Change is inevitable.
If you were to tell someone in 2005 that only ten years later more than 43% of the world population would be using the internet, they wouldn’t have believed you.
Society as a whole is rapidly changing and with that, so are the expectations users have when using technology.
As people are becoming increasingly comfortable and are introducing more and more technology into their daily lives, it’s inevitable that user expectations and demands will change.
And that’s where UX designers come in.
UX designers have been working for years to simplify and improve this feeling known as user experience. And as users’ tastes and expectations evolve, UX designers do too — they adapt and envision new ways to make users’ lives easier by turning an idea into a reality and proving its worth by testing and refining.
To do that UX designers must stay ahead of the curb and see the trends before they’re here. So today, let’s go through the UX trends to watch in 2016.
The rise of the UX designer
User experience no longer takes the backseat in organisations. Senior management now understand that designers who can understand people’s habits, feelings and needs, produce user interfaces (UI) that lead customers to convert.
In 2016 we will see an influx of ‘specialised’ UX roles like never before. That’s right, UX designers are becoming more and more influential and their role is becoming further refined.
In fact, right now on Seek, there are more than 900 roles being advertised using the word UX. What’s more, compared to just two years ago, there are far more different roles within the ‘UX’ scope.
You’ll find organisations looking for:
- UX designers
- UX architect
- UX specialist
- UX front-end designer
- UX back-end designer
- UX researcher
What an exciting time for all those in the UX world.
UI designs based around time
Only 5 years ago many websites had myriads of information about the company on the homepage, most of which was never actually needed by the user.
There’s no doubt advances in technology have helped to shift this trend. Today users expect a clean space that displays relevant information to them.
Next year they will expect even more personalised, relevant experiences. UX designers will move toward more time-based UI designs — to give the user smaller, relevant chunks of information when they need it.
The Domino’s Pizza app is an example of a well thought out UI design. It’s not only time-based, but also interactive.
It works like this:
- Create your pizza
- Set your delivery location
- The timer starts
- You can track if the order has been received by the store
- When the pizza is in the oven
- When it’s with the driver
- Where the driver is
- And when it’s at your door
These ‘triggers’ give UX designers the ability to design around time. You can see more examples of this with companies like Uber - they’ve taken it a step further and prompt users for a review once they’ve paid the fare and left the Uber.
Prototyping and wireframe tool improvements
New tools are coming to market every day to make UX designers’ lives easier. These tools give designers the power to create seamless prototypes of what the final product will be like — saving hours or even days of work.
Rather than designing everything manually, from scratch, these new tools give designers shortcuts and enable them to spend more time testing if the UI’s idea and flow is effective.
The speed at which these tools come to market won’t slow down in the new year. UX trends explained it’s almost like a ‘gold rush’ to find the best all-inclusive prototyping tool with new solutions being released every week. Staying across the new tools will be challenging but keep up-to-date by frequenting these 10 technology blogs.
If you’re not already across some of the tools out there, check out UXPin and Flinto.
UI: Wide-width and parallax themes are here to stay
You wouldn’t be wrong if you think most websites look the same. Whether it's the obsession with wide-width themes, the love of parallax backgrounds, simplistic hamburger menus or long scrolls, everything’s starting to look like a clone.
UX designers are somewhat being forced to embrace the intuitive UI scroll designs smart phones have demanded.
These themes are responsive, effective and most importantly user-friendly. Even though this style’s been popular since early 2014, it’s not surprising that the want for these types of designs isn’t going anywhere and will still be a hit in 2016.
There’s no doubt that improving the user experience will be a key priority for organisations next year and well into the future.
Not only will UX design in 2016 become more time-based, but current popular design styles will continue to evolve.
The role of the UX is only just taking off and the future is nothing but exciting.