5 Web Design and Development Books You Need to Check Out

From a wide range of choices, I have narrowed down 5 web design books you need to check out. The information provided by these books can give you a competitive edge, and help you become a better designer.  Web design and development is quite challenging. There’s a good reason why well read and talented people can make some good amounts of money with a little CSS and HTML know how. However, it’s important to understand that every web designer started somewhere. Proper education and experience is the first step to polish your skills, and become a proficient web designer.

These days, you can choose from a wide range of forums and tutorials to further your knowledge. This knowledge can help you make some sense of the formatting and markup language. However, the scope of information you need to create usable, functional and attractive websites demands expertise.

Although some of the resources discussed in this post may not be free, you need to understand that valuable information always comes at a price. Moreover, you can’t overlook the capabilities of print to graphically and flexibly represent complicated and trickier aspects of basic coding. Such benefits are definitely worth the investment.


5 Web Design and Development Books You Need to Check Out


In order to build attractive websites, you need a good resource. This comprehensive book from Jon Duckett helps you build the essential skills required to create the perfect website. Moreover, this book also helps you gain insight into informative and beautiful graphic design. Besides the aesthetic appeal of the book’s pages, you will find thorough and detailed explanations of web basics, and even advanced CSS functionality.

According to readers, the real value of this comprehensive book lies in a considerate and creative application of textual and visual elements. The primary benefit of online tutorials is that they properly demonstrate numerous effects of syntax on a web page. It’s worth mentioning that their capabilities are limited to this specific technical acumen. On the other hand, a printed well crafted volume comes with textual explanations combined with visual aids. They can help you understand important concepts in a much better way.

Don’t Make Me Think

It’s important to understand that learning to build web pages is not even half the battle. With appropriate formatting and markup knowledge, you can create usable and attractive pages for the website. The importance of user experience has been perfectly explained in Steve Krug’s book. In this book, Steve examines the standard process of human interaction with all kinds of web pages. This allows designers to understand the various elements of function and usability.

In order to teach these concepts, Krug has taken a very valuable and unique approach. Instead of just explaining the best UX practices, he also asks designers to think like usability experts. This helps in guiding their developmental efforts, while informing functional solutions. Moreover, the guide is very short and engaging. Steve Krug has explained the process in a very digestible way. This allows the book to help designers understand every aspect of user experience.

Responsive Web Design

In case you have been paying attention to the evolution of web design in the last few years, you must already know about responsive web design. It is the perfect solution to make sure a website adapts to different configurations on a wide range of devices. With the ever changing platforms, this has been even more important. Due to this, any education in web design and development requires you to catch a glimpse of something about responsive and adaptive layouts.

The 150 page crash course from Ethan Marcotte can give you comprehensive information about responsive web design. This book examines various important aspects of responsive and adaptive layouts. It also talks about how to adjust text sizes, media and various arrangements in order to properly accommodate tablet, desktop and mobile services. It’s important to understand that whatever you design is likely to be seen on multiple devices at some point. Thus, you need to consider everyone’s needs and requirements.

The Smashing Book

Smashing has always been one of the most popular and reputed design knowledge books. In fact, their website features professional driven techniques, ideas and code with the intent of turning you into a better designer. The greatest contribution of this book has been the explanation of the design history in a very easy to understand manner. Moreover, it also talks about the most recent developments in the industry.

The true value of the Smashing Book exists in the authors’ abilities to completely turn basic design concepts into vital and unique takeaways. Recent additions in the book also make predictions about the future of web development. The concepts are also targeted toward helping you come up with interesting and unique content. With this book at your disposal, you will be assured of enhancing your knowledge further.

Mobile First 

In the last few years, the mobile phone has become a part of our lives. When it comes to web design, the increasing use of mobiles has led to the development of various layouts to fit the small screens, and touch based interfaces. In addition to this, mobile phones offer a huge commercial potential. This makes it important for a web designer to learn everything about this aspect.

The paperback guide form Luke Wroblewski allows you to understand every aspect of mobile design and development. Luke formerly worked at Yahoo! as a design architect. The guide includes various data driven strategies along with time tested techniques to make sure your mobile site is perfect. It has been written in a concise format and engaging tone. While going through this guide, you will find yourself getting more interested in the world of mobile web design and development. It’s not just another dry academic read.

It’s important to understand that web design knowledge continues to grow and evolve with every passing day. Due to this, the books mentioned in this post may fade away over time. However, the knowledge they provide will always be useful and worthy. From understandable and attractive explanations to annual updates, your bookshelf will feel blessed with these web design and development books.


Megan Wilson is user experience specialist & editor of UX Motel. She is also the Quality Assurance and UX Specialist at WalkMe Megan.w(at)walkme.com