The homepage slider (or carousel) has long been a staple when it comes to a website design. For several years since the move away from Flash, it has been an attractive way to display multiple rotating images, videos, calls to action, and content in an organized and visually pleasing way. The carousels that transition to the next slide automatically are often referred to as sliders, while the one’s that require user navigation are known as carousels.
The problem is that these sliders have become stale, predictable and using them has become the creative equivalent to a Thomas Kinkade painting. What’s worse is people don’t actually even click on them. Only about 1-5% of visitors click on these homepage carousels (source: mightybytes.com). If you want to move in a more creative direction than the now traditional homepage slider above the fold, here are a few suggestions on what to use instead!
1. Keep it minimal
Source: Shure KSM Microphones
Minimalism and clarity are two of the most important characteristics of modern web design, so why not apply that above the fold as well? One solid object against a stark background, silhouettes, or a single powerful call-to-action against a solid color are all options.
2. Use a single large background image
Source: Design Bits
Multiple calls to action can be used against a single background image in a clean and legible way. Or using a filter over a single background image and placing your logo, call to action, icons, content, etc. on top is another way to go!
3. Get back on the grid
Get creative with a design grid above the fold. But don’t go too crazy, or it will end up looking like a Windows 8 phone crashed. If done correctly the tiles, photos and colors can be arranged in a fun way that will engage your viewers.
*Example designs used are not the work of New Wine Web Design.