Website design inspiration : 10 great resources to help you design better websites

website design inspiration: 10 great resources

Website design inspiration : 10 great resources to help you design better websites

Website design inspiration for your next website project can come from anywhere, but if you find yourself stuck or if you need a list of resources that can help you speed up the process, I’m going to share 10 resources that can help you achieve just that!

First of all, I must insist on the fact that these resources are some of the resources I use most nowadays, but of course there are many more that you may prefer, like Pinterest, Behance, and a ton more.

I just wanted to share some of the ones that have helped me get good directions for my projects, in a limited amount of time. Because your enemy when you’re trying to stay on track, is distraction. And for that reason, social media is not always the best way to get inspired AND at the same time stay focused.

DISCLAIMER: I often review / link to products & services that I love and think you may find of interest. When you purchase a product/service through one of my link, I receive a commission, which helps me producing free content (you don’t pay anything extra!).

Website design inspiration

Second point, and this is very important, I’m not talking about resources to steal other people’s work. I’m talking about resources that can help giving you a direction for your next website design inspiration.

Which fonts combo works nicely together?
Which color palette would have the most impact?
Will you go for round buttons, or square?
Which animations could enhance the storytelling?
You get the idea.

Now, without further ado, let’s dive in!

10. Call To Idea

website design inspiration: call to idea

The first resource for website design inspiration we’ll check today is called Call To Idea.

The concept is simple, Call to idea helps you find inspiration for specific User Interface elements, and types of content.

So for example, if you’re in lack of inspiration for how a 404 page for your next project should look, then just go to the Call to idea website, click on the 404 section and you’ll be presented with a gallery of screenshots for that specific category.

While I wish there were more entries, it can definitely help, especially when you’re at the sketching stage or between the sketching stage and more advanced wireframing.

For me, it helps me validate the direction I want to take for a specific section or portion of content.

9. FromNorthUp

website design inspiration : from north up

The next in line for website design inspiration is From North Up. Now this one is different from many of the resources presented here today, because it doesn’t strictly concern web design.

What you’ll find on this website are design inspiration roundups, that of course incluse web design inspiration but not only as it brings inspiration from a wide variety of creative fields.

So you’ll get inspiration from web, print, packaging and even ancient art.

And it’s kind of refreshing, because web design, is part of the wider design array, and it’s good to get inspiration from outside the web design eco-system, especially if you want to stand out, and not just look like anybody else.

So having this kind of curated content can greatly improve your designs, whether for client work, or even if you’re just trying to make your business website different from your competition.

8. Webflow

website design inspiration : webflow

For our next website design inspiration, let’s take a look at the webflow showcase gallery.
As it says, this resources showcases websites made with Webflow , a tool helping you to design, build and launch websites visually.

You don’t get that many search options here, but I’ve included it in this resources lists because, just like with the previous resource, it helps to find inspiration outside the eco-system you’re used to.

I’m used to WordPress, and even though I usually create my own designs, it’s refreshing to get outside of the WordPress eco-system and see what the competition is doing. Because even though I love WordPress, I believe competition is good and can inspire you to go beyond what our own limitation beliefs tell us.

What I love mainly about Webflow is the subtle animations that seem to come out of the box, and the focus on great design.

So definitely check it out if you are in the same situation and need to get out of your comfort zone.

7. Httpster

website design inspiration : httpster

Our next website design inspiration is httpster.

Httpster is a famous web design focused inspiration resource and what I like about it is that it’s minimal, straight to the point, and neutral enough so that I can focus on getting a feel for what I’m looking for without being distracted.

You can use filter to search via Type or via Style, although the search feature is hidden in the off-canvas navigation and to be honest I didn’t see it right away so at the beginning I thought there were no search options. But once you know it’s there, you won’t forget it.

Also, something I noticed at the same time, is the timeline feature, that is laid vertically on the right handside of the screen when you’re browsing their website.

And this is quite handy because, once you start frequently browsing these inspiration websites, you will notice that often times the same websites come up, and the fact that the navigation is usually sequential (so either you see that there are X number of pages of content and you click from page to page, or you find a “load more” button that will load new resources each time you click).

So on httpster, it helps that you can just decide to browse by the timeline and check for example the resources from a year ago, because you feel that it’s still relevant to today’s design.

6. Web Design Inspiration

website design inspiration : webdesign inspiration

Number 6 of this list of website design inspiration resources is … Webdesign-Inspiration.

The name says it all, and like httpster, Web Design Inspiration focuses on beautiful websites.

You can filter the results by website type, industry, styles and by colors, which is pretty handy if you start a project and you already know the color palette.

But what makes this website different is the “Editor’s pick“. Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, so in other terms it’s all about subjectivity, and what the editor offers you here, is a view through his own subjectivity. Now it’s up to you to decide whether you like it or not, but personally I found many designs that resonate with my own design philosophy, so having a massive website inspiration resource pre-filtered is definitely a gain of time for me.

Doesn’t prevent me to dig deeper when the time allows, but, I like having that option when I have limited time for research and I just want to sort through the best of the best.

5. The best designs

website design inspiration the best designs

Our next website design inspiration resource on the list is a website called “The Best Designs“.

Here, you will find a slightly different approach if you look at the navigation, because beyond browsing by designs you can also browse:

– by designers: this will give you a list of designers and agencies, give you their location, as well as the average budgets they work with

– by themes: this will give you a list of WordPress themes that you can filter by style or by search. Now initially I didn’t see the filters as they are hidden behind a link, and personally I think it should be visible upfront. But that’s just my opinion.

