University Marketing & Communications

May 1, 2014

2014 Seattle & Portland conferences for Web professionals


A few people have recently asked me about professional conferences I would recommend, so I decided it was time for a local conference roundup. This post turned into a relatively comprehensive list, but it is not a complete list of all local, Web-related conferences.

If I missed one that you think is particularly valuable, please leave a note in the comments!

WebVisions Portland – May 7-9

Event site:
Where: Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon
Education rate: $397.00 for a two-day pass, $526.00 for three-day pass
Register: Buy tickets online

WebVisions explores the future of design, content creation, user experience and business strategy in an event that inspires learning, collaboration and entrepreneurism. Since 2001, we’ve built a loyal audience of designers, developers and industry leaders. Join us for an event that’s seen as the creative conference for the Web.

This post is last-minute for WebVisions, but I’m throwing it in the lineup anyway since registration is still open. And there’s always next year: WebVisions Portland has historically happened every May since 2011, so chances are high it will happen return for May 2015.

Best for: Designers, front-end developers, UX professionals, content managers, videographers and multimedia producers.

MobileUXCamp Seattle – May 17

Event site:
Where: Mary Gates Hall, Seattle UW campus
Cost: $10 for students, $25 for general public
Register: Buy tickets via Eventbrite

MobileUXCamp Seattle is an unconference bringing together professionals, academics and enthusiasts to share the current state and future direction of mobile technologies.

MobileUXCamp Seattle follows the “unconference” style, which means anyone who attends can present a session related to “mobile.” The timetable is determined collaboratively by attendees and those who have “pitched” a session. Session styles range from informal group discussions to more formalized presentations with slides (it all really depends on the style of each session that wins the most votes).

Best for: Designers, site and app developers, UX professionals and students interested in any of the aforementioned fields.

Devsigner 2014 – May 23-25

Event site:
Where: Eliot Center in Portland, Oregon
Cost: $50 for just the conference, $60 for the conference and after party
Register: Buy tickets via the conference site

Portland, Oregon is excited to be the host city for Devsigner 2014, a new event for frontend professionals to gather, exchange ideas and learn from one another. This event will help developers expand their horizons through workshops and speaker presentations, as well as educate designers who would like to start creating for the web.

Best for: Web designers and developers.

Seattle WordCamp – June 28

Event site:
Where: The HUB, Seattle UW campus
Cost: $20
Register: Tickets not yet on sale

WordCamps are casual, locally-organized, non-profit conferences covering everything related to WordPress, the free and open source personal publishing software that powers over 60 million sites on the web. WordCamps come in all different flavors, based on the local communities that produce them.

The sessions and speakers have not yet been announced and tickets are not yet open, but I’m estimating both will happen within the next week or two.

Best for: WordPress theme designers, WordPress developers and content creators or bloggers new to WordPress.

MozCon – July 14-16

Event site:
Where: Washington State Convention Center, Seattle
Cost: $1,499
Register: Buy tickets via the conference page

We bring you three days of forward-thinking, actionable sessions on SEO, social media, community building, content marketing, brand development, CRO, the mobile landscape, analytics, and more. MozCon speakers share next-level advice on everything from building a loyal community to making data-driven decisions in your marketing.

This is an awesome conference full of awesome knowledge that I strongly recommend to any content person who can find the funds to attend.

Best for: Online marketers, social media managers and basically any marketing and communications professional in charge of an online space.

Seattle Interactive Conference – October 15-16

Event site:
Where: Washington State Convention Center, Seattle
Cost: $111.29 for students, $551.22 for everyone else
Register: Buy tickets via Stranger Tickets

The annual Seattle Interactive Conference is a two-day event celebrating the convergence of online technology, creativity, and emerging trends in one of the world’s most innovative cities. Attendees have the rare opportunity to explore disruptive technologies and business models with visionary thinkers and peers in areas ranging from online commerce and social media to gaming, interactive advertising, entertainment, and much more.

Katherine and I attended last year and had a blast. Based on the sessions I saw, I’d say the strength in this conference is in being exposed to many marketing, social media and technology solutions that companies and organizations have created. There were a few actionable takeaways, but I think the majority of the conference is about keeping abreast of disruptive technologies as well as being inspired.

Best for: Online marketers, social media managers, videographers, multimedia producers and Web/app designers.

HighEdWeb Conference – October 19-22

Event site:
Where: Hilton Portland and Executive Tower in Portland, Oregon
Cost: $625 for HighEdWeb members, $725 for non-members (rates raise after July 31)
Register: Buy tickets via the conference site

HighEdWeb is the annual conference of the Higher Education Web Professionals Association, created by and for all higher education Web professionals—from programmers to marketers to designers to all team members in-between—who want to explore the unique Web issues facing colleges and universities.

HighEdWeb is hosted annually, but at different locations throughout the country. It’s rare that they’re so close to home, so this year is one of your best opportunities to attend.

Best for: Anyone working in higher education and on the Web, including designers, developers and content professionals.


Not all conference dates have been announced yet—plus there are a few good ones that happened earlier in the year—so here’s a list of others that may be of interest.

  • Pacific Northwest Drupal Summit – Typically happens in mid-October.
  • ConveyUX 2015 – Expect this one to happen sometime in late January or February of next year. The session content is typically in-depth and targeted towards UX professionals.
  • An Event Apart – Will probably return to Seattle in March/April 2015.