Are you interested in becoming a web developer? We’ve compiled a list of the top 10 skills you’ll need on this career journey. Our list includes both technical and soft skills – from programming languages to frameworks and libraries. Front-end developers in 2022 must be able to create consistent web pages across different browsers and know how to test and debug web pages throughout the creation process. Here are the top ten! Below, you can learn more about each of these skills.
A front-end web developer is responsible for developing what users see and interact with on the “front-end” of a website or app. Front-end web developers are not only proficient in programming languages to create web pages, but they also are artists in their own right and must use creativity to create the front design of a web page. The front-end web developer creates a user-friendly experience when building the part of the webpage where the user sees and interacts. Everything from the placement of buttons to the links and images used are all the responsibility of the front-end web developer.
To become a front-end developer you’ll want to consider a couple of possible paths.
In addition to one of the paths above, it is also necessary to do the following to become a front-end developer:
Keep in mind, it is possible to become a front-end web developer without formal education. This does, however, require dedication to learning programming, platforms, and interacting in appropriate groups to learn and master the skills needed.
HTML (HyperText Markup Language) is widely accepted as the standard programming language used for building web pages. CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is the standard programming language that brings the HTML page to life. CSS is used to create the style of a webpage including the layout, fonts, and colors used. There are a variety of online courses and web-based resources and tools available to learn these coding languages. Once you complete a course, you will want to practice using the languages as much as possible.
A CMS is needed to build a website, so knowledge of how to use a CMS is necessary for a front-end web developer. The most popular CMS is WordPress which is used by over 75 million sites. Other CMS platforms include Wix, Joomla, Drupal, BigCommerce, and Shopify. Often, the CMS platform used is related to the type of website being built and the needs of the client.
Responsive Design Skills are needed since web pages are viewed on more than just a desktop computer. Now, front-end developers must also consider how a user will interact and see a web page on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones.
Cross browser development considers how web pages will be viewed differently on different browsers. Understanding how different browsers react to web pages guarantees that users of websites have consistent experiences using web pages across different browsers. For example, a website should load and look the same in both Chrome and Safari. A good front-end developer can ensure that this happens.
There are now many user interfaces that provide easy-to-use menus which users can choose from to design webpages. The best front-end web developers still are able to adequately write and use command lines, knowing that these user interfaces are not “one size fits all.” There are multiple open source tools that can be used to write command lines.
When working on a web page or website, it is important to keep track of the different versions of the design process. This allows you to return to a previous version of coding when there is a mistake. One popular version control system is Git. Git is free and open-source so you can practice using it from home.
While technically skills will land you a job as a front-end web developer, it is often the soft skills that will allow you to keep — and excel — in your position. Front-end web developers must be able to work in and collaborate with teams. They must also have excellent communication skills to work with their team and clients. Front-end web developers should also be detail oriented and have great problem-solving skills.
The job outlook for a front-end web developer is promising. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects an 8% growth rate in jobs for web developers and designers from 2019 to 2029. This is above the average job growth outlook.
As the use of mobile devices and ecommerce grow in popularity, the demand for front-end web developers also grows. The various sizes and varieties of mobile devices requires a need for front-end developers that can create similar user experiences for users of all mobile devices. Ecommerce requires more web pages with more products, increasing the demand for front-end developers in that industry. Since essentially every business and company has or needs a website, front-end web developers will continue to be in demand.
Front-end web developers are needed in a variety of industries. From website development to app development, front-end developers are needed at an entry-level and beyond. Front-end developers are not only needed for creating web pages and apps, but also need for maintaining the structures. Industries like ecommerce, cyber security, banking, retail, business solutions, and more all need front-end developers.
Glassdoor reported the average U.S. front-end developer salary at almost $77,000. This was based off of over 7,000 salaries. A career as a front-end web developer can be lucrative. A bachelor’s degree, work experience, and proficiency in coding and troubleshooting are all examples of ways front-end developers work to earn higher than the average salary.