The web didn’t just change the world – it’s still changing it as you read this.
Of all the inventions humankind has created, the internet ranks right up there with the very best. It’s changed everything from education to commerce to entertainment.
Every type of group and individual today likely has some type of web presence. Whether it’s a simple social media profile or a full website, your own personal spot on the web can provide many benefits. It’s great for networking, communication, and advertising purposes.
Whether you’re a public figure or the manager of a business, you may want a website. It could help you make connections with others or allow customers to find you.
Because of how important websites are, the demand for web designers is constantly growing.
Sure, it could be argued that there’s no shortage of web designers today. But the number of websites is growing as the number of internet users grows. Since learning to make websites requires a lot of time and effort, most people would as soon hire someone else to do it for them.
Today, we’ll discuss all things related to web design. What is the average web designer salary? What are the education requirements to land a position like this? And what are the responsibilities a web designer will be expected to complete?
What is the Average Web Designer Salary?
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The median salary for web designers as reported by PayScale is $49,021. Those on the low end of the pay range made $34,000, while those on the high end made $73,790.
In terms of hourly pay, that equates to a median wage of $19.74, with those on the low end starting at $11.77 and those on the high end topping out at $48.79. There’s also a few other ways web designers have reported making money, including:
When we take everything into account, web designers could make anywhere from $30,000 all the way up to $75,000 and even toward six figures if they land on the high end of the base pay range and get big earnings on all the extra avenues.
This puts their earnings on par with many other positions in that there is a solid midrange and a lot of room for improvement in terms of total earnings.
But what exactly does a person need in order to land a web design position?
Education and Skill Requirements for Web Designers
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Web designers will almost always need a college degree in order to succeed. Many universities offer their own web design programs. A bachelors or at the very least an associates will be required to land a good job.
There are also a number of certifications out there both in individual programming languages and even in dedicated web design curriculums. For many people, a liberal arts education is a bit excessive – if they want to design websites, there’s no point in taking out thousands in loans to take classes in sociology, English literature, or fine arts just for the sake of it.
Web designers may be asked to understand specific programming languages and systems depending on the jobs they apply to. While freelancers could get by with simply being able to build sites in general, those who hope to work for established companies will have to adapt to the requirements of said companies.
Experience is also a factor – this is where freelance work or even internships come in handy.
For those who are looking to get started, there is a lot of benefits to having previous experience making sites. Even if they’re made on a freelance basis or for free, being able to show previous work is a big selling point for anyone applying to a job.
Web Designer Job Responsibilities: Beyond the Obvious
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The most obvious requirement of being a web designer is right in the name.
We know they’re tasked with making websites – but what else lies within that job description?
Web designers will be tasked with creating websites, as well as web promotions using a variety of software and tools. While making standalone sites could be the biggest part of a web designer’s money-making possibilities, they could also be asked to edit existing systems or networks.
For example, a company may use a type of software portal for all their locations. It could link various locations together and be usable by all the company’s employees and vendors. If work needs to be done on it, a web designer could be hired to edit the graphics of it and even alter the coding to change how the system processes information.
Some of this may overlap with the duties of a programmer, or even an IT consultant – and while large companies may hire each of these positions, a web designer could be asked to do a bit of everything in certain cases.
There’s also a great degree of interpretation involved with web design jobs. Finding a good web designer salary doesn’t just depend on a person’s ability to understand technical concepts – it depends on their artistic capabilities as well.
Balancing Artistry and Creativity in Web Design
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When a business is looking for any type of designer, there’s always a need to find someone who is artistic. Interpreting elements of requests and understanding how to convey them artistically is very important.
For example, let’s say a company commissions a designer to build them a site. They may have the following requests:
- 1The site should have a Home, About Us, Services, FAQ, and Contact page.
- 2The site should have a minimum load time of 5 seconds on the area’s average internet speed.
- 3The site should encompass the spirit of the company’s brand.
The first two requirements are based on technical knowledge – but the third is based around artistry. The company may be targeted at younger people, and thus it may want to position itself as an exciting, fresh, engaging brand. These qualities need to come through in the site.
Bringing such a brand to life through a website could require a designer to use certain color patterns and design schemes that wouldn’t necessarily be fitting in other projects.
While there is some subjectivity in place here, there’s always a benefit to having someone who can take client requests and bring them into reality through artistic vision.
This is something that can be taught – at least a designer can be encouraged to explore art classes enough to help them grasp the basics of design. And for those who have a natural knack for artistry, they will automatically have an advantage as a designer.
Is a Web Designer Salary Worth the Work?
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Since we know the demands of the job and the work it takes to get there, now we can compare it with the earning potential – is a web designer salary worth it?
For a person who enjoys this type of work, the pay would be worth it. The earning potential is enough that a person could build a comfortable living and have enough money to meet their needs plus save up.
Combined with things like benefits, which are usually also available from large companies, a web designer who gets paired up with the right company could have a very good career.
If a person doesn’t gravitate to the demands of a changing work environment or if they don’t understand the artistic aspect, they may not enjoy this type of position as much. Even if they were proficient enough to get the job, they may be better suited for one of the related positions we mentioned such as general programmer or IT specialist.
Web designers are in high demand, as even the growing number of designers can’t keep on pace with the growing demand for sites. With the right training and skillset, anyone can make a good salary as a web designer.
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