Why Web Development is different than Web Design

9th August 2022 by Das Candler

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Web development, specifically front end web development, and web design both play major roles in the creation of a website. It's important to note however, that they serve two very distinct purposes. With that being said, it's understandable that upon first glance these titles could lead to confusion, causing one to come to the conclusion that perhaps they are the same thing.

This is simply not the case. Think of it like this: A web designer is much like an architect. Just as the name implies, they are in charge of determining what the website will ultimately look like. They use many different tools to wireframe a design, experimenting with different layouts, typography, and color theory to achieve their desired results. Experienced designers are capable of creating eye catching websites that immediately instill trust in the user.

While it is true that web design could be considered more of an art form, there are many rules and much theory that designers need to understand. These are all subtle elements that many visitors are simply not aware of, but play a vital role in the success and perception of the website. Things such as line height, font size, font color, background colors, and box shadows may seem unimportant, but are essential building blocks for creating great user experiences.

After the web designer is satisfied with their new design, they will hand it off to the developers who then get started on the actual construction of the website. These developers can be thought of as framers or iron workers, who begin construction on the so called building that is the website. They are in charge of making the designs come to life through the languages of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Developers work in what is called an integrated development environment (IDE), building pixel perfect websites in accordance with the designs given to them by the designers.

There are many responsibilities that fall on the shoulder of the developer. They must be proficient at troubleshooting and finding solutions to the inevitable problems that arise during the development process. Developers must also ensure the website looks good on all major browsers so it reaches as large of an audience as possible.

Another crucial factor that developers need to keep in mind, is that as time goes by, more and more people are using smart phones to access the internet. This requires additional thought to be put into the code behind the scenes. The website should always be mobile friendly. Good developers are aware of this and build with a mobile first approach.

There have been a plethora of tools and technologies developed over the recent years, making front end web development quite a bit more complex then it was in the early 2000s. Frameworks such as Angular and React have been created in an attempt to expedite and streamline the development process. While the majority of developers see these frameworks as a boon, some feel they are a passing fad and would simply rather work with vanilla JavaScript.

In conclusion, developers typically aren't great designers, and designers might not know how to code what they designed. But by working together, they produce the beautiful and fully functional websites we are used to seeing.

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Metadas Media
Founded in 1999, Metadas Media is a web development company which provides targeted web solutions in order to take the online exposure of your business to the next level.

With more than 50 years of combined experience within this highly competitive industry, we also appreciate the fact that any web development company needs to adapt its services to the times.