Top 12 Web Design Blogs You Should Be Reading
Internet culture is all about diving into a wealth of resources and mastering skills yourself. The same attitude runs through the web industry. You can bet that web designers each have personal go-to sources for keeping up with industry news, learning new skills, and finding inspiration for new projects.
There’s lots of material out there to sift through, especially if you’re an industry newbie interested in web design. To help you get started, I asked veteran web designers for the top entries on their personal lists: the best sites to get you up to speed on the skills, trends, and developments that have the web design world buzzing.
In no particular order, here are the top 12 web design blogs you should be following:
Updates: around 7 posts/week
What started out as a design-oriented blog has now become one of the foremost content hubs for all things web design and development. Webdesigner Depot was founded in 2010 by Walter Apai, a Vancouver-based designer. Now, the site offers tons of articles written by creative professionals from all over the world.
You’ll find tips and tricks, the latest news on industry developments, in-depth interviews with experts, and even weekly comics that poke fun at the designer life. Webdesigner Depot is also home to tons of free assets and resources, a weekly newsletter, and a fantastic deal website where you can score high-quality web design products at massive discounts.
For a peek at the content you’ll get, here are some recent popular posts:
- Is Firefox Quantum Really Any Good?
- How to Design Better CTAs
- 9 Must-Have Features for Magazine-Style Blogs
Updates: around 4 posts/week
One of the standbys for web designers everywhere, Germany-based Smashing Magazine has been serving up top-shelf, in-depth content for web professionals since 2006. Smashing Magazine focuses on providing detailed resources rather than keeping tabs on the latest trends. The focus here is the substance and process of web design — and how you can get better at it.
And how they’ve succeeded. Smashing Magazine covers everything from responsive web design to coding; animation to user experience systems; and more. Its small core team has packed the blog full of informative articles, a massive library of resource books, and recently, even a job board, conference alerts, and meetups to help professionals take the next steps in their careers. The broad scope and depth of material here might be intimidating for beginners, but once you’ve got the basics down, Smashing Magazine is indispensable for pushing yourself much, much further.
Here are just some of the articles you can look forward to:
- Building a Large-Scale Design System for the US Government (Case Study)
- Mobile Interface Myths You Should Throw Out the Window
- Level-Up Email Campaigns with Customer Journey Mapping
Updates: around 28 posts/week
If Smashing Magazine is the deep dive, CreativeBloq is your far-reaching variety sampler. CreativeBloq’s coverage runs from web design to 3D, VFX, traditional design, and more, and this blog delivers valuable tips and design inspiration in quick, readable daily servings.
Since CreativeBloq casts its net wide, articles run the gamut from the latest industry trends and round-ups of the hottest tools for designers in different fields to quick pricing model guides for freelance designers. The site’s “Inspiration” tag is a goldmine of creative #goals that doubles as an up-to-date heads-up on all the best work coming from industry leaders and fresh new faces alike.
Want a taste of what CreativeBloq has to offer? Check out these posts:
- 10 visual storytelling tips from top agencies
- How to survive as a web designer beyond 2020
- 9 things we learned at Adobe Creative Meet Up 2017
Updates: around 5 posts/week
Want to brush up on your web design skills? Maybe you want to expand or update your skillset. Whatever your reasons, Tuts+ is an essential follow. Envato Tuts+ hosts rich learning resources for different creative tracks and skills — web design included. The web is all about self-directed learning, and for the creative aspects of internet work, there’s no beating the ever-growing Tuts+ library.
From skill-specific tutorials to longer guided courses, you’ll get more than enough assistance if you want to get a handle on web design on your own. You’ll also find e-books, community forums where you can consult likeminded users, and more. Tuts+ has tons of design-oriented resources covering, but you can also complement those skills with resources for game development, 3D graphics, coding, audio and video editing, and more.
For a sample of Envato Tuts+’s resources, check these out:
- Building a Landing Page that Converts
- UX Design Process: Understanding Design Fundamentals
- How to use Restful Web APIs in Python
Updates: around 8 posts/week
Since starting in 2007, Hongkiat has grown from a simple blog to one of the web’s foremost tech and design sites, and it’s a great place to find out what’s new with the web industry. Diving into Hongkiat’s design and development coverage yields lots of great news and resources covering everything from web graphics to UI/UX design and more.
Expect posts on the best and latest tools for web designers, reviews of new platforms and services, tutorials to improve your skills and workflow, and even free downloads and promos. Photoshop, HTML/CSS and Bootstrap, and general design principles are just some of the web design-related topics that get a lot of coverage.
Here’s a look at some of the Hongkiat blog’s design and development posts:
- Best Color Tools for Web Designers
- Build Responsive Sortable Grid Layouts with This Script
- 5 Web Apps to Improve Your Design Process
Updates: around 2 posts/week
Dubbed as a hub “for people who make websites,” A List Apart zeroes in on standards and best practices related to the design and development of web content. It’s been covering these topics since 1998, so don’t be surprised to see it hailed as the source for web standards in the industry.
