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Market Update: Web Designer demand and salaries in Australia, 2023

By Academy Xi

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Web Designer demand and salaries in Australia

Are you eyeing up a career in Web Design? If so, it’s handy to know the latest stats related to Web Designer demand and salaries. To make life easier, we’ve rounded up all that info and much more in our latest Market Update.

What is Web Design?

Web Design refers to the process of planning the appearance, layout, and, in some cases, content of a website. In a nutshell, it’s all about aesthetics and functionality – designing websites that are easy on the eye and easy to use.  

Unlike Web Development which concentrates on the technical build of a website, Web Design focuses on User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) rather than software development. 

Web Design used to predominantly deal with websites only for desktop browsers. However, since the mid-2010s, design for sites that are mobile and tablet compatible has become an increasingly important part of the industry.

What do Web Designers do?

There’s more to Web Design than you might think. Here are some of the core responsibilities that go into just about every Web Design project:

  • Aesthetics: This relates to strategically choosing all visual elements, including colours, fonts and images. These choices need to add up to a website that is appealing to look at and consistent with the personality a brand wishes to project. 
  • Layout: This refers to how information is structured and categorised within a website. It will be uncluttered, logical and easy to take in, which is easier said than done if you’re briefed with including lots of information on each page!
  • Navigation; At this stage, you’ll be planning how users move through your website and carry out certain tasks and actions. The aim is to make the flow smooth and intuitive – the last thing you want are users lost in the maze of a website! 
  • UX: Here, you’ll be focused on optimising the experience people have when they visit your website. As well as everything mentioned above, this might include simplifying the design, subtracting any extraneous information, or simply removing any points of potential frustration or confusion. 

Which industries hire Web Designers?

With most businesses and organisations now dependent on having high-functioning websites, the demand for the services of Web Designers is sky-high in most industries, with Indeed currently advertising 604 roles nationally. Some of the industries that most frequently hire Web Designers include:  

  • Tech – 63.9%
  • Information Media & Telecommunications – 5.7%
  • Education & Training – 4.1%
  • Retail – 3.9%
  • Other industries – 16.8%

Source: Australian Government Labour Market Insights

How much do Web Designers earn in Australia?

The average annual salary for a Web Designer in Australia is $91,019 (which equates to $46.68 per hour), The average junior Web Designer pay comes in at $72,600, while senior salaries hit $123,846 and up. However, keep in mind that earning capacity varies depending on the organisation and the specific experience of the designer.

Can you freelance as a Web Designer?

Not stoked by the prospect of a permanent contract? Fear not – it’s entirely possible to be a freelance or consultant Web Designer. However, it’s recommended that you take in-house positions early in your career for a few key reasons: 

  • Firstly, gaining a range of industry experiences will not only deepen your skills, but also make you more attractive to prospective clients.
  • Secondly, working in a full-time Web Development role will expand your professional network, which can be vital in securing freelance contracts.

How much do freelance Web Designers earn?

The rates you charge as a freelance Web Designer will likely reflect your level of skill and experience. If you specialise in a particular area of Web Design, that skill could be of extra importance for a particular project and enable you to charge more. 

If you’re unsure what rate to set clients for your services, it’s useful to take a look at what other freelance Web Designers are charging and fix your prices accordingly.

What skills are needed in Web Design?

There are a wide range of skills needed to flourish as a Web Designer. To get you started, here are the top 3 hard and soft skills that will help you climb the industry ladder. 

Hard skills:

  • UX UI – It won’t be you, your seniors, or your clients who decide if your design is a success. Ultimately, it will come down to what your users think. Working as a Web Designer without a theoretical understanding of UX UI Design, as well as the practical skills needed to apply it, is a bit like working as a Taxi driver without a car.  
  • HTML – Though the role isn’t heavily reliant on coding skills, a Web Designer must be proficient with HyperText Markup Language, which is needed to designate page structure. You’ll regularly need to work with headlines, footers, paragraphs and graphics. Therefore, having HTML skills will go a long way in helping you complete your projects.
  • CSS – Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) give browsers instructions on how to style or format HTML. CSS enhances the look and feel of the website, helping you adjust colours, change fonts and alter the background of your pages. From a standpoint of creativity, it might be your most important skill. 

Soft skills:

  • Problem solving – Designing a website is always a complicated process. You might have mountains of content that needs to be consolidated and organised, or perhaps the client has ambitious ideas and large demands. Invariably, you’ll need to come up with creative solutions to problems that crop up throughout your projects.  
  • Collaboration – Web Designers hardly ever work in isolation. You’ll need to be able to effectively collaborate with everyone from Front-End Web Developers and Software Engineers to Project Managers and Digital Marketers. Make sure you’re organised, reliable, and a good communicator – your team will be grateful!   
  • Adaptability – No website build will ever go exactly according to plan. New features might be added, the budget or timeline might be adjusted, or the client might alter the brief. In order to thrive in this industry, it’s vital that you’re able to roll with the changes and respond positively to any shifts in direction.

How to start a career in Web Design

At Academy Xi, we offer flexible training options in UX UI Design that will suit your lifestyle and career ambitions, giving you the perfect foundation for your future in Web Design. 

Whether you’re looking to upskill or entirely transform your career, we have industry-approved training offering you the practical skills and experience needed to get a headstart.

Career change? Take a look at our Transform options. 

UX UI Design: Transform Upskilling? Our Elevate courses are for you.

If you have any questions, our experienced team is here to discuss your training options. Speak to a course advisor and take the first steps in your Web Design journey.