Article header
Article header

Web Development Trends in 2018

Trends in web development sometimes change faster than they can be implemented. That’s why it is important to be ahead of the game.

Don’t ask what are the trends today, ask what will be the trends tomorrow.

We have gathered the most credible predictions to show you what will be the trends in web development for the next year. If you are about to build or redesign your website, be sure that you are aware of them.

Progressive Web Applications

Progressive Web Apps

The world first heard about progressive web apps in 2015. The next year we met the pioneers of this technology, and in 2018 progressive Web Applications seem to have become the major competitor of native mobile apps.

Progressive web apps (or PWAs) are websites that feel like native mobile apps. Thanks to service workers, they can work offline, delivering an extraordinary user experience.

The users can save the shortcut to the website on their home screen if they use it frequently. As the most information is stored in the cache, the app loads instantly. Service workers run in the background and ensure that the latest information is cached every time the device is connected to the internet. The ability to work without any connection is one of the major advantages of progressive web apps.

PWAs are gaining traction and becoming a true web development trend. Some world’s leading companies prove the efficiency of this technology.

The e-commerce website Flipkart experienced a 70% increase in conversions and tripled the time spent on their site after the launch of the PWA version of the website. And the informational website The Washington Post reported an almostfivefold increase in user engagement.

PWAs have fewer features on iOS devices since the platform doesn’t support service workers. However, Flipkart and The Washington Post have proved that the progressive web apps significantly improve user engagement and conversions on all platforms. The UX of the PWAs plays the key role.

After such inspiring examples, the world awaits the hype around the progressive web applications in 2018. Even though the technology is quite new, its prospects look very promising.

Online customer support

Progressive Web Apps

2016 was the year of chatbots. 2017 is the year of helpful chatbots. Since there are thousands of bots out now, the quality of their services will be the next web development trend.

The prediction is that 85% of all customer interactions will proceed without human assistance till 2020.

A customer service chatbot becomes a must on almost every website. Whether you are selling electronics, crocheted toys or software development services, you should have a chatbot.

The conversational interface has transformed the way businesses interact with their customers. Having a bot on the company's website ensures you are in contact with your client at any time, in any situation.

The customer service chatbot gives the client a feeling of interacting with a human. The bot is smart enough to answer frequently asked questions, to redirect clients to the needed page, to help them to choose the right product and even to proceed with payments. And all this without the round-the-clock customer support department.

In 2018 customers will prefer websites with appropriate online assistance. You can create a customer support department or get a chatbot that will guide a potential client through your website. The second option will allow you to save time and resources, and optimize the working process. So why not to join the hype around chatbots?

Static websites

Static Websites

You definitely remember the concept of a static website from the early years of the World Wide Web. All the first websites on the Internet were static.

But then the era of dynamic websites began.Websites became more functional and easier to update even for people with no technical background. At the same time, the development process became more complicated, as the extended functionality required communication with the server, so backend development got involved. Modern CMSs are the actual dynamic websites

Nowadays, the web is returning to its roots. Static websites are becoming the web development trend of 2018 again. But they have been improved by static site generators which allow combining the advantages of a static website and a CMS. The most popular of them, for example, Hexo, GitBook and Gatsby are written in JavaScript. There is also a huge variety of static site generators written in other programming languages. You can find out more and compare different solutions on the StaticGen website.

There are several reasons why static websites are back. They are faster, safer and cheaper. And they can satisfy the needs of different types of businesses. So, the prediction is obvious: static websites will experience a new reincarnation in 2018.

Single-page websites

Single-page websites

Another web development trend for simplicity is single-page websites. This solution allows putting all the content onto one long scrollable page, removing any clutter.

One-page websites have a bunch of advantages. They don’t challenge the visitor with complex navigation, multi-level menu, and tons of text. The essential information is all on one page. The user only has to scroll to it.

Of course, the use-cases of single-pagers are limited. This type of website will not suit e-commerce projects and blogs. At the same time, businesses can significantly benefit, presenting their services in a simplified and more engaging manner.

When visiting your one-page website the user consumes the information consecutivelyand doesn’t jump over the pages in the random order. You have certain control over the way he learns more about your company. Such websites are great for mobile use.

This type of website is definitely more user-friendly. At the same time, it allows to reduce the costs of the website: design is cheaper, development is cheaper, hosting is cheaper.

The single-pagers usually attract with extraordinary design, and powerful accents which bring an impressive increase in conversion. That’s why single page apps will gain traction in 2018.

