New trends continually emerge in the world of website design. Though none who make a business for themselves in web design Orange County CA would recommend incorporating every emerging trend into your site design, it’s worthwhile to keep abreast of changes in the industry and adopt those that will improve your site.

Our web design team put together a short list of the trends to watch in 2012:

Large Background Images
We’re seeing content heavy home pages being replaced by large, striking imagery. The visual story becomes the focal point and is complemented by brief copy, the two elements working in tandem to efficiently and powerfully communicate a key brand message. In most cases, websites that employ this design on the home page then revert to a more traditional content driven layout on secondary pages.

Single-page websites
It was once believed that web users were not likely to scroll to find information “below the fold” on a web page. This led to (often crowded) layouts designed to push all important information to the portion of the page that would be visible without scrolling.

But this year there has been a definite upswing in single-page websites. In this design, the entire site is contained in a single page – with plenty of scrolling encouraged! These “micro-sites” require expert copywriting and careful editing in order to pare down the amount of text required to effectively communicate brand messaging.

Mobile Compatibility
With mobile use exploding (and showing no signs of slowing), it only makes sense that websites are being designed to be increasingly mobile-friendly. Site designs must now work well with a number of different screen sizes to accommodate everything from television-sized desktop monitors to the smallest of mobile devices. Designers are turning to new techniques and tools, like responsive layouts and HTML5, to create websites that will look great and function seamlessly regardless of the device being used.

Social Media Integration
Social media itself, of course, is a continuing (rather than emerging) trend. We are, however, seeing a changing trend in the way that websites are integrating with social media. Where initially websites would simply link to their related social media profiles, we’re now seeing sites that bring social media into the primary design – often allowing for interaction with the social media profile directly from the website.

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