Top web designers often say that their approach to web design is as much an art as it is technical. One of the most common mistakes of many beginning designers is to believe that technical skills are all that are required to make it as a web designer. While it is true that, without excellent coding and programming language skills a web designer cannot get too far, it also requires a specific set of skills that are often only acquired with many years of practice and experience. In this article, we set out to outline a few of the most important skills to add to your toolbox to become a star web designer, besides the obvious coding skills required.
One of the most important skills for expert and, especially, beginner web designers is to prepare a visual plan of their project. While many aspiring web designers might believe that their work is entirely done in the computer, this could not be further from the truth. A good practice that might save you time and help you see problems before you start coding is to jot down your plan on a piece of paper or on a white board. Seeing your plan all together in one place can help you spot places where it could be improved. Also, you can catch anything that might create an issue later on during the implementation process. Once you have a plan, then you can move on and start working on your computer. It will make for a faster and more efficient use of your time. Another thing that expert web designers know and use is good administration of white space. It is not necessary to fill every single inch of your website with content and information. In fact, white space can help you achieve an elegant and sophisticated look instead of a cluttered mess. White space can also be used to place the focus on what you want to feature more prominently in your website. But efficient use of white space goes hand to hand with planning ahead, as we mentioned before, to avoid having a website that looks sparse instead of sophisticated. One good way of testing what is the most salient feature on your website is to carry out a simple, but effective test, called the squint test. As you may imagine it involves standing away from your computer and squinting at your screen so that everything seems unfocused and you can only make out the colors, stylistic elements, graphics, or text that loom larger in your website. This should give you a pretty good idea of what a random visitor might notice first when navigating through your website.
If you would like to expand your web design skills, a great way to start is by consulting experienced designers, such as the team behind Web Design Northern KY, the experts on Search Engine Optimization KY. You can find examples, ideas, and inspiration to help you gain valuable skills as a designer.