Every now and again a writer publishes a ‘… is dead’ article. We’ve all seen them, ‘Print Is Dead’, ‘Advertising Is Dead’ and so on. One such post on Mashable recently got my attention.
The headline was ‘Web Design Is Dead’. Noted, the article was a great read and some relative points were made. I’ve been involved in website design my whole career I would like to take a moment to respond to some of the points.
Templates versus custom design
When’s the last time you heard a client, a big, game changing brand ask for an off the shelf WordPress template for their site? Never. Every single web design project I have worked on is an original design. To suggest to a client that we go with an off the shelf template that is already being used on 1000’s of other websites on the net is ludicrous.
There are styles, trends and ways of doing things in web design that has evolved and is constantly changing. The demand for fresh, original web design from clients is growing every year. Budgets for digital channels such as web design is increasing year on year. Yes it is just one channel but the demand is there.
Content is web design
Web design is not just putting together the framework and elements of a website together, navigation, header, footer etc. Web design is the design of the actual content that sits on the pages. The demand and use of content marketing design via standalone websites, Facebook, infographics, blogs and general digital content is a huge, growing part of web design.
The desktop is not going away
Yes everyone keeps banging on about mobile. We get it. People use their mobiles a lot. But they also sit in front of their desktop computer a lot. The majority of the modern world works in front of a desktop computer 8 plus hours a day. Whilst at their desktop computer they are visiting websites via browsers. Despite everyone talking about mobile all day, I don’t work on my mobile. I can’t create stuff for clients on my mobile. Therefore the desktop and accessing the internet via the desktop will always be present.
Facebook is not replacing business websites
Facebook charges businesses to talk to their audience. Facebook is unpredictable and let’s face it, it could one day shut down completely. It is not immune to failure. Big, smart businesses will always want and need a domain that they can completely control themselves. One of these such things is their website, usually custom designed by a team of web designers.
Apps versus websites
Websites are the canvas of the internet. Web design is the paint on the canvas. Whatever device you are accessing the internet on must be able to display universal, non-platform specific content. This content is not hidden away in an app. An app must be downloaded from a specific place and work on a specific device. The web is universal.
As long as there are screens displaying information there will be web design. Web designers are progressive people and we adapt. Technology is at the heart of a web designer. Why do you think we chose to design for the web and not paper? We are future forward. Long live web designers, shaping the future of digital media.