So you got your client's approval for your proposed wireframe designs on how the site should be laid out, you've clarified the goals of the websites as well as your client's desires, now it's time for you to start creating a design mockup of the website; however, you run into a creativity roadblock.
Recently, I asked on the subreddit /r/web_design what sources they use for web design inspiration, and that is what led to the creation of this post. Oh yeah, I added some of my own suggestions to this list as well.
One popular response was Behance. Behance is a site where most people, specifically designers, go to post their artwork to showoff and to use as their design portfolio. You can kind of think of it as "the Linkedin of designers."
It's great. It features a lot of high quality artwork, and because of this, it also makes it a great place for others to go to for some design inspiration.
Another popular social platform geared towards creatives is Dribbble. Dribbble, similar to Behance, is another great place to turn to when trying to search for some web design inspiration.
Despite being extremely similar to Behance, Dribbble leans more towards the social aspect rather than a systematic platform to display artwork as a portfolio.
Note there are 3 'b's in the name.
One great site to check out at least once in your lifetime is Awwwards. They feature a wide variety of unique and modern web designs to look at for web design inspiration. They're also able to maintain the high quality submissions by enforcing a payment if you want to submit your design. Not only that, they also go through with a voting process for each design.
If one talks about Behance and/or Dribbble, then one can't forget to talk about Pinterest. Although Pinterest contains a wide variety of content on their uniquely laid out platform, it is also a great place to search for web design inspiration.
Combined with the use of their browser plugin pin feature, you get to conveniently save web designs you find throughout the net and on the platform itself to your own Pinterest account where you can access and refer to later either publically or privately.
Thanks to its grid layout, it makes browsing through the site's search results a breeze! Perfect for skimming through hundreds of posts a quick glance.
If you are strictly looking for web design only inspiration that are picked to be the best, then this is the site for you. CSSDesignAwards focuses on featuring beautiful looking websites on their website. It's a site where designers can submit their designs to where it then goes through a panel of judges who then selects a winner to be featured on their site. Becuase they've existed for a while now, you can find a nice variety of high quality sites on their website! It's also similar to Awwwards.
If you're looking for a Dribbble alternative, then Uplabs is for you. They feature a wide variety of digital artwork ranging from Web Design and Mobile Applications to things like Branding, 3D, Illustration, and Motion Design! You can even sell your artwork on their site too, but you only get 70% of the pay cut.
One popular suggestion with a lot of upvotes was Httpster. They feature a wide variety of strictly web design layouts for your creative inspiration. Their site features an infinite scroll which constantly loads new images in. Not only that, they have a large database of modern designs.
My first impression of it was it seemed pretty "hipster" for the 2017 and 2018 designs. Again, that's just me. They have it sorted nicely in reverse chronological order plus a nice UI element to the side which features a timeline to show which year you are currently at.
UIMovement features a wide variety of UI designs to choose from. One particular feature that stood out to me from this site right away is that each entry has a animated demonstration of the submission which makes it really nice if you are looking for some animations-based UX design inspiration. Definitely a site you should check out.
With a UI layout very similar to Pinterest, DesignInspiration is another site you should consider adding to your arsenal. They feature a variety of design work shared by creatives out there. If you type in Web Design in their search box, you'll get the Web Design inspirations you are looking for. Again, it's very similar to Pinterest so if you are familiar with Pinterest, navigating this site should be easy.
One of the things I like about NicelyDone club is their approach towards sharing web design for inspiration is a little bit more unique. Instead of the usual categories you would normally find in most sites (if they even categorize them), NicelyDone categorizes by UI elements or specific page features of a website!
For instance, let's say you are creating a new SaaS site. You decided to make a nice looking signup form, but don't want to make a generic looking one. Luckily for you, NicelyDone club has a category specifically for "Sign Up" forms!
So far most of the links shared mostly focused on product or service based business websites. What about something more personal, such as a portfolio website? This is where NicePortfol.io comes into play! They feature a nice variety of user submitted portfolio websites to check out for inspiration.
Lapa.ninja features web design content. They also have free templates available for download and a variety of free eBooks to choose from. It's a nice bonus in my opinion if your main goal is just to search for inspiration.
Before you complain or start to bash me out on this one, please hear me out. Codepen.io is a platform where web developers can code on to share their code. However, because of that, it also serves as a great place to quickly mockup simple UI elements for demonstration (great for UX prototyping for the web too!)
With that in mind, CodePen.io makes a nice candidate to search for inspiration. Although it might not generate the best results all the time compared to Behance, Dribbble, etc., but it works.
Muz.li Chrome Extension
Muzli is a chrome extension which aggregates design inspiration from a variety of popular sites including some of the ones mentioned in this post. They show a variety of clean and modern designs to look at. It's definitely worth checking out. Bet you didn't expect a Chrome Extension as a result, right? Neither did I. :)
Although not as popular as the ones mentioned above, SiteInspire is another directory you can check out as a source for web design inspiration.
Land-book is a site I only recently found out about just a few months before making this post. It's a site that focuses on sharing nice looking landing page web designs (i.e. homepages, portfolios, etc.). Unlike Awwwards, people can submit their sites for free.
Similar to land-book, it offers a variety of full page screenshot designs to refer to for web design inspiration.
With this list in mind, hopefully, now you have a a few sites to add to your arsenal of sites to refer to when you run into a creative road block in the future. Feel free to leave in the comments section a site that you love to visit for web design inspiration.