If you’re an artist who intuitively searches for visual solutions to problems and enjoys web technology, a web design essential skills and profession is the perfect job for you.
Web design allows you to stretch your creativity and keep you updated with the latest web technology.
Like other essential roles and skills in tech, web designers require both the analytical and creative sides of your mind.
A web designer is a versatile career, and it offers vast opportunities to expand.
It’s no bizarre fact that the web design and development industry is an expanding profession, and is appealing for many reasons.
With tons of organizations and companies that understand the online presence nowadays, individuals who can develop, design, and manage a website are in demand.
Whether you’re planning to start a web design company or looking to change your career as a freelance web designer or professional web designer Malaysia, there are some essential key skills that you need to learn and understand to thrive in this industry.
You also need to stand out and offer helpful solutions and creative ideas that are different from other designers.
Ask yourself some of these questions –
What makes you special and unique from others?
How do you cope with current trends and competition out there?
How can you possibly stand out in an industry where so many people are trying to offer the same service as you?
A good web designer is more than just someone who creates aesthetically pleasing websites; they are helpful, specialize in a particular skill, a good communicator, know the latest tech and software, and the list goes on.
In this article, we’ll discuss in detail the web designer essential skills that you need to know that will build your repertoire as a web designer in Malaysia – leading to more clients and projects.
The 22 Web Designer Essentials Skills A Web Designer Needs To Success in The Industry
The skills and knowledge that you need to acquire to become a successful web designer are divided into two distinct categories; technical skills and soft skills.
These two elements are the primary keys that will guide you to the right path and help you succeed in this industry in the long run.
Web Designer’s Technical Skills
1. Basic Principles of Design
Even though you think you’re more creative than others, you also need to understand the fundamentals and create the difference between reproducing what you see and creating a unique and well-planned design.
2. Technical Skills
Every designer understands the importance of designing with the right web designer tool.
Like other professions, a web designer has his own set of tools that convert an idea into a resolution. There are various applications available to use, but some are unique that will help you distinguish yourself from other designers.
It would help if you also used the right tools at the right time.
Based on the Hosting Tribunal, 75 percent of people establish an opinion about a website based on its aesthetic and experience.
That means, to become a web designer, you’ll have to acquire the art of magnifying the UX (user experience and UI (User-interface). Use essential design tools like Photoshop for image processing and Adobe Illustrator or Adobe Dreamweaver for graphic design.
Familiarising yourself with these tools will help you to understand the crucial elements of web designing.
3. UI/ UX
User Experience (UX) emphasizes a deep understanding of users in terms of what they need, what they are looking for, their abilities, limitations, and how they’ll respond to a design.
It’s a process of creating a site that brings enjoyment to use and at ease to navigate.
UX focuses on understanding a person’s behavior and experience while engaging and guiding them through the site.
If your website chooses to use large images and flashy videos that slow down loading times, visitors will get frustrated and leave the site, and that’s the last thing you want.
Best UX practice includes:
- Understand your audience. Once you’ve got a clear idea of your site’s audience, you can find out their needs and wants and create the perfect design that will fulfill their desires.
- Be trustworthy, approachable, and transparent with human interaction preferred over machine interaction.
- Creating a scannable site page will appeal to your audience.
- Understand that the user wants clarity and simplicity. Don’t make it hard to find action buttons.
While UX focuses on the comprehensive features of web page design, UI manages the specific elements of how users interact with the site. UI is often considered as the menus and buttons that make up all the navigation on the site. These come together to create a unified experience and an effortless web interface design.
Best UI involves various aspects of usability that include:
- The simple and straightforward navigation interface
- Call to action button that helps people to do what you want them to do in a brief amount of time
- Intuitive and repeatable steps and actions that your audience can do and understand when they use your design
4. Responsive Design
Responsive web design is a way to arrange and organize a website to automatically scale its elements and contents to complement the screen size on which it’s viewed.
It maintains images from being too large than the screen width and prevents the site’s visitors on mobile devices to easily navigate the site to read the content. Responsive design is an essential element of web development.
Ensuring your designs render to various devices helps it reach more audiences without sacrificing the user experience.
5. HTML & CSS
HyperText Markup Language acts as the foundation for most websites; it’s one of the critical skills that need to be acquired by all web designers.
You might think that a web designer would not need to know how to code, though it’s an anticipated skill for most design jobs.
Even if you’re using a content management system, understanding how to use HTML grants you control of the workflow and work independently if necessary.
A useful HTML partner, known as CSS or Cascading Style Sheets, is the code that notifies the browsers on how to style and format HTML for a web page.
In a more straightforward definition, CSS allows you to adjust the colors, add stunning backgrounds, change the fonts, and so much more to the site.
