Web designing is steadily becoming a career option for more and more aspiring designers today. What is web design? It is a creatively-driven and current occupation that anyone with a creative eye can train for.
However, web designers need to go through enough experience to prove their worth as with many other occupations. The best way to do this is by compiling a portfolio of your best work. But how do you do that if you’re a newbie with little or no experience?
What is web design?
Web design is, simply put, the design of websites. It is the creation of an interface that users interact with. That said, it works hand-in-hand with website development, which can include the internal functionalities of websites.
In the early days of the internet, web design was done to fit desktop browsers, then, later on, laptop browsers. Nowadays, you can also find web design in tablets, mobile phones, or any device that can access a website.
Basically, web design is everywhere on the internet. It is the face you see when you click on a link online and the page you interact with as you browse through a site.
What does a web designer do?
A web designer is someone that designs websites or creates web designs. That is the primary role or responsibility. In detail, a web designer can have the following tasks:
- Work on the appearance and layout of a website to fit a client’s needs and preferences.
- Produce sample sites from which clients can choose
- Receiving feedback and editing draft sites to fit a client’s preferences
- Meeting with clients to discuss site requirements
- Identify technical requirements for the website design
- Ensure optimal user experience
- Digital designs and image editing
- Working with a web-development team
- Updating websites as needed
- Helping to solve code problems relating to the website design
- Creating back-up files for safety measures
How do you become a web designer?
There are no strict requirements to become a web designer. You don’t really need a specific degree or take a licensure exam to apply as a website designer. All you need are the right set of skills to get the job done.
Here are a few things you can do to follow the web design career path:
Learn web design
There is no formal degree in web design, although a computer-related degree such as IT can help. You can start off by looking at online courses such as Web Design Beginner’s Course. Such courses don’t require a degree either, although having some computer-related knowledge can help you learn faster.
Learn to Code
Coding is a required skill if you want to work in website development. Luckily, you can learn it online too. The Complete Front-End Web Development and Design course covers all you need to know about coding for web design.
Learn some basic SEO techniques
SEO is not merely limited to written content on the web. A large portion of it also resides in the user’s experience, which has a lot to do with web design. Knowing the fundamentals of SEO can help you make better designs that are more visible online.
Develop your craft
When you have all the knowledge you need to create websites, you need to start actually making them. You need this to build your portfolio and fit in with the web design community. You also need to brush up on your business skills so you can sell your services to prospective clients.
Creating your first portfolio
Beginner web designers usually find it hard to get off the ground because of a lack of experience and small market coverage. People are reluctant to trust someone who doesn’t yet have a track record of excellence. That is why it is essential to create your portfolio as soon as possible, so you have something to show them to prove your worth.
Work for free
While it may not be an appealing thing to do, doing a few designs for free gives you the practice you need to design actual websites so you can see how well they work. It also is an opportunity for you to start your portfolio.
Alternately, you can try offering web design services for a minimal fee. There are plenty of online job websites to find opportunities to showcase your skill and talent. You can undertake project-based jobs to try your hand out on short-term jobs with a variety of styles you can try out.
Set up a portfolio website
To have a portfolio to show, you need somewhere to showcase your work. Just as you can display art in an exhibition or an album, you can feature your web design work online.
To do this, you can either opt to build your own website, or you can compile your work in a portfolio website. An alternative solution is to create your own social media page on Facebook or Instagram. Social media is a cost-effective way to market your services.
Do it for fun in your spare time
The secret to building a portfolio with minimal experience is to have fun with it. If you are planning to make a career switch and are still employed in another job, it is best to do it for fun during your spare time.
Doing it for fun not only gives you much-needed practice but also allows you to explore your creativity and learn to love web design even more.
Keep up with the latest
While you are in the process of creating your first portfolio, it is essential to keep up with the latest trends in web design. There are several resources that allow you to keep yourself abreast with what web visitors like the most.