitors quickly and purposefully to the areas of your website where the conversion takes place. This design also offers you the possibility to bundle text and image elements. When implementing this design, you should be careful not to overwhelm the user with too much. The card design was prominently implemented by Pinterest, for example.

Web Design Trends 2016: Simple Navigation, Minimalism & Personalization

Pinterest is the classic use case for a card design.

Web design trend 2: Minimalism

A big word and a wide field of application, I know. Your website will most likely already have a minimalist design, because two of the most prominent web design trends of the past years are based on this principle: Flat Design and Material Design. These styles also provide important input for the design of the conversion area. This should be kept as visually slim as possible.

A good headline, a few advantages and an intriguing question for gaining new conversions

On the one hand, the conversion button should be combined with good content, i.e. an understandable and captivating headline and a short description of the central benefits. On the other hand, white space and a clear layout ensure the necessary attention and easier understanding of the content. The conversion button itself should then contain a thematically appropriate, short question or prompt.

Web Design Trends 2016: Simple Navigation, Minimalism & Personalization

Prime example of a minimalistically designed and cleverly illustrated conversion area. If the user scrolls down, he receives more detailed information. The conversion is possible with only three clicks.

Prominently place the conversion button

You should also make sure to place the actual conversion button as prominently as possible. For example, if you have a site with several columns of text, then it is a good idea to display the conversion button in full width and without a sidebar or other unnecessary elements. Just the button, an inviting headline and, if necessary, a few key data and the conversion area jumps right into the user's eye. With plenty of white space around this area and appropriate color choices, you can even enhance this effect.

Web Design Trends 2016: Simple Navigation, Minimalism & Personalization

Our conversion button catches the eye because it stands out clearly from the rest of site : Instead of four rows, only one column is visible in the conversion, which is also visually highlighted.

Web design trend 3: Personalization

Personalization in this context means two things. Firstly, the emotional, human representation of one's own company, team, blog etc.. This should evoke a positive affect in the visitor, i.e. a vague good feeling when interacting with the site . Here, in most cases, I do not want to evoke a specific emotion yet, but simply make the brand (of the blogger, company, site ) more human and thus easier to grasp. On the other hand, personalization means adapting the user experience (UX) to the preferences of the user.

Since the topic of personalization of the UX is a special topic, which also requires special knowledge and skills - or at least a certain budget - I will not discuss the creative and design aspects of the UX here. This topic would have to be dealt with separately.

Personalizing your own brand presence, on the other hand, is relatively easy - at least in theory. If you choose the right motifs, for example your own employees, your own premises or at least images that reflect your own (brand) personality well, you have taken the first step. If you have the possibility and the resources, it is also a good idea to include video material. Using moving images you can gain the trust of your potential customers more quickly and illustrate your own company in a simpler and more sustainable way. In WordPress , for example, a video integration is possible quite simply via video backgrounds.

Conclusion: Much potential for conversion tests

These were my 2016 web design trends that will not only make your site more stylish and modern, but also ensure more conversions: Reduce the navigation and tailor it to your conversion, minimalism not only in the content areas of your site , but especially in the conversion areas and finally the personalization of your site with video and images.
These rather general design guidelines give you the opportunity to play around a lot with your conversion areas in 2016 and keep improving them. The important thing here is that you approach the implementation professionally and authentically from the start. It takes work, but your customers will thank you for it.

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