Maintaining effective websites means not only making them look good but also ensuring they function in ways that support a brand’s marketing and sales goal. That goal is often achieved by incorporating new web design and development technologies as they are developed to boost website capabilities.
Four leading-edge technologies are impacting the present and future of web design and development — virtual and augmented reality, cybersecurity, blockchain and motion UI. Here’s a brief overview of each, including why they are relevant, best practices and future predictions.
4 Leading-Edge Technologies Impacting Web Design and Development
1. VR, AR and MR: Creating Immersive Experiences
These futuristic technologies are capable of changing the way websites interact. VR (virtual reality) provides a complete immersion experience that shuts out the physical world. AR (augmented reality) adds digital elements to live views, often by using a smartphone camera. MR (mixed reality) combines elements of both, allowing real-world and digital objects to interact.
Why Use VR, AR and MR in Web Design and Development?
There are a few key ways these technologies add value:
- Easy content creation. While the mass production of headsets is making it easier for consumers to access VR content on the web, the increasing availability of open-source libraries is making it easier to create that content. Even novice developers can use advanced technologies to quickly and easily build new VR, AR and MR experiences.
- Browser adoption. Rather than needing a headset and app, big-name web browsers are working to support WebVR, the open standard for VR. Web visitors will be able to click a button and start interacting with VR content without added steps.
- New possibilities. Businesses can expand their content options, such as providing virtual tours, conference access and virtual spaces to gather content.
VR, AR and MR Best Practices
Leveraging these technologies opens up new opportunities, in particular for enhanced user experiences:
- Inject emotion. Playing to consumers’ emotions is a popular marketing tactic, and immersive environments provide opportunities to leverage this advantage.
- Live-action UX. WebVR can transport users to places and experiences they might not be able to enjoy in real life.
Future Use Predictions
While still in their infancy, the immersive environments created with these three technologies have companies thinking about the future. Facebook, Microsoft, Google and others have deeply invested in the development. It won’t be long before both the hardware and software become available for mainstream use.
2. Cybersecurity: Creating Security-Focused Websites
The more information you collect from users, the better you can tailor customer experiences. But the data must be collected in an ethical way and then protected from breach risks. As a result, cybersecurity is poised to remain a dominant trend in web development.
Why Use Cybersecurity in Web Design and Development?
Data security and privacy concerns have filtered into every facet of the site-building process, from design to development. Websites are now obligated to build consumer privacy principles into all projects and to document the processes along the way. The goal must be to determine how to collect and use data to provide the most personal experiences to prospects and customers, while also protecting their data. By building data security into a website’s foundation, organizations can create sites that are both practical and secure.
Cybersecurity Best Practices
When deciding on the most effective way to collect and use customer data in a privacy-conscious manner, web designers and developers should consider the following fundamental principles:
- Security. All data collected must be secured and protected end-to-end.
- Pre-emptive. Privacy must be integrated into the architecture of the website from the beginning rather than included as an afterthought.
- Privacy by default. Website visitors should not be required to take any conscious actions to protect their online privacy.
- Transparency. Standards of data security and user privacy should be visible and accessible.
Future Use Predictions
Adopting an open, transparent and integrated approach to data security in web design and development will not only improve a website’s effectiveness and help companies avoid the risks of noncompliance with privacy regulations, but also help organizations move toward healthier digital cultures that deliver consumer trust and mutual respect.
3. Blockchain Technology: Creating Better Transactions
Blockchain is a leading-edge technology that, simply stated, is a set of blocks (public computing powers) used to process efficient, secured and fast peer-to-peer transactions in ways that eliminate the need for intermediaries. It has surpassed its original purpose of processing cryptocurrency transactions to improving transaction processing in any industry.
Why Use Blockchain in Web Design and Development?
Blockchain technology offers website design and development numerous benefits including:
- Identity protection. One of the main reasons for the popularity of blockchain is the way it protects the identities of people involved in transactions because the blocks are used to check security, not people’s identities.
- Intermediary bypass. The traditional banking system is modeled on the system of intermediary-centric transactions, with banking institutions serving as the go-between. Blockchain eliminates the go-between, which speeds up transactions.
- Secure data. When blockchain is integrated into website development, users don’t have to worry about data breaches because the cryptography feature of the blockchain protects their data.
Blockchain Best Practices
The opportunities blockchain brings to web development are endless, and include these examples:
- Smarter predictions. Merchant websites can predict the future of customer wants based on their purchase histories stored within blocks. Businesses can use this information to structure how a website will interact with particular customers during their next visits.
- Increase interactivity. Blockchain capabilities allow companies to create engaging versus static websites.
- Safer transactions. Blocks ensure transaction details are not accessible to hackers.
Future Use Predictions
The success of blockchain in keeping data safe and processing faster transactions will make the technology popular with website designers and developers. Along with security and efficiency, faster transactions can help businesses eliminate unneeded bureaucracies and paperwork that add to transaction costs and risks.
4. Motion UI: Creating Movement
Motion UI is used to build fully responsive web designs and mobile applications, providing designers and developers with the ability to create animation and movement within websites and apps. Motion UI provides the ability to instill life in a website in a variety of ways, including page header transitions, hovers, animated charts, background animations and modular scrolling.
Why Use Motion UI in Web Design and Development?
Motion UI delivers several advantages, including these:
- Focus users’ attention. With motion UI, brands can draw more attention to critical elements in apps and websites.
- Improve content access. Motion UI elements can help users access the exact information they need by pointing them in the right location.
- Decrease bounce rate. By helping customers to have more fun on a website, brands can capture their attention.
- Increased conversions. When motion UI is appropriately implemented, it can do wonders for usability and conversion rates on a page.
Motion UI Best Practices
Here are a few ideas on how to incorporate motion UI:
- Capture user attention. Use motion UI to welcome users onto a page and capture their attention so they’ll stay longer.
- Animate the scroll. This can help to make the scroll feel more natural and engaging.
- Power micro-interactions. Add everything from animated toggles, switches and buttons to help simplify and enhance the customer journey.
Future Use Predictions
Although motion UI is still evolving, many front-end developers are already excited about what it means to the future of web application development. The growing preference among web users for intuitive motion UI will drive the popularity of motion UI in the coming year