The Difference between Web Design & Web Development

the web

The difference between web design and web development is becoming increasingly blurred leading the general public to use the two phrases interchangeably. Web design has become a generic term that encompasses both design and development. A successful website requires excellent design and development therefore it is important to understand the differences between the two.

WEB DESIGN

Web design determines the look and feel of a website. It covers the layout, navigation and colors of a website. It may also include graphic and logo design. Web design is more concerned with aesthetics and user experience than functions. A web designer will make a website easy to use and fit for purpose.

Web design skills

The best Web Designers are of the creative type. They have a knack for getting inside of their clients’ heads and realizing their clients’ vision. They take this vision and masterfully convert it into an aesthetically pleasing, artistic design that aims to impress millions of potential viewers. Some designers study typography, user interface design, and usability. Most include tools such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and DreamWeaver in their arsenal.

It is common, albeit arguable, that a designer’s role should also include slicing images, writing (X)HTML, coding CSS, and drafting or editing copy. For the most part, you can think of a Web Designer as a creative expert.

It’s rare nowadays to find a web designer who can’t code his own designs. With so many resources online and in print that teach the basics of HTML and CSS, and due to the fact that these languages aren’t rocket science, there are now a lot of graphic designers who have at least basic knowledge of markup and styling.

Web design tools

Web designers use software such as Photoshop, Flash and Fireworks. They will also have a good working knowledge of typography, color theory and web accessibility.

Overlapping tools are HTML and CSS.

WEB DEVELOPMENT

In contrast, web development provides the functions and features of a website. It is about the back end programming and not the face of a website. Functions covered by web development include registration, content management systems, e-commerce and any database applications. Web development enables visitors to carry out actions on a website.

Web development skills

Web Developers are usually more technical in nature. They tend to have excellent problem solving skills and are generally good at math. On a daily basis, a developer will write code in five or more different languages including (X)HTML, CSS, JavaScript, [PHP, ASP, ColdFusion, Ruby, Python, Perl, etc.], and some flavor of SQL. Web Developers can usually be found wielding some kind of text editor or IDE, an FTP client, three or more web browsers, and development plugins such as Firebug. A developer also knows what an API is and how to develop with it.

Although Web Developers are sometimes referred to as programmers, their skills are usually just a subset of a conventional software developer/engineer’s. Think of a Web Developer as more of a technical expert with programming skills.

There will be some overlap of skills between web designers and web developers. It is unusual for one person to be both an excellent designer and developer.

Web development tools

Web developers will use a range of programming tools such as PHP, MYSQL, JavaScript, XML and SQL. These are just some of the better-known tools. There are many others and new tools are being developed all the time. For example, mobile apps have created a huge demand for developers with the relevant knowledge.

Overlapping tools are HTML and CSS.

CONCLUSION

In conclusion, both web design and web development are essential to produce an effective website. Web design should be integrated with web development. This approach gives the best chance of creating an outstanding website.

kisstopher

3 comments

  1. isurangad Reply

    good article. Most people think web design and developing are same and hope this article will be a help to understand them in correct way. good job Reuben.

  2. varunsharma017 Reply

    Nice article…….. found it useful

  3. Janine Reply

    Very good article, very informative for people like me how only know the basics on web design and web development. Thanks Reuben!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *