Experts Weigh In: What book should every web designer read?
Whether you’re just kicking off a career in web design or have plenty of experience, you can always learn something new. We reached out to a handful of experts to weigh in on what book they think every web designer should read. Unsurprisingly, a certain title popped up more than once. Anything you’d add to the list? Let us know in the comments!
Shayne Moore, Managing Director, MintDesign
Hands down, Steve Krug’s Don’t Make Me Think. DMMT gives any designer a solid introduction to UX principles. Each of our new design staff are given a copy on their first day at our agency. It’s clear, concise and designers can pick it up and flick to a relevant chapter and anytime for a refresher.
Above all else, DMMT proves the relationship between design and common sense. Despite the fact that the book was first written in 2000, the principles will never be outdated.
Sarah Hunt, Senior Product Manager, UX Design, Adobe
One of the most valuable traits a designer possesses is the ability to pitch an idea. Your designs are only as good as your ability to sell them. Learning how to tell a powerful story, the motivations behind human behaviour and how to eloquently articulate your solutions will accelerate your ability to sell an idea, and also challenge you to learn more about the intent behind whatever it is you design. Power Questions and The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business are two excellent books I’ve read which discuss how to better yourself in conversation and better understand human behaviour.
Nir Eyal is one of my favourite usability experts, and he has extremely thorough knowledge on how to help your users succeed. Definitely recommend reading his material, very insightful and easy to digest. See: Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products.
Paul Boag, Digital Consultant, Trainer, Speaker, Writer, Mentor and UX specialist
That is easy. Don’t make me think by Steve Krug. This is the definitive introduction to user-centric design. It teaches the fundamentals of usability testing and reminds designers to focus on user needs, not personal preference. Best of all it can be read in only a few hours.
António Pratas, Digital Art Director at Maverick
For a web designer, it’s good to have a general understanding of the whole project, and usability plays a really important role in making a website work well, one that affects concept and design, so for me one of the most important books I’ve read was Designing Web Usability by Jakob Nielsen. It taught me the basis of usability and how to approach a website as a product that has to be functional. But as a designer in general, that are a lot of daily challenges, especially on dealing with clients and managing a project, things that you don’t learn in any School, and Design is a Job by Mike Monteiro is an amazing read that enlightens and motivates any designer to do a better job.
Any other books you’d add to the list? Let us know in the comments!