What Is a Good Salary for a Software Developer?

Patrick Burnett

As a software developer, you may be wondering what a good salary for your profession would look like. The answer to this question can vary depending on several factors, including your level of experience, location, and industry. In this article, we will explore what factors contribute to a good salary for software developers and what numbers you can expect based on these variables.

Experience Level

The amount of experience you have in the software development industry is one of the most significant factors that determine your salary. Entry-level developers typically earn less than experienced developers with years of experience.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for software developers was $107,510 as of May 2020. However, this figure varies by years of experience.

  • Entry-Level Developers: If you are just starting in the industry, you can expect a lower salary than those with more experience. On average, entry-level software developers earn around $67,000 annually.
  • Mid-Level Developers: With three to five years of experience as a software developer, your annual income can range from $80,000 to $120,000.
  • Experienced Developers: Software developers with more than five years of experience can earn an average salary ranging from $120,000 to $160,000 per year.


Where you work also plays a significant role in determining your salary as a software developer. Salaries for developers vary by region due to differences in living costs and demand for skilled professionals.

  • San Francisco Bay Area: The San Francisco Bay Area is known for offering some of the highest salaries for software developers globally. On average, developers in this area earn around $140,000 to $160,000 annually.
  • New York City: Software developers in New York City earn an average of $120,000 to $130,000 per year.
  • Seattle: In Seattle, software developers earn an average salary of $110,000-$120,000 annually.
  • Austin: Developers in Austin earn around $100,000 to $110,000 annually.


The industry you work in also has a significant impact on your salary as a software developer. Software developers in certain industries tend to earn more than those in others.

  • Finance: Developers working in the finance industry typically have higher salaries than those working in other industries. On average, finance developers can expect to earn around $140,00-$150,000 per year.
  • Technology: The technology industry is a highly competitive industry that offers lucrative salaries for skilled professionals. Developers working in this sector can expect an average salary ranging from $125,000 to $130,000 annually.
  • Gaming: Developers who work in the gaming industry earn an average salary ranging from $75,000-$95,000 annually.

The Bottom Line

In conclusion, there is no one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to determining what a good salary is for software developers. Your experience level and the industry you work in are just two of the many factors that determine your earning potential.

However, on average and based on the variables mentioned above – you can expect salaries ranging from around $67k for entry-level up to $160k for experienced developers. It’s essential to research the industry, location, and company you’re interested in thoroughly to determine what salary you should expect.