This is where your skill for design shines and how you can use your unique and creative side on every site you’re creating.
The site will look different each time visitors are logged-in. It complements HTML well by powering features like search bars, videos, and more.
If you can learn other programming languages besides HTML and CSS, you’ll be doing yourself a favor.
Coding language helps web designers to understand the same language the developers use for building the site. It’ll prevent the designer from making mistakes and allow them to understand the tools and elements they’re working with.
In today’s world of designers, someone who understands code is more valuable than a designer who doesn’t.
Understanding a few coding languages would be good for your web designer portfolio as well.
8. Web Server Management
No matter how modern and up-to-date the site’s server may be, there’ll always be unexpected issues.
You may think that your job as a web designer doesn’t involve administering the site, and anyone from the organization will do the site maintenance instead.
But it will be helpful for a web designer to know about the essential functions of a web server so you could help resolve any technical issue immediately.
A web server is needed to host a self-hosted WordPress blog and also an ecommerce web design platform like Magento.
The more knowledgeable you are about webserver management, the better you are equipped to deal with server limitations and compatible web design functions.
A wordpress web designer acquire the fundamentals of coding and read up on WordPress
9. Content Management System – CMS
Just as the name indicates, a content management system, also known as CMS, is a software application or set of intertwined programs that let you manage and create your website’s digital content.
CMS gives you the ability to upload, delete and edit content from the website without understanding CSS, HTML, or other coding languages.
Knowing how to use CMS correctly helps you organize content smoothly.
For content that requires regular updates like recipes, blog posts, or events, a CMS will help streamline the process.
Thus, to be a good web designer, you need to familiarize yourself with CMS’s basic features. A CMS also makes custom web design, embedding graphics, video-audio files, and inserting programming codes easy.
Read also: 10 Ways to Create Attractive Niche Content
Typography is the technique and art of layout type to make written language readable, legible, and appealing when displayed.
The term typography is also widely used for the arrangement, appearance, and style of the symbols, numbers, and letters used for the design you make.
Typography forms our insight of ideas, and it’s vital to understand the best way to convey messages using the appropriate options.
A type of weight and geometry is chosen to help people know what you’re trying to share.
Particle fonts like Verdana, Georgia, and Roboto, work wonderfully as body copy, while decorative typefaces should be used carefully as decorative elements.
Good designers know how to differentiate type styles and how to properly use them with tons of resources on the web that can help boost your typographic skills.
The positioning of visuals, text, and other elements play both appearances and functional purposes.
It’s to create a balanced and visually pleasing web page.
A good website composition gives a simple way for readers to navigate the site while highlighting the primary message that you want to relay to the audience.
A minimalist web design is the in thing, and many designers opt for this style as it is easy to navigate and loads better.
Read also: Tips To Achieve Minimalist Website Design
A well-planned layout requires creating balance with contrast, proportioned elements, and negative space. Learn from other designs around you like billboards or other websites to familiarize yourself with composition for better understanding.
12. Digital Marketing Skills
A web designer plays a crucial role in every digital marketing strategy; hence, being knowledgeable on various digital marketing elements will help you analyze the potential and the flaw of the site and assess it.
Usually, a digital marketing team will inform you of the latest trends to gain traffic, so you can act accordingly on how to improve the site to reach more visitors.
Conversion rates refer to how many visitors take desired actions such as sign-ups to an email list or making a purchase.
Good website designers can help improve the layout and navigation to boost the site’s conversion rates and increase sales.
Effective web design binds together several components of the digital marketing plan and helps improve user experience to entice audiences to come back to the site.
13. Video Production
Many websites are now including video as part of their content. Web designers are often requested to help produce video testimonials, tutorials, product showcasing, advertisements, and other short videos to help the client promote their businesses.
You don’t need a massive budget to create a quality video. Here are some video tools that can help you elevate your video editing skills:
- Adobe Premiere Pro CC
- Pinnacle Studio 23
- Vegas Pro
- Avid Media Composer
- Final Cut Pro X
- DaVinci Resolve
14. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Without on-page SEO, no website design can run smoothly; thus, a website designer must understand and focus on the site’s speed, structure, and performance.
A web designer should also create a site that is SEO friendly as it helps the site rank in the search engines.
To achieve this, web designers need to understand responsive website design, among other technical seo skills.
Read also: Beginner’s Guide to SEO
15. Communication Skills
Good communication skills are the key to success in work, relationships, and life. Without effective communication, a message can be misunderstood, leading to errors in judgement.
Or even the worst disasters if misinterpreted or poorly delivered.
A good web designer understands that good communication skills are crucial.
It’s vital to get your point across and stay in touch all the time of the project.
