What’s the difference between web design & web development?
In my early stages of web development learning, I found myself often confused about the differences between design and development. What is the role of a web designer? What is involved with working with web design? Are web design and web development the same? Are those interchangeable terms with the same meaning?
The simple answer would be no. Everyone’s role is completely different. But let’s take a look at the different roles and practices of both web designers and web developers.
Think of web designers who transform an idea or story into a visually appealing design and use their layout to create a user experience across the entire website. The architect will plan your home before starting the construction of your house, just as a web developer will build the layout model of your website before it starts to develop.
Web designers have a difficult role that is often underlined. They need to integrate the best user experience possible in their design and create a welcoming environment for the user. They need to change an idea by writing in a user-friendly, usable design and interface. The website description cannot be optimized if the correct design strategy is not implemented during the initial stages of a project. Nowadays, web designers are rated at the same level as web developers, because without a great user experience and design, that development cannot really be appreciated by the user.
Web designers have created a whole library of strategic techniques for themselves. You don’t create a perfect website right away by reading or thinking about specific features or features. You start with the scope – the focus point and purpose the website offers. You will first get an idea of the design in your head and start with the drawing or drafting of the design. From sketching, web designers go to wireframes, mock-ups, and final designs. Professional web designers build the entire website into design elements with a perfect pixel layout with all web pages, icons, typography, and other intricate features.
Here are some of the key roles of web designers:
Of using software tools such as Adobe Photoshop, Framer or Sketch to create the ultimate layout design of a website
Web designers have to keep themselves up to date with the latest design trends. It is also important to keep the design consistent with popular designs from other web companies such as Google and Facebook. This makes the website environment and interfaces easy to navigate and use, as it is already familiar to users.
Web designers also need to keep in mind the branding of the website, the color palette used, and the typography and readability of the website.
Think about web developers who converted design directly into a website. Web developers use web languages and software tools to develop a website’s design and functionality. Note that web developers are further subdivided into two sub-categories; Front-end developers and back-end developers. I see front-end developers as the connection between both web designers and back-end developers, who both have a little knowledge while allowing front-end developers to create fully functioning websites. The front-end developer creates the same interface and provides the layout as an interface between the back end of the website and the user.
Back-end developers are the ones who control server data and requests. Usually, a website has dynamic data that requires back-end services. This means, for example, users submitting an account with personal data (such as creating an account) or saving articles for your blog page. Usually, if a website needs to save data and make it accessible at a later stage, it means that it also needs a database connection. A database connection is made possible through a direct connection from the server. Thus, the back-end developer then uses a server language such as PHP or ASP.NET and writes database queries using languages such as SQL or MySQL.
Here are some of the key roles of a web developer.
- Front-end developers provide markup designs to back-end developers so that they can implement dynamic websites and submit the necessary data to servers and databases.
- Back-end developers build websites with languages like PHP and MySQL.
Both front-end and back-end developers can use the same development environment or IDE (integrated development environment). These are software application tools where you code and create a website’s design.
Web developers can also use versioning tools to keep track of past construction history. It will help you quickly and easily revert to the previous and intact version if needed.
What does a full-stack developer do?
Full-stack developers are those who have a good knowledge of all the development areas discussed above. This means that if you are a full-stack developer, you should be able to build websites from scratch and database queries, from handling the back-end process and creating design mark-ups. Usually, a full-stack developer also has a basic knowledge of design and user experience. Being a full-stack developer doesn’t mean that you need to be an expert in all languages. It’s already difficult to become an expert or a professional in just one language. It is also difficult to learn all the best techniques and strategies for how to be most efficient in all the areas we have discussed above. Remember, web technology is evolving every day.
Having a basic knowledge of everything on the web is always a plus, but I recommend staying with the one you enjoy the most and focus on becoming an expert at it. Once you are comfortable developing a front-end or a back-end, there is a need for more attention to that area.
I hope you now have a clear understanding of the differences between the roles of web developers and web designers. Keep in mind that both have an essential role and the web does not exist without one or the other. Let me tell you, from my experience, nothing else will be easy. Working full-time as a front-end developer, and regularly interacting with both designers and back-end developers show me that all the roles you have just discussed are in one way or another. Just remember that focusing on one language first is a great way to start yourself. Once you are motivated and take the first step, the rest will be less of a challenge.