Web Design & Development: A Beginner’s Guide


So many of us spend so much time online, that we often take for granted the amount of effort and creativity that goes into most of the pages and sites that we visit. But for some of us, the concept of creating web experiences and good website design is something worth learning when we build our own website. According to Indeed.com, the average annual salary for a web designer is $66,000 a year. That’s not a bad salary, especially if you love designing websites and meeting people.

And that’s a good thing. Web design is an enormously creative field, and it can be an enormously challenging and rewarding one as well. And, if it leads to a professional, it can be financially rewarding to boot.

 web design & development a beginner's guide

Where to Start in Web Design

But, at the early stages, learning web design and development can seem like a pretty daunting task. Web design combines creative design skills with technical programming skills, and to be a really good developer you’ve got to have both sets. But it can be done. There are literally millions of web developers all over the world, at various levels of expertise, and there’s no reason why you can’t be one too.

The best way to get started learning web design and development is to jump in and start learning. So with that in mind, let’s identify some areas to begin the

Getting Started with Web Development

Basic Technologies

  • HTML5HyperText Markup Language (HTML) is the fundamental basis for virtually all web design. While it’s not a programming language per se, and there are tools to automate HTML generation, it’s still critical for you to understand HTML at an advanced level.
  • CSS3Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) can best be described as an HTML methodology for more advanced layout and design, to specify exactly how every page on a site should look. It’s also a fundamental element of web design, and required learning for any prospective web developer.

Intermediate Technologies

Once you master the technologies above, you’ll be ready to add more advanced knowledge, that will help you to greatly enhance the functionality of your sites. Some of those include things like:

  • Javascript – Javascript is a programming language that’s commonly used in web development, because it’s lightweight and runs via the client’s browser. Javascript can be used to add a huge range of functionality to most websites.
  • PHP – PHP is similar to Javascript in function, and it used to provide interactive functions and other elements to web pages, to make them more dynamic.
  • MySQL – At some point, your web sites will most likely require the ability to store and retrieve data. One of the more popular (and easier to learn) databases in web development is MySQL.

More Advanced Topics

And once you graduate to more advanced web design, you can begin to incorporate development that not only involves a language, but development frameworks that allow you to tackle more advanced projects. A couple of the more popular frameworks include:

  • Ruby on Rails – Ruby is a web development language, similar in concept to Javascript and PHP. Rails is a development framework that supports Ruby.
  • .Net Development – .Net is a development framework for Microsoft applications and web development. If you’re developing web applications using Microsoft tools, you’ll want to learn .Net development.

Continued Learning

There are a lot of ways to keep learning, including MeetUps and developer groups, and collaborating on sites like GitHub. Web development is something that’s learned quickly but mastered slowly. It pays to immerse yourself like this web design company in Toronto – but if you stay with it, it can pay dividends for a long time to come.


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