Tuesday, October 16, 2012

What is the Difference Between Web Design and Web Development

Web design and web development are often used interchangeably.  However, there is a difference and it's important to know the difference so you are able to choose the right service and the right company that is appropriate for your business or project.  Web design is the creation of the visual layout. This includes the graphical elements on a page such as images, text, font, etc. Tools used for web design includes Adobe Photoshop and Dreamweaver. Web development is the phrase used to describe the technical aspects of a website. In other words, the programming required in order to present the right information in the correct format to your visitors. It is used to describe database-driven web designs using dynamic scripting languages like PHP, ASP, ASP.NET and Coldfusion. The term can also be used for client-side scripting such as JavaScript and Java.
More often than not, these two disciplines will overlap. A web designer is usually familiar with the basic codes and a web developer is normally able to create a functional web design. It is nearly impossible for a web designer to be considered good at his or her job without understanding coding. After all, most clients want to have a "one stop" service for their website creation needs.  Hence, most web designers will be able to design and code a website to function the way you want it to. This is because most websites do not require hyper-technical code. If a client wants a web site that is more advanced than your average website, a web developer is what he or she would need.  Sites that require the option of user-generated content, for example, will need ways for a user to log-in, permissions to determine what the user can and cannot authorized to post or edit, etc. The same goes with e-commerce or online games. In these cases, a web designer would be out of his or her league. However, having a web designer that is able to advice on the visual elements of a page would still be highly desirable.
It would be beneficial for clients with complex requirements in website design to work with a web development company who has both designers and developers.  Furthermore, if a company wants their website to be found, a digital marketing company that offers a "one-stop" shop would be ideal.  These companies are capable of promoting the site, creating custom applications and integrating the website with social media management elements.


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