What does a web designer do? (Skills and responsibilities)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 13 July 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

If you have a creative mind and are thinking about a career in technology, you may be considering a career as a web designer. The role of a web designer is to create websites for clients that are both functional and visibly attractive. Learning what a web designer does can help you decide whether it's a suitable career path for you. In this article, we discuss what a web designer does, explore the main responsibilities of a web designer and list the qualifications and training that benefit this role.

What does a web designer do?

If you're thinking about a career in computing that can allow you to work creatively, you may be wondering, 'What does a web designer do?' The main role of a web designer is to design or redesign websites for clients, specifically focusing on the visual aspects of the website. To create a successful website, web designers often communicate with their clients to discuss their requirements before they begin the design process.

Once they have a brief, the designer uses computer programming techniques, coding and creative tools to design various pages. This role may involve selecting the right fonts, colours and images that display the client's brand stylishly and effectively. Website designers may also code different features, and always have to ensure that every aspect of the website functions properly and is easy to use. Website designers can either work for themselves, for a web designing agency or a specific company. They may also work by themselves or work as part of a larger team.

Related: Web developer qualifications: a guide with tips and FAQs

Main responsibilities of a web designer

There are many different daily responsibilities of a web designer, including:

  • meeting clients to discuss their website design ideas and requirements

  • designing website drafts and making any alterations based on the client's wishes

  • designing graphics, images and other digital pictures

  • registering website domains and finding appropriate hosting sites

  • coding different aspects of the website

  • creating websites that are search engine optimised

  • working with other specialists to create larger and more complex websites

  • regularly testing websites to ensure they are functioning

  • keeping up to date on current website trends

Related: Web design vs. graphic design: definition and differences

What qualifications and training should a web designer have?

There are multiple different ways that you can enter a career as a web designer. There are qualifications and training that all web designers can benefit from acquiring. Here are some of the qualifications and training that may help you to achieve a career in this role:

Web designer qualifications

Most employers may require that you have an undergraduate degree in some of the following subjects, such as web design, computer science, software engineering, information technology or graphic design. It's important to note that some companies may offer apprenticeships or entry-level roles for creative individuals who don't have a university degree but want a career in this field.

Although they are not necessarily a requirement, a postgraduate degree can help you stand out from other applicants, especially if you're applying to large companies where there is competition. Additionally, it may be beneficial to create an online portfolio of any websites you created during your degree or during your spare time.

Related: How to become a web designer: a step-by-step guide

Web designer training

Although there are no official requirements for training for this role, work experience and training courses can help your application to stand out. Here are some training courses that you might undertake:

  • HTML fundamentals: This course can teach you the fundamentals of this coding language that can help you create unique and specialist features.

  • Digital marketing courses: These courses can teach you how to optimise websites for SEO and how to utilise social media and content to boost the ranking of the websites you design in search engines.

  • UX design: UX design is a design skill that specifically focuses on the user experience. A deep understanding of user-friendly design can help you to create more streamlined and effective websites.

Related: What does a web developer do? (With salary and skills)

Web designer salary

The average salary for a web designer is £27,515 per year. It's important to note that this salary may vary depending on location. For example, the average salary for a web designer in Sheffield is £31,187 per year. Your salary may also depend on the company you work for, whether you choose to work freelance or your level of experience in the industry.

Related: How much does a web designer make? (Plus duties and skills)

Web designer skills

To succeed in a career as a web designer, several desirable skills can help you to excel in this role. While it is not necessary to have all these skills, practising new skills can help you to advance in your career as a web designer. Some of these skills include:

Attention to detail

To create successful websites, website designers have to spend time ensuring that all aspects of their site function properly. This is to ensure that everything is complete before they send it to the client and there are no spelling mistakes. To do this, web designers may choose to test their website by reading every piece of information, clicking on every link and ensuring that all extra features function correctly.

Communication skills

Web designers have to communicate regularly with their clients to ensure that they are meeting their requirements. When a new client shows interest in a new website, the web designer has to hold an initial meeting with the client to discuss their requirements, the style and tone of their company and any features or pages that they want to add. During the creation process, the web designer may have to have multiple meetings with the client to ensure that they are meeting their requirements. Therefore, good communication skills are imperative to the success of this role.

Understanding of computer programming and coding

Although some web designers use specialist web designing systems to create more simplistic websites. To create more complex features, web designers may have to use specific computer programming skills to create a successful design. They may also choose to use different coding languages to create website features depending on the programme they are using.

What are the benefits of a career as a web designer?

If you are thinking about a career as a website designer, there are many benefits of working in this role. Understanding the potential benefits can help you to decide if the career is right for you. Some of these benefits include:

There is a high demand

With advances in technology, businesses in every sector are now creating websites that stand out from the competition. Because of this, the demand for skilled and professional website designers is usually high. To be able to keep up with their competition, most businesses now have a website that is informative and engaging and therefore relies on website designers to produce professional sites.

Opportunity to work freelance

Although you may choose to work as an in-house website designer or for an agency, many website designers choose to work on a freelance basis. Because this role is mostly online, many website designers work from home, giving them the freedom and flexibility to design as many websites as they like for whichever clients they choose. Moreover, by working freelance, you have the opportunity to negotiate your prices and you can work on your schedule.

Allows you to work creatively

Creativity is a fundamental skill of a successful website developer, so a career in this role can allow you to work more creatively. This role allows you to have complete autonomy over what type of website you create, meaning that you can use your creative skills to design and implement fun and unique websites. You may even have the opportunity to create graphic designs, logos and images for your client.

Website developer professional development

Because the world of technology changes so rapidly, it's important that web designers undertake regular professional development to ensure that their websites are optimal and learn about new design concepts. To do this, you may want to consider taking regular website design lectures and seminars.

Alternatively, consider reading website design blogs and magazines that detail the latest web design trends. If you work as a web designer for a company, they may regularly offer you opportunities to complete both in-house and external training to help boost your understanding of different web design practices, different trends in web design, digital marketing and social media.

Related: Web Designer vs Web Developer

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