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Earning Potential: Just How Much Can a Web Designer Make?

written by: Stephanie Mojica•edited by: Robin L.•updated: 2/11/2010

A web designer with the right education and experience can make in excess of $100,000 a year, especially if they work full-time for a large company or gain a lot of respectable freelance clients. On the other hand, starting web designers can make in the $25,000 to $30,000 range.

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    Those starting out in web development often wonder how much does a web designer make in their job. However, there is no absolute answer. When it comes to full-time positions, salary depends upon experience, education, and the size of the company. Employed designers can make anywhere from $25,000 to $100,000 per year. Those who are experienced computer programmers tend to make more. When it comes to freelancing, a lot depends on how well the designer can manage his or her time and find lucrative clients.

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    How Much Do Freelance Web Designers Make?

    Freelance web design may be the best and most lucrative choice for beginners who have talent and gumption but not a lot of impressive educational credentials. Some projects can gain a designer $1,000 or more dollars, and to earn $75,000 a year it takes about 75 of these projects. Offering web hosting, website testing, and web writing up the amount that can be billed even higher. Starting a business has very few upfront costs, and with the right skill set and attitude work can flow in rather quickly. However, a disadvantage is needing to pay your own taxes and to stay on top of marketing and invoicing in order to succeed in this avenue of web design.

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    Web Design Employment

    Gaining full-time employment as a web designer has a few advantages, such as benefits, stable work hours, and the ability to focus on the actual work of web design rather than invoicing and marketing. However, even a full-time job does not offer job security as the economy has required people in all fields to suddenly be laid off from their jobs. In addition, you may be doing a lot of work for $50,000 or less a year, especially if you did not graduate from a prestigious school or do not know a lot about computer programming.