We’ve spoken about which web design trends to watch this year but what about the web design trends of the past? At the moment, we’re not sure if any of them are going to make a comeback (to view all of them check out our web design history infographic) but we are sure that we’re glad to see the back of some of them. Don’t get us wrong, though, there are some web design trends of the past that we love and still use today like flat design, hero images and the page curl. However, these are the ones we would happily never see again.
1. The big, bad colours
Does anyone else remember those horrible gradient backgrounds? You know the ones that looked like a rainbow had smeared across your screen. What possessed web designers in the late 90’s and early 00’s to offend our eyes with these bold and unsightly colour combinations? The reasoning behind it was more than likely to be eye-catching and memorable. Well, whatever it was we hope that it doesn’t plague web design again. Awful colour palette choices, ineligible content and (most likely) irrelevant to your brand. Need we say more?
2. Egotistical hit counters
Do you want to know how many hits we got last month? Probably not. So what made web designers think that anyone ever wanted to know? Nothing says egotistical and annoying like a meaningless hit counter. We assume that this all started to show your audience just how successful your web page is or to phase out your competition. Either way, we think that the hit counter doesn’t add any real value to your web design and is just another component taking away from your websites power. You’re better off leaving your hits where they belong- in your analytics data.
3. The infamous Comic Sans
Once a benevolent and admired aesthetic across the web Comic Sans was a worldwide favourite. Now, it’s the butt of all jokes both on and offline. But why do we all hate it so much? Firstly it was overused, so much so that it has become a tacky cliché that no designer wants to be part of. Secondly, it is not fit for purpose. Comic Sans was originally designed to appear in comic book speech bubbles so it is probably not relevant to the majority of websites. Additionally with user experience design taking over web design, there is no room for trends that aren’t fit for purpose.
4. Annoying splash pages
We’ve spoken about splash pages before and how they are not good for user experience. There is a long list of cons as to why you shouldn’t include a splash page on your website; they use flash; they require the user to download said flash; they are prone to freezing; they take a long time to load; they serve literally no purpose. And as we’ve said before if an element of your web design serves no purpose then it has no place being there.
5. Not-so-real skeuomorphism
If you ever had an iPhone before IOS seven then you probably remember the skeuomorphism IOS with its bookshelves, lined paper notes and YouTube TV. While it all looked pretty cool there are many disadvantages when using skeuomorphism in your designs. Due to file sizes, skeuomorphism web design elements can take longer to load, they hugely rely on imagery instead of CSS which makes content longer to load again and designing all of the illustrations for your design can delay the rest of the design process. Overall skeuomorphism seems to take up too much time and can result in a slow, out-dated looking web design.
That’s it for this post. But if you want to learn more about web design trends of the past then visit some of our favourite references down below!
However, remember that a trend is but a trend and nothing else. Don’t make your web design follow suit just because something is fashionable. Here at 3mil, we always believe in designing for a purpose. So if a trend doesn’t fit your business, don’t use it. You’ll be better off in the long run.