Web Developers

Summary

web developers image
Web developers are responsible for both the look of a website and its technical aspects.
Quick Facts: Web Developers
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Typical Entry-Level Education $qf_education_html
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On-the-job Training $qf_training_html
Number of Jobs, 2020 $qf_number_jobs_html
Job Outlook, 2020-30 $qf_outlook_html
Employment Change, 2020-30 $qf_openings_html

What Web Developers Do

Web developers design and create websites.

Work Environment

Some web developers work in the computer systems design and related services industry. Others are self-employed. Still others work in industries including publishing, management consulting, and advertising.

How to Become a Web Developer

Educational requirements for web developers vary with the setting they work in and the type of work they do. Requirements range from a high school diploma to a bachelor’s degree. Web developers need knowledge of both programming and graphic design.

Pay

Job Outlook

Overall employment of web developers is projected to grow $pc.toString().replaceAll("^\-","") percent from 2020 to 2030, $gra.

About $tools.number.format('#,###',$op) openings for web developers are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

State & Area Data

Explore resources for employment and wages by state and area for web developers.

Similar Occupations

Compare the job duties, education, job growth, and pay of web developers with similar occupations.

More Information, Including Links to O*NET

Learn more about web developers by visiting additional resources, including O*NET, a source on key characteristics of workers and occupations.

What Web Developers Do

web developers image
Some developers work with graphics and other designers to determine the website’s layout.

Web developers design and create websites. They are responsible for the look of the site. They are also responsible for the site’s technical aspects, such as its performance and capacity, which are measures of a website’s speed and how much traffic the site can handle. In addition, web developers may create content for the site.

Duties

Web developers typically do the following:

  • Meet with clients or management to discuss the needs and design of a website
  • Create and test applications for a website
  • Write code for the website, using programming languages such as HTML or XML
  • Work with other team members to determine what information the site will contain
  • Work with graphics and other designers to determine the website’s layout
  • Integrate graphics, audio, and video into the website
  • Monitor website traffic

When creating a website, developers have to make their client’s vision a reality. They build particular types of websites, such as ecommerce, news, or gaming sites, to fit clients’ needs. Different types of websites require different applications. For example, a gaming site should be able to handle advanced graphics, whereas an ecommerce site would need a payment-processing application. The developer decides which applications and designs will best fit the site.

Some developers handle all aspects of a website’s construction, and others specialize in a certain aspect of it. The following are examples of types of specialized web developers:

Back-end web developers are responsible for the overall technical construction of the website. They create the basic framework of the site and ensure that it works as expected. Back-end web developers also establish procedures for allowing others to add new pages to the website and meet with management to discuss major changes to the site.

Front-end web developers are responsible for how a website looks. They create the site’s layout and integrate graphics, applications (such as a retail checkout tool), and other content. They also write webdesign programs in a variety of computer languages, such as HTML or JavaScript.

Webmasters maintain websites and keep them updated. They ensure that websites operate correctly, and they test for errors such as broken links. Many webmasters respond to user comments as well.

Work Environment

web developers image
Developers build websites for all types of businesses.

Work Schedules

Most web developers work full time.

How to Become a Web Developer

web developers image
Developers often have both programming and graphic design knowledge.

Educational requirements for web developers vary with the setting they work in and the type of work they do. Web developers need knowledge of both programming and graphic design.

Education

Educational requirements for web developers vary with the setting they work in and the type of work they do. Requirements range from a high school diploma to a bachelor’s degree. An associate’s degree in web design or related field is the most common requirement.

However, for more specialized developer positions, such as back-end web developers, some employers prefer workers who have at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science, programming, or a related field.

Web developers need to have a thorough understanding of HTML programming. Many employers also want developers to understand other programming languages, such as JavaScript or SQL, and have knowledge of multimedia publishing tools, such as Flash. Throughout their career, web developers must keep up to date on new tools and computer languages.

Some employers prefer web developers who have both a computer degree and coursework in graphic design, especially if the developer will be heavily involved in the website’s visual appearance.

Advancement

Web developers who have a bachelor’s degree can advance to become project managers. For more information, see the profile on computer and information systems managers.

Important Qualities

Concentration. Web developers must sit at a computer and write detailed code for long periods.

Creativity. Web developers often are involved in designing the appearance of a website and must make sure that it is appealing as well as functional.

Customer-service skills. Webmasters have to respond politely and correctly to user questions and requests.

Detail oriented. Web developers need to have an eye for detail, because a minor error in coding could cause an entire webpage to stop working.

Pay

Web Developers

Median annual wages, May 2020

Total, all occupations

$41,950

 

Most web developers work full time.

Job Outlook

Web Developers

Percent change in employment, projected 2020-30

Total, all occupations

8%

 

Overall employment of web developers is projected to grow $pc.toString().replaceAll("^\-","") percent from 2020 to 2030, $gra.

About $tools.number.format('#,###',$op) openings for web developers are projected each year, on average, over the decade. Many of those openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who transfer to different occupations or exit the labor force, such as to retire.

Employment

Employment of web developers is projected to grow 13 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations.

Employment of web developers is projected to grow as ecommerce continues to expand. Online purchasing is expected to grow faster than the overall retail industry. As retail firms expand their online offerings, demand for web developers will grow. In addition, an increase in the use of mobile devices to search the web will lead to increased demand for web developers. Instead of designing a website for a desktop computer, developers will have to create sites that work on mobile devices with many different screen sizes, leading to more work.

Because websites can be built from anywhere in the world, some web developer jobs may be moved to countries with lower wages. However, this practice may decline because the cost of managing web developers in multiple countries can offset the savings to businesses. Furthermore, web developers must understand cultural nuances that allow webpages to communicate effectively with users, and domestic web developers are better equipped for this task, curtailing the work that may be moved to other countries.

Job Prospects

Job opportunities for web developers are expected to be good. Those with knowledge of multiple programming languages and digital multimedia tools, such as Flash and Photoshop, will have the best opportunities.

Employment projections data for web developers, 2020-30
Occupational Title SOC Code Employment, 2020 Projected Employment, 2030 Change, 2020-30 Employment by Industry
Percent Numeric

SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Projections program

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15-1134 $tools.number.format($emp_current) $tools.number.format($emp_projected) $emp_percent_change $tools.number.format($emp_net_change) Get data

State & Area Data

Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS)

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) program produces employment and wage estimates annually for over 800 occupations. These estimates are available for the nation as a whole, for individual states, and for metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas.

Projections Central

Occupational employment projections are developed for all states by Labor Market Information (LMI) or individual state Employment Projections offices. All state projections data are available at www.projectionscentral.com. Information on this site allows projected employment growth for an occupation to be compared among states or to be compared within one state. In addition, states may produce projections for areas; there are links to each state’s websites where these data may be retrieved.

CareerOneStop

CareerOneStop includes hundreds of occupational profiles with data available by state and metro area. There are links in the left-hand side menu to compare occupational employment by state and occupational wages by local area or metro area. There is also a salary info tool to search for wages by zip code.

Similar Occupations

This table shows a list of occupations with job duties that are similar to those of web developers.

Occupation Job Duties ENTRY-LEVEL EDUCATION 2020 MEDIAN PAY
Computer and information systems managers Computer and Information Systems Managers

Computer and information systems managers plan, coordinate, and direct computer-related activities in an organization.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Computer programmers Computer Programmers

Computer programmers write and test code that allows computer applications and software programs to function properly.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Computer support specialists Computer Support Specialists

Computer support specialists provide help and advice to computer users and organizations.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Computer systems analysts Computer Systems Analysts

Computer systems analysts study an organization’s current computer systems and find a solution that is more efficient and effective.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Database administrators Database Administrators

Database administrators (DBAs) use specialized software to store and organize data.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Information security analysts Information Security Analysts

Information security analysts plan and carry out security measures to protect an organization’s computer networks and systems.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Graphic designers Graphic Designers

Graphic designers create visual concepts, using computer software or by hand, to communicate ideas that inspire, inform, and captivate consumers.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Multimedia artists and animators Multimedia Artists and Animators

Multimedia artists and animators create images that appear to move and visual effects for various forms of media and entertainment.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Software developers Software Developers

Software developers create the applications or systems that run on a computer or another device.

$qf_education_html $qf_median_annual_wage_html
Suggested citation:

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Web Developers,
at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/web-developers.htm (visited June 25, 2024).

Last Modified Date: Wednesday, September 4, 2019