by Bernadett Toth on December 10, 2020

WordPress Design Trends in 2021

wordpress design trend

WordPress design trends are constantly changing, and are always popular trends that you can encounter on the sites. Web developers and designers want the visitors to spend more time on their website so they care about the look of the page. They need to create good-looking and eye-catching designs but don’t forget the content is also important.

I’ve collected 10+1 WordPress Design trends which you can encounter in 2021 and they can be also a great inspiration if you are creating your website now.

WordPress Design options

Before I start with the trends, I would like to talk about the WordPress design options. In WordPress, you can choose from default WordPress themes like Twenty Twenty, or you can choose a theme to your liking.

WordPress has customizing options for the themes where you can customize the default colors or the fonts. The theme can also put options there like setting a header image, or a background video. If you want to customize only one page or post, you can do that with the default Gutenberg editor. There are plugins which are compatible with Gutenberg, and you can create blocks, or give more design options for the blocks.

WordPress design options

WordPress Themes

In my opinion, there are 3 types of themes available in WordPress if we focus on the design. A basic theme, where you can choose from layouts, has its own widgets and you can find all design options in one place in the WordPress editor. You can set the look of the page and posts, and can also create a front page. The second type is a theme that comes with a visual builder. It allows you tons of options that you can choose from and you can design your page as you have imagined.

The third type is the themes that are created to work well with page builders. These themes also have their own design settings and in a lot of cases have their own widgets that work inside the page builders. Of course, each theme can and should work without any other plugins, but there are a lot of them that offer to use third party plugins, and you can use all of their features with them.

If you want separate designs for each page, then you can consider choosing a theme that work well with the most popular page builders and create your pages there.

Which are the best tools for WordPress design?

A web designer always uses a 3rd party tool like PhotoShop or Sketch. But a great design is not just great colors or images, you should care about the content, too. There are 5 steps that you can take care of when designing a website or a part of the site. Also, a designer should plan a design which the developer can implement. They need to know the trends, the tools, and all of the options which can be used.

Today is the page builder period of WordPress. More and more WordPress websites have been built with a page builder or with a visual builder. The WordPress themes also care about the page builders, and have optimizations for it or create their own builder. With a page builder or visual builder, you can create whole websites with drag and drop without any coding skills. Let me mention my 3 favorite visual builders.

Elementor

The most used page builder is Elementor in WordPress. Elementor has 5+ million active installs and a lot of plugins and extensions. There is a free and a paid version available, you can start with pre-made templates, or create your WordPress design from a sketch.

Elementor

Divi

Divi is a great theme with a built-in page builder, and lots of WordPress users decide to create their website with Divi. This premium theme has a lot of design options, extensions, and tools that you can use to create your unique website. It follows the latest trends and always has more and more tools available which can cheer up your design.

Smart Slider 3

Smart Slider 3 is the best visual builder of WordPress in which you can create stunning sliders and blocks. This plugin has a lot of design options which you can use, you can easily achieve the layout you want. The drag and drop builder helps you to put elements where you want, it is responsive, and you can easily publish it.

Smart Slider 3 Logo
The new way to build a Slider
Next generation visual editor, customizable animations & effects, and access to hundreads of premade templates.

10+1 WordPress design trends

I’ve collected 10+1 design trends which you mostly meet on WordPress pages. If you want some inspiration, take a look at the examples, and build your own design using these trends.

1. Broken grid layouts

One of the most used WordPress design trends is the broken grid layout. Overlapping elements and asymmetrical designs are loved on the web. This kind of layout cheers up the page and breaks the monotony of a site. However, broken grids aren’t the best solution for every website, but if you want to create a personal and original look, you can try to create a layout like this.

Breaking the standard layouts makes the impression that the site isn’t traditional and doesn’t follow strict rules. It is a modern look, so your site can stand out from the crowd.

Broken grid layout

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2. Vibrant colors, high saturation

Today the bold, vibrant colors and high saturations are the winners. The colors are very important, they can determine the whole page, and has a big impact on people’s emotions. Vibrant colors catch the eye and give a good feeling. WordPress designers love this trend, too.

