Web 2.0 isn’t really a phrase I like. it means so many different things to so many different people that it really doesn’t mean anything specific. However, it is a buzzword and it seems inescapable, it is becoming widely adopted so it is time I embraced it.
To the lay person Web 2.0 seems to be synonymous with a particular design style. This Web 2.0 design style is characterised by fresh, clean looking websites with large, easy to read typefaces, lots of whitespace and usually some subtle gradient backgrounds and/or reflected graphics. I really like this design approach and it can be used on any website to give it that Web 2.0 feeling, even if the content and functionality of the site doesn’t really make it a Web 2.0 site.
Pixelwave Web Design now has a growing number of Web 2.0 style design templates on offer through its Website Template shop. These templates can be used to give your new website that Web 2.0 feeling, or would be ideal to revamp an existing jaded website. A couple of examples are shown below.
Of course Web 2.0 isn’t just about the look and feel of the site. A true Web 2.0 website is standards compliant, conforms to accessibility guidelines, is a pleasure to use. They also offer certain levels of functionality not found in earlier websites. Often Web 2.0 websites are driven by user generated content, often they allow the end user to customise the content to their own particular preferences and often they include applications that allow sharing of information rather than simply presenting information to the user.
However, even if your website isn’t a true Web 2.0 site, the clean fresh, easy to use design style is valid in its own right and often such a design style will aid readability and usability of your website as well as giving it that modern Web 2.0 look.