10 Web Design Trends for 2019: Vibrant Color Gradients, Illustrations & Mobile First

Torben Simon Meier Last updated 04.08.2021
7 Min.
webdesign trends mobile first
Last updated 04.08.2021

The web design trends of 2019 lie with deliberate asymmetry, high-contrast colors and gradients with unconventional proportions. Human illustrations are also on trend. The whole thing is accompanied by the "Mobile First" principle. The web design is first oriented to smartphones and tablets and only in the second step to the desktop view.

Web design trends don't happen by accident. Rather, they evolve in response to the ever-changing preferences and needs of your website visitors. In 2016, web design trends have included the "medium of the screen" with very practical elements such as flat design e.g. Google's Material Design or even Apple Design Resources As well as the ease of use of mobile phones rightly came to the fore.

In 2017, we were able to observe the first concepts in web design with bright colours and shapes that were intended to bring a more emotional and dynamic character overall. In 2018, web design trends were then all about slanted gradients, colourful 3D shapes and flat design with targeted drop shadows. Today, I would like to take a look into the future and present you with the 10 most promising web design trends for 2019.

Web Design Trend #1: High Contrast Gradients

High contrast gradients will continue to have their raison d'être in 2019 and will certainly continue to grow. Gradients have come a long way and are evolving into more harmonious color palettes and more subtle use than perhaps their first version in Microsoft Office back in the day. On the platform Gradient Hunt, for example, you can create your perfect gradient and download it as a PNG.

For some time now, gradients have been adapted and implemented by some of the biggest companies. Think of the Instagram logo from 2016 or Apple Music. Colorful gradients breathe more dynamism and thus emotionality into illustrations and graphics on your website, which in turn are very good sellers. Meanwhile, there are already entire CSS libraries that provide ready gradients for your website and are still economical in resources.

Web Design Trend #2:Human Illustrations

Web design trends 2019: Human illustrations

Perhaps 2019 will finally be the year we finally say goodbye to generically photographed, often cheesy stock photos of inauthentic-looking token office workers. The latest design trend to illustrate people uses exaggerated proportions and rather humanly atypical color schemes to create wonderfully unrealistic characters in the form of exciting illustrations. Regardless of whether the look is more cartoonish or cubist, creative interpretations of human figures across the web will likely continue to grow in 2019.

Web Design Trend #3: Abstract Geometry

Web design trends 2019: Abstract geometry

Colorful 3D shapes, blobs, building block sculptures or the like are now one of the predominant web design trends for 2019 and make you feel like you're going back to your kindergarten or art class. Web designers and agencies are now only too happy to stack and layer geometric shapes in a playful, abstract way to easily create attention-grabbing websites.

This web design trend lets your visitors' imaginations run wild and increases the positive association with your website. More creativity and openness included, especially for the digital economy such as agencies, designers and freelancers who earn their daily bread on the net.

Web Design Trend #4: Dynamic Patterns

Web design trends 2019: Patterns

Although backgrounds with recurring patterns were very popular in the early days of the internet, they fell victim to flat design and increasingly minimalist layouts. However, smaller and colorful patterns in particular are making a strong comeback. Both as dynamic graphics rather in the background of a web page and as additional illustration in whole graphics.

You can always find beautiful examples at Dribbble.com. The platform is my personal first choice to get inspiration and regularly deal with the latest web design trends.

Web design trend #5: Isometric representation

Web design trends 2019: Modern collages

With realistic perspectives and proportions, the isometric representation of your products or services proves to be an absolute eye-catcher on your website. These miniature scenes are an excellent way to do storytelling and build a sense of community.

3D models are a welcome change from the popular flat design and most minimalist graphics that most websites make use of. 3D models express attention to detail while remaining abstract enough to be suitable for almost any branding or story.

