10 Best Web Design Books | March 2017

We spent 32 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Whether you are contemplating a career in technology, are brushing up skills you already have, or simply want to stay abreast of the latest advancements, this selection of Web design books has got you covered. They are not only useful for professional Web designers, as any individual or business who maintains their own site can learn a thing or two from them. Skip to the best web design book on Amazon.
10 Best Web Design Books | March 2017

Overall Rank: 3
Best Mid-Range
Overall Rank: 1
Best High-End
Overall Rank: 6
Best Inexpensive
JavaScript: The Definitive Guide is recommended for experienced programmers who want to take their skills to the master level. It helps you apply your current programming skills to website creation and features chapters on jQuery and HTML5.
Don't Make Me Think helps you understand the principles of intuitive navigation and information design using a common sense approach. It has multiple illustrations, making it fun to read, and will noticeably increase your abilities as a web designer.
Designing with the Mind is an in-depth study that arms designers with not only design rules, but also the science behind them, so they have an understanding of perceptual and cognitive psychology and can make more informed decisions.
Head First Design Patterns takes a troubleshooting approach by showing you tried-and-true, road-tested patterns used by developers with great success. It has recently been updated to include Java 8 and focuses on object-oriented design.
  • every page contains a picture or doodle
  • makes learning about design patterns fun
  • you either love or hate the methodology
Brand Freeman, Eric/ Freeman,
Model pending
Weight 2.3 pounds
HTML and CSS is a quick start guide for those who need to learn web design and don't have a lot of time to waste. It explains the concepts behind web standards and shows code examples that reflect today's best practices, plus it teaches you how to debug your own site.
  • teaches how to add video and audio
  • covers input types in html5
  • doesn't teach about menus and columns
Brand Peachpit Press
Model pending
Weight 2.4 pounds
Learning Web Design is well suited to beginners who are just starting to grasp the basics of web design. It teaches readers how to build HTML pages with text, links, images, tables, and forms, as well as how to use style sheets for colors and backgrounds.
  • focuses on responsive web design
  • explains how to optimize web graphics
  • includes short quizzes
Brand Brand: O'Reilly Media
Model pending
Weight 3.1 pounds
About Face: The Essentials of Interaction Design has been updated for the mobile age, taking the worldwide shift to smartphones and tablets into account. It contains lots of up-to-date examples and state-of-the-art interface recommendations.
  • talks about touchscreen interactions
  • goal-directed methodology
  • covers best patterns and practices
Brand Cooper, Alan/ Reimann,
Model pending
Weight 3.6 pounds
Web Design with HTML, CSS, JavaScript and jQuery is a two-book set that combines related technologies in an easy-to-understand format with lots of diagrams, charts, and photographs. It helps you learn how to integrate multiple technologies into one seamless web design.
  • includes a discussion of seo
  • highly visual format
  • great for front-end developers
Brand Duckett, Jon
Model pending
Weight 5.7 pounds
White Space is not Your Enemy is a useful graphic design and layout guide that gives you a better understanding of the kinds of website layouts that appeal to people and make them spend more time on your sites. It also includes concepts for traditional print media.
  • covers current web design trends
  • recently updated with new examples
  • sections on gestalt and color theory
Brand White Space
Model pending
Weight 1.1 pounds
New Perspectives on HTML provides detailed instructions on building interactive websites that are ideally suited to the modern society of handheld smart devices. The lessons do not require prior knowledge on the subject and contain lots of realistic exercises.
  • detailed explanations of key concepts
  • has in-depth case studies
  • chapters are step-by-step tutorials
Brand Carey, Patrick
Model pending
Weight 3.1 pounds

Are Web Design Books Useful?

With the predicted 27 percent growth in the field by the year 2024, web designers are needed now more than ever. Web design books remain one of the most effective ways to learn concepts of web design at an individual pace and in an economical way.

If the your intent is to become a professional web designer, self study is one of the best options. Specialty schools, professional tutoring, and apprenticeship all have a rather large price tag attached to them in comparison to books, and provide much the same knowledge. With a web design book, the reader has the ability to learn at their own pace, and repeat concepts as needed to fully integrate them.

Web design books are equally as important for business owners and entrepreneurs looking to enter the growing startup economy. In this environment, cutting costs until investors arrive is usually a key factor. As a business owner, it may be better to learn basic concepts of web design before hiring an expensive designer, especially for simple changes. Web design books remain the most effective and comprehensive tool to do so.

What Is Covered In Web Design Books?

In the web design world, there are some concepts which must be understood before reaching the finer points of designing for the web. For instance, the idea of visual hierarchy. This is based on the known fact that in most cultures, people read in a similar way: left to right and top to bottom. This suggests that viewers favor the top and left sides of webpages. With this logic, it is easy to see why the company logo is nearly always found in the top left corner of the site.

From there, viewing behavior becomes more complex. Viewers tend to scan a page rather than read it, and their eyes typically move in a pattern similar to the shape of the letter F or the letter Z. Basic web design will usually cater to this and place the most important elements of the site in their natural viewing path.

Web design books may also cover the importance of color in design. Rather than being a decoration on a website, color may actually play an integral role in the psychological response a consumer has to a particular brand. An example is the notion that the colors red and yellow stimulate the appetite and promote quick decision making. It is interesting to note that the most successful fast food chains use heavily red and yellow color schemes.

Any basic web designer will also need to understand the beauty in the simplicity of a site. It can be tempting to try and force a site to stand out by using many different fonts, highly contrasting color schemes, or bright animations. Research in the field tells us that this may scare away the same customers the site is trying to impress. A much more positive impression can be made by limiting font and color choices to two or three dominant options, and to shift the focus towards simplicity in the text.

How Important Is Web Design For A Business?

As the internet era took hold, the need for web designers exploded. This need is as present today as ever. Now that a website is an integral piece of a business's brand and strategy, its design is an important factor in their success for many reasons.

Proper web design offers a business a consistent image, or brand. Over time, viewers begin to identify with this image. This brand awareness is actually a determining factor in whether or not a customer will choose a particular company. Consumers are much more likely to purchase from a brand they identify with versus an unknown brand offering a similar product or service.

In the modern era, most markets are saturated. Consumers are bombarded with advertisements, social media posts, invites, and push notifications from hundreds of different brands and businesses every day. The only way to stand out in a customer's mind is by differentiating your brand somehow. One of the simplest ways of doing this is through unique web design elements. A professionally designed website is much more appealing to the viewer, and is more likely to keep them reading as well as help build trust in your product or services. This increases the chance of them converting into a lead, or better yet a customer.

Controlling the customer journey is one of the most important aspects of web design. Most people put as little effort as possible into reading the contents of a site. This is why it is so important that the content and design match up. Proper web design will empower the content to catch the eye of the reader, keep them reading, and lead them to the desired action.

Web design can also help to properly target the correct audience. Some target audiences respond well to a minimalist design, while others like things spelled out for them. Some readers require heavy logic and well-researched text, while others are affected solely by the emotional elements of web design. Understanding web design enough to create a site based around the target audience will ensure its success.

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Last updated: 03/25/2017 | Authorship Information