How to Become a Web Designer
What Skills Does a Web Designer Need?
To succeed as a Web Designer, you really need an elusive mix of both technical – or hard – skills as well as soft skills, since it’s a job that requires top-notch communication and excellent collaborative skills.
What Does a Web Designer Need to Know?
A Web Designer needs to know web design theory and industry best practices, search engine optimization (SEO) tactics, and how to work collaboratively with clients and stakeholders to make sure you’re meeting their needs.
Learning web design theory is important because there are certain foundational principles for creating excellent websites, including color theory, structure and user experience. If you don't attend college, you can still study this theory through a bootcamp or online course.
SEO is an increasingly in-demand skill. As the visual architect of your site, you’ll be responsible for ensuring that it has all the elements in place to rank high in search.
Client and stakeholder management is another skill necessary to thrive as a Web Designer. Web Designers rarely have full autonomy over their creations and need to work collaboratively to ensure buy-in on a new design.
Technical Skills Every Web Designer Needs
Visual design is the art of selecting the right design principles to boost the look and enhance the feel of a website. Web Designers with advanced visual designing skills tend to do extremely well. Visual design is closely linked to user experience, only that it’s more related to the esthetic elements.
The most common tools used in visual designing are grid systems, spacing typography, color psychology, and type hierarchy.
The user experience (UX) of a website can be described as the feeling visitors have during their end-to-end interaction with your website. UX is one of the most crucial factors in defining a website’s success, especially as design philosophy becomes increasingly user-focused.
A Web Designer who understands UX practices will always approach his designs from a user-first perspective. Conducting research is a crucial part of the UX process, and then using those insights to improve things like navigation, content, colors, and so on.
Like any other professional, you need the right tools to get the job done. You should definitely familiarize yourself with all the industry-standard design software. Tools like Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and Sketch are ones that almost all Designers use for important parts of their job like creating mockups, designing logos and images, and of course modifying and enhancing photos.
A good Web Designer should learn how to use them.
For a long time, Web Designers believed that coding was something they wouldn’t have to deal with. If that was ever true, it’s not now: Web Designers are expected at minimum to understand HTML (HyperText Markup Language).
HTML helps you place and optimize your content on the web, giving it structure and form. You’ll need it to get content up on your site.
CSS or Cascading Style Sheets is a specific code that tells web browsers how to format and style the HTML components of a page.
To put it in simpler terms, CSS helps you improve the esthetic appeal of your content. Using this coding language, you can change fonts, tweak colors, add/remove backgrounds, and much more.
Soft Skills Every Web Designer Needs
In a world of tight deadlines, time management skills are crucial. The rapid pace of project iterations means that designs must be flexible and quick on their feet to respond to requests for changes. Good Web Designers need to manage their schedules and follow up on project needs. They also need to be flat-out efficient in their workflow.
Communication skills are an asset that every professional – in any field – should strive to develop, but they’re especially important to Web Designers. You must be able to effectively convey your ideas into clear language, so you and your clients or stakeholders can discuss, work, and be on the same page.
Similarly, since you’re definitely going to be working collaboratively with other teams, you need to be able to provide consistent updates on project progress.
Digital marketing skills are a huge asset for a Web Designer. You’re a vital part of a digital marketing strategy, and if you can take the knowledge and skills you have and learn to adapt to the marketplace, you’re going to make yourself very valuable to a potential employer.
Improve your SEO and social media marketing skills and you’ll have a bigger voice as you develop a design.
Whether you’re an employee or a freelancer, you will have to work with clients or stakeholders to create websites that they find appealing and functional. You need to understand how to communicate your ideas to people who might not have a technical background, and also how to manage expectations while still trying to give them projects that turn out even better than they hoped. And, if you’re designing directly for clients as a freelancer, you should have a plan for making sure that your cash flow and project backlog are both healthy and realistic.
Kick-Start Your Web Designer Career
We offer a wide variety of programs and courses built on adaptive curriculum and led by leading industry experts.
- Work on projects in a collaborative setting
- Take advantage of our flexible plans and scholarships
- Get access to VIP events and workshops
Recommended Courses for Web Designer
The User Experience Design bootcamp is designed to introduce the skills and concepts required to become a User Experience Designer.
User Interface (UI) Design is the practice of transforming user goals and requirements into beautiful, intuitive, and functional digital interfaces.
The part-time User Experience (UX) Design course was developed for professionals with an interest in digital design, web development, and improving the user experience of their product or digital properties.
The part-time Web Development course is designed to provide a crash course in web development, with introductions to HTML, CSS, and the Bootstrap framework.
The Design Thinking training course gives you the skills to solve complex business problems using the design thinking process.