Professional web designers will always be in demand. A lot of businesses take part in ecommerce and use user-friendly websites to promote and sell a wide range of products. For this reason, there are big opportunities in the field of web design and a lot of ways to gain the required skills. In this guide, we’ll show you how to become a web designer.
A web designer is responsible for designing or redesigning websites. They work on both the layout and the appearance while creating responsive designs. They make sure that websites are functional and aesthetically appealing.
The major responsibilities of a web designer are to make design decisions and to create landing pages that are both engaging and responsive. They often use content management systems (CMS) and data feed management software to facilitate the design process and optimize sites for maximum scalability and speed.
Part of their job is to test the website for bugs and liaise with programmers and other stakeholders to ensure that the code corresponding to the design is working as intended. Furthermore, they ensure website functionality and stability across all kinds of devices, including mobile, desktop, and tablet.
According to PayScale, web designers earn an average salary of $51,997 per year. The lowest 10 percent of earners, moreover, make less than $37,000 per year, with the highest 10 percent making $75,000 and above. The salary varies with the designer’s background, experience, and skills. PayScale reports that the average experienced web designer earns $60,360 annually.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that the employment of web developers and web designers will increase by 13 percent from 2020 to 2030. Every year between now and then, BLS expects there to be about 17,900 job openings in the United States for developers and designers.
As with any profession, web design comes with both challenges and perks. That being said, there are many reasons why a career in web design is more attractive than not in 2021.
When you’re ready to start applying for entry-level web design jobs, you should be aware of the job requirements that potential employers typically look for.
Different kinds of web designers focus on different areas of a website. They could focus on digital interfaces, the technical aspects of design, or program updates.
A web designer who focuses on user experience (UX) designs all the components of a digital interface while keeping the user’s navigation in mind. The goal is to create simple and efficient interfaces that are user-friendly.
A web developer focuses on all the technical aspects that go into creating fully functional websites, including capacity and performance. They check on website speed as well as the traffic that the website can handle. They also write and maintain the code that fulfills the vision for the design.
This type of web designer is a jack of all trades. They focus on creating, designing, deploying, and updating cross-platform applications for various devices and operating systems.
A web designer does a lot of things, but his or her workflow mainly involves the following three tasks.
Web designers translate the needs of clients and end-users into concepts. This involves meeting up with clients, either in person or online, to get a clear picture of the company’s brand, its products, and its goals for the website.
Once they’ve planned out how the website should look, web designers choose the layouts that best represent the concepts, designs, and other features that they think will appeal to the target audience. From font colors to font styles to images selection, they make sure that the website has its own personality.
These professionals don’t work alone. They collaborate with web developers and graphic designers to build high-functioning and attractive websites. This means that you need strong communication skills to be a successful web designer.
Technical skills are a very important aspect of design. Below are the three main skills you should have.
Web designers should know all about design, including essential visual design principles and the art of applying graphic design theory to digital interfaces. You should know how to mix colors, how to create visually pleasing layouts, and how to make the brand identity of a client come to life.
Talented web designers are well versed in design software programs. These include popular UX design tools like Figma and Adobe XD, as well as other Adobe products like Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop. Web designers use these on a regular basis to put the concepts of graphic design and photo editing into practice.
It could take anywhere from 12 weeks to four years. It all depends on your learning style and how much time you have on your hands. If you don’t have time for a bachelor’s degree, there are short online web design courses and bootcamps organized around projects, which make it easy to start your professional portfolio.
Yes, attending a bootcamp can help you learn essential tools for a successful career in web design. The best web design bootcamps are designed to streamline your learning journey. Keep in mind that bootcamps are fast-paced, which is not for everyone. You may need more time to learn in-demand programming languages and build a strong portfolio.
Yes, there are excellent web design courses that you can take from home. And once you’re finished studying, you may be able to continue working from home as a freelancer. Entry-level web designers do need to make connections first, but an online community can help you meet people in the design industry and get feedback on your portfolio.
There are many skills that an aspiring web designer needs to master. Learning the foundational principles of digital design, vector graphics, and basic programming languages is just the beginning. If you want to get hired, you also have to cultivate soft skills and build a strong portfolio. For your best shot at a good job, follow these three steps.
You can’t get by in the design industry without understanding the basic principles of web design. You should be able to identify how each element is important to the overall layout, how to execute design ideas, and how to work in a digital medium.
There are a lot of web design tools that help with website creation. These include Adobe XD, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, and Figma. Effective web design is all about knowing how to use these tools and how to select the right one for each task.
Once you know what you’re doing, you should begin work on a design portfolio. If you’re just starting out, make sure that your portfolio showcases your design skills. Be on the lookout for the latest design trends and try to incorporate them into your portfolio projects.
Wherever you are in your design journey, there's always an opportunity to be a professional web designer. You can become one by joining a bootcamp, enrolling in a community college or university degree program, or even by attending a vocational school.
A web design bootcamp usually lasts for a few months. You’ll likely learn the fundamentals of user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design. Flatiron School has a product design program, for instance, that lasts between 15 and 60 weeks and includes hands-on training in things like user research, typography, mockups, and dealing with clients.
A vocational or technical school provides practical training for high school graduates below the level of an associate degree. A technical diploma or certificate in web design centers around teaching students the skills they need to use tools like Adobe InDesign and Adobe Photoshop.
Community colleges offer Associate Degrees in Web Design and Web Development. In these programs, you’ll get hands-on experience with web page navigation, publishing, ecommerce, web graphics preparation, and even database design and development. The programs usually last two years, and you can transfer to a bachelor’s degree program afterward.
A Bachelor’s Degree in Web Design usually takes three to four years to finish. This helps learners dive deeper into Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and other essential tools. This is a good option to consider because many employers require candidates to have their bachelor’s.
Web design certifications are not usually required. That being said, by getting certified in popular web design tools and technologies, you will appear more credible and knowledgeable to employers. Below are a few professional certifications and certificates worth checking out.
An Adobe certification proves your skills in various interactive and online content areas. These include web design, video, technical communications, rich Internet applications, and elearning. Depending on your experience, you can become an Adobe Certified Professional, an Adobe Certified Expert, or an Adobe Certified Master. Certifications must be renewed after two years.
You can dive deep into the world of user experience with this six-month certification course, part of Google’s influential professional certificate series. Here you’ll learn all about the foundations of UX, what the design process entails, and how to build wireframes. To take the course and get the certificate, you can enroll on Coursera for $39 per month after a free trial.
This free certification is from freeCodeCamp. It covers basic HTML and HTML5, CSS, and applied visual design. It takes about 300 hours to study all the material, and the training ends with five responsive design projects to test your newfound knowledge.
Interviews are a nerve-wracking part of any job hunt. It can be especially challenging when it’s your first time. However, the best thing you can do to prepare is to study common interview questions and practice answering them. Below are a few questions to help you get started.
Yes. Web design is a great field to get into in 2021. Many opportunities are waiting for you in this growing industry. But as with any profession, you should ask yourself whether the tasks and responsibilities appeal to you. If you like designing, are willing to learn new software, and are eager to acquire the necessary skills, you should become a web designer.