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Market update: How much do web developers earn in Australia 2022

By Academy Xi

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With the demand for web development surging in recent years, this Market Update will explain the role of a Web Developer, analyse national job opportunities and help you plan how to upskill for one of Australia’s most promising tech careers.

What is Web Development?

With digital transformation now redefining the interactions companies have with their customers, the vast majority of modern-day businesses simply cannot expect to stay competitive without a strong online presence. 

Most businesses employ or contract Web Developers, who are tasked with creating functional, user-friendly and eye-catching websites and apps that attract customers, market goods and services and facilitate sales. 

Web development is now one of tech’s most important sectors, as covid conditions have seen countless businesses and customers relocate online. Throughout 2021, a surge in online purchases led ecommerce to reach a record-breaking high of $4 trillion

Even with the lockdown lifestyle fading, ecommerce is expected to hit $7 trillion by 2024, meaning web development is set to enjoy a booming trade for the foreseeable future.  

Parallel to this, modern web development has now entered an exciting new phase of creativity. Instead of simply browsing products and static information, users now interact with an array of immersive content in real-time, meaning web development is a more dynamic and innovative profession than ever before.

What does a web developer do?

As you might have already guessed, the work carried out by Web Developers is diverse. The skills you need as a Web Developer and your day-to-day tasks will depend on the company you work for and the scope of a particular project. 

You’ll normally start by consulting with clients to discuss what’s needed from an application or website (which means you’ll need good ‘soft skills’ for communication). Once the specifications have been agreed on, you’ll build the overall architecture of a website or app and write code that performs its various functions.  

There are a range of tech tools used by Web Developers. Taking a look behind the Instagram app reveals a shortlist of some of the essential ‘devtools’ and programming languages today’s Web Developer relies on. 

The web development for Instagram is powered by:

  • Python
  • JavaScript
  • React.js
  • Redis
  • SQL
  • Nginx
  • Django

However, there are still plenty more tools to choose from. The specifications of a particular project will determine the combination of ‘devtools’ you use. Even though your previous projects were successful, a tech stack used in the past won’t necessarily get the job done with your latest brief.

The best Web Developers will dedicate time to researching the latest innovations, making sure the tech they use remains cutting-edge and optimal for any upcoming projects. 

As a Web Developer, your work day will normally be far from routine. You’ll often be fixing problems and responding to challenges as they arise, so expect the unexpected! This could include anything from repairing broken links, to adjusting images or text that aren’t displaying properly.

There’s also a good chance you’ll create interactive content using Java or Visual Basic programming languages. Web developers often work with content creators and use a CMS (content management system), which is a flexible application that organises content and serves it to users, either at set stages or following predetermined triggers. 

You’ll often need to collaborate with other teammates to discuss ongoing projects, brainstorm ideas and devise new strategies to maximise your clients’ online presence (there’s not much point in building the perfect website or app if no one finds it!). 

What’s the difference between a front-end and back-end Web Developer?

You’ve probably already figured out that web development is a multifaceted role. To simplify things, it’s useful to distinguish the different tasks that go into developing the front and back end of a website or app. More often than not, Web Developers specialise in one or the other. 

Front-end developers are responsible for building and maintaining the elements of the website that users see and interact with. This includes:

  • Designing the look and functionality of a website or app 
  • Finding ways to boost SEO (search engine optimisation) and visibility
  • Creating applications compatible with mobile devices (a recent web development report found the vast majority of web traffic now comes from mobiles)
  • Adding interactive features and content 

Back-end developers are tasked with creating and maintaining the underlying platforms that drive the front-end. This includes:

  • Planning and building the architecture of a website or app
  • Managing servers on a day-to-day basis
  • Troubleshooting faulty applications and features

Is becoming a Web Developer a good career move?

Now that you have a clear picture of what it’s like to be a Web Developer, you’re probably wondering if it’s a good long-term career move. 

