The Most Prominent Digital Marketing Design Trends in 2021

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Trends and Changes in Digital Marketing Design

Designing for Digital Marketing: Trends in 2021

August 2, 2021
6 minutes


Want to know more about the digital marketing design trends of this year? Keep reading to discover our favorite graphic design trends and tips that will improve your marketing game.

Things on the internet happen quickly. Changes are quick, and before you know it, something is popular, trendy, and catchy. From web design to email marketing, digital marketing assets are way, different from, say, two years ago.

Whether you’re a small business owner doing your own marketing, a digital marketing designer looking for the latest trends, or a marketer looking to improve conversion rates, here are a few ideas on how to improve your marketing with changes in graphic design.


The inclusion of minorities and people of different backgrounds is essential in marketing today, especially in social media posts.

In recent years, we’ve seen groups fighting for minorities’ rights, as well as the necessity to reflect diversity and multiculturalism. There is usually at least one movement trending, from Black Lives Matter to Me Too, indigenous climate activists, and Women’s marches.

Taking the hype train is typically reckless and inconsiderate. However, utilizing graphic design to represent various individuals and create visual appeal is far more responsible long-term. Consider how frequently we see people of color, same-sex couples, and other “progressive” imagery in today’s ads and design.

These tendencies in valuing variety and supporting freedom, liberty, and equality for all individuals should also be reflected in the design. It indeed isn’t a strategy that will directly increase conversions or raise customer engagement. Still, making it possible for some customers to see themselves represented in your marketing efforts will help nurture relationships. It also gives them a better experience through the customer journey.

diversity 1.jpg Tubik Studio and Yaroslava Yatsuba diversity 2.jpg Alex Valentina


Sorry for the bad news people, but the planet is doing horribly, and we all should do our best to help. Plenty of customers and target audience members are passionate about environmentalism and sustainability. If your brand does its portion in this fight, you can reflect that with your digital design in social media marketing.

sustainable 1.jpg Evgeny Boltachev sustainable 2.jpg Alisa S

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Natural elements

We also saw a lot of herbal and floral graphics, as well as greenery and natural materials, in the production of daily things last year. Because individuals have recently felt cut off from nature and vegetation, layering and natural light are popular in photography.

As a result, we now tend to over compromise and provide what we lack. You might not be able to create an augmented reality project that mimics the great outdoors, but providing design that can fill in the lack of greenery is something.

That’s why you’ll find herbs and flowers in patterns and pictures, as well as natural color schemes in advertisements and social media postings. Many individuals have taken to gardening, tending to their plants, and living a more organic and clean lifestyle, therefore packaging and advertising should also reflect this.

nature 1.jpg nature 2.jpg teo bichinashvili and Lusine Nerkararyan


In more than a year of inability to hold photoshoots, we slowly saw more and more illustrations take the place of the (until then) omnipresent stock photo.

Slowly, marketing campaigns and content marketing started filling empty places with illustrations, data visualizations and other graphic assets. Most visuals today can be produced with artistic skill and zero human interaction.

Open floor plans and home offices

Unsurprisingly, we see more open floor plans in graphic portrayals and rooms with more streams of air and natural ventilation, in visual design trends.

People having their remote workplace is also common, so instead of the classic picture of a team meeting, a person with a headset in front of a laptop isn’t uncommon.

Subconsciously or not, seeing people in cramped spaces and no distance between them creates a panicky reaction in people these days, and we have corona to thank. So, in the near future, we’ll be seeing a lot of spaces, photos, advertisements and illustrations where people have plenty of space between them.

home office 1.jpg Nidhi Shah

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Optimism and positivity

After more than a year of being locked in and living in constant fear, it’s not surprising that people lack sunshine, color, and a positive kick. Although we took the pandemic with us in 2021, things are moving forward, and there is hope that parts of the world will slowly be going back to normal. That hope will also be translated into graphic design and art as well.

Illustrator Michelle Solomon, when questioned by Creative Boom about this trend, said: "2021 will be all about finding ways to be positive despite challenges, in contrast to the darker vibes of 2020. We all need uplifting art and design at this point!".

From creative and playful typography to brighter color palettes, and illustration that puts a smile and dynamic energy into viewers, we can easily expect to see these trends in the year to come.

positivity 1.jpg Emily Eldridge positivity 2.jpg Milica Golubovic

Empty lines

Simplistic illustration and minimalism are still popular and will keep being a style you see a lot on social media and advertising.

This type of design is slightly easier to produce than hyper-detailed illustrations and photo manipulation. So it makes sense why marketing designers turn to the empty line style to kick-start production too.

Apart from illustrations, empty lines are also prevalent in animation and motion graphics.

empty lines 1.jpg empty lines 2.jpg Offbeat studio and THE MUSHROOM CO

Featured snippets in search engines

In the past year, instead of trying to bump into the first featured spot with impeccable SEO and sponsored posts, companies have attempted to enrich the position zero (or featured snippet) with visuals.

The information Google provides at the very top of the search results is known as the Zero Position. This data provides the most accurate answer to the user’s query.

The highlighted snippet differs from other search results entries. It is separated from the rest by a tiny box and appears at the top. More significantly, it provides relevant information on user’s inquiries without requiring them to click on it. Thus earning it the moniker “no-click search.”

It may seem counterintuitive to sacrifice a single click/visit in exchange for recognition as a thought leader. The award you gain as a thought leader exceeds a single click/visit. Furthermore, with Google Assistant voice searches, highlighted snippets are occasionally spoken aloud.

But, for the audience that will visually perceive the snippet, adding a well-designed visual that will entice them to click will enhance the chance of extra visits even more.

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Stefanija Tenekedjieva

August 2, 2021

Journalist turned content writer. Based in North Macedonia, aiming to be a digital nomad. Always loved to write, and found my perfect job writing about graphic design, art and creativity. A self-proclaimed film connoisseur, cook and nerd in disguise.