Sometimes, clients looking for a web application are confused about what they actually need and mostly use web design and web development interchangeably. However, this is not the case, and the two terms are different, including the end results a web developer and web designers produce.

Therefore, clients looking for web developers are looking for entirely different functionalities than those looking for a web developer. It is important to differentiate between the two to make sure that, as a client, your project requirements align with the type of roles you are looking for.

Who is a web designer?

Web designers are responsible for ensuring that your site is visually appealing since they are responsible for creating the site layouts and determining how users will interact with the website for an optimal experience.

Web designers are also tasked with ensuring that users spend more time on your website. This means that they research the latest layouts that are engaging to site visitors and create a good user experience that allows users to continue browsing your site.

Take an eCommerce site, for instance, a web designer is also tasked with ensuring that users who visit your site are able to subscribe to your site or buy something. This is done through research by web designers that understand what is appealing to site visitors and how to lead an effective conversion campaign.

Clients looking for a web designer should understand that web designers mostly do not code a website and are not involved in the programming of a website. Their main task is creating how the client-side will visually look.

What do web designers do?

Web designers have different profiles and what they do depends on the project requirements. However, their profiles sometimes overlap and some web designers are able to do all design works without requiring any help from other designers. There are three roles of web designers:-

User interface designers (UI designers)

These group of web designers are responsible for creating the layouts that users interact with when they visit a website. Their responsibility is to ensure that these elements are visually captivating and able to keep users on the site. They are also tasked with ensuring the user interface is able to meet users’ expected workflow.

User experience designers (UX designers)

This group of web designers are responsible for ensuring that users are always engaged on the website. They are tasked with doing research and changing the website outlook to make sure that the user experience is optimal at all times. They ensure that users of a website are interested and enjoying the website in order to ensure that users who interact with the website have an increased chance of returning to the website again.

Visual Designers

This is a combination of the UI and UX designers. This group of web designers is well-versed with the user interface’s ideas, such as what it takes to create optimal user interaction and user experience that ensure that users are always glued to your site due to optimization of users’ experience. They are tasked with creating interfaces that are both visually pleasing and convenient to use.

Who is a web developer?

These are the individuals responsible for turning the web designs produced by clients or web designers and turning them into a web application through programming. They are responsible for the development of a worldwide web application using a client-server model.

Web developers are able to convert all ideas that are expressed visually and turn them into a working website. They can turn the designs into client-side websites and turn functionality ideas into backed functionalities that can interact with the client-side to produce a complete web application.

Clients looking for a web developer should be aware that mostly, web developers do not focus on web design.

What do web developers do?

Like designers, web developers also have different profiles that dictate what they can and highlights their skills. These profiles include:-

Front-end developers

These are the web developers tasked with ensuring that web designers’ concepts are implemented as requested by the designers. They are the closest developer profiles to web designers and work hand in hand with designers to ensure that user interface and user experience are implemented as required by the web designers.

Front end developers use HTML, CSS and Javascript to create the client-side of a website that users interact with. They are the ones that are responsible for programming the visible side of a website and their skills programming skills determine how well a user experience and interaction with a website should be. Their main task is to ensure that their projects are as visually closer to web designs provided as possible.

Backend developers

These group of web developers are responsible for creating the hidden layers of a website that users cannot see, and that forms the core functionalities of the website. They do these by using programming languages such as Python, Java, PHP, SWL. C#, Ruby and C++.

They are also responsible for creating application programming interfaces (APIS) and interactions with databases. Their main task is creating a bridge between the front end and the databases using a dynamic connection and ensuring the flow of data between the two.

Fullstack developers

This group of developers are able to do both the front-end and back-end development in a website. They have the skills of both the front-end and back-end and can code in any language.

They are also required to have skills such as being able to configure Linux or Windows servers, coding server-side APIs, running client-side scripts and operating and querying databases. In short, full-stack developers can code a website from start to finish without input from any other web developers.

Recommendations for clients

It is important for clients to know what they are looking for before asking for development work. Clients should determine beforehand if they are looking for a web developer or a web designer or both. Knowing what each group does is the first step in determining what you want to implement your web application idea.

It is also important to ask beforehand what your idea will entail and if it needs a full-stack developer or a visual UI/UX designer. This makes it easy to come up with a web application and also reduces the costs involved in web development.