It almost goes without saying that there are pros and cons to pursuing a career as a Web Developer. The good news is, the advantages greatly outweigh the disadvantages. 

The advantages of a Web Developer career include: 

  • Job Security – The ongoing growth of e-commerce means skilled Web Developers are destined to be in high demand
  • Career Progress – tech innovations and digital transformation give Web Developers every chance to ‘freshen-up’ the nature of their role      
  • Flexibility – Web Developer roles can often be carried out remotely
  • Self-employment opportunities – Web Developers are often self-employed in Australia, meaning you can set your own prices, pick your clients and projects, and carefully manage your own workload
  • Career Impact – Good Web Developers are fundamental to profitable businesses and, collectively, provide the backbone for entire economies dependent on online commerce      

Some of the disadvantages that come with being a Web Developer include: 

  • The employment market can be competitive – it’s unlikely that you’ll struggle to find work once properly qualified, but it is vital that you keep your CV up-to-date by incorporating tech innovations into your skill set  
  • Web development projects normally entail fixed deadlines and always come with high client expectations. This shouldn’t be a problem, just so long as you effectively manage your time, maintain high work standards and have good attention to detail

Are there many Web Developer roles in Australia?

As of 2022, the web development industry in Australia is worth a hefty $1.2 billion, with 1.7% market growth occurring in the past year (more than twice the 0.8% average growth seen from 2017 to 2021).

Demand for Web Developers in Australia is sky-high, with 8,600 active roles currently recorded nationally, with long-term career prospects categorised by Job Outlook Australia as ‘very strong’.  79% of these roles are full-time and require an average workload of 42 hours per week. 

All this leads to the million dollar question. How much can you expect to earn as a Web Developer in Australia?

What’s the average salary for a Web Developer in Australia?

The web development industry is now one of the fastest-growing tech sectors in the world. Salary statistics for qualified Web Developers are representative of a profession that industries are crying out for. 

  • documents the average Web Developer salary in Australia as $102,500 per year 

To more accurately predict your earning potential, it’s useful to look at salary averages for Web Developer roles at different levels: 

  • Junior Web Developers earn an average of $82,500
  • Senior Web Developers take home an average salary of $112,000.
  • Freelance Web Developers can expect to earn an average of $52.56 per hour

How do I become a Web Developer in Australia?

Though Web Developers are highly skilled, it’s not as tricky as you might think to break into the profession. It’s useful to know that most Web Developers follow a similar development trajectory. 

There are five simple steps that will move you along the path to becoming a Web Developer:

  • Get to grips with web development fundamentals
  • Choose a specialisation
  • Learn key programming languages for web development
  • Work on projects to hone your Web Developer skills
  • Build a portfolio of web development projects 

If you’re keen to move down this path quickly, Academy Xi offers a full range of short courses that will help you fast-track your career ambitions, covering all five of these crucial steps.  

Our web development courses are bootcamp style and designed, taught and approved by industry professionals, giving you the hands-on skills and industry experiences recruiters are hunting for.

Online skills courses for Web Developers

If you’re after a practical qualification to complement your existing skill set, our Front-End Web Development course will take your web development capabilities to the next level, setting you up to build and maintain seamless user-facing websites and apps.  

Our React course will seriously boost your web development skills and your CV, offering you the chance to master coding with the world’s most popular JavaScript library, React.js, used by Facebook and Airbnb.  

If you’re after a total career transformation, our Front-End Web Development: Transform course will equip you with a complete set of front-end web development skills and leave you job-ready in just 16 weeks. You’ll have full access to our Career Support Program, which delivers 90% of our web development graduates straight into their dream role. 

Our Software Engineering: Transform will also prepare you for a complete career overhaul, leaving you with all the skills needed to design and build apps and websites using the full tech stack (again, 90% of graduates go directly into a software engineering role!).

Not sure which is the best course for you? Chat to one of our course advisors today. We’ll help you pick the perfect course so you can plan your route into one of Australian tech’s fastest moving professions.