In this day and age, most people get confused between web development and web design. What is involved in working with web design? Are web design and web development the same? Are they interchangeable terms with the same meaning? The simple answer would be no. The role of each is completely different from the other. But let’s have a look into the different roles and methods, of both a web designer and a web developer.
Think about web designers as those who transform an idea, or a story, into a visually appealing design, and use their layout to build the user experience throughout the whole website. They design the website’s look and feel. As an architect would create a plan of your house prior to starting building it, similarly a web designer would model the layout of your website before a web developer can start developing it.
Web designers have a difficult role which is often underrated. In their designs, they need to integrate the best user experience possible and create a welcoming environment for the user. They have to change an idea from writing, into a usable design and interface that catches the user’s attention. A website cannot be described as great if a proper design strategy wasn’t applied in the early stages of the project. Nowadays, web designers are rated at the same level as web developers, as without a great user experience and design, the development cannot be truly appreciated by the user.
Web designers have built a whole library of strategic techniques for themselves. You don’t just create a perfect website immediately after reading or thinking about the specifications or the features required. You start with a scope — the focus point and the purpose that the website will offer. You would first roughly envision the designs in your head, and start with a sketch or draft of the design. From sketching, web designers move to wireframes, mock-ups, and to the final design. Professional web designers build the whole website in design components, with a pixel-perfect layout of all the web pages, icons, typography, and other intricate features.
Main roles of a Web Designer
- – Using software tools such as Adobe Photoshop, Framer, or Sketch to build the final layout design of the website.
- – Have good skills in graphic design and logo design
- – Have a good feel for user experience, to identify the simplest approach possible to attain the desired function. This includes the layout, buttons, images, and the general format of the website.
- – Web designers need to keep themselves up to date with the latest design trends. It’s also important to keep design consistency that is made popular by other web giant companies, such as Google, and Facebook. This makes the website environment and interfaces easier to navigate and use, as it is already familiar to the user’s eyes.
- – Web designers have to also keep in mind the branding of the website, the color palettes to be used, and the typography and readability of the website.
Think about web developers as those who turn the designs into a live website. Web developers use web languages and software tools to develop the design and functionality of a website. Notice, that web developers are further split into two sub-categories; front-end developers, and back-end developers. Front-end developers are the connection between both web designers and back-end developers, as having a little knowledge of both, would allow a front-end developer to build a fully working website. A front-end developer is the one who builds the interface and provides the layout as the interaction between the back-end of the website and the user.
Back-end developers are those who control the server data and requests. Usually, a website requires back-end services if it contains dynamic data. This means, for example, users submitting a form with personal data (such as creating an account), or saving an article for your blog page. Generally, if the website requires data to be saved, and making it accessible at a later stage, it means that it would also need a database connection. Database connections are made possible by a direct connection from the server itself. Thus, a back-end developer then uses server languages such as PHP or ASP.NET and writes database queries by using languages such as SQL or MySQL.
Roles of a Web Developer
- Building the actual interface through which a user interacts with the website. This interface is built by front-end developers using HTML, CSS, and JS languages.
- Front-end developers provide the markup design to back-end developers, so they can implement a dynamic website, and submit all the required data on the server and databases.
- Back-end developers create the backbone of the website using languages such as PHP and MySQL.
- Both front-end and back-end developers can use the same development environments or IDEs (Integrated Development Environment). These are software application tools where you code and build the structure of the website.
- Web developers may also use versioning tools to keep a history of the previous builds. This will help them to quickly and effortlessly move back to a previous “unbroken” version if required to do so.
What does a full-stack developer do?
Full-stack developers are those who have a good knowledge of all of the development areas discussed above. This means that if you are a full-stack developer, you should be able to build a website from scratch, from looking at a design, and creating the mark-up of the design, up to handling back-end processes, and database queries. Usually, a full-stack developer would also have a basic knowledge of design and user experience.
You now know the differences between a designer and a developer. This is important stuff to know because knowing when to hire each one will make your website-related life much easier.
Job and Salary Factor
It’s very hard to find a job as a Web Designer because many companies do not offer a job web designer. They just simply ask their front-end developer to design an interface. On the other hand, finding a job as a Web-Developer is very easy, but you need to update your skills with time because the technologies used to build websites update every day and it might be possible that the tools you know get obsolete in a year or so.
As there are not many jobs for web designers, this affects the salary and other facilities in general. A web designer is always paid less as compared to a web developer. However, the salary depends on the organization, the developer, and the developer’s experience as a whole.
Web Design and Development are two different professions however you do not see too many jobs for a web designer, but there are plenty of Jobs for a web developer. A web designer only deals with the layout of the website, whereas the web developer brings the website to life by writing code using different technologies. Dcastalia has a dedicated web development and web design team that caters to the client’s needs with careful consideration. We believe in curating creative, flexible, and affordable websites that would set you apart from your competition.