10 Cutting-Edge Parallax Scrolling Websites

February 14, 2023

Words by Jeff Cardello

Parallax scrolling websites are still cool, elevating your designs into powerful and engaging web-based content.

Parallax scrolling holds visitors’ attention, providing a visually exciting user experience and giving them a heightened sense of control as they move through a website. Through a bit of design trickery, it turns two-dimensional screen space into something that has depth.

Curious about how parallax scrolling websites work, and the variety of forms they can take? We’re going to cover all you need to know, as well as offer some hints on how to easily achieve this effect with the help of our no-code web creation platform.

What Are Parallax Scrolling Websites?

Parallax scrolling websites play with space and depth, yet technically speaking this design technique is actually a lot simpler than it may seem. Most parallax scrolling websites simply move content in the foreground at a faster rate than content in the background. Through this juxtaposition of movement, parallax scrolling websites create the illusion of three-dimensional space.

Parallax scrolling can really enhance the overall user experience of a website, livening up a design with motion and enhancing its interactivity. When people see that scrolling doesn’t move everything in one fixed block, but rather touches multiple elements, they feel more in control over how they experience a website. This makes it an ideal technique for visual storytelling content, giving visitors a sense of autonomy in revealing content at their own pace.

Best Practices for Parallax Scrolling Websites

Even though parallax scrolling is a great way to bring a sense of dimensionality and add action to a web design, you should follow a few guidelines when designing parallax scrolling websites.

Follow Intuitive Patterns

Though there are instances where it’s appropriate to depart from what’s familiar, parallax scrolling should guide visitors through content in a way that feels natural. Surprising them with something that’s too unorthodox may confuse them and cause them to bounce. The most effective parallax scrolling websites use the technique to encourage visitors to keeping moving through them.

Keep Parallax Scrolling Websites Simple

Don’t overwhelm your website visitors, especially if you’re using parallax scrolling with animations, videos, and other moving visuals or effects. Make sure everything works cohesively, and that your key messaging doesn’t get lost within a messy, chaotic design.

Make Sure Parallax is Responsive Across Devices

With most people experiencing websites from small handheld screens, you need to make sure that parallax scrolling doesn’t get in the way of usability. It’s not unusual for parallax scrolling websites to disable the effect on mobile devices for this reason — something that can easily be done inside our own design editor by toggling through various breakpoints.

Be Mindful of Page Loading Speeds

Follow what’s going on with page load speeds (check this guide), and evaluate whether or not parallax scrolling may be having a negative effect. If it's bogging things down, you may need to consider whether or not you need it. 

10 Inspiring Parallax Scrolling Websites

Many parallax scrolling websites present visitors with a march of text and images moving in a familiar vertical direction. But parallax scrolling can take different forms. It can move horizontally, include three-dimensional visuals, take elements in different directions, and be utilized in other inventive ways.

Let’s look at ten different parallax scrolling websites showing how designers are using parallax scrolling in new and inventive ways, for more interesting and visually engaging websites.

Amadeo

The design and branding agency Amadeo takes a multi-layer approach in this parallax scrolling website made in Vev, pushing their featured projects to the front of the page. The background gently buzzes with white noise, with a horizontal marquee of the word “WRK” across it. As you scroll through, a staggered series of featured projects float over the top. Amadeo utilizes parallax scrolling in keeping the focus on their work, which is essential for agency or creative portfolio websites.

Dopegood

Dopegood’s lamps, sofas, and other home products stray from the clean lines we often associate with modernism. Instead, Dopegood’s furnishings have smooth curves, giving them a warm and more welcoming feel. This web design echoes the circular lines of Dopegood’s products, complementing the look of their products and fitting in perfectly with their brand identity.

Throughout, parallax scrolling is used in unique ways. Instead of seeing elements moving in a familiar vertical orientation, they move horizontally and at oblique angles. There’s a sense of originality that makes scrolling through this space feel fresh and exciting.

Norwegian Air Ambulance Foundation

The Norwegian Air Ambulance Foundation is a non-profit whose mission is to better the quality of care given to those experiencing medical emergencies as they’re transported to hospitals. This website, created with Vev, tells the story of one woman’s cardiac arrest, as well as the perspective and insights of an air ambulance doctor.

