The COVID-19 pandemic is shaping up to be one of the most serious blows to the global economy in recent history. With more than three billion people stuck in their homes, employees and executives included, thousands of businesses around the world are at risk of shutting down.
Except for some industries. According to Martha Heller, chief executive of tech recruiting firm Heller Search Associates, the pandemic has presented a lot of benefits for the tech sector.
In April 2020, just a month after global lockdowns were put in place, Tech Times reported thousands of new jobs in Silicon Valley, one of the biggest tech company hubs in the world. Among those in-demand professionals are web designers and digital marketers.
Though several startups are closing down, businesses that are already online and industry giants such as Google, Amazon, and Apple are opening up new positions to address the rising demand in online services. Web designers and digital marketers are sought out for their contributions to the success of businesses within the virtual landscape.
These two professions are heavily involved in connecting with customers, a priceless feat that no company will give up, especially since their tasks can be completed in the comfort of one’s home. It is safe to say that, pandemic or not, the demand for these professionals won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.
Why Web Design Is In Demand
Company stability is a primary selling point while the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage entire industries and nations. Online businesses see gradually growing success despite the limitations of their customers and audience.
For example, fashion sales in global e-commerce was down by 30% in March. It only took a month for those numbers to bounce back by 21% compared to April 2019, according to e-commerce platform Nosto.
If they are completely offline, businesses will not make it through the pandemic, nor will they be able to compete with well-resourced competition. Web designers are responsible for making businesses present online with strong e-commerce capabilities and defining the customer journey.
In this stage of the pandemic, there are already countless stories of small and family-owned businesses surviving solely from hiring a web designer. This makes perfect sense since web designers are solely involved in the front-end of websites where user interaction takes place.
Work in web design can include a wide range of responsibilities. Here are some that fall under that category:
- Construct the overall aesthetics of a website using graphical elements
- Coordinate with web developers to provide total functionality and a positive customer experience
- Ongoing website and digital maintenance, along with user testing
Websites are essentially virtual storefronts where customers are expected to enter, explore, and either purchase or inquire for more. While this dynamic process is the responsibility of a whole team, web designers take a front seat in creating an interface that is capable of generating leads and revenue.
Right now, there is a surging demand for organic traffic, making smooth, responsive design essential both for online and mobile sites. Web designers are encountering tremendous opportunities virtualizing stores, and new post-pandemic businesses are expected to follow suit.
Now that web designers are in demand, professionals in this field also have a chance to explore other sides of their industry. Having skills and experience in web content and development will be incredibly valuable in differentiating yourself, making holistic training in all web matters vital.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (USBLS) in January 2020, the median salary for web designers is $70,000, with its higher end topping out at $125,000.
Why We Need More Digital Marketers
With people staying indoors for the next couple of months, in-person events have taken a backseat in practically all industries. Conferences, conventions, and nearly all types of in-person events have been canceled or postponed for the foreseeable future. On top of that, billboards and traditional marketing materials have become less valuable and effective.
This leaves companies with a huge loss of income and a whole lot of space to rebudget. Companies are likely to have an average of 30-40% of their marketing budget freed up for reallocation, especially toward stronger digital marketing.
Given the increase of people purchasing solely from a screen, many companies are looking to bank on the world’s new online shopping habits.
Digital marketers are responsible for strategizing and execuring online marketing campaigns that promote a company’s brand, products, and/or services. They are in charge of driving website traffic to get high-quality leads, and that requires a thorough understanding of how everything translates through the screen.
As a dynamic onslaught of aspects and responsibilities, digital marketing is typically done with a whole team of professionals. The following positions are vital to putting companies on the digital map:
- Digital marketing manager
- Search engine optimizer / SEO
- Content marketing manager
- Social media marketing
- Content marketing manager
- Digital marketing copywriter
Companies are looking for digital marketing that gets people to connect, sympathize, and trust in their products and services. Twitter published a survey detailing how consumers want brands to market themselves while the world is dealing with consequences of COVID-19, revealing:
- 64% say that brands should continue to advertise their products, but only 7% think they should use their normal marketing tone
- More than 80% say that brands should show effort to support vulnerable sectors
Sincerity and empathy may be easy to communicate in person, but it is much more complex online. This has been the trend for years, and the pandemic reinforced this reality. Digital marketers coming from Generation Z will be highly qualified to meet these demands because they are digital natives adept at online communication, mobile-first thinking, and viral marketing content.
According to USBLS, the median salary for marketing managers in 2019 was $135,000 with people in the upper 10% earning more than $200,000.
The Future Of Web Design And Marketing Beyond Tech
The rapid growth in business was always anticipated to end up online – the ongoing pandemic only accelerated it. Labor economists say that the current job patterns are exactly in line as what they had initially projected.
Web designers and digital marketers are set to become even more valuable in the coming years. Companies will be looking for individuals with the knack for combining data with design, and crafting wonderful customer journeys online that will keep them coming back for more. So it is best to begin your path toward these careers with the right training and a clear career progression path.
Q College offers diploma courses in web design and digital marketing that provide students within-demand skills, expertise, and a promising career path. With several programs to choose from, you can choose how you want to position yourself within the tech job sector and build the necessary skills, connections, and opportunities for internship, job placement, or pathway toward a university degree.