The Day-to-Day as a Web Designer
Web Designers use design theory, graphic design, responsive design, and user experience knowledge to create websites that are visually appealing and user-friendly. They can work full-time, part-time, and freelance. Remote and onsite opportunities for Web Designers are both abundant. They work in nearly every industry with organizations like small business, multinational corporations, the government, restaurants, and nonprofits.
Full-time Web Designers work on a team with Web Developers, Software Engineers, UX Designers, and Project Managers. They’ll use more soft skills than a Web Developer but less technical skills. Their daily tasks vary based on their employer, but usually include attending standup meetings, collaborating with teammates, creating design comprehensive, meeting with clients, conducting competitor analysis, and making mockups.
What Skills Should Web Designers Have?
Web Designers also need soft skills like time management, communication, research, and client management. For Web Designers working for a company, teamwork will be an essential soft skill for you. Self-employed Web Designers will need digital marketing skills to grow their careers.
Learn the Skills You Need to Become a Web Designer
Web design is the process of creating the look and feel of a website. This includes web page layout, content production, copywriting, graphic design, typography, user-flow, and some coding. Web design can be done using tools like a code editor, templates, and photoshop.
Photoshop is a software application created by Adobe for image editing and photo retouching on Windows or macOS computers. Photoshop can be used to manipulate and retouch photos. It can also be used to create compositions, collages, design comprehensives, and more.
Sketch is a design platform used to create, share, and collaborate prototypes and wireframes.
XD is an Adobe application that facilitates user experience design for web and mobile applications. XD stands for Experience Design.
Visual design is a set of strategic best practices used to improve a design or product's aesthetic appeal and usability through the selection of appropriate images, typography, use of space, hierarchy, color, and layout.
Front-End Web Development
Front end web development manages the part of the website that a user sees and interacts with in their browser. Front End Developers design, analyze code, write code, and debug the client-side of an application or website.
Illustrator is a computer program for design developed by Adobe. Illustrator is used by designers to create and edit vector graphics. It can be used for print, web, applications, videos, animations, and more.
Design theory is a non-standardized framework of theoretical approaches to understanding and practicing design principles and knowledge. Design theory is used to research, imagine, develop, and manipulate designs over the lifecycle of a project. The most common approach to design theory involves five steps including empathize, define, ideate, prototype, and test to make the development of products and services more efficient by establishing a target end-user from the start and testing along the way.
Web Designer Salaries
A Web Designer in the United States makes, on average, $50,568 annually, according to Indeed.com.
Salaries for Web Designers vary by region within the the United States. Listed below are some Web Designer salaries for specific areas with the United States compared with the average national salary:
- U.S. Average $50K source n/a
New York City
Orange County, CA
- U.S. Average $50K source n/a
Los Angeles, CA
Typical Qualifications to Become a Web Designer
Web Designers do not need a degree or certification to secure employment but it is recommended that their résumé and portfolio demonstrate their technical skills. There are no standard certifications for Web Designers but some courses and bootcamps provide certificates of completion.
Searching for Web Designer Jobs
Web Designers may be employed within a corporate company, a startup, a nonprofit organization, or a small business in-person and remotely. If you have good time management, communication, and business skills, you may find satisfaction working as an independent contractor or freelancer. Freelancers and independent contractors can make about the same salary as a full-time Web Designer who is not self-employed.
You can find Web Designer jobs on sites like:
- Google Jobs
- Authentic Jobs
- Stack Overflow
You can find freelance and independent contractor and remote Web Designer jobs on these sites:
Tips to Become a Web Designer
Web Designers are in high demand and finding a job mostly depends on showcasing their work and networking, consistent job searching, and nailing a technical interview. A Web Designer who is seeking employment should have a well-rounded portfolio that showcases the required skills for the position. If you know how to code, you should also have a GitHub set up with some projects uploaded or contribute to a few open-source projects. You should also be able to articulate how and why you chose to design a site through case studies or short verbal communication prepared for interviews. You can showcase your design thought processes through case studies on a blog or Medium and link them to your LinkedIn for potential employers to see.
