Design trends emerge and die every year as more brands look for ways to increase engagement with their customers through design. Now that 2021 is behind us, we can look back at what happened in the UX design space and probably prepare ourselves for trends that will still be relevant in 2022. Whether you are a freelancer or from a large agency, all of us are sure to learn from some of the UX design trends that made waves in 2021.
Top 2021 UX design trends that we can learn from
In the world of UX (user experience) design, it’s safe to say we can anticipate design changes often due to the constant and rapid changes in technology and society. So to help with staying current and relevant, we have compiled some key UX design trends we saw last year, that will most likely impact us in the months ahead for 2022.
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The last two years have seen more people use the internet for work, education, entertainment, and shopping, among others. With the growing use of the internet, businesses must think of the needs their customers have, which means creating websites accessible to people with disabilities.
UX design has already made steps toward optimizing websites for mobile, but the needs of disabled people are yet to be met adequately.
Progress has been made in making more websites accessible, and the industry expects to see more UX designers embrace accessibility to ensure people with disabilities have their needs met through company websites.
Accessible design will include features such as high contrast color combinations, captions for video and audio content, voice input, and gesture recognition technology.
In line with UX design that focuses on accessibility, inclusivity is another UX trend that we saw in 2021 and can expect to see more of in 2022. Companies are hiring UX designers and requiring them to incorporate inclusivity into their designs.
These inclusivity efforts include working with a segment of the population that represents varying viewpoints of society. For instance, companies are moving away from gender-based designs, choosing instead to focus on developing gender-neutral design elements.
The goal of inclusivity in UX design is to ensure that a website or material does not reinforce one specific viewpoint. Society is trying to move away from varying viewpoints to accommodate multiple ones and UX design is moving to accommodate this trend.
Voice User Interface
Voice user interface was a trending UX design tool in 2021, and it is expected to continue dominating the space in 2022. As more people use voice-enabled tech, they will need to interact with interfaces that are easy to use, without outside assistance.
This trend will see speech recognition become more fine-tuned and the experience of working with voice more seamless. Designers will have to think about the customer, their needs, and what a voice user interface can do to meet their needs.
In 2021, digital and print pieces demonstrated an increased inclination to expressive typography. Big and loud typography has become an ongoing trend in web design. Some of the typography trends that we saw in 2021 include:
- Brutalism where designers used straight harsh lines without additional decorative elements. In 2021, we saw a subtle shift in brutalism where designers used softer color palettes to create a softer kind of brutalism.
- Big and bold headlines to make them catchy and prominent on a website
- Outlined fonts
- Broken typography layouts
- Black and white minimalist fonts
- Animated typography
The trends in typography provide variety for customers to choose the type of font that adequately represents their brand and messaging.
3D imagery is a popular trend among UX designers, especially now that it is easier to create 3D objects. We expect this trend to continue being popular in 2022 and beyond.
We will see more animated 3D elements including logos, text, and illustrations on websites. This will be especially important in e-commerce where brands can provide customers with a better view of their products.
Takeaways on UX design trends from last year
UX design keeps evolving as the world around us changes. Some trends may emerge while others build on trends we’ve seen before. For 2022, some of the trends that dominated 2021 will continue to be significant, such as the focus on voice user interface and accessibility UX design.
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