Top 10 Books on Web Design Every Designer Should Read

Web design is essential in today’s business world. Although you might hire a specialized agency to help you out, understanding web design and how it can impact your business is always a good idea. That is why here we will let you know which web design books are worth investing in.


We have made it easier for you by coming up with the most valuable and practical books recommended by top web design companies:


1) Don’t Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability by Steve Krug

This is by far the most recommended and read web design book there is. Steve Krug explains how businesses should design their websites to become self-evident and to provide the user exactly what he is looking for. Once you read this book, you will start to think like your customers and design with their needs at the forefront.


2) HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites by Jon Duckett

This is another great book by another great designer. John Duckett’s vast knowledge and experience of more than a decade of designing and building websites have given him the authority to write more than a dozen books covering web design, programming, usability, and accessibility. The most significant thing is that it makes web design and programming accessible to all, even those who don’t necessarily want to be full-time programmers. It is a book that can be read front to back or just dipping in on the specific topics that you are looking to understand a little better.


3) Design for Hackers: Reverse Engineering Beauty by David Kadavy

This book is excellent for those who want to better understand design, not as a technical skill like programming, but as an art. Design for Hackers understands that those who are already knowledgeable in programming need to understand what design is to become great web designers. This includes making functional and beautiful interfaces or applying the correct color palette. This book won’t just tell you what to do and what not to do, but it will give you principles and examples to bring out the designer in you.


4) Learning Web Design: A Beginner’s Guide to HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Web Graphics by Jennifer Niederst Robbins

Jennifer Niederst Robbins was one of the first designers for the web starting from 1993. She has also worked as web design teacher at the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston and Johnson and Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island. With all of this experience and knowledge, her book is a must for anyone learning web design.


5) Responsive Web Design by Ethan Marcotte

Ethan Marcotte is one of the top authorities on web design and is also the one that invented the “responsive web design” term. It brought about a new way of designing: one that is more flexible and considers how people interact with websites and devices. This is the definitive book on the topic, written by the most appropriate person for it.


6) Design Is a Job by Mike Monteiro

Mike Monteiro is the co-founder and design director of Mule Design, a design studio whose work has been described as “delightfully hostile” by The New Yorker. In his book, you will find a practical and helpful way to address some of the everyday problems of designers. And get some answers to some crucial questions like: How do we deal with clients? How do we convey value? How do we charge? How do we ask the right questions?


7) JavaScript and jQuery: Interactive Front-End Web Development by Jon Duckett

Yes, Jon Duckett is listed twice here, and that’s only because of how good his books are when it comes to explaining topics that might be dry and complicated in a way that is easy to understand and very engaging. This book is written for anyone that wants to learn how to write JavaScript. It will take you on a learning journey that will eventually allow you to write and customize your scripts.


8) Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon

Austin Kleon is an American writer living in Austin, Texas. He’s the author of two bestselling books: Steal Like an Artist, an ode to creativity, and Newspaper Blackout, a poetry collection made with newspaper articles and a permanent marker. In his book Steal Like an Artist, he embraces the idea that nothing is original but that when you combine things around you and use inspiration from others, you can come up with creative and unique ideas. He lists ten principles that will make all readers find their most artistic and creative side.


9) 100 Things Every Designer Needs To Know About People by Susan Weinschenk

The author has A Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology degree. Susan Weinschenk has over 30 years of experience as a behavioral scientist who works as a consultant, teacher, and writer applying behavioral science to design technology and business. This book integrates scientific research with illustrative examples to better elicit a response from your users through design. After all, great design will make people act without even noticing, and to do this, you need to understand human psychology and people’s ways better.


10) Choose Yourself by James Altucher

James Altucher is a successful entrepreneur, chess master, investor, and writer who has started and run more than 20 companies and sold several of those in great deals. In his book Choose Yourself, he reflects on how everything we used to think was safe no longer is. College, employment, retirement, and governments have all been changing and crumbling down during the past few years. That is why Altucher says there is only one last place where we can be safe about investing our time and energy, and that is ourselves.

You might be wondering, why is this a book for designers? Because designers need to be able to see the world from as many perspectives as possible, and this book will open your mind to so much more than you could have thought of before.

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