Apr 14, 2020

Your guide to UI/UX design: trends to look out for in 2020

Articles, Blog

Written by Jason Grant

First of all, what does UI and UX stand for?

UI stands for User-interface: the way a user interacts with an application or a website through the appearance of display screens.

UX stands for User-experience: the process used to create products that provide meaningful and relevant experiences to users. This involves the design of the entire process of acquiring and integrating the product including branding, design, usability and function.

The main difference between the two is that UI is a series of screens, pages, and visual elements, such as buttons and icons, that enable a person to interact with a product or service. UX, on the other hand, is the internal experience that a person has as they interact with every aspect of a company’s products and services.

What are the main goals of a UI/UX designer?

In short, a UI/UX designer’s goal is to create a positive sum of emotions and perceptions for the user’s experience when interacting with a designed product, website or software. It is all about creating a positive response and meeting the user’s needs so that the user will stay longer and return often.

Now that we have that covered, let’s move into the UI/UX design trends to watch out for.

1) Visual storytelling

Custom UI graphics have opened up to a wider perspective to visual storytelling. More websites and mobile apps turn to specially designed characters who tell a story to set up a fun atmosphere that corresponds to the mood, tone, and voice of the platform. Characters help make the interactions on the platform more human-like by setting strong visual associations with the real world and making the page or screens feel more dynamic and lively.

2) Minimalistic navigation

“You don’t need more screen space, you just need less stuff.”

Minimalism in UI is a user-friendly trend. Applied wisely, it helps users to see the core elements of the interface and makes user journey intuitive and purposeful. Moreover, minimalist interfaces usually look sophisticated and uncluttered bringing further satisfaction as one of the core factors of UX success.

Minimalism is one of the most effective ways of adding elegance and marking out the core elements for your design. 


3) The rise of the “business designer”

“A business designer has the head of a business person, the heart of a designer, and the ability to understand and communicate across the full lifecycle of a product”.

Business designers are very human-centered and innovative which helps them succeed out there in the real world. They use strategies, analysis, and financial modeling as generative design tools to help organizations turn their design ideas into businesses with long-term viability.

The trend here is that business-minded people are learning and embracing the power of design-thinking, whilst designers are now preferably studying business instead of code.

Our in-house UI/UX design team at 7 Peaks Software work heavily on branding, testing, research, UI design and more. Read more about our design services here.

4) Photography + Graphics

A really hot UI/UX design trend here is overlapping graphics onto real images. It is a perfect way to customize images and add extra personality to your web design through showing:

  • Custom images such as showcasing your team members and clients to add extra personality and credibility to your design
  • Eye-catching graphics and colors which makes your images stand out further

This mixing technique allows you to unleash creativity, implement some really fabulous designs and also helps develop your brand personality too.

5) The use of 3D

3D graphics and animation aren’t newcomers to UI design. Their frequency has increased in recent years across multiple product categories. Another common example is the 360-degree product view that has become popular on eCommerce sites.

If a UI design needs to be particularly eye-catching, 3D graphics are an excellent way to accomplish that. Animation adds to the visual appeal. While these effects are more time-consuming than 2D versions and require a specialized skill set, they’re worth the extra resources in cases where they add to the overall user experience.

6) Dark Modes

Apps and webpages with the “dark mode” in the background have heavily increased in popularity. Along with a cool appearance, the main goal of darker themes is to minimize digital eye strain; which is the pressure that your eyes have when looking at a digital screen such as your smartphone or laptop. 

You may have noticed that Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, Reddit now offer their apps to be used in a dark mode theme to help reduce eyestrain – especially during night time when your eyes are most exposed to digital eye strain.

Other reasons why dark-themes are trending is due to the following points:

  • It has a neat, modern look
  • It can highlight other design elements better
  • It can save device battery power
  • It reduces eye strain in darker conditions

Many applications now provide visitors with the ability to choose when to activate the dark mode. For example, Apple users can schedule times to change their device appearance automatically. You can pick the “Sunset to Sunrise” option or set a certain time to perform the transition.

7) Higher demand for UI/UX professionals

Companies are now devoting much more attention and resources to design; resulting in more bigger design teams around the world than ever before. As design teams grow each year, it only means that there will be even more demand for UI/UX designers who will thrive in an increasingly-integrated product development experience.

Here are some examples of in-demand UI/UX designer requirements right now:

  • Create impressive UI for websites, applications and other digital solutions
  • Use industry design tools such as adobe creative suite, Sketch and Invision
  • Attend or run briefing and feedback sessions, take notes and collect requirements
  • Participate in client workshops to gain insight and understanding of projects.
  • Actively collaborate with peers in design led discussion
  • Analyse and collect research based on quantitative and qualitative data.
  • Incorporate research and learning into design solutions with valid reasons
  • Confidently present work internally and to client stakeholders

We at 7 Peaks Software are always look for creative designers to join our team. To find out more, visit our careers page here.

 Conclusion: UI/UX is the future of digital design

The best UI/UX design trends are the ones that visually appeal whilst improving the overall experience and satisfaction of a digital product. The trends covered above will continue to evolve in 2020 and beyond.

As larger brands adopt these UI/UX design trends, they will evolve into higher standards and become part of the digital landscape. This evolution is already happening with the trends mentioned above including dark themes and visual storytelling.

Do you need help with the UI/UX design of your application or webpage? Contact us below to see how we can help you.

“Design creates culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future.”

– Robert L. Peters

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7 Peaks Software

The PARQ (West Wing), Unit 8-13, 7th Floor,
88 Ratchadaphisek Road, Khlong Toei, Bangkok 10110

+66 2026 3292

7 Peaks Software

The PARQ (West Wing)
7th Floor, Unit 8-13,
102 Rama IV Road,
Klong Toei, Bangkok 10110