Web Developer vs. Web Designer

Web developers are Programmers who create applications and programs that function on the Internet. They make code that they use for websites and other functions. These web developers essentially create websites from beginning to end using multiple forms of code and language. Having a web developer to create a website is a must-have in the new 21st century. Without a great web developer creating websites, a company is primed for failure.

Three Parts to Web Development

Web development can be separated into three parts; client-side scripting, server-side scripting, and database technology. Client-side scripting is the code that viewers will see. This is what the average consumer would see when they run the website. Server-side scripting is the behind-the-scenes code that helps run the website and all the functions necessary to perform tasks. Lastly, database technology, which helps keep websites running smoothly. This last part is essentially where all the data is kept for a website or where all of the information is stored while it is waiting to be accessed.

Many people often get web development and web designing confused with each other or assume they are the same. Web design is more of a visual concept for the creation of a website. Web designers will use visual software to help make a website look more appealing to the eye, such as Adobe Reader or Paint. We have Web development, where programmers are trying to make sure a website functions correctly and are more concerned with how the website is used. The most apparent difference between the two would be that web designing is focused on the way the website works, while web development cares more about how the website functions. It would be easy to suggest that web development is far more critical.

While these two aspects are different, they are interchangeable. To create a good functioning website, it must work properly and be easy to use, but the way it looks and feels matters. If a perfectly functioning website is bland and boring, it may lose out to other competitive websites that do roughly the same thing. Combining these two areas is very important. If a programmer is adept at web development and design, they have a great combination of skill sets. But sometimes it is also best to divide the work and distribute different tasks. If that route is taken, communication will be immeasurably important. Web design and web development go hand in hand when creating a website. Ensuring both teams work together is paramount.

Programming & Web Languages

As mentioned previously, multiple parts make web development; client-side, server-side, and database technology. Each part uses a different language to function. A good web developer should be fluent in these languages and understand the roles each piece utilizes.

Client-side Scripting

These types of language are web applications that process within the browser of the viewer. Everything that the viewer is clicking on and interacting with is directly correlated to this language. These languages include HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and JQuery, to name a few.

Server-side languages

These languages are used to create the back end of a website. These are languages that help tell the website how to function. The programmer would embed code that would say to the website what to do when told. This type of language is also much safer since the viewer has no access to this side of language. These languages include ASP.NET, C, Java, PHP, and Python.

Last we have database technology languages. This is the language used to help store and access data when needed. Some of the most popularly used database languages are Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, IBM DB2, Apache, and MongoDB.

Uses and Applicability

Some of the most widely used languages are Python, PHP, and ASP. They are behind many websites that most people use every day of their lives but would not be aware of it.


Python is used by some of the most successful companies out there. Google, YouTube, Yahoo, Instagram, Spotify, and many more all use Python. It is commonly used for many reasons, one of which is the ease of learning and use.

Python is one of the more simple languages out there and makes for easy use and maintenance. Python is an easy-to-use yet very proficient programming language used by many companies. It uses dynamic typing and binding to help with the creation of many website functions. It is also very proficient. There is no compilation step necessary, so it makes for quicker coding, and searching for errors is much faster than other coding languages.


PHP is another widely used language. It is used by Yahoo, Facebook, and Wikipedia, including others. PHP stands for “Hypertext Preprocessor and is a widely used coding language that can be embedded in HTML. Like Python, PHP is also easy to use coding language and can also be used for more advanced tasks for more experienced programmers.


Websites that use ASP include Microsoft, Godaddy, and Ancestry.com. ASP stands for Active Server Pages. Some coding languages can be affected by which browser a viewer chooses to use. But with ASP, is more compatible with various types of browsers. ASP is extremely useful in today’s website generating, It can be used for emails, questionnaires, and other everyday uses companies may need.

Custom Web Development

As the name suggests, Custom web development is when instead of using a premade template to create your website, you start from scratch. This method can be good or bad depending on the web developers’ skills and experience but done right, and one can make a unique and different website that stands out. The decision for either one is entirely subjective because both can help create well-produced websites. But If a programmer can make an excellent custom-developed webpage, it is probably the way to go.

Most websites are not created custom and instead use the templates mentioned previously to get a good starting point. While templates are a safe and quick way to start, they can limit the website’s effectiveness. When creating a custom website, the programmer can ensure that the code is specifically designed for the tasks needed for the website. Sometimes pre-made templates were not created with specific tasks in mind. But overall, custom-built websites can be made to fit the particular role the customer would need. A pre-made template is acceptable, but to get the best website for the tasks you need, custom web development is the better alternative.

What makes a good web developer?

After reading all of the above, you are probably wondering, “What should I look for in a good developer?” Well, there are a few things to keep in mind. One is clean code. If a programmer uses messy code to create a website, over time the website may show signs of bugs and problems. Finding a developer with great attention to detail and making few mistakes will go a long way.

Speed of Website

This is less of an issue than it used to be, with many people having faster Internet than in the past. But loading up a website with too many tasks can slow the system down. Sometimes websites will have video clips or other add-ons that slow down the website. This could lead to the website losing viewers and visitors if they can find a faster alternative. This would result in lost value. Sometimes a simple and easy-to-use website is more important than a flashy one. A good developer will understand this idea.

Working Website

Failed pages or tasks not running effectively will result in a negative impact on viewers and site visitors. Making sure the web developer is thorough and detail-oriented in their work will pay dividends. Also, just having experience will help a lot in this department. A seasoned developer will know what works and what doesn’t, saving the companies’ website from unneeded trial and error.

Understanding the small businesses Vision

Another side priority for a good web developer would be for them to understand the company’s vision. The marketing team should have input in the website development, but if the developer knows and understands the idea for the company, it can go a long way in helping create a great website.

Final Thoughts on a Web Developer

Web development is an essential skill in the technology field. Finding a great or even a few great web developers can take a business to new heights. But landing with a lousy developer will result in the project not being delivered, the incorrect scope being worked on, and a waste of money!

Now that you are somewhat familiar with web development, you have a good amount of background information on the subject. You now know what to look for in a future web developer, and you know what you should expect from them when making your websites. You also understand that custom websites are much better than a pre-made template, and hiring a web developer capable of this should be a high priority. Good luck in finding a great web developer who is detailed, patient, experienced, and understands what you want from your company and vision. I know your companies websites will be proficient.

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