13 Top Web Design Trends for 2021


Standing out from the crowd, especially if you are a small business owner is hard. That means that you need to stay on top of the trends in web design even if you are not a designer yourself. Your potential customers visit tons of websites on a daily basis, so making them stay on yours is a tricky job.

The first step you should take is to create a visually appealing and intuitive website. In today’s environment that’s awash with information, your website needs to be intuitive, to communicate a strong message on a first glance.

Let’s explore the web design trends for the upcoming year that will ensure your website is clear and uncluttered, yet still rich in information…and trendy.

Here is our choice of 13 trends in web design that will be noticeable in 2021:

  1. Dark mode
  2. 3D elements
  3. Oversize
  4. Whitespace
  5. Exposed grid
  6. Minimalist navigation
  7. A mixture of photography and graphics
  8. Tailor-made illustrations
  9. Luminous color schemes
  10. Bold fonts
  11. Split-screen content
  12. Overlapping layers
  13. Fullscreen forms

Trend #1 Dark Mode

Dark mode has been around for a while and the predictions are that it will still be present in 2021. The interesting thing is that this trend has a practical beginning. Big brands, such as Instagram, Android, and Apple offer an alternative dark mode as it is easy on the eyes. Today, many other apps and websites offer visitors the option to choose if they want to activate this ultra-modern, yet healthier mode.

Dark backgrounds are praised by designers as well. Why? – They allow other elements to pop-out. Besides, if you are using an OLED/AMOLED screen, the dark mode can significantly save your device’s battery power.

Image source: Dribble

Is there any reason you haven’t still implemented dark mode to your site’s theme?

Trend #2 3D Elements

3D elements fascinated both users and designers for several years now. The reason why they haven’t been around that much is the costly technology behind them. Still, as VR technology is gaining momentum now, our forecasts are that the 3D trend is going to reach its peak in the next moths.

Image source: Dribble

When the designers combine VR and 3D we’ll enjoy some hyper-realistic visuals on our screens! On top of all, users will tend to stay longer on the websites to explore other stunning 3D visuals which will increase the average session duration.

A small warning: one of the main requirements to implement 3D visuals is a high performing website. Make sure you double-check if everything is well optimized before investing in these captivating visuals.

Trend #3 Oversize

Large, oversized, prominent elements will help you to communicate your message clearly and right away. This trend can be applied to just about anything on your website: from enlarged fonts or menu icons to fullscreen images and videos.

Big-size elements are eye-catching and can be a great complement to the overall idea of making your website intuitive as possible. Plus, they look great on small screens.


Well, just don’t go big with too many elements on your website – you don’t want your website to seem overwhelming.

Trend #4 Whitespace

Whitespace (negative space, the blank area between the design elements) can give any page, on any screen a well-adjusted look. Of course, the whitespace doesn’t necessarily have to be white, yet in 2020 many designers have embraced this trend. And it is going to stick around.

Image source: Apple

This trend isn’t that new among designers. The whitespace has always been a design principle, yet today it is larger, noticeable more than ever.
This trend is a great addition to the previously mentioned oversized elements – the combination of these two gives a pristine, fresh, and clean page look.

Trend #5 Exposed Grid

What if we told you that it is trendy to have a UX inspired by operating systems and apps? We beat that you won’t imagine such an appealing design. However, if you take a look at websites that follow the exposed grids trends, you’ll see that their look is contemporary, yet with a humoristic approach.

Image source: Cyberchimps

Rectangles and strokes, or thin lines, divide up our screen into sections, guiding our eyes in the desired reading direction. explained at Wix.

Let’s just add that this trend is great for online skim reading

#6 (More) Minimalist Navigation

Wearable devices are getting more popular each year and that means that web designers need to think smaller. Therefore, the navigation has been simpler over the past years.

Today, we see the rise of ultra-minimalist menus, easy to navigate on basically every device.

Image source: 99designs

In addition, this trend gives websites a very sophisticated look and encourages users to use their imagination. One more trend that goes hand in hand with large-scale elements and minimum text!

#7 A Mixture of Photography and Graphics

A challenge that designers are facing today is how to communicate customized messages with users. The trend of mixing photography and graphics can be a great solution! Photos of real people or products can support the overall branding in a way that will distinguish you from the crowd.

Image source: Shutterstock

Create stunning visuals by overlapping graphics on top of real photos. Or, communicate abstract concepts in a simpler way – just imagine how easy can you explain your finance or tech business by the combo of visuals and photos.

#8 Tailor-made Illustrations

Spice up your story with visuals that fully support your brand’s identity. Surely, you can use some pre-made elements and combine them to craft a unique visual. Or even better – add some emotions and humanity to your web design with hand-drawn elements. Yes, they will be imperfect, but that’s the catch!

Image source: Dribble

Users will appreciate if the see some realness in your design, they will recognize the designer’s heart and soul.

#9 Luminous Color Schemes

In the past years, we’ve seen glowing elements on websites that promote cryptocurrencies or ICOs. However, the trend of these futuristic color schemes is going to be around in 2021 as well.

Image source: Xmoneta

Futuristic color schemes and designs will be on trend next year, continuing with the isometric trend and bringing in colors like blues and purples and hot pink to give designs that futuristic glowing feel. – Adrianne Mesnard, Art Director at 99designs

We are excited to see how will this trend develop especially with the combination of dark mode and minimalistic design. Just imagine those glowing purple shades on a dark background!

#10 Bold fonts

Okay, so we know that bold fonts aren’t something new. But, in 2020 this trend has made a statement. Everybody is competing in grabbing the user’s attention faster, better. Bolded titles can be a great solution.

Image source: FranaFX

Apart from this practical aspect, the trend of big, bold fonts will add a modern feel to any site. Apple is a great example…and we are sure that they know what they’re doing, right?

#11 Split-Screen Content

The captivating trend of breaking the rectangular mold in two (or more) is a great way to convey more ideas. Unleash your creativity, play around with different scroll effects and make each block move at a different pace.

Image source: Inextwebandseo

#12 Overlapping Layers

This trend is a good complement to the previously mentioned split-screen content. This time, try layering up elements to add a 2D effect. Visuals piled on top of each other can be a bit confusing, so don’t forget to use whitespace around the elements to make your composition clear.

Image source: WebINTENSIVE

#13 Fullscreen forms

Online forms are a crucial part of many online businesses: from eCommerce, signing up to a service, webinar, etc. With the trend of big elements comes the popularity of forms displayed on a fullscreen.
In addition, expanding your forms looks more inviting and can result in improving your user experience.

web design trends
Image source: JethSloth

We are eager to see more trends that will 2021 bring us – stay tuned for updates! Be creative, don’t be afraid to experiment, yet if you need a hand with making your website OSM – just send us a quote, no strings attached.

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