7 web design trends that will directly impact the eCommerce world in 2016

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Web design is a living thing that changes it’s shape and grows with every year that passes by.
Some of the general web design trends that will mold websites world wide in the upcoming future are things like Flat Design 2.0, big images and videos, rich animations like parallax, mouse over effects, loaders, scrolling effects and many more.

But let’s see what are the web design trends that will have the biggest impact on eCommerce stores. Let’s dig in!

1. The death of the above the fold sliders

carousel

I know you like them, but sliders or carousels on eCommerce sites just don’t convert well.
The users ignore them, usually don’t have the patience to wait for the slides to change and also don’t make the effort to look through them manually.

Instead you could use another web design trend that’s more suited for eCommerce, a high-quality hero image or video that’s visually pleasing, transmits one clear message and calls to action.

2. The comeback of the pop-ups

popup

I know you hate them, but they bring results. If done correctly they can significantly increase your list of subscribers and this is one of the most powerful tools to sale online.

You don’t have to annoy your visitors, first make sure you’re offering something of real value to your audience in exchange for their email. You could also use more subtle ways of grabbing the attention, as small notifications sliding from the side or something that is not as intrusive as blocking all the view with a pop-up.

Another key aspect is timing. You don’t want to bother your visitors continuously, instead be smart about it and trigger them on certain user events. Let’s say a user reads one of your articles and reaches a paragraph from which you think he could more easily make the transition into giving his email. Or maybe it has filled the cart with some products and suddenly wants to leave, offer him a discount or ask for some feedback.

The bottom line is to use pop-ups to your advantage, not your disadvantage.

3. One page presentation

For those that have one product or very few products an approach is to create a landing page in which the information is presented to the customer in a very attractive way.
Usually there’s a minimalist approach combined with high-quality images/videos and small movement effects.

One page example

One page example

The one page design can be very well combined with another web design trend called storytelling in which the products sold are put into a story that requires a small interaction from the user that will increase audience engagement and the time spent on the store.

Storytelling example

Storytelling example

4. Full width products grid

More and more users are opting for bigger monitors with higher resolutions. For those that have many products to sell, using a boxed layout would be a big waste of viewer’s space on desktop. You want to get in front of your visitors as many products as you can and let their eyes be drawn to what catches their attention and interest. You could direct some of the attention by emphasizing some of the products you want to stand out.

Look at how Amazon fills the desktop screen space with their products:

amazon

Also here’s an example that beautifuly fills the screen with clothes:

steallamccartney

5. Responsive design

When talking about a successful eCommerce website it’s already implied that it has a responsive design, it’s so basic that it almost doesn’t worth mention it.
Customers that buy using mobile devices are rising by day, more and more users are using multi-devices from which they can interact with your store.

Google recommends it as being good for your SEO, they seem to know a few things about that.
Implement an app-like behavior and interface for mobile devices, this could increase the conversion as visitors interact with your online store in a familiar way.

If you don’t have a responsive design already, trust me, you are way behind.

6. Social login

When designing an interface for your users to interact with, always keep in mind that people are generally lazy. The need to fill out yet another registration form or to remember yet another password requires effort, but to enhance the user’s experience you could allow him to access your store by using one of his social accounts. This will seem even more natural when the user wants to sign up from a mobile device.

Try to simplify the checkout process as much as possible. Adding a social login will also reduce the rate of cart abandonment, as one of the main reason why people leave their cart is the requirement for registration.

7. Lazy loading

Instead of downloading and rendering all the content at once you can serve the content when the user needs it, usually by making scroll. Users will feel your store as very snappy because only a small portion of the website gets downloaded at first.  You’ll also benefit from lower resource costs because your server will have reduced stress since the content is not delivered all at once, but only as much the user is willing to see. Read MaxCDN explanation of lazy loading.

One of the most popular lazy loading method is called infinite scroll. WordPress has found that providing continuously more content at scroll makes the reader to consume more content than the traditional pagination approach. This could be true also for your customers by continuously loading more products.

lazy-loading

Products infinite scroll example

But be careful with this, it’s a double-edged sword. For some store owners it went well, but for others it was disappointing. You have to test your audience to see what they prefer, a infinite scroll or walking through pages. Some have complained that is hard to find what they’re looking for in an endless scroll. Consider combining this with a dynamic filter that can improve the overall search experience.

Final words

We introduce in our PrestaShop themes many of the eCommerce web design trends presented in this article and also many others. Have a look at our PrestaShop themes to see what’s trending.

Which web trend do you think it will have the biggest impact on eCommerce?
What web trends are you going to implement this year into your store?

Happy sales!

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