10. Gods Unchained
11. Iron Fish
The shift from Web2 to Web3 is beginning now; we see it, most notably, in the way artists, musicians, and entrepreneurs are sharing their work and building community.
Whether you're creating a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO), minting or collecting NFTs, building on the decentralized web, or developing blockchain dApps, there's no shortage of projects to work on.
In this article, we review 13 of the most exciting blockchain startups that are using Web 3.0 designs to push the movement forward and build community.
After reading this article you will have a comprehensive understanding of crypto design trends, blockchain website design tips, and numerous relevant examples.
It’s no secret that well-designed user experiences are one of the most genuine forms of building trust with your audience. We could speak for days on what good design is at its core, but this quote from Paul Rand sums it up quite nicely.
To design is much more than simply to assemble, to order, or even to edit; it is to add value and meaning, to illuminate, to simplify, to clarify, to modify, to dignify, to dramatize, to persuade, and perhaps even to amuse.
While this ideology applies to so many facets of design—digitally and in our everyday lives—we believe design’s importance in crypto, specifically, is paramount to the adoption of blockchain-based alternatives.
Building in the blockchain industry is believing in the future—one where power is placed in the hands of the people and freedom is given back to creators.
The movement is picking up momentum with each passing day; however, blockchain's ambitious goals are consistently met with doubt and hesitation. Doubt is especially present when finances, drastic change, and risk collide.
Blockchain companies today are asking people to not only trust them with their money but challenging them to change their perception of the internet and the global financial system. Pair a subversive ideology with poor design, and you’ll be met with pushback.
Blockchain is the perfect storm and presents an incredible design challenge.
So, how do we keep the momentum going when there is seemingly so much to tackle?
We start with what we can control—design.
We have to kick this article off with Cosmos. Not only are they a perfect example of the Web3 design trends we’re seeing across the industry such as colorful gradients, 3D elements, and futuristic space themes, but they do it so unbelievably well.
While being incredibly expressive, they’ve done an excellent job at designing their brand on a solid foundation of beautifully orchestrated typography that scales, clear CTAs, a header hierarchy that allows users to effortlessly scan the website, and they make clear attempts to remain accessible with high-contrast text and backgrounds.
On a visual level, their use of planets to portray the decentralized apps, and "Internet of Blockchains" messaging is outstanding. Plus, they’re interactive, which we love!
It’s these subtle touches that really drive the design home and give the Cosmos Network design team bragging rights as the first spot on our countdown.
Besides their knowledge of beautiful and functional web design - which we love - Cosmos leans heavily into their name, symbol ($ATOM), and their vision of an internet of blockchains which to an active imagination looks like an interconnected universe.
🌈 Colorful gradients
✨ 3D elements
🖥️ Interactive visuals
We see similar elements to the crypto website design trends above, yet Circle adds flair by introducing heavily curved sections which feel immersive while retaining a great flow throughout the page. We love this design choice because it nods to Circle’s brand and the execution was done perfectly.
Another noteworthy design choice is the attention to detail in their iconography.
Sometimes, icons can be an afterthought since there’s only so much one can do with small website elements. Instead, we saw icon design as an opportunity to give Circle more real estate to embrace its Web3 style.
Rich design experiences like icon design make for engaging landing pages that draw the eyes down the page, promoting site exploration and increasing time on the page.
Navigation is another important UX area that Circle does extremely well. Their organized and well-designed mega menu helps first-time and return visitors quickly find what they're looking for with the minimum amount of clicks possible.
When you're trying to sell Payment APIs built on public blockchains, today's corporate treasurers will likely meet you with side-long glances and looks of confusion.
With a complex product, the easier you can make it for visitors to learn about your product, the greater your chances are at converting them into a lead and customer.
(Humble-bragging over. But if you’re interested in working with us, let us know.)
🌈 Colorful, pastel gradients
✅ Custom icon designs
🌀 Curved sections to accentuate their brand
🍔 Well-organized menu
Decentralized exchanges (DEX) allow anyone with a digital asset wallet (more on these later) to buy and sell cryptocurrency tokens without requiring an intermediary.
Unless you know what you're doing, trading digital currency on a DEX can feel overwhelming, especially when there are real amounts of money on the line.
To welcome, reassure, and send trust signals to novice crypto traders, decentralized exchanges like 1inch, Uniswap, and Raydium emphasize simple UI designs.
Not only is the text super legible, but all the user needs to do is choose the token they have, the token they want, and set the amount they'd like to swap.
Because 1inch is a DEX Aggregator, they find the best trade for you across multiple DEXs to give traders the best possible price and lowest gas fees.
1inch displays this important information including the expected number of tokens they will receive, expected gas fees, and the trade route so users know exactly what is happening behind the proverbial curtain.
🔥 Breaking up the page into panels that are labeled with clear descriptions
🌎 Designing with universally understood icons
🆒 Providing hover state tooltips, to help users learn how to use the interface
📈 Offering intuitive analytics with an embedded trading chart
🔘Welcoming buttons, CTAs, and user flows
In our best web 3.0 design countdown, we'd be silly not to mention Foundation.
