From VR to AI-controlled Bots, the internet is nothing like it was only one year ago, nor will it be anywhere near the same tomorrow as it is today. In this article, we take a quick-like glance at only five website trends on fire in 2017 and poised to control the web going into the future.
Virtual Reality (VR) and 360 Video
At this point in time, we are seeing VR going through the beginning stages of its “hype cycle“, as Charles Platiau wrote in an article for NewsWeek. For now, VR hasn’t seen much traction in the realm of social media or other functional applications. Nevertheless, we are bound to see things pick up speed on into 2018.
Here are some examples of how leaders in the industry are utilizing VR:
- French Auto maker Peugeot utilizes both VR and 360° to showcase their new Peugeot 208 supermini.
- Google’s Daydream VR headset works with smartphones such as HTC VIVE and Lenovo. You can view YouTube, CNN, BBC, Splash for Reddit, only to name a few.
- YouTube now offers a special Virtual Reality section.
With practical uses of VR technology gaining speed, it only makes sense that more and more web designers will be looking into the possibilities of incorporating VR and 360° video into web design space as well.
AI Bots and Conversational Interfaces
Every month more than 900 million people around the globe are using Facebook Messenger for personal and business use. Companies can now build and integrate Bots into their Facebook profile using tools such as Botsify or Chatfuel with no knowledge of coding. The process is so easy that it’s becoming unusual for companies not to use customized bots.
With more than 11,000 “chatbots” being built atop Facebook Messenger, and another 23,000 or more developers signing up, it’s no wonder Facebook has become a global leader in the arena. Facebook Messenger product manager Seth Rosenberg said in an interview,
“Messaging is already the number one thing that people do with friends on their phone. Imagine a world where it’s the central hub for all of the businesses you care about.”
Authentic High-Quality Photography
Who even likes stock photography anymore? Not very many people a recent study showed. Web sites that go the lazy route and use stock photography usually lose trust and get completely ignored.
Furthermore, catchy photos are nice, but visitors of websites are more interested in the content versus the stock photos. This is because photos are of no value when deciding to buy into a brand or not. Furthermore, where photos are necessary, people like to either download the photo so that they can see a larger version, or they like to utilize automatic image magnifiers.
A Robust Web App Functionality
One trend that seems to be gaining speed is progressive web applications. They take advantage of the entire web ecosystem, plugins, and community by combining the best features.
Progressive web apps are much easier to develop, install and keep up than native apps. For example, if you want to start selling custom printed t-shirts on your WordPress site, there is no need to develop a functional web app to do it.
WooCommerce is a good example of a popular plugin that can turn your site into an eCommerce site, no skill or lot’s of time required.
A Unique Brand-Themed Illustration
Creative and unique brand-themed illustrations can boost your brand’s recognition. Just look at companies like Slack and Dropbox. They have been successfully cashing in on the effectiveness of finely customized illustrations for some time now.
With the internet becoming saturated with visuals and tons of content, it has become more important than ever to stand out. Companies are quickly realizing the power strong brand-themed illustrations have in communicating to their visitors in an impactful and memorable way. This will make illustrations a focal point of many website designers this year and into the foreseeable future.