What Are the 2020-21 UX/UI Design Trends?

Although 2020 is almost over, so we decided to sum up the best design and UX trends. Let’s see what works the best this year and what tools are helpful! Most of them will also be relevant in 2021.

#1 — Animated Illustrations

GIFs have long been ruling the world of digital product design, still, they have greatly evolved. They glue users’ attention, they give us a feeling of a ‘human touch’. When one looks through a list of static images and sees an animation, they pay x2 or even more attention to it. What’s more, product designers can use animation to bring product elements to life and engage people with that. A person will instantly get an answer to the question ‘How does it work?’ and will more likely become your client. There won’t be room for hesitation.



#2 — Microinteractions

We can bet you’ve come across microinteractions in every site or app! A great example is Facebook. Every ‘like’ or ‘share’ is a microinteraction. They are small yet very important, as the whole feature wouldn’t be full without it. 


Think of what small engaging micro features could be added to your product - this will work for sure! Even entertaining elements will bring customers more pleasure when using your app. Finally, it’s up to you to decide whether microinteractions will be part of your gamification strategy or something more basic and serious.


Search icon animation
Search icon microinteraction by Volorf

#3 — Minimalism & Buttonless

Several years ago, people would pay attention to bright and vividly colored apps and websites. In 2020, minimalism takes first place. Stock companies were the first to determine this UX trend. They focus on static nature, high product quality, and sometimes even elitism. Experience shows that minimalistic design with a single button is the best way to lead a user to their final decision. Forget about tons of distracting buttons!


Minimalistic design mobile app
Mono Weather mobile app by David TJ Powell

#4 — Virtual Reality

VR has been trending almost every year since its birth. The gaming industry has evolved from the first Oculus Rifts to the entire VR systems. World-known companies - Microsoft, Sony, and even Facebook — are developing technology now. So, soon there will be a VR boom, and better you be in its epicenter. Though augmented reality is already used in product design, virtual reality is coming soon… 

#5 — Augmented Reality

Brands are extensively using this technology in their promotion. Kids are fond of fairy-tales characters dancing and singing on the screen of a smartphone! The industry is skyrocketing, and even Apple introduced its ARKIT 3 (an AR toolkit for designers and developers). So, everyone has an opportunity to create awesome experiences in the augmented reality dimension.


Designers make it evolve, and soon brands will please their clients with tons of new positive emotions.‍



#6 — Neumorphism

This phenomenon is often called ‘Soft UI’ and originates from two words: ‘New + Skeuomorphism’. This design style is very pleasant and lightweight yet precise and detailed. With much attention to detail, it combines shapes, colors, gradients, shadows, and highlights. This leads to a stylish ‘plastic’ look. Sometimes, you can even think it’s 3D styling. 


Obviously, this style can be opposed to classic flat digital design, still, it’s a mistake. These two ways of styling complement each other in the modern UI.


#7 — Asymmetrical Layouts & Split Screen

Traditions are good but modern times need fresh brave design decisions. This trend started last year and is going to continue now. Asymmetrical layouts and split screens in UI design add dynamic and character to products. They stand out from other designs, people pay more attention to them. What’s more, it’s easier to remember something unusual. 


The good news is that there is an endless variety of asymmetrical design options. Forget dull templates. Unleash your creativity, leave the mainstream far behind. The split-screen gives designers a chance to fit everything into a single screen. This is key for a great desktop layout.


#8 — Storytelling

Content and stories are an integral part of UX/UI design. They make landing pages either masterpieces or senseless yet well-designed sites. 

Storytelling allows brands to convey the sense of their products to the audience in the most creative way. Mix strong copy with exceptional photos or illustrations, attention-grabbing typography, vivid colors, juicy GIFs, and some interactive elements. Set data in a beautiful plot using the best information architecture tips.


By the way, the FlowMapp app allows team members to tell stories with flowcharts. Use this app to tell everyone about your users, their flow, customer journey, and so on.


#9 — Meaningful Value

Meaning has moved to the top of the ‘to-do-list’ of any developer and designer, according to the latest UX trends. The narrative has become as important as emotions and feelings. When digital products get their design, they gain more than just an attractive look to glue customers. It means more than just profit and companies’ wellbeing.


Focus on what your customers value, what they really need. Show how your product helps society solve global issues. Demonstrate your care about customers’ needs.

#10 — Low-key Gradients

Simplification has been trending for the last year, and so it does in 2020. Low-key gradients on the background can be considered part of it. Flashy and bright gradients are being replaced by subtle ones. 


This trend was born in the times of developing the flat design. Since then, users have been fond of dark themes in apps. This is when UX trends 2020 and art meet. No more ‘screaming’ colors in modern design!


Website design trends
Geome website design Tran Mau Tri Tam

#11 — Harmonious Colors

This trend can be called a continuation of the previous one. Minimalistic design implies using calm colors to display harmony. However, perfect 2020 colors don’t need to originate from a single palette. 


Monochromatic color patterns are still very popular among designers and users. Anyway, adding a couple of accent colors to a monochrome palette is always a win. You’ll get a color splash without being too meddling.


Minimalist mobile app UI design
Furniture Product App by Sajon

#12 - Dark Themes

A couple of words was already said about our favorite dark themes. They made quite a stir after the release of the MacOS Mojave update. Even reputable organizations released updates for their software containing dark themes options. For example, you can switch themes on Skype, Telegram, and plenty of other apps. Well, there is no secret — the dark side has always been interesting to users. ;)

#13 — Personalized Content

The more personalized content is the more chances of a positive user decision there are. Some users are loyal to brands and products thanks to personalization. They can set their preferences and make products more convenient. They are ready to pay for that! That’s why personalization is totally worth your time and effort!


When you visit a website and think ‘Wow, that is what I wanted to see’, you will likely explore it or order the goods they sell. This is how personalization works. Still, customized user experience takes tons of developers’ and designers’ time and great financing.


Apple Watch Nike+

#14 — Multi-platform Integration

Compatibility across different devices has never been an outsider among UX trends 2020. Creating a single customer experience design for various platforms is what can skyrocket an app of software. Make users think you care about their desires anytime, anywhere. At home, at the office, in the car, while browsing websites, playing games, reading messages from a tablet before going to sleep. This is a nice way to present you care about user experience design on the web and mobile devices with all screen sizes. Also, pay attention to VUI (voice user interfaces) that is becoming a star of 2020.


#15 — Community Outreach in UX

Online users, as everyone in the real world, tend to gather in communities. Dialogue is switching to the online format. People share their opinions and impressions, negotiate, spread information across the world. And there are no boundaries on the Internet! Reaching out communities with your UX design can result in a tremendous success for the whole business.


Social interactions have become crucial not only for those who visit the online world but for the entire online ecosystem. Search engines, social media, product sites, messaging apps, and so on! Their evolution is based on community needs. So, user experience sometimes can be expanded to the community experience.

Key Takeaways

The modern design must be outstanding, memorable, and strong. Otherwise, your product will be ‘one of many’... And it makes sense, as there are millions of products on the web. To stand out, follow the UX trends mentioned above. They won’t end with the beginning of 2021. On the contrary, they will develop further and evolve. All early movers who use VUI features and other innovations will lead the market in the upcoming decade. Their ROI will be impressive hanks to following UX trends 2020. And you can be one of them! Start using FlowMapp for conveying the sense of your product to the audience right now! ;)

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