Parallax scrolling is an effective way to segment long-form content like this, aiding readability and guiding people through the events that unfold. In this design text moves over background images that fade in and out, marking the passage from one section to the next. It’s easy to follow the stories being told and to understand the Norwegian Air Ambulance Foundation’s role in helping people.

Parallax scrolling websites work well for telling stories, and The Norwegian Air Ambulance Foundation utilizes this technique to great effect in showing the importance of what they do.

Sputnik Design Team

We always like seeing designs that aren’t afraid to take risks. This agency website from the Sputnik Design Team pushes its website to the limits, with a busy collage of floating visuals representing projects they’ve worked on. Hovering over a project image turns the cursor into an icon, which keeps you from getting lost. Every space is occupied by a creative visual, filling this space with interesting things to look at.

Where parallax scrolling websites are usually a bit less heavy-handed in terms of visuals, here it works in Sputnik Design Team’s favor, showing the breadth of their talents and the variety of projects they’ve worked on.

Margrete: Queen of the North

Margrete: Queen of the North is a historical drama that tells the story of Margrete the First, who ruled over Sweden, Norway, and Denmark, and how the Kalmar Union threatened her reign. Much like a film, this website built in Vev is divided into different acts.

Dividing up this layout are full-screen photos that are fixed into place. With each upcoming block of content pulled up at a faster rate, this breaks up what would otherwise be a long scroll. We also like the progress scroll bar tucked into the top, showing you exactly where you are.

Parallax scrolling not only adds to the visual feel of a design but is also effective in making a user experience more active and engaging.

Get Some Fresh Air

Get Some Fresh Air is an initiative aimed to educate people about the sensitive topic of domestic violence, bringing visitors through simulated outdoor journeys led by different guides. The purpose is to make people examine their own beliefs and behaviors, hoping to instill in them better self-awareness in preventing them from becoming perpetrators themselves.

Get Some Fresh Air offers an immersive user experience filled with visuals and sound. The illustrations have personality and a sense of humanity. The background audio of the sounds of nature adds another dimension connecting it to the real world. Further adding to its natural feel is parallax scrolling, which gives it a sense of depth.

Hajk

With outdoor wear products like fleeces, t-shirts, and pants Hajk offers plenty of options to those who want to explore the world in comfort. Along with its consumer offerings, Hajk also dedicates itself to more responsible garment production. This website covers their efforts towards better sustainability.

Hajk creatively employs parallax scrolling with fixed images, with one section opening to the next in a window-like fashion. There’s a strong sense of organization, with each content block telling what they’re doing to improve their manufacturing process, as well as information about why choosing their garments helps decrease someone’s environmental impact. 

Talking about sustainability can be a complicated topic, but parallax scrolling websites make it possible to reveal information piece by piece, making it easier for people to take in and understand.

Doubble

Both web design and interior design work with space, transforming it into something that has both a sense of style and functionality. Doubble merges the elegance of their work as an interior design firm with an equally sophisticated website with typography, colors, animations, and visuals coming together in a graceful balance.

Parallax scrolling adds to the fancy sense of atmosphere, gently offsetting the elements, and floating them through the space of the design. It’s a gorgeous user experience that’s both lightweight and rich in details.

WanderJaunt

WanderJaunt takes on the short-term market rental industry catering not only to making things easier for property owners but in offering temporary living spaces that appeal to the sensibilities of modern remote workers.

The combination of three-dimensional graphics representing living spaces combined with parallax scrolling is a novel technique that we don’t see too often. Scrolling brings each room closer, with details about how their services work. 

We’re fans of parallax scrolling that strays from the well-trodden path of vertical movement, with WaderJaunt using it in unexpected ways that are a delight to experience.

DHNN

DHNN stands out with an agency website full of motion and interactivity. Each scrolling movement reveals something that will catch your attention. Combining videos, interactions, and animations, it’s a lively and immersive experience the moment you land on it.

We’re impressed with the many forms parallax scrolling takes in this design. It touches the text, three-dimensional graphics, and visuals, moving these elements in different directions and energizing this digital space with motion.

Craft Your Own Parallax Scrolling Websites

Ready to add parallax scrolling to your designs? Whether you’re looking to create something more experimental like multi-image parallax or go with more traditional parallax scrolling effects, Vev makes it easy to create stunning parallax scrolling websites with no coding necessary.

Check out our step-by-step tutorial on building parallax scrolling websites with Vev, and our Parallax Guide that offers even more ideas for getting creative with this technique.

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