Web Design Trends for 2013

by Christina Drews-Leonard | January 13

Responsive Website Design

Responsive Website DesignWe’re looking forward to an exciting year ahead for web design. Designers and developers are pushing the limits of the new technologies available. We can expect to see more integrated websites that work as well for mobile devices as they do for monitors and that use content from more than one source to build a more complete experience for site visitors. Learn more about the leading trends:


Infinite Scrolling Pages – Website like Pinterest don’t use separate pages to display more content but continue to load in new content as the viewer scrolls down the page. Many people prefer this to clicking to see the next page of content. WordPress, a popular blogging and content management system, recently made this feature available on their new website themes. Read more about it here.

Responsive Websites – Designing a website that resizes itself to fit the screen size such as a phone or tablet will become the standard versus creating a separate site for mobile devices. However, some sites will offer separate mobile sites to take advantage of features only available on mobile browsers. Learn more about responsive web design at A List Apart.

Parallax Scrolling – This is a design style that leads viewers to continuously scroll down a web page and creates an illusion of depth. It has been around for a while but you can expect to see more websites use this effect to catch your attention. Check out http://www.janploch.de/ or Nike Better World to see it in action. The plugin Scrollarama http://johnpolacek.github.com/scrollorama/ makes it easier for designers to implement this effect.

HTML 5 and CSS 3 web designHTML 5 & CSS 3 – These will become the standard in 2013. Support for older browsers such as IE 7 and earlier will be dropped as designers continue to use newer web technologies and refuse to do elaborate workarounds to accommodate out of date browsers. Sites like The Expressive Web show how HTML 5 and CSS 3 allow designers to use drop shadows animation without the use of Flash. Flash is not supported on mobile devices such as the iPhone and iPad.

Live Feed WebsiteLive Feeds – Sites that use feeds from various sites including Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and more for the site’s content. See the shop feed on Fab.com or the website for ad agency JWT for examples.

Mood Boards – Web designers will be presenting web designs to clients in a form known as a mood board or inspiration board. This is similar to how interior designers present a collage of fabrics, wallpaper and paint chips to express the design tone for a new room without showing exactly how it will look. As the web design process has become more complicated requiring designs for different size screens, the amount of time it takes to mockup web designs has increased. To save time and money, the mood board allows the client to get the look of the website through colors, fonts, photos and more presented on a board or screen for quick feedback. Once the designer has this feedback, creating the final design is an easier and quicker process. See an example of a mood board on Web Designer Depot.

Have any web design goals for your business in 2013? Let us know in the comments!

About the author

Christina Drews-Leonard