A List Apart goes beyond simple tutorials and news updates, instead putting the whole web industry under its probing lens. You’ll find in-depth articles and e-books written by top web design and development professionals, giving you insightful analysis into the practices and future of the web. If you want a long-view perspective on being a web professional and the trajectory of web content and design, you don’t want to leave this blog off your list.
Check out these posts to get a feel for A List Apart’s content:
Updates: around 3 posts/week
Started in 2010, Designmodo covers the latest news in web design and development. You’ll find articles on new platforms and emerging trends, tips and tutorials to keep your skills sharp, and links to valuable resources (both free and paid) to add to your toolset.
Aside from the regular articles, Designmodo is also home to a popular newsletter on all things web/graphic design, coding, business, and more. Since 2011, the site has also branched out into offering premium UI kits and custom-built static website builders for developers. Add a market for design and development resources plus a web industry job board and you have yourself an indispensable web design resource.
Here are some popular posts from the Designmodo feed:
- Responsive Web Design: 50 Examples and Best Practices
- Making It Work: Flat Design and Color Trends
- Best Websites to Find Design Freebies: The Ultimate Collection
Updates: around 3 posts/week
Design Shack has been around since 2003, serving up articles from a wonderfully varied group of contributors writing about all kinds of design-related topics. Focused on fueling web designers with fresh new ideas and the resources to pull them off, Design Shack regularly turns the spotlight on stunning new design inspirations via round-ups, gallery showcases, detailed critiques, and more.
If you sign up to be a member, you’ll also be part of one of the biggest and most influential design communities on the web. As a member, you can submit your own designs to be featured, as well as rate or bookmark others’ designs. It’s a great opportunity to get valuable feedback on your work, and Design Shack throws in great bonuses like a weekly newsletter.
Check out Design Shack’s recent posts to see what they’re all about:
- Design Trend: Obstructed Text
- Parallax Effects Compared: 5 Choices to Consider
- 30+ Best Photoshop Actions of 2017
Updates: around 5 posts/week
Want to see the best of web design? Get your fill of web design and development inspiration with Awwwards. Primarily a hub to recognize “the best web designers, developers and agencies in the world,” Awwwards features stunning submissions for the annual Awwwards, which are then judged by a panel of select specialists from the web industry.
The site isn’t just a lively awards voting hub, though. You’ll find links to web design and development conferences and events, plus a great magazine-style blog. The Awwwards Magazine specializes in detailed case studies of exemplary websites, plus reports and videos from top design conferences that give you access to the latest from the luminaries of the web design and development space.
Here are just some of the features from the Awwwards team:
- A video of Adobe’s Khoi Vinh talk: “Things We (Don’t) Talk About When We Talk About Design”
- Case Study: Heartbeat Agency Portfolio
- Brutalism: BrutAl wEbsIteS for mOdern dAy webMAsTeRS.
Updates: around 2 posts/week
Codrops by Tympanus is another great resource for leveling up your web design skills. Codrops features some of the best web design tutorials and resources on the internet, all created to help you play around with the latest tricks and innovations in web design and development. While Tuts+ and other resources give you a solid foundation, Codrops is where you should go to try out the exciting new techniques that will shape the future of web design.
Pedro and Manoela, both web designers, curate the content on Codrops, and they infuse their content selections with a passion and playfulness that will have you raring to experiment with new web design possibilities yourself.
Check out some of the hottest posts from Codrops:
Updates: around 10 posts/week
Since starting in 2007, Speckyboy has expanded the menu of web design content it offers readers, going from simple design inspiration blog to full-fledged magazine. Speckyboy reports the latest in web and mobile design trends, complementing its news articles with great tutorials and resources alongside a steady stream of real-life design #goals.
Expect lots of emphasis on topics related to web and mobile app design, UX/UI design, and graphic design. You’ll also find a smattering of posts on life as a web designer, whether freelance or otherwise, to help you better navigate the industry.
Here are some of the latest articles from Speckyboy:
- How to Use Visual Hierarchy in Web Design
- The Web Design Trends of 2017
- Why You Need to Prioritize Page Speed in Discussions with Clients
Updates: around 10 posts/week
Web Design Ledger describes itself as a blog for web designers by web designers, underscoring the unique perspective that sets it apart from other online publications. This blog is designed to be a space for sharing web design expertise and resources, making it a great spot for taking the pulse of the web designer community. Web Design Ledger is where you’ll find articles directly shaped by what designers are concerned with or want to know more about.
A lot of Web Design Ledger’s content revolves around UI, graphics, and various web development (coding) resources, with articles that lay out tips, tricks, or promising new tools. You’ll also find lots of design inspiration features, plus stories and interviews from both web designers and developers that provide a deeper look into the minds of top industry professionals.
Here’s a sample of what you can look forward to from Web Design Ledger: