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You can design a website, but can you build it?

We separate the roles of designer and developer, but every designer should have a basic knowledge of web development. I am not suggesting that you learn JavaScript or SQL, but if a client approaches you to redesign their site, you should be able to use one of the many content management systems (CMS) or website builders available.

Why? Because a design that isn’t live is just a mock-up. Aim to make the innovative ideas you’ve pitched a reality, but only to a certain extent. If your client needs a complex backend or wants to create the next big social media platform, leave that to the experts.

Website building as a UX designer looks like using SquareSpace to enhance a local restaurant’s web presence with its dinner menu, contact info, and feature to make reservations online. You could use Shopify to create an online boutique for a budding designer, which automatically includes an easy-to-use inventory management system for the business owner to track and fulfill orders.

WordPress, Wix, WebFlow, and Framer are just a few of the numerous website builders out there. Most have drag-and-drop features and loads of tutorials to get you started. Some are more complex than others, so get a feel for each through free trials. Knowing basic HTML and CSS will also help if you ever need to add custom code.

Design it, then build it. These skills will only enhance your career as a designer.

Check out the resources below to get you started:

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