WordPress Design and Development Trends in 2022
There’s no doubt that WordPress has come a long way to reach the top of the Content Management System market. Since it was founded in 2003, it has committed to working with enterprises to help even the most non-technical people get their content online.
Since trends and innovations drive the future, we set out to discover the latest WordPress design and development trends and how they’re changing the website development landscape.
The Future of WordPress: What Is New in WordPress Web Development
WordPress has solidified its position as the leading CMS in the world. With over 70 million posts put up by users every month, the platform continues to innovate and invite leading developers and technologies into the ecosystem every year.
So, what is the future of WordPress? Where is the CMS taking us, what can we expect to see in the coming years, and generally, what are the latest trends in WordPress to keep an eye on?
Augmented and Virtual Reality
Only recently have we seen virtual reality integrated into websites and blogs. As one of the newest WordPress development trends, augmented and virtual reality capabilities are already fully authorized on the platform, giving sites the ability to present a 360-degree view of photos and videos.
Augmented reality technology allows site visitors to place a device/display between them and the real world. The image presented on the device is altered. An example would be Snapchat or Instagram filters.
On the other hand, virtual reality simulates objects and experiences that site visitors interact with. An example would be a virtual dinner furniture set that users can interact with through zooming in, 360-degree views, and alterations (changing color, configuration, object count, and more).
Operations like eCommerce, entertainment, events, and other visually-delivered or -advertised businesses can use not just virtual reality on WordPress but augmented reality as well.
Presentation is a big part of selling products and ideas online, so adding a complete view of what’s advertised presents exciting new ways for enterprises to show their wares and for customers to experience them.
Though it may feel mysterious, the world of neural networks functions on concepts similar to AI. The idea of neural networks, machine learning, and AI uses real data to train models that then use the data to accelerate work, thus increasing productivity, making predictions based on historical data, and more.
It’s not just productivity that does well but the customer service department. AI, ML, and neural networks continue to get better at interacting with customers in a meaningful way. Most of the tasks that can be automated will fall under the purview of neural networks, reducing time and effort, and monotony.
A business can create its neural network, provided they have data to train it. One of the obstacles in making a neural network is that it requires time to teach itself what it’s programmed to learn. You’ve probably heard about matches between humans and AI (complex and finely tuned neural networks) where they obliterate the human players entirely in games like Go and Dota 2.
Those neural networks learn the game from scratch, repeating moves until they find the best ones and reliably replicate flawless gameplay during challenges. The same concept applies to neural networks that can be taught to perform advanced searches for faster discovery, personalizing shopping experiences to cater to unique individuals, and making advanced predictions or forecasts.
While the blockchain is normally associated with cryptocurrencies, it has carved out a niche in applications that require security and transparency. Even though digital currencies underpinned by blockchains tend to fluctuate wildly in value, the stabler coins are still perceived well among users.
Blockchain is one of the newest WordPress trends which can be integrated into stores as a plugin to take Bitcoin payments.
In addition to that, Web3 is gaining ground as consumers try to take back control of the internet through decentralization, which will prevent corporations, who essentially control Web 2 (our current internet structure), from harvesting data or forcing policies on users who often do not have a choice.
The blockchain is now the driving force behind the NFT (non-fungible tokens) craze, which has seen all sorts of creative minds generate NFTs that sell for astronomical amounts of money.
Over on WordPress, an emerging use for the immutable nature of blockchain transactions has come about in the form of certificates of authenticities, guarantees, and warranties, which inspire customer confidence.
Suffice to say that blockchain technology isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Businesses have to be prepared for the opportunities it presents and the changes it may impose.
Voice search is not just growing in popularity but a preferred search method for many users, making it a relatively new but developing trend on WordPress. Not only are the search assistant interfaces easy to use, but they can be leveraged for shopping tasks.
Businesses on WordPress can use the voice search features via plugins to allow their customers to use their voice search-capable tools like smart speakers. Because of the rising popularity of voice search, businesses have to tweak their SEO strategies to optimize for it.
Some of the practices used by voice search SEO specialists to gain prominence include using long-tail keywords, optimizing to gain featured snippets, focusing on Frequently Asked Questions, implementing local SEO best strategies, optimizing pages to load faster, and optimizing for mobile-first.
All these practices position a business’s optimized content to be most likely chosen by the voice assistant to reply to a customer’s query.
One-Click Demo Import
WordPress has brought its users the capability to import themes in one click. With that capability, users save time and money. The one-click demo import feature allows a shop to import all menus, posts, categories, posts, comments, and more.
Using intuitive designs, your website can be adapted into the new theme perfectly, without any tweaks. One-click imports are part of a wider trend in the industry to make development options accessible to everyone by providing low- or no-code solutions.
With this simple plugin, the manual labor required to import elements, menus, and other related data to a new template/theme is reduced to clicking on the ‘One Click Demo Import,’ which does all the work for you.
Latest WordPress Design Trends
Along with the evolving and improving features, web design trends WordPress users get are changing too. The website design trends change with time, which is why we can guess which decade a website design trend was in fashion.
Here are the latest design-side WordPress trends in 2022:
Building a website from scratch or a theme/template has never been easier. One of the features that have made it easy is eliminating the need for users to code everything for themselves. They can now build unique sites from templates they can populate with features and elements that are simply dragged and dropped to where they are needed.
The time it takes to build the site is reduced drastically without sacrificing visual and design uniqueness. Think of it as building with Legos but for a website.
Designing for small mobile devices screens is more constrained than designing for PC-sized devices. It is known that more people are shopping on their mobile devices, which is why optimizing for them is crucial in capturing a large chunk of the market.
Mobile-first design starts creating the site for mobile users and progresses to tablets and desktop versions. Mobile internet usage surpassed desktop usage in 2016, with more people spending their time on mobile ends.
Smartphone sales overtook PC sales a decade ago, which is why the trend has shifted to developing for mobile-first or using alternatives like Progressive Web Apps to cater to every screen size and device type.
Also known as negative space, white space refers to the unused space between website elements. It is the space between columns, illustrations, text blocks, margins, and gutters. White space lends a site a spacious feeling, allowing the design to attract attention to specific elements while avoiding the cluttered, frenetic look early website designs tended to have.
White spaces emphasize the elements shown, allowing the website to get its message across and guide a site visitor on a visual journey they can follow with ease. With increased content legibility, site visitors interact with elements more.
It is also much easier to highlight your call-to-action, keep a tidy look (which keeps people on a site longer), and create balance and harmony so elements can work together.
Minimalism is by no means the peak of design. It has its fans and works well on some sites and not too well on others. Minimalist web design focuses on removing any unnecessary element on a website. It is about making an impact with as little as reasonable.
When properly executed, minimalist web designs are beautiful, make site responsiveness easy to implement, faster-loading (given the drastically reduced element count), draw attention to the most important messages presented and enhance the navigation’s intuitiveness.
The tricky part of the minimalist design has to do with developers delivering an unfinished product whose idea hasn’t been thought through or removing important elements that should be left in. To achieve functional minimalism, developers usually focus on:
- Bright and/or contrasting colors while striking a balance to avoid distracting visitors.
- The creative use of Negative space (also known as white space)
- Beautiful font choices (creative typography)
- Retaining important navigation elements
Minimalism is here to stay. However, every element added or removed needs to be thought through thoroughly to make it work for you. Striking a balance between the elements that denote minimalism and those your specific website requires to be useful is part of the development process.