Learn the difference between a website designer and a website developer so you’ll know exactly who to hire for your next web project.
With the majority of consumers using the internet to research companies and/or products before making purchases, it’s safe to say your website is an essential element of your marketing strategy. Not only do you need a website to compete in today’s marketplace, but you need one that works!
Your website is often the first chance you have to make an impression on your customers. It must load quickly. It must be mobile-friendly. It must be easy to read and navigate. It must clearly showcase your products and services. And, it must have a call to action clearly showing potential customers what they need to do next to purchase from you. In addition, it’s wise to make sure your website is easy to find, professional, and well-branded.
If you’re starting a business or if you’ve realized your current business website doesn’t meet the criteria above, you’ll most likely be looking to hire someone to build a new site for you or revamp your existing site. You’ve probably heard people refer to themselves as “website designers” and “website developers”. So what’s the difference and which one do you need? Keep reading to see what they have in common, how they differ, and how they often work together.
As mentioned above, when it comes to building a website for your business you want to make sure you do it right. Whether you have a brick and mortar location or are an internet-based company, your website is your most valued piece of online real estate. It’s where all the information about your business and your products and services can be found. Not to mention, it provides a great deal of marketing insight as well as an opportunity to track and retarget potential customers.
In order to get the most from your website, it should be handled by experts. Fortunately, there are a plethora of talented designers and developers out there who can help you. Whether you’re speaking to a designer or a developer, both can offer their expert advice regarding user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) and best practices for site optimization.
Design vs. Development
Now let’s talk about what sets the two apart. Generally speaking, the look, feel and branding of a website is handled by a website designer. Just like a graphic designer would create your logo or a printed brochure for your business, a web designer would bring those same existing brand elements into your website and lay it out in a way that is easy to use and navigate. Once the designer has the look of the page mapped out, the developer usually builds the actual site using coding language. Think of it as a LEGO® set … the designer creates the picture on the front of the box and the developer puts the blocks together to match the picture.
At times there needs to be some flexibility in the website design due to functionality issues. If a developer runs into a problem with the plan or the code, the design may need to be adjusted slightly. This is why it’s important for web designers and developers to work together and have open communication when collaborating on a project. As a client, you’ll often work with a designer, and that designer may have a developer or team of developers to help them bring their visions to life. So no worries if you don’t speak “tech”, your web designer will likely be able to translate to the developer on your behalf.
In our opinion, it’s best to have both a designer and a developer working on your site, since both offer a unique and expert perspective. If you contact a web designer for a price, you should ask if they work with a developer and find out if they have one or if you need to hire one. But since the website design is usually done first, a web designer is a good place to start.
How We Can Help
At KW, we specialize in all aspects of design, including website design. And to simplify our client’s experience, we handle both website design and development to ensure that your site is designed, built, and optimized to maximize your online presence so you can compete in today’s crowded marketplace. Every day you put off building that new site or updating your current site is a missed opportunity to grow your business! Don’t keep putting it off. Contact us today for a quote!