What is the difference between web design vs web development? Although the two terms can overlap, design and development are different fields requiring different skills. Let’s look at their similarities and differences in this article. 

In a nutshell

web design vs web development

Web design is creating the visual aesthetic and user experience of a website. Web designers are experienced in graphic design principles and use various software such as Photoshop and Figma. 

On the other hand, web development requires expertise in front-end or back-end coding languages. Web developers are programmers responsible for building out the functionality of a website. 

Choosing between web design vs web development might be simple. Do you need creative individuals to create a visually appealing website? Or do you need someone to solve technical problems and make your site work correctly? If you are still trying to decide which is right for you, keep reading to understand the distinction between web design vs web development. 

What is Web Design?

Web design focuses on the effectiveness and aesthetic of a website. For example, the designer would concentrate on the layout and color scheme of the website’s appearance. Their goal is to create a website that is visually appealing and useful. 

A good website design aims to score high points for user experience. A website with successful web design offers eye-catching features, is easy to navigate, relevant to the brand, and fits the target audience. 

Since web design is involved in the visual characteristics of the user interface and experience, web designers typically produce deliverables such as storyboards, format, logo design, UI and UX design, and color palettes. 

What is Web Development?

Website development focuses on the mechanisms that enable the website to work correctly. A web developer makes the web designer’s idea come to life and makes the site functional through coding. It is worth remembering that  front-end and back-end are the two different categories of website developers:

A front-end developer writes code that identifies how the website lays out the website designer’s concepts or mockups. The back-end developer effectively manages the data within the website’s database and enables that data to be displayed on the website’s front end.

Web Design and Web Development: What are the Differences? 

web design vs web development

There are some crossovers when you evaluate web design vs. web development. So, finding a professional with working knowledge of both is not uncommon. But, these two facets are not the same. They work in tandem to create an engaging and functional website. Here are the key differences between the two: 

Web developers do not create visual assets. 

The main difference between the two is that while web designers create visual assets that add aesthetic value to the website, web developers are responsible for adding those functionalities. The developer translates the designer’s mockups and other assets into coding using JavaScript, CSS, and HTML. That means creating visual assets is the job of the website designer. Meanwhile, using code to make those appear on the website is the responsibility of the website developer.

Website designers do not write code.

Remember that designers usually do not write code. Of course, there are exceptions, but generally, designers aren’t held accountable for coding.

Differences in Primary Responsibilities. 

A web designer’s primary responsibilities include using an editor like Photoshop to develop images, create mockups, and design layouts. However, coding is not required in these tasks – that’s where web development steps into the picture.

Clients pay less for web design compared with web development. 

Typically, website design is less costly than website development. ZipRecruiter says that web developers usually ask $36/hour, while designers make an average of $29/hour. There may be inconsistencies, but usually, you’ll pay less for web design than web development. 

Website development adds functionality to the site, while website design seeks to add aesthetic appeal. 

Website development adds functionality to the site using their coding skills. On the other hand, website design improves the user interface and user experience and makes the website one that customers want to see. 

What are the Similarities of Web Design and Web Development?

two people working

Web design and development share similarities as they aim to craft a seamless website experience for users. A closer examination of these parallels will shed light on the significance of both disciplines in creating a successful website.

Both play a pivotal role in shaping an immersive user experience. 

If the goal is to encourage customers to revisit your website, prioritizing user experience is crucial. Why? A positive user experience establishes a favorable connection between customers and the website, subsequently impacting their product perception. 

How do web development and design contribute to this objective? The explanation is straightforward. The design ensures that customers enjoy a user-friendly navigation experience, while development guarantees the website’s proper functionality. A visually appealing website that needs to function correctly holds little value for consumers.

Both components must collaborate seamlessly to construct a unified website.

Is investing in website design and development necessary? The answer is yes. They have to work together to develop a cohesive, functional website. Without design, a website would feel impersonal. With development, a website would function effectively. The outcome of design and development working in harmony is an exceptional web experience.

How Can Penji Help You with Web Design?

There you go, the similarities and differences between web design and web development. Now is the time to enhance your website design and unlock the full potential of your online presence. Don’t settle for mediocrity. Choose Penji and discover the impact of professional, stunning designs that capture your brand essence. Whether you’re a startup, small business, or established enterprise, Penji can help you stay ahead in the competitive digital landscape.

Penji offers unlimited web and app designs, branding visuals, marketing graphics, and more for affordable fixed rates. Over 25,000 brands trust Penji. Watch the demo to learn more about our unlimited graphic design services.