Web design encompasses a variety of disciplines and skills in the creation and management of websites. The different disciplines of web design include web graphics design; web authoring, which includes proprietary and standardised coding; web user interface design; content management; social media management; search engine optimisation; and website conversion. There are also sub-disciplines, such as web development, usability, creative development, graphic design, and client-side and server-side programming. The use of multimedia, such as Flash, Shockwave or Java, is also becoming common in web design.
The disciplines of web design also encompass creative work, such as music; photography; typography; video; interactivity; art and architecture; and visual communications. Web designers work to provide customers with a product that is effective, useful, and aesthetically pleasing. Web designers work under deadlines, and must create a website that is both functionally and technically effective. The key to successful web design is to ensure that all parts work well together, and to choose the right software for the job.
A web designer will create the layout of the website, select the content, and add the graphics, photos, videos and interactivity to make the website what the customer wants. Although web designers can be involved in every stage of the web design process, they usually divide their time into two major tasks – creation and enhancement. Creating the layout of the website is a fairly straightforward process. It involves coming up with an idea, drawing it on paper, and then deciding what will be done with it. Enhancement, however, involves coming up with ways to make the site work effectively, as well as coming up with ways to make the site easy to navigate.