Sometimes, certain websites just stand out. They may be traditional and sophisticated, or highly unusual and visionary. What makes them different from the rest? The differentiating factors usually include the combinations of standard website elements mixed with a heavy dose of ingenuity.
If you want to create amazing user experiences (UX) but you’re fresh out of novel ideas, we have some inspiration for you. Below are 10 websites featuring exciting web designs.
#1: Ice and Sky
Prepare to be drawn into a different world from the moment you hit Ice and Sky’s landing page. The comic book style drawings have a gripping effect, and they help build the site’s story about scientific expeditions and their findings. Navigation flows easily, and mixed media helps keep the UX journey from getting stale.
#2: Stores and Goods
Even though this site isn’t written in English, it’s easy to see what’s happening on the pages. In fact, it flies in the face of convention when it comes to ecommerce platforms.
The home page is basically an instant store front, and a convenient hamburger menu allows you to move around to the site’s stores and magazine at will. It’s a very no-nonsense website peppered with stunning professional imagery, but it’s still fast-loading.
As soon as you land on Inside Abbey Road, you’re prompted to put on headphones or turn up the sound. That’s because an automatic video begins, explaining the mission and vision behind the site.
From that point, you can freely move through the pages, discovering more about the Beatles’ studio. Icons are used as place markers and innovative navigation tools, increasing the site’s creative course.
#4: Jomor Design
This website puts a heavy emphasis on unusual colors integrated with snappy, concise text. The end result is a trip through the mind of the designer, brought forth by visual and textual navigation cues.
The black-and-gray color scheme is striking in its simplicity and effectiveness.
#5: Mikiya Kobayashi
Graphics are used brilliantly in the Mikiya Kobayashi site, adding texture and movement to the overall design. The professionalism and upscale nature of the user experience lets you know immediately if this is a website for your needs.
White, clean space is also used effectively throughout the webpages, training visitors’ eyes in exactly the right directions.
#6: Big Cartel
It can be tough to get parallax sites right, and Big Cartel is one that does. Its scroll-down homepage allows for fast navigation, and a streamlined experience mimics mobile design on traditional-sized laptop and desktop screens.
By adding media messaging, Big Cartel increases the relationship between visitor and company, too.
Online magazines aren’t usually heralded for innovative web design, but Woven is unique in its category. By making use of “empty” space, the website seems much less cluttered and frenetic than most article-heavy sites. There’s a definite connection with the artistry of the design, not just the content that the design promotes.
Not sure how to become a storytelling web designer? Joho’s will change the way you feel about navigation, web design, and video. It’s a mesmerizing look into how vision can alter your perspective.
The only note is that it does take a little getting used to. This site is not what you will expect, and it openly flaunts all the trusted rules of web design.
#9: Killing Kennedy
National Geographic describes their website for Killing Kennedy as an “experience.” That’s probably an understatement.
This website has a style that echoes videos and displays used by museums to explain historical occurrences to visitors. It’s part novel, part video, and all irresistible.
#10: Los Angeles Times
Most news media websites have a focus on content, content, and more content. This leaves little room for interesting web design.
However, instead of a basic framework, the Los Angeles Times manages to mix it up a little. Their site is clean, and it’s very easy to navigate for a website dedicated to real-time news and up-to-the-minute reports.
Where Does Your Website Fit in?
You don’t have to mimic any of these sites, but they are great choices if you want to seek out good, innovative, and imaginative web design practices. Browsing them will help you think more broadly about the options you have as a designing professional.