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The best new web design tools of 2019 so far

The world of the web moves quickly, and keeping up to date with new web design tools can often be a job in itself; no-one wants to be using old tools and techniques when there are new ones available that make your life easier and enable you to implement the latest techniques in your builds.

To help you ensure that your workflow's up to date, here's a selection of some of the best new web design tools (opens in new tab) we've seen so far this year, covering everything from CSS animation and accessibility through to colour management and dealing with user feedback, and many of them are completely free to use! Make sure you also see our guide to Google's web tools.


The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: CSSFX

Give your interface a touch of movement

A little bit of movement on your website is a great way to draw the visitor's eye to important interaction and make navigation easier, and here's an easy way to implement it. CSSFX (opens in new tab) features a collection of open source animations that provide visual feedback when users click or hover over elements; simply select the ones you need and the CSS is automatically copied for you.

02. Humane by Design

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Humane by Design

Eliminate dark patterns in your apps

Ever felt that you're being manipulated by mobile apps? Often they're designed specifically to be addictive, to exploit psychological vulnerabilities through dark patterns, and to monetise our personal information, and Humane by Design (opens in new tab), created by product designer Jon Yablonski, is a resource that aims to combat this. It provides guidance on creating ethically humane digital products that put people first and encourage healthy user behaviours; why not be one of the good guys?

03. Accessibility Insights

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Accessibility Insights

Sort your accessibility with this helpful extension

Accessibility is one of those things that everyone agrees is a vital element of good web design, but which many designers leave until the last minute. Accessibility Insights (opens in new tab), a Chrome extension and Windows app from Microsoft, makes it easy to identify and fix accessibility fails on your sites, with a quick check that'll point out the most common problems in seconds, and an in-depth audit to help you make your site WCAG 2.0 Level AA compliant. 

04. Absurd Design

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Absurd Design

Why have normal illustrations on your site?

Illustration is a popular way to give a landing page a bit of visual interest, but it often ends up being groups of colourful cartoon figures doing stuff that sort of reflects the company's product or service. If you want something a bit different, Absurd Design (opens in new tab) is the place to go; it has a whole load of fantastic-looking free-to-use images, and they're all wonderfully whimsical and utterly surreal.

05. Social Sizes

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Social Sizes

Perfect for those of us who can never remember the right image sizes for social sites

Getting images and video the right size can be hard enough when you just work with one CMS, but once you throw in social media things can get really complicated, so keep Social Sizes (opens in new tab) bookmarked to make your life easier. It contains image and video templates for Sketch, Photoshop and Adobe XD that'll help you get things right across all of the right major social sites: Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Snapchat, YouTube, Pinterest and Twitch.

06. Colour Harmonies

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Colour Harmonies

Play around and discover palettes you'd never have thought of

If you're in search of the perfect colour palette for a new site, Colour Harmonies (opens in new tab) is a fun way to find eye-catching combinations that you might not have considered. It's styled like a set of paint colour swatches, and by playing with the various sliders you can create well-matched palettes of all sizes and see how well they fit with each other. Once you find a combo that you like, you can simply copy the hex values and you're good to go.

07. Velocity

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Velocity

Make design systems a little less terrifying

Creating a whole design system from scratch is a daunting prospect even for the most seasoned designer, but with Velocity (opens in new tab) the whole process can feel a lot more manageable. It's a combined design system and UI kit that works with InVision Studio, Sketch and Photoshop, and features 30 screens covering all manner of common app functions in small, medium and large sizes. With over 300 UI elements and 70 components to play with, it's an excellent way to approach building an app.

08. Nolt

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Nolt

Collect, manage and act upon user feedback effectively

User feedback can be a vital element in ensuring that your build does all the right things, but actually collecting and managing that feedback effectively can be a task in itself. Nolt (opens in new tab) provides a great way of handling it; it integrates with tools such as Slack, Jira and Trello, and enables users to leave anonymous suggestions that others can vote and comment on, while allowing you keep your users up to date on how updates are progressing.

09. CodeTalks

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: CodeTalks

Catch up with all the amazing keynotes you've missed

There's nothing like a good conference to bring you up to speed on the latest trends and techniques in web design and development, but it's not always convenient to attend. At CodeTalks (opens in new tab), however, you can catch up with all those great conference keynotes that you missed – or get a refresher on the ones you did see but forgot to take notes. All of them are arranged by event and topic, and there's a full list of categories to make it easy to find a talk on the subject you need to know about.

10. Verifier

The best new web design tools of 2019 so far: Verifier

Say goodbye to fake sign-ups

It's great to get loads of people to sign up for your product or service, but it's not so great if you get inundated with sign-ups done with fake or disposable email addresses. With Verifier (opens in new tab), though, you can eliminate most of these at the sign-up phase; it checks against a list of 18,000 disposable domains, and will also check that the address's domain is valid and actually exists. You might also want to see our selection of underrated website design tools.

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Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.