Web designers combine creative and technical skills to create great websites.
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Web designers create websites for private and public sector organizations. They work in IT consultancies, software houses, Web design agencies, or in company IT or marketing departments. The professions of graphic designer, Web designer and Web developer increasingly overlap, with Web designers using a range of creative and technical skills to build websites that are visually attractive and technically sound.
A bachelor’s degree in Web design provides a practical education in the key elements, including visual communication, digital arts and design, multimedia production, Web application programming and publishing, interactivity and usability testing. Designers can also obtain certification through accreditation bodies, such as the International Webmaster Association-HTML Writers Guild and the Certified Internet Webmaster.
Web designers require strong graphic design skills. Their aim is to create Web pages that are clear and easy to navigate on personal computer screens and on the smaller screens of mobile devices with Internet access, such as smartphones. Web designers may have developed their design skills in graphic design for printed media, or they may design only for the Web. They must be proficient in using Web design software, such as Adobe Photoshop or Dreamweaver.
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To ensure their site ranks well on search engines and attracts higher numbers of visitors, Web designers must be familiar with search engine optimization techniques. They must work with content providers to ensure they supply high-quality, original content that reflects popular search terms. They must also ensure that their designs are easy for search engines to navigate and index.
Web designers must be able to show that they have experience in creating websites in a range of formats. Recent graduates with only minimal work experience can take advantage of a scheme run by the Website Design Institute. The scheme offers clients free website upgrades by young design professionals working as interns at the Institute. The interns gain valuable experience with a range of clients and can showcase their work on the Institute’s site.