As of 2016, estimates suggest that there are close to 1 billion websites in existence. While the average person is likely to visit less than 100 of these in any given month, more websites are launched each day. Each site creator is hopeful that, out of the estimated 3.5 billion or so daily Google queries, a few might land at their door.
The reality, however, is that far more websites close their doors daily than fling them open for the first time. The life of a website can be depressingly brief in the hands of the uniformed..or the uninspired.
In this post, find out about some of the freshest and most popular tools for creative inspiration for web hosting and web design.
UI (User Interface) Patterns
A UI pattern is basically a highly developed web template that can still be customized with near-complete creative freedom. So let’s say there is a site you absolutely love when it comes to organization and flow. But you also want your site to stand on its own two feet, creatively-speaking.
What you need to pull this off (without having to reinvent the wheel) is a UI pattern or template. The sites listed here are considered great places to find handy UI patterns you can customize as needed for your web hosting and web design ideas:
– UI Patterns. Find patterns and learn how to work with them – perfect!
– Welie. If you are craving a simple list of patterns for different functions that you can click to preview, Welie is your go-to site.
– UI Scraps. If you’ve ever heard the phrase “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” you already understand the concept of UI scraps. Now it’s time to go on a treasure hunt of your own!
– Pattern Browser. This site lets you preview different designs in your own browser window – handy when you need to decide in a hurry.
Large & Small Scale Animation
Video, graphics, photos – visual-based content is now known to outperform text-based content by as much as 94 percent.
But when you couple this with compelling animation, you just might finally hit the mighty 100 percent. Whether on a large or a small scale, animation, in the right placement for the right purposes, can close the deal for a site visitor.
Here are some awesome animation creation tools to get your creative juices flowing:
– Animatron. This free tool creates animated banners, graphics and infographics using HTML5.
– Tumult Hype. Tumult Hype offers a free trial to check out all the resources provided to create “smart” animation that effortlessly syncs with small screen devices.
– Mugeda. If you want to venture into the realm of animated games, Mugeda is your go-to tool.
– HTML5 Maker. For those eager to animate without having to master a learning curve first, HTML5 Maker was created with you in mind.
Micro-interactions are so much a part of today’s cutting-edge web design that most visitors will only notice if they are absent. They may not know what is missing, but they likely won’t stick around long enough to find out, either.
Here are a few examples of the types of micro-interactions you may want your web design to offer visitors: sharing or liking a post, rating a product, signing up for site updates.
These tools can help you implement micro-interactions using your own creative web design skills:
– Justinmind. This great tool will support single or multi-finger gestures for your micro-interactions goals.
– POPP. You can take the napkin sketch of your idea and transfer it to a digital prototype format with POPP.
– Marvel. Want to collaborate on a micro-interaction? Marvel gives you the ability to work up a prototype solo or with a group, regardless of geography.
– Proto.io. If your goal for micro-interactions includes encouraging use and sharing of apps, you can use Proto.io to design and launch your app.
– Axure. Axure offers you a coding-free way to design simple, interactive models of micro-interactions, testing your creations with a hand-selected group of users along the way to refine the details.
Responsive Web Design
Even non-webbies have likely happened across this somewhat ubiquitous web term to date. But responsive web design has proven it is here to stay, even digging in its heels against competitors to retain its market-leading position.
Not only is responsive web design fairly essential to Google’s “mobile friendly” 2015 algorithm update, but it is a super-useful tool for keeping page load times short and sweet.
These responsive web design tools can partner up with your creative ideas to deliver fast, responsive site designs:
– Webflow. When designing a site that will be viewed on multiple screen sizes (and what site won’t these days?) Webflow can help you see how the design will look on each size screen.
– Adaptive Images. If you are seeking a tool that can auto-detect the screen size your site visitor is viewing your site from and scale your images accordingly, Adaptive Images may just end up being your main responsive design sidekick.
New and ever more advanced and intuitive tools are being released every day in the digital sphere. These tools can assist, support and optimize for creative web design ideas, but they will never be able to replace your own human creativity.
The key to successful web design is now and always has been the ingenuity to dream up new online experiences to share with visitors. So if you can dream it up, chances are very good you can find the perfect tool to help you bring it to life!