Liquid Web Logo

Difference Between Web Design and Web Development

Have you found yourself confused about the differences between web design and web development? You're not alone since a lot of people use the words web developers and web designers interchangeably. But in fact, these are two separate professions.

Web Design and Web Development in Wellington, New Zealand

Technically, all the websites you see and browse on the internet are the cumulative output of web designers and web developers. While both positions aim to bring a website to life, the tasks, training and skillsets associated with each role are very different. 

It essential that you know the difference when you're looking for someone in Wellington to design and develop your company's website.

Let's look into the different functions of both a web designer and a web developer.

Web Design vs. Web Development: Quick Overview

In essence, web design relates to both the artistic portion of the website and its usability. Web designers use several design programs to create the interface and other website's visual elements and features.

Developers create the website's core framework using coding languages such as HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP and other programming languages.  Developers are using their coding skills to breathe life into the designer's creative vision.

You may think of developers as builders and web designers as architects – both are important, but they have different expertise.

What is Web Design?

Website design determines anything related to a website's visual aesthetics and functionality, such as colour scheme, style, the flow of information, and anything else related to its visual features.

Web Design in Wellington, New Zealand

A web designer provides the concept and layout of an entire web site, designs the overall appearance and feel of the web page, and plans how and where each part of the web page will go. A web designer uses web design tools like Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver or Sketch to design the website's blueprint to make it stand out from the rest. 

Web designers can use several fundamental design principles to obtain an aesthetically appealing layout that also provides an excellent user experience.

Liquid Web are expert web designers in Wellington who can help assist you with your marketing and web design requirements. 

Different Types of Web Designers 

  • User Experience (UX) Web Designer

The role of the UX web designer is to keep your visitors interested. They know precisely how to create a website that your particular audience would appreciate because they have carried out a deep analysis of customers' characteristics and website needs.

  • User Interface (UI) Web Designer

A UI web designer aims to enhance the way users interact with features or interfaces on your website, which can be achieved by transforming complex brand concepts and values into a fun and easy website to use and navigate.

  • Visual Designer

A visual designer is a combination of user-experience and user-interface web designers. Their task is to enhance the user's experience and help conceptualise a particular brand's distinctive tone.

Essentially, visual designers are the masters of all web design trades, and their particular tasks can vary greatly depending on what you really want.

A good web designer should take the time to consider the client's priorities, budget, and brand personality. They can align these needs with the customer’s needs, who must navigate the website to reach their own goals. The designer must have a great understanding of Search Engine Optimization in order to create a Google-friendly website that reaches the target audience.

What is Web Development?

When the website design is available, it's time for the developer to come in. Web developers have the coding that makes websites run. They will build programs and applications that bring functionality to web designs. Web Developers will concentrate on three coding areas, the client, the server, and the database.

Web Development in Wellington, New Zealand

Web development commands all the code that makes the website work. It can be classified into two categories, front-end and back-end. The program's front-end or client-side is the code involved in deciding how it displays the web designs.  The back-end or server-side of the application handles and manages the data in the database and provides the displayed front-end data.

Three Types of Web Developers

1. Frond-End Web Developers

Front-end developers use three primary languages: Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and JavaScript (JS) to construct the interface of a website. With these languages, the web developer can build a fully functional website.

The front-end developer's responsibility is to develop a user interface created by the web designer, from the critical design layout to adding images, applying various typography types, integrating graphic design, ensuring effective interaction of the different pages, and more.

2. Back-End Web Developers

Back-end developers are the ones that handle server data and requests. Typically, a website needs back-end resources because it involves dynamic data.

Generally, if the website requires data to be stored, such as the user's data submitted through a form, which would be retrieved later, it will also need a database link. Database connections are made possible by a direct connection from the server itself, and the back-end developer writes the code for this dynamic nature of the websites.

A back-end web developer uses several tools and programming languages to build a website’s backend, such as Java, Python, SQL, PHP, C++, etc.

Both front-end and back-end developers may utilise similar development environments or IDEs (Integrated Development Environment) that are software application tools used to code and build a website structure.

Web developers can also use versioning software to maintain the record of previous builds. This will help them transition quickly and seamlessly back to the last "unbroken" version if needed.

3. Full-Stack Developer

A full-stack developer operates through various layers – or stacks – including both the front and back ends. It is a complete kit for web development, and they are specialists in all fields.

More advanced web developers can choose to use a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress or Joomla to simplify development and make it easy for clients to maintain and update their website.

Web development is a much more difficult skill to master. As a result, there are fewer web developers than there are web designers. This also means that hiring a web developer is more costly than hiring a web designer.

The Bottom Line 

The distinction between a web developer and a web designer is broader than you think. A web designer puts the vision of a brand into action on-screen and understands just what the particular audience will appreciate. The web developer constructs the core structure of the site, using coding languages to create logical websites.

Web designers and web developers have always played an integral role in the digital world. To create a well-designed and functional, you need both design and development to get the best experience.

Liquid Web is a local NZ owned web design company specialising in WordPress web design trusted by Kiwis around Auckland, Hamilton, Tauranga, and Wellington.


Liquid Web is a local NZ owned web design company trusted by Kiwis and local businesses around New Zealand.
Get Started
Our Partner Brand: HyperWeb