Toronto, ON – 19th September, 2016 – As 2016 is coming to a close, BluEnt has begun strategizing how to continue cultivating innovative customer experiences based on what the future of design holds. To prepare for the exciting year ahead in UX & UI, here are the four key trends and priorities that BluEnt predicts will emerge in 2017.

Widespread use of responsive UX & UI design
Responsive design is by no means a new concept. However, we expect that the growing pressures for businesses to incorporate this aspect of UI into their customer experience will greatly increase the number of responsive websites in 2017, particularly in regards to mobile content.

In recent years, it has been proven by The State of Mobile Publishing that mobile users are 5 times more likely to abandon a site if it’s not optimized for mobile. Furthermore, Google’s latest ranking algorithm now boosts the rankings of sites that work efficiently on mobile as well as desktops.

All this is to say that non-responsive content is a dissatisfying experience for the mobile users who come across it, and progressively difficult for these customers to find in the first place. And according to the Canadian market research organization Catalyst, “With 68% smartphone penetration, mobile [optimization] is no longer an option but a necessity.”

To respond to this trend, BluEnt will continue to not only offer state-of-the art responsive web design, but also progress the usability of our services. We are dedicated to creating clean, contemporary design and flow that will stand out from the crowd amidst the influx of optimized sites that emerge in the coming year.

Furthermore, we will commit to producing the most cost-effective solutions to ensure that responsive UX & UI is easily accessible to clients looking to make the switch from traditional websites without any down time.

Haptic technology
Haptic technology refers to incorporating the sense of touch in a user interface. This trend was popularized in the 1970’s when the video game company Sega used the technology in a motorbike arcade game, in which the user’s handlebars would vibrate in response to virtual collisions.

Today, haptic feedback is most commonly found in virtual keyboards that simulate the pressure felt when pressing down on a physical key. BluEnt anticipates that in 2017, its potential will exceed such simple manifestations.

We are already seeing this trend beginning to take effect as 2016 comes to a close. A good example of haptic technology used in app design is Breathe for Apple Watch, which lightly taps your wrist to guide you through relaxing breathing exercises through touch alone.

This is a whole new sensory dimension of customer experience that will have a tremendous impact on wireframe & prototype designing in the near future, though not necessarily in so central a role as the one it occupies in Breathe for Apple Watch. We expect it to be incorporated as an innovative element of the user experience through the form of subtle sales cues, engagement encouragement, and incentives to remain or open up a page.

As we move into the new year, haptic technology is an area that BluEnt will explore as we perpetually expand the capabilities of our UX & UI services for mobile and tablet. More broadly, we will strive towards crafting the richest possible customer experience through tactile and other sensory information. As virtual reality devices inch ever closer to becoming a mainstream commodity, our development experts will work towards forming increasingly immersive experiences that delve into augmented ways of interacting and engaging with technology in 2017.

Putting content strategy first
In August, Facebook revealed that it would update its algorithm to reduce clickbait articles in users’ newsfeeds. “People have told us they like seeing authentic stories the most,” reported Alex Peysakhovich, Research Scientist.

This insight has been a recurring theme prevalent throughout the internet over the course of 2016, and so it’s no surprise that content marketers will be making the necessary changes come 2017.

UX is not about how much traffic your website generates, but about how engaging the experience is for the user and how much revenue that engagement can generate in turn. A fundamental part of that experience is in the content you produce, which must be a genuine and helpful encounter for the customers you reach.

At BluEnt, we pride ourselves on the breadth of our services, which include Search Engine Optimization and Content Management alongside Responsive UX & UI. Going into the new year, we will ensure that these three services are informed by one another to create an online presence for our clients that benefits both from maximum visibility as well as positive customer experiences.

Start-to-finish customer experience
As it stands, UX & UI have been largely focused on user onboarding and the product experience – after all, these are the pivotal points leading customers towards a purchase. However, recently there has been a move towards enhancing user off-boarding instead. Based on our research and experience, BluEnt forecasts that this trend will only grow over the course of 2017.

According to Kahneman’s Peak End Theory, when we recall past experiences, we have a tendency to base our evaluations on the most intense part and how they concluded. Thus, though the moments spent immediately after a sale and leaving a website do not directly result in sales, they have the most impact on users’ overall opinion of the site and its owner.

This is a valuable insight that BluEnt will integrate into future projects. Our first concern is to produce holistic customer experiences that are not only effortless and intuitive to use, but also leave a lasting positive impression for all visitors.

The customers of 2017 want richer and wider user experiences, and as UX & UI designers, it is our responsibility to create them. So what are you waiting for? Give us a call and turn the future of design into today’s reality.