If you’re applying for a full-time position within a company, you should attempt to reach out to the people at that company who would manage you via LinkedIn and other Web Designers within that company. This will boost your résumé through name recognition and provide you with a connection to follow up on your application.
If you’re having trouble finding a Web Design job that suits you, consider taking on freelance or contract gigs while you search for employment. This will give you first-hand experience executing the job if you’ve never done it before. It will also build your portfolio with real-world projects, help your communication skills, and showcase your willingness to be a self-starter and a self-learner. Be sure to share your freelance projects on a portfolio website that you’ve designed. You might consider adding a blog to your portfolio site to share case studies.
What Job Titles Would a Web Designer Hold?
Web Designers can narrow down positions to apply for based on their own coding proficiency, level of user experience understanding, desired company or industry, and location. Web Designers will likely start out in junior or entry-level positions. Most Web Designers will find that rising the ranks to a Senior position or upskilling to do more development or user experience tasks is possible relatively quickly and will result in a better annual salary.
Here are a few options you might be qualified for as a Web Designer:
- Web Designer
- Junior Web Designer
- Associate Web Designer
- Senior Web Designer
- Front End Developer
- Design Director
Additional Web Designer Resources
- Web Designer Job Description
- What Software Do Web Designers Use?
- Best Cities for Web Designers
- Is Web Design a Good Career?
- Is Web Design Right For Me?
- What Degree Do You Need to Become a Web Designer?
- Web Designer Career Path
- Web Designer Certifications
- How to Become a Web Designer Without a Degree
- How to Become a Freelance Web Designer
- Web Designer Interview Questions
- Web Designer Resume Guide & Tips
- Web Designer Cover Letter
- Web Designer LinkedIn Profile Guide & Tips
- Where and How to Secure Web Designer Freelance Jobs
- Web Designer Portfolio Website Guide & Tips
- Web Designer Job Outlook
Web Designers are on the cusp of myriad related fields. Upskilling or pivoting could lead a Web Designer to positions like Digital or Graphic Designer, UX/UI Designer, Interaction Designer, Web Developer, Full Stack Developer, Content Strategist, Product or Project Manager, or SEO Specialist. These positions could be achieved by learning things like more programming languages; sharpening digital marketing skills; practicing team management; UX/UI skills such as research and wireframing; or niching down specifically to things like interaction flows and search engine optimization. All of these positions will likely lead to a raise for a Web Designer and even more upward mobility options.
Salary Comparison to Web Designer
User Experience Designer
User experience (UX) designers are responsible for ensuring that digital products offer a seamless user experience, through prototyping, user research, and user testing. They will test the navigation and functionality of websites, apps, and more. UX designers must stay current on design trends to ensure ongoing adherence to best practices. They will also conduct ongoing user research to understand the habits and needs of users.Learn about becoming a User Experience Designer
Graphic designers work with both digital and physical media to create art that communicates and inspires. Using graphics, text, colors, and animations, graphics designers develop media assets for branding, advertising, and messaging. Graphics designers can work for agencies or themselves. They create a wide variety of design elements, such as brochures, infographics, marketing material layouts, and design elements for print, video, or web use.Learn about becoming a Graphic Designer
Motion Graphics Designer
Glassdoor Avg. Salary
$87K / yearglassdoor.com
Motion Graphics Designers, sometimes referred to as MoGraph professionals, use visual effects and animation to create artwork for: television, film, tech devices, software, live-video, video games, applications, and the web.Learn about becoming a Motion Graphics Designer
Digital Designers make graphics, animations, and other visual effects. Depending on their preference, a Digital Designer might choose to niche down to work exclusively on pre-print, web, or digital marketing. These niches that the Digital Designer is designing websites, applications, advertisements, or publications.Learn about becoming a Digital Designer