Website Designers – What they do and don’t do

Often I get questions from other drone operators about making their own business websites.  Many don’t want to build their own website, they’d rather hire a professional website developer / designer.  In today’s post I wanted to share what web developers do, and what they don’t do.  Often potential web clients don’t understand that there’s more than just designing a website.  Marketing, SEO, Graphic Design, and other disciplines contribute to a final website.

So, I asked Chat GPT the other day the following question:

“Are web designers also marketing experts, graphic design experts, video experts, copywriters. What’s a realisitc expectation of a web designer?”

I’m happy to say, Chat GPT did a good job with the answer.

Web designers often possess skills and knowledge that overlap with various other fields, but they might not be experts in all of them. Their primary focus lies in designing and creating the visual and functional aspects of a website. However, depending on the context, their roles and responsibilities may encompass additional areas to varying degrees:

  1. Marketing: While web designers may understand basic principles of marketing, they might not necessarily be experts. However, they often have an understanding of user experience (UX) design, which can align with marketing goals to create more effective websites.
  2. Graphic Design: Web designers commonly have graphic design skills since the aesthetics of a website are crucial. They create layouts, choose colors, select typography, and use images to enhance the visual appeal of the site.
  3. Video: Video expertise might not be a core skill of most web designers, but some may have a basic understanding of embedding and optimizing videos on websites. For more complex video production, a specialist might be needed.
  4. Copywriting: While web designers may not be professional copywriters, they often collaborate with content creators or copywriters to ensure that the written content fits well within the design and enhances the user experience.

Realistically, the expectations of a web designer might include:

  • Proficiency in web design tools, such as Adobe XD, Sketch, or Figma.
  • Strong understanding of HTML, CSS, and possibly JavaScript for creating responsive and visually appealing layouts.
  • Knowledge of design principles, color theory, typography, and user experience (UX) design.
  • Collaboration with team members like developers, content creators, and marketers to achieve a cohesive and effective website.
  • Awareness of current design trends and technologies to keep websites modern and engaging.

While some web designers might possess expertise in one or more of these additional areas, the depth of knowledge can vary widely among individuals. In many cases, larger projects or companies might involve specialists in marketing, graphic design, video production, and copywriting to complement the web designer’s core skills and create a comprehensive web presence.

Before hiring a website developer, list out your needs.  Let the developers you talk to know what types of media and content you’re looking for up front so your expectations are met.

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