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Top 10 Front-end web development trends 2020

Steve Safarowic
January 20, 2020
Last updated on
March 13, 2024

Web development experts and the strategic use of technologies are two of the biggest drivers of business success and customer engagement on digital platforms. To empower their online presence, companies need to hire web developers who are aware of the latest web development environments, tools, frameworks and related practices. 

Since the technological space is incessantly evolving, it is important to keep up with new emerging trends and adopt business-friendly tactics.

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To help you thrive and grow as a company or individual, we have gathered an insightful list of the top 10 front-end web development trends to watch for in 2020.


1. Artificial Intelligence

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Artificial Intelligence has become integral; it is impossible to conclude any discussion on modern digital transformation strategy without its mention. Integrating AI software to improve service quality is the norm these days. Gartner also signifies that artificial intelligence (AI) is going to reach $3.9 trillion in 2022. 

As cognitive AI helps you explicitly understand customer behavior from the gathered data, many big brands have already implemented smart AI to grow business and enhance overall profit, brand dominance, market reputation and visibility.

For instance, Starbucks leverages AI to deliver personalized experiences to their drive-thru customers using their mobile app data. For in-store customers, the technology follows store transaction histories and in-store criteria to display relevant recommendations on the digital menu. Thus, customers receive a most personalized experience just like mobile app customers.

Another suitable example is Babylon by TELUS Health, whose free healthcare mobile app does more than brief online health consultation. The app allows users to monitor specific symptoms, access health records and consult with doctors by fusing AI technology with face-to-face consultations.


2. Trending Programming Languages

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Although the stack of programming languages is expanding, there are a handful that have emerged as the most popular and highly leveraged ones. The legacy language C still leads others while its derivatives C# and Java are being commonly preferred for modern web development. The language itself is quite easy to learn and offers great productivity tools and features.

On the other hand, JavaScript is a mainstay for building front-end structure of 95% of websites. Hence, you better master this widely used web application development language. Also, try to be a pro in applying NPM (Node Package Manager) or Yarn which enables JavaScript developers to share, update and reuse code.

In the world of AI and machine learning development, Python and R have seized the center stage and are in the spotlight. Python especially is the hero of many diverse AI and ML algorithms and Python libraries as it is a long-standing, well-documented standard language.

What is interesting among newly emerged languages is Google's Golang, an open-source programming language that you can use to build websites. See it for yourself and have a test ride by running Go playground.


3. Responsive design

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The concept of Responsive design is not new but is still worshipped as an unbeatable formula to attract more web traffic. Statista declares that the must-have responsive design was mainly accountable for serving 35% of website visitors in 2015. The number of website users turning to mobile devices from tablets or computers gradually increased to 50% in 2017.

Google is also officially rolling out a new update understood as mobile-first indexing which will follow the opposite of what it does now. In this fresh perspective, Google considers mobile website version, and not desktop version of the site, to determine the ranking -- which means it will rank the desktop site on the basis of mobile site performance. Thus, mobile websites are to become the ultimate benchmark in Google rankings. Mobile-responsive websites are something developers need to be prepared for in 2020.


4. Next-generation Website Hosting

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Static web hosting is another noteworthy trend taking firm shape in 2020. To ensure a fast response and excellent performance, it is important to build web infrastructures that live to the expectations of website users. One of the robust and reliable web hosting services gaining its ground in 2020 is Netlify which provides next-generation affordable hosting solutions.

JAMstack websites are also very popular in the world of modern agile web infrastructure development and have positive prospects for rapid web products development in future. Netlify hosting goes best with JAMstack type of websites since it also works in favor of developers who wish to develop at a fast pace.


5. Shifting to adaptable Headless CMS from Traditional CMS

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The liberally used term digital transformation also seems to be sweeping through the CMS system. The bar of user expectations in terms of content is set higher than ever now. Surprisingly, Web explorers are pretty unpredictable and may either turn the game around or down for you. They tend to make quality web content choices and would like you to be prepared for the best in the business. Not being able to fulfill customer expectations can put you in a painful, daunting situation. 