– by collections: here you will find a list of collections like “Travel & Tourism” websites, “Minimal portfolios” websites and so on. And I love this kind of lists, because it allows you to quickly assess curated lists of designs relevant to your specific projects. And by the way as a tip, you can also just google something like “best interior design wordpress themes” and you will find such lists. But back to “The Best Designs” website, I swish there were more lists, may be more in the future.

– now there is also a feature to get workspace inspiration but this is not the topic of today, although I plan to do a video in the future about the importance of having a great workspace whether you are an agency or a freelancer working from home.

4. Css Winner

website design inspiration : css winner

For our next website design inspiration, let’s take a look at Css Winner.

Css Winner is a website where people vote for the best websites, and similar to a resource that we’ll review later in this list, websites that make it to the first filter enter the Nominees category, and after the votes are closed, the best ones make it to the Awards category when they’re voted Site of the day.

The votes take into account design, functionality, usability, and content.

Css Winner has been around since 2010 with more than 12000 entries at the time of writing this article, so they kind of know what they’re talking about.

Now, there are many other resources like CSS Winner, and of course, some of the websites showcased will be the same than on those other platforms, but once again, the game here is to have several sources of inspiration, so that once in a while you land on that hidden gem that will outline some elements that will sparkle that idea, that in turn will bring the missing ingredient in the digital alchemy you are trying to craft for your project.

And what I like about Css Winner, is that when you’re browsing through the archive, the thumbnails are larger, which helps me better assess that first impression that is sooooo important in web design.

3. SiteInspire

website design inspiration : site inspire

The next website in our website design inspiration list is SiteInspire, and contrary to the previous resource, what I don’t like about this website, is the tiny thumbnails due to narrow grid used on the page. The website is nice and clean though, but I’m strictly speaking about a subjective practical standpoint, since I prefer larger thumbnails to scan through such archives for inspiration.

But that’s just my personal opinion.

Now, what I love about SiteInspire, and that’s what is really important, is the quality of the curated content.

I love minimal design, maybe because usually minimal design last longer, and there is a lot of minimal design resources on that website, and beyond minimalism, generally speaking there are a lot of great and gorgeous design entries.

Once again, it should resonate with the type of design you’re after, but if you love clean and minimal design, SiteInspire is a great source of inspiration.

2. Awwwards

website design inspiration : awwwards

Awwwards is one of the most famous website in the site inspiration category. Even the big brands are competing here, and usually you can definitely rely on Awwwards when it comes to trends in web design.

Even though sometimes I feel that many of the websites, although beautiful, would have little interest in real life scenarios, such as a beautiful website with a ton of 3D interaction for a mom and pops grocery store for example, I still believe it’s an outstanding resource for staying in touch with the latest trends in UI/UX design that will influence upcoming trends in the wider market.

It’s a bit like the fashion world. If you go to a fashion show, and you’re John Doe or Jane Doe, you don’t really see yourself wearing a hybrid alien-plumber outfit in the next 30 days, but may be, next year, when H&M launches a collection with some of the new trends, you may end up buying and wearing it clothes that portray scaled down trends that were featured at the fashion show because since then, it has become the norm.

1. Themeforest

website design inspiration : themeforest

The last resource of this list about website design inspiration, is Themeforest, and depending on your situation you may want to use this resource as a source of inspiration or as a source for finding a design that is already crafted.

For this article, we’re going to focus on the first option, and consider Themeforest as a search engine to find web design inspiration.

Once again, we’re not talking about just copying the design that someone spent hours crafting, we’re talking about finding a direction and elements that can help you create a digital alchemy for your project, that someone might get inspired from later the line.

So with that spirit in mind, if you are looking for general inspiration, you can just hover over the Themeforest main categories, and for each category you will find a page with the most popular items.

And if you’re looking for something specific, you can just create on the corresponding categories, or just type in relevant keywords in the search engine.

You can also filter per platform, like WordPress, Sketch, PSD templates, and so on, but if we’re looking at this from the inspiration angle, I wouldn’t worry about the platform, I would just focus on find great design inspiration.

Don’t limit yourself

And a word about this, that can actually be applied to the other resources in this list: you shouldn’t focus specifically on just one category. For example, if you’re looking for inspiration for an Interior Design website, of course you can start by checking resources made specifically for interior design, but don’t limit yourself to that: you may find the ultimate inspiration on an architecture design, or on an airline website design, or art gallery template.

See those themes and templates are build with specific pictures and subjects in mind, so that it’s easier for their creators to market and sell to a specific audience, but if you just change the images, and the wording, then the context changes.

So don’t limit yourself, keep an open mind and focus on your project’s main goals. What perception do you want to convey? What problems are you trying to solve? Which audience are you trying to serve?

Make these a priority and you will become a master at using inspiration sources the smart way.

So, I hope that this post introduced you to new sources inspiration for your next project and that you found some value in it.

Now question of the day. Which are your favourite resources that you’d like to share with the world? Let me know in the comments !

If you liked the companion video, please give it a thumbs up, as it really helps growing this channel and if you know someone that could benefit from it please share it now, because let’s face it, there are so many things to do in a day that if you don’t do it now you’ll probably forget.

Now if you want to brand, market and grow your business it in the Digital Age make sure you subscribe and smash the notification bell, so that you never miss your share of digital alchemy, and if you are interested in tips, tools, services and case studies that can help you grow your business online, make sure you subscribe to my email newsletter.
So I hope to see you in the next video, and in the meantime, do you know what time it is? I think you do, it’s time to invest in your success!

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