Foundation is one of the leading Non-Fungible Token (NFT) marketplaces for many reasons, but most notably for their god-tier design skills.
Where to begin?
Foundation’s minimalistic approach truly allows the art to be center-stage. You’re not hit with loads of information or “This is what an NFT is and this is why it matters!”
Foundation knows their audience; they know that the people coming to the site understand the value of the creator economy, and subsequently, give all of the attention to the creators and their artwork.
We see this done using a grid of cards that take up the majority of the site. While simple, they add in the most beautiful details—from the subtle drop shadows and movement on hover to their fun use of typography.
The creation/collection flow is also incredibly easy to navigate.
As creators on Foundation, we always look forward to minting/listing a new piece because of the fun confetti animation that occurs.
Last, but certainly not least, their new Explore page is absolutely incredible. The creation of Worlds allows creators and collectors to easily browse art types by category.
This is such a fun, creative way to introduce a new way to discover NFT art.
Well-done, Foundation. We’re a fan.
🎨 Allowing the art to take center stage
💡 Elegant Minimalism
➡️ Clear flows
🔎 Fun, easy way to browse artwork through “Worlds”
Audius is paving the way for what the future of music can look like through their musician-first platform and token $AUDIO.
Along with the inspiring mission of giving autonomy back to musicians, Audius has a great deal of personality across its website and music streaming platform.
They’ve embraced certain Web 3.0 design trends, such as gradients and heavily blurred drop shadows, but what we enjoy most is how their design is unique to their mission.
Naturally, their marketing site is riddled with nods to music. One particularly nice example is how they display FAQs along with the accents of a guitar fretboard.
Their use of animation is also beautifully done and does an excellent job at lending to who they are and what they do.
As far as listening to music on Audius, the experience is similar to Soundcloud and easy to explore. They’ve done an excellent job at integrating what works with other music streaming UIs while remaining incredibly expressive and on-brand.
It is design choices like these that make building a community much easier. Of course, design is one small piece of the puzzle, but when something works well, the foundation for building community is much stronger.
Since your community is entirely one of a kind, show that you value them by providing well-designed user experiences.
Between Audius’ exceptional design and strong community, we look forward to seeing where blockchain-based music streaming takes the music industry.
🎵 Design elements that allude to their mission
🔨 Building off of what already works in the traditional space
🔥 Engaging animated visuals
As we mentioned at the outset of this article, earning people's trust when you're a new technology that promises to safeguard their money is not a small challenge. Argent is building confidence in its wallet solution through strong, direct messaging.
As soon as you hit the website, you’re met with a bold animation that says, “Own it,” and, “Own your future.” We love the copywriting as it immediately assuages your concern while simultaneously building hype.
Speaking of Web 3.0 design trends—our personal favorite is this 3D hover animation on their call-to-action section. It’s the perfect mix of immersion, user feedback, and interaction design showcasing different dApps, and a CTA.
Keep owning it, Argent!
📣 Strong, bold copywriting
✨ 3D hover effects and interaction design
🖥️ Immersive ways to include CTAs
Ledger is a hardware wallet that offers crypto holders the highest levels of security for protecting their digital assets. Because hardware wallets are not connected to the internet, the attack surface for getting hacked is significantly reduced.
While Ledger's minimalist design goes against most of the Web 3.0 design trends mentioned above, their design choices are perfectly fitting for their role within the cryptocurrency ecosystem.
Instead of colorful gradients and interactive design elements, we see mockups of their products in a flat illustration style.
Because Ledger is selling digital asset security their website doesn't need to be flashy or cute. It needs to be direct, trustworthy, project confidence, and instill trust.
In many ways, Ledger does what Apple does really well - they let their product shine, highlighting the craftsmanship, simplicity, and industrial-grade quality.
In the end, choose the website design style that makes the most sense for your product, and don't just follow the crowd because it is the hip thing to do.
💬 Letting the product speak for itself
🧭 Purposeful design
Rainbow’s playful design, use of memes, and strong community are so unmatched that we could write a whole article on their brand (and tweets) alone.
Whereas many other wallets stick to what’s considered safe in finance, Rainbow challenges the norm by pushing fun, eccentric designs.
The Rainbow website is rather straightforward as its goal is to send people to the app download page, but in the small details, we see the creativity that we—as the design industry—seem to have forgotten in the pursuit of the minimalist trend.
The wallet is also beautifully designed with the same artistic expression.
Their knowledge of beautiful and functional app design is abundantly clear; from the clear flows to the small moments of delight (loving the use of emojis), they’re one of our favorite Ethereum-based software wallets apps to use.
Rainbow is a breath of fresh air and a leader in bringing some ✨spice✨ to design.
🌀 Bringing expressive, fun design back to the web
🆒 Embracing individuality
🌈 Use of emojis
Blocknative is bringing simplicity to the most complex part of Web 3.0: the mempool.