To save yourself from this misery, you can shift to a headless CMS with a content-first approach in mind. The dynamic headless CMS offers more benefits than traditional mainstream CMS: it allows you to deliver bespoke content and is able to adapt to multiple platforms and digital touchpoints. Eventually the content grows more aesthetically lovely, readable and impactful.

Read Also: Role of Software Engineers in Startups

6. Innovative UI for super-limited attention spans

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Due to massive online content, the attention span of an average website visitor is growing narrower than ever, coming down to a maximum of 8 seconds. That is why one needs to be a little thoughtful about shifting the content on an engaging motion user interface. Motion UI is an innovative way to captivate the audience and expand their attention span a little more.

The motion UI works by adjusting and adapting as the website readers scroll down the page, enhancing overall user engagement. From 2020 to 2021, we are likely to come across more websites with motion UI as more developers come forward to embrace the motion UI strategy.


7. Chatbots and customer support

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No wonder chatbots are integrated firmly in almost all online customer service channels, especially for omnichannel retail. AI-based chatbots can automate customer service processes as well as marketing and analytical operations, while saving millions of dollars by reducing human involvement. According to statistics, 57% of consumers appreciate interacting with chatbots for instant resolutions. Due to its ever growing success, SMEs have already adopted chatbots variations such as Amazon Alexa and Apple's Siri along with voicemail robots to better engage with customers. The solution also helps create a unique experience on their most preferable digital touchpoints based on consistent interactions through chat, messages, web applications and voice.

As Gartner predicts, AI robots will take care of 85% of customer interactions for businesses by 2020. Also, of all AI integrated apps, chatbots are going to be the number one application for consumers across all AI integrations in the next five years.


8. Voice search capability

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Having a voice search functionality implemented in a website is a commonly observed demand from today's tech-savvy consumers. Voice search capability is also popular because of people's tendency to consume less time while searching for what they want using in-built web search engines. Being one of the most sought-after marketing trends, voice search queries have grown 35 times more from 2008 to 2016. Voice search engines are so influential that they are used by 55% of teenagers and 40% of adults everyday with 19% of people talking to Siri at least once per day.

Already, 20% of mobile searches are voice searches, and it is said that voice power will drive 50% of search queries by 2020. Voice-activated service in web development is so common that consumers are getting more comfortable using features of Siri, Cortana, Alexa and Google Assistant. Google and Firefox, the world's biggest browsers, also support the voice search feature. As consumers rely on voice search to browse the internet, it is essential for developers to integrate voice search feature with voice recognition API in their website.


9. Progressive Web Applications (PWA)

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Progressive Web Applications are comparatively faster and easier to develop, not to mention they provide an instantly-great user experience. PWA is trending since it looks and feels like an app but is a website in reality. PWAs use unique technology to create an app-like experience in the browsers users use. They can view and access all the information and core features of a typical mobile app without actually downloading one. App users have embraced this genre of apps because it also offers offline capability and synchronized content across multiple platforms.


10. WebAssembly

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WebAssembly is gaining momentum as a next-generation web platform nowadays. WebAssembly is a small, quick binary format that can help develop rapidly performing native-like web applications for gaming, music and media content streaming, video editing, etc. WebAssembly acts as a compilation target for development languages, including JavaScript. However, there is a mythical notion among many developers that WASM is slowly replacing JavaScript. But the truth is that it can be JavaScript's next-gen companion during the development process since developers can leverage it to write client-side apps or high-speed web apps in any given language.

Read Also: How to get a Software Job without a CS Degree

Closing Notes

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The above top 10 frontend development trends will help keep you a step ahead amongst other businesses with a strong online presence. Since technologies play a crucial role in connecting with prospect customers, you must consider implementing the best possible feature set in your websites. If you are one of those enterprises planning to reach your audience faster and better, having a mobile-responsive web presence with excellent chatbot support, modern UI and voice search capabilities will undoubtedly give you a winning edge. Hopefully, these contemporary front-end web development trends will help you achieve your goals in 2020.

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