What is to design?
Designing is a process of creating a plan and originating the development of a specific product. Once the product is designed, its design is used to start the production. Design often refers to the creation of a product prototype. In most cases the meaning of “product design” refers only to the product's appearance rather than to its construction, architecture and technical specifications.
Web page design
Web design itself refers to the process of creating a web page’s appearance and to the choice of a right color scheme, page layout, fonts and more. Every single web page in a website has different content, but all the pages are using a similar graphic design. Often sites will use website templates, which contain all the basic elements of web design - the website's CSS style, buttons, backgrounds, borders and various graphic elements like hover images, bullets and header banners. When the website template is applied to the website, all the pages assume its appearance, using the same styles, background and other graphical elements.
But most of the pages in a website have their own design elements. This is needed because every page has to present a different content, and the basic website style is not fully applicable for all the web pages. For example, designing a contact form will sometimes require a custom layout and design elements with which to handle the form's fields, buttons, drop-down menus, etc. All these styles, layouts, images, etc. are often not applicable for the other website pages. So, the contact page uses the basic website template for the menus, backgrounds, header images, etc. but also has its own web page design, including the contact form’s design itself and all the other elements specific for that page.
How to design a web page
Before you start designing your web page, you have to figure out what sort of a web page it’s going to be and what contents it should have. All this information is needed in order to successfully design a web page.
You need to know the type of the page, because there are different methods of approach when you design a static or a dynamic web page.
You also need to know the contents of the web page, because you need to arrange them within the page's layout. There are different types of content - text, images, videos, animations and other dynamic elements. In order to create a successful web page you need to put the right content in the right place.
It is very important to consider what the page’s purpose will be when you start sketching it. Creating the basic layout, color scheme and arranging the content, is the second important step. Now, when you come up with some basic design idea you may discuss it with your client. If the client has some notes about the design it's good to consider them, but remember - you are the web designer. You have the knowledge and you are the one who has to tell the client how the web page should look.
Once you have an approved design conception you can proceed with revising the current basic layout, designing the page's specific elements and putting some final touches to your web page design.