Inexperienced users routinely get confused between web development and web design, and that’s understandable because of the fine line separating them. Both functions are equally important to a successful website, so we’re going to unpack the terms for you to create a deeper understanding of each.
Identifying the Differences
Web design includes the visual layout and usability of a website, ranging from the choice of colors and images through how information flows and guides users from points A to B. The design comprises the overall user interface (UI), which is the functionality enabling visitors to move around the site and find what they are looking for. This guides the user experience (UX), which determines how long a visitor remains on the website and whether they engage with the company or not.
How Web Development Works
Web development processes typically involve creation of complex code to build necessary applications that work in a browser. These are pieces of software that run on a website to enable visitors to perform a function. Some examples of web applications include:
- Online calculators that provide users with updated payment values, based on daily changes in exchange rates and other factors.
- Web commerce options, such as online stores and payment apps or methods of viewing dates and making reservations (e.g., Airbnb).
- Web-based software that provides a service, carried out right in the browser.
Web Development Examples
AndPlus has developed complex web applications that provide functionality for clients to deliver on promises to their own customer bases. Examples of these are:
- Crunched, which offers small businesses simple, cloud-based accounting services. Users can perform multiple operations including invoicing, making and receiving payments, cash flow management, bank reconciliations and accounting. These are all done directly on the website, without having to download anything to their own devices.
- Bloomberg Vault, a sophisticated, database-driven information application that enables analysis and management of mass data by compliance personnel for risk management purposes.
These examples show the difference between web development and web design, and how development goes further towards creation of a site.
Choosing a Web Developer
By now it should be obvious when you’re looking for a website that does more than display your logo and a list of products and services, you need a web developer. This team will create a custom application that lives in your web browser. An efficient web developer will make the application accessible through all devices, including your mobile phone.