5 Major Trends in Web Design for 2024

Written by Coursera Staff • Updated on

Design influences the way we interact and navigate a site. Take note of the major trends in web design in 2024.

[Featured Image] A UX designer sits at their computer and explores the most recent trends in web design.

Globally, over 70 percent of businesses have a website, and around 10,500 websites are created every hour [1]. According to Forbes, the average user takes 0.05 seconds to form their opinion of a website, and this impression is 94 percent related to design. These numbers are staggering—staying up-to-date with the latest trends in web design has never been more important.

Here, we go over the top web design trends in 2024 so you and your organization can continue to engage and delight consumers and stakeholders.

Animation, accessibility, and the abstract. Let’s take a look at the major trends in 2024.

1. Animations and illustrations

Animations have become popular in modern web design. The trend of micro-animations will continue in 2024. They should remain subtle and powerful, bringing the overall experience to life instead of distracting or overwhelming users. Micro-animations can illuminate what’s important on a page, drawing your attention to specific text or images.

Illustrations have begun to replace photography, which aligns with another trend of optimizing website loading speed. Illustrated images tend to load faster because they often have smaller file sizes. There’s creative space for illustrations to convey unique ideas and concepts that photographs cannot. While high-quality illustrations can be expensive, they have massive potential to benefit brands and their bottom lines.

2. Accessibility and inclusivity

It’s no secret that organizations are keen to ensure accessibility and inclusivity at every point of the business, which extends to web design. There’s a shift toward cutting back on special effects that might create surprise or shock, as well as auditing a website’s colors, layout, and navigation to ensure it’s accessible to those with disabilities. 

Further, more than simply a trend, crafting an inclusive web experience drives this cultural movement forward. Inclusive web design ensures a website is usable, culturally sensitive, ethically responsible, intuitive, and age-appropriate. It means curating images that feature people of diverse backgrounds, making core features usable for all, and designing a consistent experience across devices and browsers.

3. Responsive design across devices

A trend that ties with accessibility and inclusivity is developing responsive design for desktop, mobile, and tablet devices. “Thumb-friendly mobile design” refers to making websites navigable with just your thumb. This involves keeping ergonomics in mind to help users reduce strain. How can users reach the menu, select options, and navigate the site with their thumb? Designers can optimize this experience with user research and testing.

Another component of responsive design is speed. According to Google, bounce rates increase by 32 percent when a page takes three seconds to load instead of one [2]. Pages that are heavy with stunning graphics can take longer to load and, therefore, perform worse in search engine results than a simpler design. 

4. Personalized and geo-located content

Geo-location is a trend that will continue in 2024, especially for e-commerce websites. A geo-located website shows different content, language, currency, weather, and news based on the user’s location. Based on this information, websites can further personalize content, such as adjusting layout or colors, or enable push notifications and targeted marketing (such as paid media and social media advertising) to provide discounts and recommendations.

5. Abstract and nostalgic designs

Just like there’s a shift from photography to illustration, the trend in 2024 is to employ abstract designs and tug at heartstrings with nostalgic visuals. Many websites focus on simplicity in design, such as unique lines, two-toned color schemes, and retro-style typography. Textures or art used in web design are increasingly abstract and gradient, opting for sweeping colors and shapes that evoke emotions and memories of the past.  

Web designers emphasize white space alongside the abstract as a nod to minimalism, paring down to the basics. Whether it is a site featuring a sneaker brand, holistic wellness, or a food waste volunteer group, increasing the white space between sections, paragraphs, and imagery creates a balance for the eyes and mind to highlight what’s important.

Start learning web design today

Your journey in web design can begin today. Enroll in Web Design for Everybody: Basics of Web Development & Coding Specialization from the University of Michigan for an introduction to web design basics. You can work on real-life projects and build a responsive and accessible web portfolio using HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript.

Article sources


Forbes. “Top Website Statistics And Trends, https://www.forbes.com/advisor/in/business/software/website-statistics/.” Accessed March 8, 2024. 

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