Many premium themes have a focus on color. It isn’t easy to find matching colors, but if you don’t have an idea, you can get some inspiration from websites that gives color palette for inspiration like Flat UI Colors, Material palette or Colorhunt.

Vibrant colors in full page portfolio

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3. Illustrations

One of today’s coolest trends uses illustration on the header or footer. Illustrations make the website more personal and can tell a story with the images. The key is to find an illustration that matches what your site is about. Illustrations can be used in a lot of ways. They can give a feeling, show a movement, an action or a style. Marketing agencies love to use people with graphs and numbers because it can give a professionality of the page.

Illustrations in header

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4. Headings in the background

Heading in the background in Security Block

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I’m really sure you have seen headings which are in backgrounds. Not every design element should be stunning and be in the front or need a focus. These headings aren’t lost in the background, they can be rather a unified message for the visitors. They can focus on the most important parts of your design, but this heading makes the message whole.

5. Mobile-friendly designs

Nowadays it is a basic and needed trend to create a mobile-friendly design. Designers should focus on mobile devices and developers should achieve a responsive design. The best is if you have planned a separate design for mobile and desktop. The texts should be legible so it is a used trend to break the grids into new lines.

6. Slider

Sliders are one of the most popular design elements of WordPress. Designers, theme developers and also clients love them. With a slider you can highlight your product or company, showing more content in one place, and also they catch the visitors’ attention. You should care about the autoplaying slider because they can be annoying so make sure if you autoplay them, set an appropriate duration.

Layer slider example

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7. Hero image

When you browse on the WordPress sites, you can meet a hero image almost in every site. In a lot of cases, you can change the images in the theme options, but you can use a plugin like Smart Slider to create it. Making the first impression is incredibly important and the hero images are the first thing you can see.

Put some text on the image, but don’t burn in on it. Also, you can use CTA-s which the visitors can navigate to other pages of your site.

Hero image template

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8. Split screens

Creating a modern and good looking website can be a challenge if you aren’t a professional designer. It’s not easy to create a website and use the latest trend, and you should also care about the content. The split screens break your layout into 2 sections and maximize the screen space. Each side of the screen is used, and with a great animation, it can look really great.

Split screen WordPress design

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9. Parallax

With the parallax effect, you can give your page a design depth. There are more parallax effects which you can encounter on the coolest websites. The most used is the parallax in the background. In this case, there is a big image in the background, and while you are scrolling, you can see another part of it.

Also, you can use a parallax effect on a text, or any smaller element, and you can move them by scrolling or move it away with your mouse. This can give a great visual impression.

Example for parallax in a Portfolio page

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10. Creative Typography

Typography is one of the most important design tools. In web design, a well-chosen font can give your site another look. Also, a great trend is to highlight a text or put animation on it. Typewriter effects or highlighted headings highlight your most important part of your content, and the animations make your website live.

Highlighted heading in a full width slider

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+1 One page websites

Nowadays social media is the focus of a lot of companies. But if you want to make your company more professional, then you will need a website. WordPress is a great tool to create websites, and if you use a page builder, you can build your website without coding knowledge. One-page websites are becoming more popular, they can be done with minimal effort, but your clients can find the most important information about your page. Pay attention to using fitting blocks, colors and typography.

wedding one page

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Final Thoughts

Using trends can be a good decision if you want to create a modern website, but don’t forget, trends are constantly changing. Also, you should care about the content and SEO. Search engines can find you if you have quality content, but the users will stay on your page if it’s interesting for them. Using animations and effects can attract the eye but don’t use too much, take care of the harmony. I hope you have enjoyed the examples and got the inspiration for your next project.

Bernadett Toth

About Author

I’m Bernadett Toth and I’m a member of Nextend‘s support team.
I have two dogs, in my free time I teaching them. Besides that I often ride a bike, watching movies or reading.