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You may have used web design and development interchangeably over the years, but do they mean the same thing?
While many of us use both words interchangeably, there is more than a thin line between them. While web design is more about beauty and aesthetics, web development is more about coding and technicality to make a website functional.
But let's not get ahead of ourselves just yet. Let's break all of that down.
Web design is a part of the website creation process that focuses on visual appeal and usability. It usually involves visual aspects like UX and UI, selecting the right color schemes, etc.
A web designer is an expert who makes a website look good. They determine the best layout for the web page, where content goes, and what colors would work well according to the business identity for which the site is built.
Tools and skills you'll typically find a web designer using include:
In short, most web designers do not code. A web designer may design a website using WordPress without any coding knowledge. They may only need to use color, images, layout, and typography to bring the digital experience to life. UX/UI designers will also consider the target audience to create an interface that works best for them.
Web development involves creating a website from scratch using programming languages (codes), including HTML, CSS, Python, etc. In fact, web developers are generally called programmers.
Web developers build websites using software solutions and skills like:
We can see that the development is more technical than web design.
Web development is split into front-end and back-end development. Front-end development governs how the website will work and display the designs implemented by the designer. The backend is the server-side that manages data in the database and serves this data to the front-end to be displayed. Backend developers also handle the business logic of a web app. They write the codes and APIs that enable data to flow from the front-end and backend.
So if you want more than visual design but total control over how your website works, you're better off with a web development agency. Front-end developers will also usually work alongside web designers because they need to see the visuals their codes will be controlling.
You can design a basic website using templates from a CMS platform like WordPress. But website development requires more technical skills to give you full control of how your business website or web app functions.
Therefore, web developers charge higher fees for their work than designers.
Although developers don't create the visual assets you see, such as images and color schemes, they are responsible for making the designer's wireframes and mockups work using codes. It's like a house built with bricks (development) and then using a roof and paint (the design you see).
In summary, website design and development work together to produce a functional website.
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