The Role of a Web Designer

The role of a Web Designer

The main responsibility of a Web Designer is to ensure that the website that they are creating is appealing to the desired target audience and, as a result, catches their attention.

Nowadays however, the role of a web designer has evolved to include several other aspects including user experience design, search engine optimization and website maintenance. This expansion of the role has seen the need for Web Designers to broaden their skillset and has meant that there is no longer a clear divide between Web Designers and Web Developers.

User Experience Design

As well as making the website look attractive to the eye, Web Designers are also tasked with taking in to consideration user experience techniques. User Experience Design has its roots in human factors and ergonomics as it looks at the way in which people interact with websites, for example, where they instinctively look when a page opens. By understanding these key principles, Web Designers and User Experience Designers are able to suggest placement options for websites that could maximise “goals” such as clicks or purchases.

Search Engine Optimization

Another key element of Web Design is the understanding of, at least basic, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques and more specifically on-page SEO. SERPs or Search Engine Ranking Positions are essential for many online businesses, as they can be the main referral source that drives traffic to the site. Although a lot of SEO can be done off-site or after the website has been created, by ensuring that you follow SEO techniques on-page during the design stage means that your site is likely to rank well from the off!

Web Designer or Web Developer?

As roles have evolved, the clear distinction between web designer jobs and a web developer jobs has blurred. More and more Web Designers are expected to have an understanding of programming languages and coding to ensure that they can implement certain aspects of their design, meaning their responsibilities cross over with that of a Web Developer. The same can be said of the reverse – Web Developers are now expected to get involved in the front –end design of a website and look at user experience etc.

Key skills of a Web Designer

As a result of the evolution in Web Design jobs, the key skills that you will need in order to become a Web Designer are now very diverse. As mentioned above you will need a knowledge of both User Experience and SEO principles as well as development skills such as html, css or php and content management systems such as drupal or symphony.  

Other soft skills that you will need to demonstrate to become a web designer include:

  • Organization
  • Planning
  • Analysis
  • Communication
  • Teamwork