what is a web designer?

Research shows that more than 250,000 websites are created every day, and this number is likely to rise over time as technology keeps advancing. Once a website has been developed, the next step is to design it to improve user experience and make it appealing to visitors; this is where a web designer comes into play.

As a web designer, you are expected to create and build web pages and websites by using many different visual design elements. These visual design elements include:

  • videos
  • animations
  • texts
  • graphics
  • photos

Depending on the nature of the task, you can either create a brand-new website or make updates to the layout and design of existing pages. Ideally, you are not primarily responsible for understanding how the code works. Instead, your focus should be on creating a website that is aesthetically pleasing and makes users happy every time they interact with it.

Would working as a web designer suit your visual design and UX design skills? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a web designer role.

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average web designer salary

The salary of a web designer in Canada varies based on factors such as experience, location, and employer. Entry-level web designers typically earn between $45,000 and $55,000 annually, while mid-level designers may make $55,000 to $80,000, and senior-level designers with extensive experience can command salaries ranging from $80,000 to $100,000 or more. 

These figures can be higher in cities like Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal due to the higher cost of living. Various factors, including company size, project complexity, and the designer's skills, influence the specific salary.

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type of web designers

In tech, some positions have similar responsibilities as web designers. They include:

  • ux designer whose responsibility is to create products that are intuitive, usable, and accessible;
  • visual designer who is responsible for making backgrounds, icons, and buttons visually appealing;
  • front-end web developer who works on the client side of websites but with more attention to the code;
  • user interface (UI) designer who ensures products are accessible, inclusive, and responsive regardless of the browser you are using them on;
  • information architect who puts content together in a precise way so you can have an easy time finding them.

working as a web designer

If you are wondering what your everyday work life would be like working as a web designer, keep reading to find out. It is worth noting that the responsibilities of a web designer never change regardless of the organization.


web designer skills and education

In Canada, there are no strict educational requirements to become a web designer, but having formal education and relevant skills can be beneficial for your career. Here are some common educational paths and skills that can help you become a web designer:

  • post-secondary education: many web designers have at least a diploma or bachelor's degree in a related field such as web design, graphic design, computer science, or a similar discipline. These programs can provide you with a solid foundation in design principles, programming, and web development.
  • web design courses and certificates: you can also pursue shorter-term courses and certifications in web design. These programs are often offered by community colleges, universities, or private institutions and can focus on specific skills and tools commonly used in web design.
  • self-learning and online resources: some web designers are self-taught, learning the necessary skills through online tutorials, books, and practice. You can gain proficiency in design software (e.g., Adobe Creative Suite), HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and responsive design through self-study.
  • portfolio development: regardless of your educational background, building a strong portfolio is crucial for a web design career. Your portfolio should showcase your design and coding skills. Many employers and clients are more interested in your actual work than your formal education.

skills and competencies

The last decade has seen the demand for web designers rise since most businesses are moving online. However, the increase in demand has come at a cost in the sense that most companies now prefer candidates who are masters of several coding languages, understand graphic design, and are able to execute digital strategy properly.

That said, the following are some of the skills you must have as a website designer:

  • HyperText Markup Language (HTML)
  • Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
  • JavaScript
  • Content Management Systems (CMS)

The following are additional skills necessary in your job as a web designer:

  • web server management
  • responsive design
  • ui and ux
  • graphic design
  • colour theory

As a web designer, you must also have soft skills to help you execute your digital design plans successfully and with the utmost precision. These soft skills include:

  • communication skills
  • setting up projects
  • critical thinking skills
  • interpersonal skills
  • patience
  • being able to receive feedback
  • project management
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FAQs about working as a web designer

Here, you will find answers to the most frequently asked questions about web designers.

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Make sure your resume is up-to-date, including information about your technical skills and certifications. Then share it with us to connect with a recruiter and be matched with job opportunities.

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