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The Future of Design: What Trends Will We See in 2022?

Design trends come and go with lightning speed. What may have been innovative two years ago could be seen as stale today, or what was once thought to be played-out could be making a comeback in today's landscape. The important thing, as design leaders, is that we understand those trends and determine what the best fit is for our clients. In our ever-evolving world, visual design trends can be influenced by many factors including mobile, social media, digital services and technology innovations. Here, we'll take a closer look at the likely trends for 2022 that could shape how we work and create this year and beyond.

3D Elements and Microinteractions

3D elements have been around for years but with new technologies that make rendering 3D textures on web pages much easier, it is inevitable this trend will become more popular. The same can be said about microinteractions, which create subtle moments of user trigged actions that provide a visual change to make the user experience more engaging. In 2022, we see more 3D elements and microinteractions being applied across every discipline of design, from user interfaces to illustrations. As technology enhances, we strive to find creative ways to keep the audience's interest without derailing them from their customer journey.

VR and the Metaverse

Though what the Metaverse will actually be is still unclear, in theory, any design that exists in the physical world could live in the virtual world. This can range from booth expos to promotional emails to ecommerce websites and much more. The reality is that people are not going to stop using their phones and devices to find and explore content, so the Metaverse could open new possibilities for designers to help attract new audiences for their clients. We expect to see a leap in the VR space this year with our B2B customers moving toward the Metaverse.

Dark Mode's Rising Usage

Like color gradients, minimalism and flat design, dark mode is becoming a major consideration in the design and development of emails, web apps, and websites. In a survey performed by Thomas Steiner for, more than 80% of participants used dark mode on their devices. As design leaders, we need to adapt to what users are telling us and dark mode is becoming the preference. This means creating visuals that are less exhausting for the eyes in less illuminated rooms. We can achieve this by utilizing lighter tones and avoiding saturated colors that can cause eyestrain. Although dark mode may not be for everyone, the usage and adoptive rates are on the rise – we need to factor it into our content layouts to increase readability and assist in content consumption.

Closed Caption Design

The closed caption phenomenon is obviously not new but absolutely needs to be considered in any current design project that contains video material. In social content, text elements are a must. The vast majority of social video is being consumed without sound, as the viewer is choosing how they want to experience the content. We see closed captions playing an even bigger role in the inclusive design process throughout 2022. In order to have successful video campaigns brands need continue to understand and pay attention to their consumer's behaviors.

These top design trends are currently on the rise and we think they will shape how we work and create for our customers this year and beyond. Staying on top of new software developments, better usability techniques, and improved communications will help our customers be relevant leaders in their industries.


About the author

Greg Wisneski

Creative Design
Greg connects the dots in digital marketing, overseeing the design and production of branding, campaigns, and strategies that succeed. He works closely with staff and vendors to provide creative direction for marketing plans that elevate the benefits of our clients’ services while improving engagement. Greg’s knowledge of UX principles and assets—including wireframes, user flows, and prototypes—complements his design expertise.

About Trellist

Trellist is a professional services firm delivering performance-driven business solutions that are flexible, innovative, and optimized to maximize efficiency and return. The firm consults on, and integrates, data with marketing, design, technology, and digital services for clients at the global, national, and regional level. Trellist utilizes a unique approach to business—from the firm's employee-shared structure, to how it partners with its clients. 


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