A company may release a product that works exactly as designed and is flawless and reliable. Still, if it’s difficult for customers to use, it will languish at the bottom of the sales charts and never get the love it deserves. The same can be said if the product fails to inspire people or offer them a pleasant experience. That’s why UX and UI are so important.
This article reviews the top UI UX design trends in 2023 and predicts what’s in store for 2024. But before we get to the heart of the matter, let’s review what UX and UI are.
UI is short for “user interface” and covers all aspects of the product that the customer directly interacts with. Regarding a website or app, the UI deals with the visual, audial, and interactive elements, such as buttons, images, sounds, video, drop-down menus, nav bars, links, etc. If the client reads, watches, listens, clicks, and interacts with it in any way, that’s UI.
On the other hand, UX is short for “user experience” and deals with the customer’s entire experience when using the product. UX includes the interface mentioned above and how the customer feels when they use the product. UX includes customer service, bells and whistles, warranties, promotions, tech support, etc. Any element of the product or service that can contribute to a positive mood for the customer is part of UX.
An oft-used analogy references a new car. The UI would include the dashboard, gas, brake pedals, and all the readouts. Those are the elements the driver directly interacts with to operate or interface with the vehicle. The UX would include the maintenance plan, buyer’s rebate, warranty, car interior, entertainment and climate control systems, etc.
So, UI is a sub-category of UX. All UI is UX, but all UX is not UI. Clear?
Now that we have established our definitions let’s look at the top UI design trends in 2023.
Also Read: A 2023 Guide to UX UI Design Companies
Top UI Design Trends of 2023
- Larger font size and a more immersive experience. What do we mean by a more immersive experience? We mean that websites are becoming cleaner, displaying only the vital, relevant information the customer needs, foregoing clogging pages with needless text. Additionally, the text is getting larger, which makes for easier reading. This trend also includes increased use of capital and bold text.
- VR and AR. The concept of “try before you buy” is a solid strategy that lets the customer give the product a test spin before committing to a purchase. More companies (e.g., IKEA and L’Oreal) are turning to VR and AR to let customers see how the products look and work without leaving the comfort of their homes.
- Say goodbye to parallax scrolling. Parallax scrolling is a web design feature where the website’s background moves slower than the foreground, resulting in a 3D effect as users scroll down the website pages, creating a more immersive browsing experience and adding a sense of depth. Many organizations use parallax scrolling when it’s necessary to call a visitor’s attention to a glut of information. However, many websites are doing away with parallax scrolling.
- Buttonless user interfaces. Wait, aren’t buttons an essential part of UI? Well, they were, but not anymore. Many UIs, especially mobile UIs, are turning to tap, slide, and swipe gestures.
- Incorporating generative AI into the design process. You just knew that AI would figure into this list somewhere, right? AI is everywhere. Generative AI describes deep-learning models that generate high-quality images, text, and other content based on the data the models were trained on.
- Making full use of the card UI component. Card components are flexible containers of information used to display almost any information set (e.g., images, product previews, blog posts, videos, instruction steps, tasks, etc.). Card components can effectively organize interface information and enhance the user experience when incorporated correctly.
- Less is more. “Minimalism” is the UI design watchword of the year. Check out how YouTube has changed its UI to a sleek, simple black and grayscale scheme, providing users with a seamless user experience between themes of light and dark.
- Light mode/dark mode. Some users prefer more light than others. Other users work in low-light conditions or are visually impaired. User interfaces are increasingly letting users choose between light and dark modes.
Top UX Design Trends 2023
- Personalizing the product. Personalization involves creating a personalized user experience based on customer behavior and browsing habits. Algorithms are being increasingly used to personalize individual user accounts so that no two are exactly alike, reflecting the diversity of the customer.
- Mass migration from Adobe XD to Figma. Adobe is working on its $20 billion acquisition of Figma, and the former realizes that Figma has Adobe XD beat in areas like prototyping and collaboration. So, if this acquisition happens, expect more users to move from Adobe XD to Figma.
- Creating values through qualitative UX research. Qualitative research collects and analyzes non-numerical data (e.g., video, text, and audio) to better understand opinions, concepts, or experiences. Qualitative research gathers in-depth insights into a problem, potentially generating new ideas for research. Qualitative research is becoming more critical than quantitative research, which relies on numbers, logic, and detailed, convergent reasoning.
- Incorporating AR into our everyday lives. Augmented reality has become more widely used in everyday life than before. For example, AR is used in Instagram when visitors use the filters, in iOS’s Measure app to automatically measure a person’s height, or in Snapchat to create Snapchat lenses. Thus, we can expect to see a wider adoption of AR technology in more apps. Augmented reality has become an increasingly effective tool for improving the apps’ user experiences by significantly advancing features and functionalities.
- Enhanced cross-platform experiences. Cross-platform applications are familiar, but many organizations have been slow to provide seamless user experiences across multiple devices, such as desktop vs. mobile or tablet. Businesses that want to remain competitive must make services and features accessible to all customers, whether they’re mobile or desktop users.
- Accessibility is becoming a legal requirement. When discussing user experiences, we cannot exclude people with disabilities or older people. The members of the European Union have adopted the European Accessibility Act into law, establishing accessibility standards for products and services like ATMs, computers, operating systems, banking services, smartphones, and e-books. Could other nations be far behind? After all, greater accessibility means more customers can use the services and products, which means a healthier bottom line.
We’ve covered the best UI and UX design trends for 2023, but what does the future hold in store?
Also Read: What is UX UI Design? A Beginner’s Guide
What’s In Store for the Future of UI and UX?
Keep an eye out for these five UI UX design trends.
- AI-generated content. We’re already seeing AI creating content. AI uses machine learning algorithms to create content that adapts to users’ preferences and needs.
- Advanced cursor functions and interactions. Cursors have been evolving lately thanks to programs like Figma that facilitate complexity in UX design. Expect to see an increased variety of cursor shapes and sizes, incorporating animation and even allowing cursors to conduct actions previously only made using UI inputs.
- Personalized experiences. Personalization will continue to play a vital part in UX design, curating more meaningful customer experiences, creating a total package for users, and targeting a greater field of potential customers.
- Greater responsive design. Every year, more new devices are released, which usually means new screen sizes. UI/UX designers must keep pace with these new releases and ensure their UIs can adapt to fit any size screen or browser space.
- Enter the metaverse. The metaverse is a virtual space that users can interact with in real time, and it has been gaining increased traction in the world of UX design. Metaverse UX is increasingly blurring the line between the virtual and physical worlds using augmented and virtual reality technologies. These technologies allow users to fully immerse themselves in the metaverse and interact with avatars and virtual objects as if they were real. We will also see greater personalization of the metaverse experience, with users customizing their avatars and their environments, letting users express their identity and personality in new, creative ways.
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