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WordPress Theme Design Trends

Posted by Mr WordPress in Web Design & Photography, WordPress 0 Comments

WordPress Theme Design Trends

Utilising current theme design trends in website design are an easy way for you to make your website stand out, even if your site content is boring or is “just another directory”, or for an industry that is usually not overly technical it can make a very positive impression and open up new markets that were not before put online.

So even if your competitor spent 1,000’s of dollars on a new website just last year, you can release your new fresh look within days and look instantly more modern and cutting edge.

What you want this year is Flat, Responsive, and Parallax themes. All three in one is trendy overload and may be a little too much if you are feeling a bit conservative, but combine responsiveness with either of the others and you have a winner. A Flat Responsive design or a Responsive Parallax is currently the pinnacle of website design – and can be built so easily by just clicking the right buttons.

 

What makes a “flat design” user interface?

Literally it is “flat”.. so..

  • No drop shadows
  • No bevels
  • No raised edges of any kind
  • No gradients
  • Usually uses solid blocks of colour, or thin light grey lines to separate content sections and headers.

 

What makes a design “responsive”?

Responsive means it fits to any device, and rearranges the content elements, boxes, widgets, header, menus, etc to fit in the reduced (or enlarged) space offered by the screen of the device. You can try out a website yourself to see if it is responsive by simply re-sizing the browser window, the website will react on the fly and change itself around. This is responsive.

It is a cost effective solution to developing separate apps and mobile websites for mobile and tablet devices. Since there is such a range of devices, screen sizes, resolutions and screen DPI nowadays, it is difficult to design for any set standard, this gave rise to responsive website design that reacts fluidly to whatever screen size it is being presented on, since it is not hard set to any size, it reacts to what it is provided with.

Have a look at Responsive Web Design on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Responsive_web_design

 

How About Some More Funky Features?

Here is what you should be looking for in my theme so that I am using the latest technology:

Video Backgrounds
Easily possibly using a premium slider plugin, and included in many themes. Watch out for these when your market doesn’t have super fast internet though, large video files don’t work well in less developed countries or through 3G mobile internet. Try a slowly panning city scape or fields with flowers moving in the wind, lots of stock videos available on the stock websites.

Sticky Headers & Social Links
Like it when the header bar sticks to the top when you scroll down or the same for social links or widgets that get “caught” by the screen and follow the scrollbar down. These are great for sites with long content pages.

HTML5 & jQuery
Look out for HTML5 with it’s great animated effects that are often used in parallaxes. Always a staple of the industry jQuery regularly features in themes and plugins offering JavaScript based user interface enhancements such as popup dialogue boxes, popup calendars on form fields, expand and collapse elements, and loads more. In general it just makes everything that bit slicker and smoother, you probably want a theme that uses these technologies.

 

Introducing… the Mobile Responsive Parallax

You heard it, you can now get parallaxes to work on mobile, this is new since the end of last year. The Morpheus theme offers us all the ability to create beautiful parallaxes to be enjoyed on both desktop and mobile devices.

I’ll say one thing about the Morpheus theme that any prospective buyers reading this should take into account – those pretty sliders and parallaxes on the demo are super complex to put together in the backend, however it is all done using the GUI rather than getting dirty with code. The layers are handled by multiple new content types, so just be wary it’s not as simple as other featured/content sliders. I find Layer Slider much easier to use compared to how the built in parallax builder is configured, and if all you need is a slider then you have the option to keep it simple.

It is pretty heavy on the shortcode use so the parallax component doesn’t really make it a WordPress theme for beginners.

 


We hope these WordPress theme design trends give you some inspiration for your own website design.

Mr WordPress
Mr WordPress
WordPress Mechanic at Host Asean Ltd.
We use WordPress every day, and so do many of our customers. We post tips, tricks and WordPress guides on the HostAsean blog to help you put together your own powerful WordPress based website. Subscribe for the latest updates or check back regularly.

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