Nobody likes to be left hanging without knowing what the other parties are thinking or planning on the other side.
You need to regularly update your client on the project’s progress and explain to them briefly your ideas and creations so they comprehend your plan and can provide you with feedback.
16. Time Management
Everyone gets the same 24 hours in a single day.
As a web designer, there are tons of moving parts to your responsibility like planning, coding, designing, strategizing, and the list goes on. While you can’t possibly add more time back into the day, you can find ways to maximize your workflow to get some time back. In business, time is money, and as a web designer, every single minute is valuable.
While your schedule can be quite hectic, it’s vital to take care of your health and wellness. When you give your body the best environment to flourish, you’ll see it work more in your favor.
Another key to time management is having a clear and defined list of tasks each day to keep you organized.
Make sure your goals are measurable, doable, realistic, and timely.
This will set the expectation bar for you and the client, so your plans are transparent.
17. Project Management
Whether you’re interested in freelance web design or work for a company or to be a freelance web designer, you’ll need to plan your schedule and stay organized to be a successful web designer.
This can also mean familiarizing yourself with productivity apps like calendars or task lists, especially if you’re working for large companies.
It’s the same thing with freelancing.
It would be best if you had a tool or an app that can help you stay organized. Productivity apps like Click Up, Asana. Jira or Trello help you prioritize and track your work. These apps are essential for both your success and sanity in the industrious and busy web design world.
Discipline is a must when you want to ensure productivity and meeting deadlines.
Make every minute of your working time useful and avoid distractions at all times.
Don’t check on social media when you’re working.
One key to self-discipline is to follow a strict daily schedule.
Set a time to accomplish a task, and when the time is up, move on. If it’s not the time to check on your email, don’t do it.
19. Interpersonal Skills
Interpersonal skills are characteristics you depend on when you interact with other people.
It covers some scenarios where communication and cooperation are essential.
These skills involve the potential to communicate and build relationships with others.
Often known as people skills, it tends to incorporate your natural personality characteristics and how you have learned to handle certain situations. Good interpersonal skills can help you score more projects and positively impact your career development.
Being a web designer, it’s like working in a team. You might have to communicate with other people who are not designers. And you have to explain your ideas in universal terms where everyone can understand.
Design often works together with a digital marketing team alongside other business departments like I.T, for example.
Recognizing your limitations does pay off.
Never promise the client something that you can’t deliver.
Please don’t accept the project and hope to learn how to do it along the way as it will only affect your reputation and credibility.
Receive a job when you are confident that you can deliver and are knowledgeable to do it.
Accepting a job merely to create a name is not worth it.
It’s okay to decline an offer for the reason of lack of knowledge in a specific area.
You’ll do the client a favor by not wasting their time and money.
When you’re ready, you can contact the client again, and they’ll be sure happy to work with you as you’re honest about yourself.
21. Taking & Receiving Feedback
Receiving feedback, whether it’s good or otherwise, is one way to learn how to improve your design.
Many times we lose sight of how important feedback is. A good designer is always willing to take criticism positively.
Creating a website means you’ll be taking constant editing and requests, and you need to know how to implement it to complete your task.
If you ask anyone in your company when feedback occurs, they’ll typically mention an employee survey or performance appraisal.
In actuality, feedback is around us all the time.
By asking for feedback, it can help you stay motivated to perform your task better.
And feedback from clients can be used to help build better working relations.
22. Attention to Detail
Good web design and layout do not happen by chance and luck.
It is created by weighing on a few points like the navigation, layout color scheme, fonts, technological aspects and interactivity, and most importantly, creativeness and originality.
All these elements are well-positioned and planned. Hence the attention to detail is a must in every part of the design.
Paying attention to a design’s detail means you intentionally examine and polish every invention element, be it simple or complicated.
That means you only add what is necessary, and you make every critical piece beautiful.
The Bottom Line
Web design is more than just making great websites.
It’s an integral part of online marketing.
A website represents how one business or entity looks, and that is why a web designer’s role is essential.
This list concludes the top 22 web design skills you must have to be a good web designer and stand out in the crowd.
These skills and knowledge form the foundation needed to score more projects and establish your industry name.
Looking for a credible web design agency is as hard as finding the best digital marketing agency in today’s world. Some might not get what you want or can’t understand your business’s mission precisely.
Contact us at One Search Pro as we can provide the best web design services.
As the trusted digital marketing agency in Malaysia, we are responsible for designing and building our clients’ interface and navigation.
Our team possesses a range of skills and qualities to ensure we deliver the best web design for your business.
We can also help you create an online presence for your business using various mediums like SEO, SEM, Social marketing, Facebook Management, and Google Adwords.