They’re another client of ours here at Webstacks, and they’ve truly embraced the Web3 design style that’s been the focus throughout this article.
As you scroll their website, you’ll notice highly saturated gradients, dark backgrounds, interactive elements that demonstrate how the product works, and Easter Eggs that when discovered, switch your view from light to dark mode!
With the passing of EIP-1559, and the recent London Hard Fork, how Ethereum manages gas (Gwei) prices have changed.
To give builders and traders reliable gas prices to cost-effectively execute smart contracts, Blocknative updated their Ethereum Gas Estimator.
Tools like gas estimators, impermanent loss calculators, and DeFi dashboards are great ways for blockchain startups to attract users to their site and earn new business by providing immediate value to website visitors.
Another area where Blocknative's design shines is its bold, clear, and concise marketing copy. They address their visitor's needs immediately and instantly build rapport by assuring their visitors they are in the right place.
We also took care to include a section specifically for tweets.
While this isn’t entirely design-related, considering how active the crypto community is on Twitter, and this level of social proof goes a long way to establish trust.
Blocknative's website design demonstrates that even the most complicated blockchain API solutions can be communicated clearly and elegantly to convert new customers.
Use Blocknative's Gas Estimator to see how much gas to use to be 70%, 80%, 90%, 95%, or 99% confident that your transaction will be included in the next block.
🌈 Gradients on text
🌚 Dark mode
🤝 Multiple trust signals
🖌️ Product animations
When game design meets web design like Gods Unchained, it creates an immersive user experience that any fan of video games can appreciate.
There are so many well-designed fantasy-themed elements; you can tell that care was put into the smallest of details, too, with even the dividers being styled to match.
One of the worst aspects of traditional games is ownership of the items and achievements you earn by investing countless hours playing a game.
Using NFTs, in-game items can be provably owned by the players, and sold on exchanges, moving the industry from a pay-to-play model to a play-to-earn model.
Being a core value proposition of blockchain-based video games, Gods Unchained boldly leans into this selling point with its poignant copywriting.
One of our personal favorite sections is this card section. They could have done a standard card UI design with some fantasy icons, but no. Instead, the cards were given full card deck treatment with beautifully done textures and accents.
Founded by former creators of Magic the Gathering, it's clear Gods Unchained knows their target audience and plays into the fantasy-style game design trends.
The only thing unchained is the design team's creativity. (+1 charisma)
🎮 Fully embracing the fantasy gaming theme
🪄 Beautifully designed cards
🎨 Stunning illustrations
🧝♀️ WoW/MTG vibes
Iron Fish is a Layer 1 blockchain that aims to provide the strongest privacy guarantees on every cryptographically secured transaction.
Blockchain technology, being born from the cypherpunk forums, is rooted in privacy, security, and decentralization. While this ethos permeates the entire industry, nowhere else is it more pronounced than the privacy token sector.
If you're building a privacy competitor to long-established tokens like Dash and zCash, you need to take privacy - from protocol design to marketing - to the logical extreme. From Iron Fish's name, logo, and no-nonsense messaging, their priorities are clear.
And what’s better than a cool name like Iron Fish? Even cooler fish illustrations.
While one could argue that fun, creative illustrations are antithetical to something that should be seen as private, secure, and hardened, brands in crypto still need personality to attract the attention and support of new users.
Iron Fish’s style is unlike any other layer 1 blockchain. It’s fun, it’s wacky, and we don’t know about you, but we 100% trust this fish.
🔒 Direct messaging
🐠 Fun illustrations
➡️ Clear site flow
Speaking of styles that challenge the Web 3.0 design trends, Arweave is bringing back the newspaper aesthetic in a new, modern way.
Arweave is a permanent web storage solution that replicates and distributes content across thousands of machines across the world to resist censorship.
This censorship resistance is becoming incredibly important for getting the truth heard from journalists in countries where freedom of speech is often suppressed.
As you scroll the site, you’ll immediately notice many outlined elements, heavy, harsh drop shadows, and an eye-catching background composed of an array of images.
Their newspaper aesthetic fits the “store your content forever” message, and we find the simplicity to be well-done.
🧭 Purposeful design that highlights the content's message
💡 Elegant minimalism
💻 Highly accessible text and buttons
As a bonus, we just had to include Curve Finance, a decentralized exchange for trading closely related assets like BTC/Wrapped BTC, USDC/USDT, etc.
Do you find yourself reminiscing about the 90s and wish to relive some of the original World Wide Web experiences?
Well, look no further.
Curve embraced the 90’s aesthetic and took it to the next level.
While the interface and color scheme may not be the most welcoming or user-friendly, from a purely “for fun,” standpoint, we adore everything about it.
🌀 90's aesthetic
☀️ Vibrant logo
There we have it—13 examples of Web 3.0 design done well in the blockchain industry.
Whether you follow the trends or challenge them, we hope you took inspiration from this list. If you learned something, share it on Twitter or your favorite Discord server.
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10. Gods Unchained
11. Iron Fish