One of the most popular web design trends taking 2015 by storm is the hero. No, we’re not talking about the public servants who keep us safe at night (though we are grateful for them, of course!) Instead, we are talking about the large intro area at the top of a web page, illustrated by a big graphic or crisp image, and accompanied by minimal text. Sometimes the hero image includes navigational elements. At other times it exists to set the tone or illustrate the service or subject of the site.
Specifically, the 2015 trend is to make these hero images take up the full screen, completely capturing the viewer’s attention. These images can include (but are not limited to) video, sliders, or animation. This wholly artistic trend has influenced Tag Team Design.
Let’s talk briefly about when the hero area works best and when it doesn’t work as well.
WHEN IT WORKS. The hero area/image works well if you have amazing photos or videos that will properly convey your message and fully captivate your audience’s attention. This technique works best for creative companies such as art galleries, architectural firms, music studios, or other innovative companies with something fun to show or share. The hero area is a great way to demonstrate personality or showcase services or work.
WHEN IT DOESN’T WORK. Though it is difficult to say with certainty that something will always or never work, it is safe to make a few assumptions with regard to the hero area of a website. Speaking of this creative design choice, it doesn’t work well when the target audience is older. The hero area can be confusing, especially if the end user is looking for simple or straightforward text or navigational choices. Confusing the audience is the fastest way to repel someone from the site.
TIPS TO USE THE WEB DESIGN CHOICE SUCCESSFULLY
- Be sure you use the highest possible quality photo/video that is web ready. (Web ready matters because a non-web-ready video can slow your website load time and send your audience for the hills.)
- Be sure you post video or images that are quick to digest and not too distracting. We want to capture our audience’s attention in order to have them click to the next page. Overwhelming the viewer will not profit anyone.
- Be sure you pay attention to image colors. A colorful photo, for instance, should be accompanied by simple black or white text.
- Be sure you explore the use of technique. Experiment with font size and type to make sure the text compliments the hero image and is still easy to read.
- Be sure you use ghost buttons to add a subtle call to action that does not take away from the image.
If the trends are any indication, the hero isn’t going away any time soon. Use it to your advantage!
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