Web Design Trend #6: Grid Layouts

Web design trends 2019: grid layouts

Gridded layouts and graphics have reached their final acceptance in web design in 2018. In 2019, we will see even more grid layouts that play with overlapping individual areas at one point or another. If this looks chaotic to you, at first though this is correct, ultimately that is exactly the goal of this design. The rather untypical grid of the layout ensures that you spend more time with the content. Ergo, longer attention span and thus longer dwell time on your website.

Although various elements are not arranged symmetrically, the appearance is often anything but unaesthetic. Grid layouts combine brutalist tendencies, called "web brutalism", with the web design trend of minimalism that we all know. Often the shapes harmonize very well with different page elements. They give e.g. a flat design more depth, but on the other hand site also leave more room for the so important "white space".

Web Design Trend #7: Modern Collages

Web design trends 2019: Modern collages

Magazine and newspaper collages may be a thing of the past, but multimedia collages are becoming increasingly popular online. Abstract collages are elements from many other current web design trends such as geometric shapes, illustrations, and gradients, and are more than just the sum of wildly thrown together graphics .They are a great way to combine disparate elements and significantly increase the attention of your visitors.

Plus, you'll set yourself apart from the crowd if you've been keeping up with the popular web design trends of the last few years. Personally, I had to get used to this mostly "wildly thrown together pile" for some time. In the meantime such collages are have become a nice change in the web design monotony, which ready-made web construction kits like Jimdo or WIX unfortunately often bring with them.

Web Design Trend #8: 'Mobile First'

Web Design Trends 2019: Mobile First

The term "Mobile First" refers to the overall concept for web design and the conception of website design. The Mobile First concept provides that especially for smartphones and tablets optimized view is developed first and then successive additions take place. Thus, the Mobile First strategy follows the trend that more and more visitors surf on your website with a smartphone or tablet and not as before mainly with a desktop computer or laptop.

In the meantime, Google has also significantly increased the importance of Mobile First since the world's leading search engine provider made the so-called "mobile friendliness" an important ranking factor in 2016 and later even made the "mobile index" the primary index(!). Instead of the desktop version, the mobile version of your website is now primarily crawled by the Google Bot.

Thus, the Mobile First concept may have a massive impact, positive or negative, on your search engine optimization, which you should definitely consider when redesigning. Newer elements like the Voice Searchsearch via voice input as well as website speed, i.e. the performance of your website, continue to increase in importance regardless of current web design trends. These aspects should be considered in 2019 for the optimization of your web design.

web design trend #9: 'Brutalism style'

Web design trends 2019: Web Brutalism

The brutalism style or "web brutalism" is a web design trend that has been around for a few years now and, against all odds, continues to gain supporters. As the name suggests, it is a particularly expansive form of design elements that are usually displayed in stark contrast to other elements on the website. A good example would be the complementary contrast, which actually ensures that certain color combinations, such as blue-orange or red-green, harmonize very well with each other.

Brutal design, on the other hand, intentionally merges the least appropriate color combinations and elements to bring about exactly this kind of "brutal design". Meanwhile, there are also larger startups and companies that are jumping on this design trend to stand out from the masses of repetitive web designs. Even entire platforms, about well-known and not-so-well-known websites, are now easily found on Google. Personally, I still can't quite get my head around this form of web design, but I'm curious to see what status this design direction will receive in the future.

Web Design Trend #10: Website speed

As briefly alluded to above, trends come and go year after year, whether in fashion or even web design. In my opinion, a good thing, because so our business is never really boring! It's a different story there with the performance of your website. It has become one of the most important ranking factors for Google - the search engine with the largest market share worldwide.

Google now communicates quite openly how important the fast output of your website is to be listed accordingly high in the SERPs (search results pages). Accordingly, web design is only one of the necessary factors. In order not to go beyond the scope of the really big topic of website speed optimization and the pagespeed tests necessary for optimization, I recommend our 35+ sites strong performance e-book with all our experiences as the No. 1WordPress Hosting specialist as well as our WordPress Hosting comparison with over 250 test results from real user websites.

What do you think are the web design trends for 2019? I look forward to your feedback and more exciting ideas.

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