Design trends to keep an eye on in 2021

Gibson Toombs

September 24, 2021

10 min read

The eCommerce landscape has changed a lot over the past year. With the COVID-19 pandemic spawning more online shoppers than ever before, brands are being forced to rethink and retool their eCommerce marketing and sales strategies.

As we make our predictions for 2021, one thing is for certain: commerce will never go back to the way it was before. New technologies will arise, consumer trends will evolve, and merchants will discover new ways to enhance their customer experience.

To get an idea of what eCommerce businesses should be paying attention to in 2021, we turned to the experts here at Codal. We asked our UX/UI designers to give us their thoughts on which trends will dominate the eCommerce industry over the next year.


“In the age of COVID-19, how can we interact with public interfaces using little to no touching? Definitely a new challenge.”

Ben Domhoff, Senior UX Designer

With the increase in public health concerns due to COVID-19, fewer consumers are willing to make purchases on digital kiosks commonly displayed in malls, retail stores, airport kiosks, fast food restaurants, etc. In fact, a recent survey by Ultraleap found that 73% of US consumers believe public touchscreens are unhygienic.


“My mind goes to how most mobile conversion rates are below desktop, but most users are shopping on mobile devices. Mobile has been a ‘trend’ for a very long time now, but I’m not sure all eCommerce sites have great mobile experiences yet. There are also increasingly different ways to pay (Apple Pay, Amazon Pay, PayPal, financing apps like Affirm), so finding a way to make that experience less disjointed would be great. What Ben said about COVID-19 made me think about how much information store locators on eCommerce sites need to accommodate. They’re like mini websites for each store now, they all have different announcements, instructions, features, so I think a lot of clients are looking to improve that cross over experience with BOPIS.”

Shannon Sajkowski, UX Designer

In the past five years, mobile commerce growth has increased by an annual average of 33.8%. Is your customer experience optimized for smartphones, smartwatches, and tablets? If not, you could be missing out on some serious revenue.  


“3D experiences are definitely something you’re starting to see more of. It seems like bigger companies are starting to embrace them and play with how they can implement them. I don’t know much about the technical implementation side, but what I had read before talked about some advancements in frameworks that allow computers to actually handle them pretty well, which has always been an issue in the past.”

Rob DeSimone, UX/UI Designer

The use of 3D and VR/AR technology to create more immersive customer experiences is rapidly gaining popularity among eCommerce brands, since it allows customers to view products online as if they are right there in front of them. Take this 3D product page by Adidas for example. With 61% of consumers saying they prefer retailers with AR experiences, it’s not hard to imagine these technologies quickly becoming a staple in digital commerce.

“In terms of pure visual design, it’s really clear to me that 3D illustrations are here to stay, and I’m all for it. There’s always a pendulum effect with design and after swinging so far to one end of the spectrum with flat design, there’s a fun and natural counter exploration of dimension now. Also, there are so many interesting softwares being developed these days that it creates these fascinating micro-experiences for consumers. The barrier to entry in terms of using 3D/AR/VR has been reduced to almost nothing, and it’s allowing companies of every size to customize design experiences for people.”

Kyle Skidmore, UX/UI Designer


If you’re an eCommerce business seeking to leverage new technologies, maintain a competitive edge, and keep up with consumer trends, we would love to chat with you.

Codal is a web development and UX/UI design agency that specializes in eCommerce. As we do with all of our clients, we’ll work with your team to create a superior customer experience that reduces bounce rate, improves user engagement, boosts conversions, and of course, increases revenue.

Ready to take your eCommerce marketing and sales strategy to the next level in 2021? Get in touch with Codal today!

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