The Top 8 UI/UX Careers to Specialize In – MUO – MakeUseOf

After mastering UI/UX fundamentals, specialization is the next step for most designers looking for a challenge. However, like choosing the right tech field, deciding on a specialization area can leave many designers stumped.



Furthermore, advancing your career in the correct direction requires solid knowledge of many design fields. This way, you’re rightfully equipped to choose the best UI/UX career path that suits you. As such, this article discusses some of the top UI/UX careers you can specialize in and what they entail.

1. Product Designer

Woman using a laptop for design

UI/UX design is often interchanged with product design, which may leave you pondering the differences between the two. While they have similarities, a product designer’s responsibilities are far more comprehensive.

To successfully create a product, several factors and strategies must be implemented. Product designers design these strategies and oversee every stage of a product’s development, from initial ideation to branding and presentation.

Of course, this includes its visual design and usability, but unlike UI/UX designers, a product designer ensures the product’s all-around success. Combining product design with fundamental UI/UX skills enables you to create exceptional products that meet customer, organizational, and market requirements.

Besides your UI/UX skills, product design requires that you understand project management and market awareness to predict consumer response. You’ll also need sound technical knowledge of how your product works and must be able to communicate this process.

As for salary benefits, ZipRecruiter states that these hefty requirements are to get adequate compensation with an average annual salary of $138,874 in the United States. Note that these figures also depend on your location, employer, and, most importantly, experience.

2. Interaction Designer

Person using an app in a car

Has an app or website ever left you in awe and amazement after interacting with it? Achieving this reaction in any user is the job of an interaction designer, so if you particularly enjoy designing for user experience, consider this role.

Interaction designers improve the user experience of digital products, focusing on producing an immersive, highly interactive product. Working in this field involves using features like animation and haptics to fully engage the user while heightening the product’s feedback and functionality.

Attention to detail is a highly important quality in creating impressive micro-interaction features. You’ll also need an in-depth understanding of user flow and user-centered design. Now, let’s talk about your expected income. ZipRecruiter states that the average interaction designer in the US earns about $105,510 annually.

3. Information Architect

A landing page with content hierarchy

A good design must convey information properly, or its purpose is defeated, irrespective of the quality of its visuals. Information architects check that a design’s message is clear and concise and eliminates overwhelming content or design elements.

The average user has a short attention span; thus, information architects structure content to pass vital information across first, followed by less crucial ones. You’ll also decide the order in which information is displayed on a product and the layout of all visual elements to maximize user satisfaction. This skill, known as content hierarchy, is a must for every information architect.

Essentially, this role demands proficiency in information organization, labeling, and taxonomy. Additionally, you’ll need good collaboration skills to work closely and efficiently with the UI designer. According to ZipRecruiter, the average salary for this role in the US is about $119,368 yearly, with experts making up to $175,000.

4. Interface Designer

Paper showing wireframes

This is the most famous part of UI/UX design and is best for you if you love the creative design process. These professionals, more popularly called user interface (UI) designers, plan and create the software’s appearance and visuals. As with fundamental UI/UX design, it involves using color theory, typography, and other design elements to build aesthetically-pleasing sites.

So, what sets you apart from novice and mid-level UI designers? As a professional interface designer, your job goes beyond designing layouts, as you’ll consider user preferences and usability. Moreover, you’re also in charge of ensuring seamlessness between the interaction’s designer and UX analyst’s inputs and your final design.

According to ZipRecruiter, the average interface designer in the US earns approximately $106,351 annually. Regardless, you can always aim for tech conglomerates that pay much higher.

5. UX Writer

Phone showing an alert message

Numerous landing pages give you an overall summary of the digital product in a single glance using concise, compelling text. While organizing these texts falls chiefly to the information architects, crafting them is the job of the UX writer.

UX writers are responsible for all written content and product interface alerts. From headers, copies, and descriptions, UX writers carefully curate text to enhance communication and understanding without removing from the product’s aesthetic. Unlike other design specializations, this role involves content and copywriting, so refining your writing skills is essential.

According to ZipRecruiter, this role attracts an average of $80,647 annually in the US. However, you can command up to $138,000 with increased value and location.

6. UX Strategist

Photo of tablet with pen on notebook

Designing without paying specific attention to the users and anticipating their requirements will likely yield a product that fails to resonate with them. So, who represents the user while guarding the interests of the business simultaneously? The UX strategist comes into play here.

Specializing in UX strategy means user research is your chief role; you’re the middleman between the designer and the user. Here, you carefully analyze potential product users, highlighting their problems and proposing solutions using your product.

Previously, we’ve seen how product designers develop product strategy, which begs the question, “Are these roles similar?” The short answer is no. Where product designers are chiefly concerned with the entire product, UX strategists focus solely on enhancing the user experience. ZipRecruiter reports that this job role attracts an average of $136,412 yearly.

7. UX Analyst

Woman showing flowchart diagram to a man

A beautiful interface and an engaging interaction design may be momentarily interesting, but the product’s usability earns the user’s loyalty. A product that proves difficult to use tends to frustrate users and eventually becomes obsolete.

Preventing this from happening is a UX analyst’s job. Armed with the usability strategist’s points and notes, this professional ensures their execution and effectiveness to the user. Additionally, taking on this job role means you’ll primarily be responsible for requesting and implementing feedback.

With these responsibilities, you’ll need to develop your abilities in empathy, master usability testing tools, and iteration. Finally, ZipRecruiter estimates that UX analysts in the US earn about $111,497 per year.

8. Accessibility Strategist

A person using braille

Software and digital products should also be accessible to disabled people, and certain provisions should allow them easy access. As an accessibility strategist, you guarantee an excellent user experience for people with disabilities.

Similar to the UX analyst, accessibility strategists frequently request feedback and iterate the product but with a laser focus on suiting disabled people. More importantly, you must stay informed about current disability guidelines and laws and strictly adhere to them.

Examples include the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) ratio and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). According to ZipRecruiter, accessibility strategists in the US can make about $72,577, with top professionals earning up to $112,500 annually.

Further Your UI/UX Career With Specialization

Specializing in any of the above careers is a great way to increase your knowledge, UI/UX abilities, and earnings. But, before venturing into any of these fields, make sure you solidify your foundation in basic UI/UX design and master the required technical skills. Failure to do so will have you grasping at straws and prolonging your specialization journey unnecessarily.


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