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Top Web Design Skills you should master to be successful in your Career and Freelance Business.

I am a web designer/ developer with 6+ years of relevant experience in building, designing and developing websites for myself and clients

top web design skills

top web design skills

top web design skills

Top web design skills you should master

Traditionally, web design was mostly focused on creating websites for desktop browsers, however, post-2010, mobile and tablet browser web design has become extremely important.

A good web design is simple to use, aesthetically pleasing, and relevant for the website's target audience and brand. To be a successful web designer and developer you should design websites with much focus and emphasis on simplicity, whether there is little to no unnecessary content or functionality that could confuse or distract users.

The keystone of any top web designer’s output should be to develop a site that wins and fosters the trust of the target audience, therefore reducing as many potential areas of user aggravation as possible is a very critical consideration.

In this article, I have compiled a list of top web design skills which when mastered by any web designer and developer can help you to not only land that lucrative job you’ve always wanted but also skyrocket your income whether employed, working as a freelance web designer or building your own web design business.

  1. Digital Marketing.

As a web designer, you will most likely be and play an essential part of many if not every digital marketing strategy.

By combining your coding skills with online marketing skills, you will have a skill set that will be very beneficial to your career – whether you have a full-time job or freelancing business.

The digital marketing industry is vast, and can at times be quite difficult to navigate for newcomers or those looking to find their niche, since it's ever growing, advancing, and revolutionizing. Where relevant tools and resources today can be rendered obsolete tomorrow.

As a result, understanding how various components and principles of how digital marketing works will help you analyze you and your clients website and address any issues that arise.

Furthermore, digital marketing will keep you up to date on current industry trends, allowing you to adjust your designs accordingly.

So, how do you set yourself apart from the competition and fast-track your way up the corporate ladder?

2. UX/UI And Visual Design

Often times people tend to judge a book by its cover. This applies to a variety of things in our lives, including digital experiences. Our products' appearance has an impact on how our customers perceive them.

According to past research, more than 70% of users create a judgment of a website solely on the basis of its appearance and feel.

To become a successful web designer, you must understand the art of improving your clients and your own websites UX (user experience) and UI (user interface).

You should start by creating a visually appealing website. Grid systems, color psychology, type hierarchy, and web fonts are all useful tools. Make sure the website works well on a variety of devices(mobile phones).

Learning user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) will offer your web design and development profession an immediate boost.

3. Programming Languages

Aside from HTML and CSS, learning a couple of other computer languages will significantly increase your web design employment prospects and freelance business success.

It would be ideal if you could master JavaScript, Python, Swift, and C++, but if you have to pick one, I’d recommend you go with JavaScript. This is because over 60 percent of designers prefer to work using Java. By learning and knowing JavaScript programming language you will be elevated in a class of your own right away.

Learning to code can help you expand your job opportunities and, in turn, make you a more adaptable candidate in a quickly changing digital economy.

Effective design does not happen by accident. Navigation, layout, and color design should all be carefully considered. Every aspect of a design should be thoroughly scrutinized for effective and efficient functionality.

4. Content Management System (CMS)

To become a successful web designer, you must learn the fundamentals of content management systems (CMS).

Content management software (CMS) is basically a software application that unifies the management of digital assets. Web designs, embedded images, video-audio files, and other programming routines are among these assets.

Having a decent understanding of how CMS works will help you create websites more successfully.

Knowing how to use a content management system (CMS), makes managing enormous amounts of information much easier.

A CMS will make it easier to update content that needs to be updated on a regular basis, such as blog articles, recipes, or events.

Further more, using a content management system (CMS) to link related data and customize templates can make content management much easier.

5.Understanding of HTML & CSS

One of the best web design skills you can master is a deep understanding of HTML (Hypertext markup language) and CSS (Cascading style sheets).

HTML and CSS are the building blocks for a website's style and structure. They allow you to read and update a page as many times as you like.

You will easily be able to acquire a decent web design job or grow your web design freelancing business if you study these key coding languages.

While some people like to devote weeks or months to intense web development classes, you do not need to do so to start reaping the rewards of learning and knowing how to work with HTML and CSS.

Even a modest understanding of HTML (to construct web elements like buttons, text, and images) and CSS (to change the appearance of those elements) can make you decent money and improve your career prospects over time.

HTML remains the primary building component of the web, regardless of how sophisticated content management systems (like WordPress) or 'simple website builders' develop.

And, as more and more industries require you to use the internet in some capacity, learning a little HTML now will almost certainly benefit you a lot in the future.

6. Web Server Management

Web server management is an often overlooked web designer and developer ability that most designers aren't particularly good at. Although web servers are not strictly part of site design, understanding how they work will help you avoid downtime and solve problems in a timely and intelligent manner.

File management, log file aggregation, reporting, and comprehensive audit capabilities are the most important features of any web server management software.

The program should also provide a single, easy-to-understand view of what's going on throughout the environment. This provides tools for identifying root causes as well as color-coding choices for displaying difficulties.

Moreso, The program you choose should have a step-by-step setup wizard that captures critical information and integrates it with system-wide context to ensure maximum performance.

The automation may then install all of the plug-ins needed to control the webserver platform as a whole. This section ensures that IP addresses and DNS records are correctly configured.

7. Basic Designing Tools/ Principles(Graphic design)

The first web designer skill you should learn is how to use basic design software.

These are the main platforms on which you can build a successful website. You must, however, ensure that you employ the appropriate tools at the appropriate times. Photoshop, for example, is a good tool for image processing, but Adobe Illustrator will be more useful when it comes to graphic design. Getting to know such nuances would give you a better understanding of the complete creative canvas.

Website and graphic design both operate in the same creative realm. Both entail the skillful creation of graphics.

However, although web design is a medium in which modifications and upgrades are a part of every project, graphic design is more about generating long-lasting graphical aesthetics.

Also though designing a website and designing a logo are two independent design professions, they are both parts of the larger branding strategy.

Your skillset will be rounded out if you have graphic design skills. Knowing how to make bespoke graphics, hand-drawn typography, and other forms of creative flourishes will improve your web design job.

8. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

A crucial website design tip to remember is that no website design can achieve smooth outcomes unless it is backed by the power of SEO.

As web designers, you'll have to concentrate on making your website's speed, layout, structure, and performance SEO-friendly.

It is always very beneficial to become familiar with the fundamentals of content/ page optimization and search engine operations in order to do this

Search Engines Optimization is where copywriting and digital marketing intersect.

It's very critical that you provide Google with searchable material if you want people to notice your effort and have your websites ranking.

When it comes to SEO, it's all about naturally weaving keywords and phrases into your content. It's critical to also understand when content SEO is forced, since it detracts from readability, and has to be rewritten.

You'll be more effective at both if you understand how copy and design work together.

It's all about making an impression with great text and design. You should be able to spot text that is overly wordy and either send it back to the writer for revisions or if you can write, handle the modifications yourself.

As a web designer, you're expected to be an expert in this field, you should be able to recognize great design when you see it.

Recognizing good writing and understanding what makes it goodwill will also aid in the development of your own writing abilities.

9. Communication

Communication is an important skill set in any web designer's ability, since it can help you advance in your career and business.

This is because communication will allow you to clearly and transparently communicate all types of technical information to all parties involved in your web design process and program.

Your designing technique and objectives will benefit greatly if both your coworkers and clients can better understand you.

It's just as crucial to have people skills as it is to have pixel abilities. It's critical to communicate your project vision in a way that non-designers can grasp. Anyone from the marketing department to the founder might be a stakeholder, and you must be able to articulate what you're building and how it will accomplish the project's objectives

Although much of design is done alone, it's still necessary to get out of your creative bubble, listen actively, and share what you're working on with your clients and team.


A web designer, like many other professions, requires a diverse set of skills. Like design's visual language, where font, color, and use of space all come together in a pleasing balance. You should be well-versed in the guiding principles that result in work that is both effective and appealing to the eye.

Communication, perseverance, and patience are all skills that will help you become a better designer and human. It's good practice to manage customer criticism well so you can hold your cool when your acquaintances criticizes your work. Being a competent designer also entails being a decent human being.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Alvin Omondi

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