What is the Difference Between Web Design and Web Development?
The Complex AnswerA web designer's primary job and focus is on how the website looks, but the "look" of a website has a lot to do with the code. Afterall, it is code that tells the text, video, and image elements where to sit on the page so they aren't all crowding the same space! For this reason, it is almost impossible for a web designer to be good at his or her job without understanding some basic code at least.Clients also would like to have a "one stop" service for their site creation, so most web designers - especially freelancers - will be able to design and code a website to function the way you want it to, because the majority of websites do not require hyper-technical code.A web developer, on the other hand, is responsible for creating a website or web application that is more advanced than your average "small" website. Online games are an excellent example in which a web designer would be out of his or her league and a web developer would need to step in, but there are other times when this is necessary as well.Sites which offer the option of user-generated content will often need ways for a user to log in, permissions set to determine what the user can and cannot post or edit, and possibly even a queue system so entries can be reviewed before posting. This type of setup usually requires a web developer.The most beneficial to clients with complex websites is to work with a company or team who has both designers and developers. This means no gap will be left in your project, and one project fee will get you everything your site needs to function precisely how you want it to.The TakeawayBe sure to keep the differences between web design and web development in mind as you plan your website and begin looking for designers or developers to help you. As you review potential companies to create your site, be sure to provide a clear and detailed overview of what you need your site to do or accomplish and ask if they are knowledgeable and comfortable providing this type of site. This will help you match your project to the right designer or company.