Push notifications for websites

Push notifications for websites

Mobile apps notifications turned out to be a highly efficient means of user re-engagement. And recently this idea has been implemented for websites and is becoming new web development trend.

The workflow looks quite simple: the user visits a website and is offered to enable push notifications. The user will then be notified of any changes on the website (like a new blog post or a private message), even after he has closed the tab with that website.

The major benefit of such a technology is obvious - you can keep the user engaged without big efforts.

In some cases, push notifications can be a cheaper alternative toa mobile app. They deliver new information instantly and redirect the user to the website to find out more.

Push notifications beat emails, SMS and social media in providing up-to-date information. They are quick, come on time, and don’t require any complicated actions. They are just user-friendly.

Since push-notifications are just making the first steps in user engagement, you have a chance to become the pioneer of this technology in 2018.

Flash to HTML

Flash to HTML

In 2010 Steve Jobs published his thoughts on Flash and its future. It became clear that this technology won’t last long. Jobs’ statement about the death of Flash is quite popular for around two years now when YouTube defaulted to HTML5 players.

The major weakness of this technology is the incompatibility with mobile devices. An enormous amount of traffic is lost just because of the outdated technology.

If you still use Flash on your website, 2017 is the final call for you to change this. The best alternative is the well-known HTML5.

HTML5-based videos and games will reach a wider audience. And the general tendency is: HTML5 is becoming the universal format for all types of digital content.

It’s no use being sentimental about your old Flash website. Trust us, the HTML5 one will be much cooler and correspond with the latest web development trends.

Motion UI

Motion UI

Simplicity is the trend in recent years. This is also true for web design. Users are already tired of crazy GIFs and flashing ads, that’s why websites with moderate design get more appreciation.

At the same time, sophisticated motion UI is becoming more popular. Animations allow to add more style and enable you to distinguish your website from the thousands of others with the static UI.

There are several ways to add some life to your minimalistic website. Consider page header transitions, nice hovers, animated charts, background animations and modular scrolling. These and many otherelements may make your web presence much more enjoyable for users. The true artwork!

JavaScript - Angular 2 and Angular 4

AngularJS

JavaScript is the number one programming language for web applications. With dozens of JS-related technologies already existing and still in development, it will even strengthen its positions. The highly anticipated release of the last years Angular 2 becomes highly appreciated in modern web development.

We met Angular 2 in 2016. It is a complete rewrite of the AngularJS framework. The main advantages are improved modularity, app architecture scalability, improved dependencies injections, etc.

What to expect from Angular 2? Compared to its predecessor, it is faster and simpler in structure. Moreover, it follows the mobile-first approach, which is highly important in 2018. Many solutions are ready to use right out ofthe box, which reduces the development time.

Angular 2 recommends the use of TypeScript. This combination is by now the most productive way to develop medium and large web applications compatible with any modern web browser or mobile platform.

Angular 4 appeared in March 2017. This is not a complete rewrite of the second version, so they are quite similar. Angular 4 is faster and consumes less space, reducing the size of the generated code to around 60%. The animation package has been removed fromthe core and put into a separate package, which is an advantage for those who don’t use animation in their projects.

According to the roadmap, it is planned to release patch versions weekly with minorreleases following every several months. The next major release is planned for September 2017 - we are expecting the new Angular 5.0.0. We can predict that the changes will also influence the web development trends for the nearest future. So, don’t forget to follow the Angular Blog to stay tuned for the freshest updates. Or subscribe to our blog - we won’t miss a chance to write about this major update of one of our favourite frontend frameworks.

PHP 7.x - Laravel 5.x

Laravel

PHP remains the popular choice for website backend development. This programming language has improved its positions even further after the release of version 7.x. The latest update of the PHP framework Laravel 5.x is a recognized web development trend in 2018.

Laravel is the most popular open-source PHP web framework. All the benefits of it can be fully experienced on dynamic websites with complicated backend.

Laravel offers ready solutions for complex tasks. The variety of existing packages makes the development process faster and more reliable. Regular updates ensure that the framework complies with the current needs of the website owners and the requirements of the time.

The current stable version is Laravel 5.5, released in July 2017. Major updates occur every fewmonths.

This open-source framework has a large developer community, so you will never have to deal with the problems in your web app on your own.

If you want to find out more about Laravel along with other backend frameworks, don’t miss our article.

Conclusion

Nowadays having a website is more important for the company than having an office.

Being ahead of web development trends means attractingnew customers, satisfying existing customers and encouraging older customers to return.

Are you just about to create or redesign your website? Contact us to get it done according to the last word in web development.

Liked this article? Sign up to be notified of new blog posts.