What Is The Difference Between a Web Designer And a Web Developer?

The terms “web designer” and “web developer” are often confused and interchangeable by those who are not familiar with the specifics of either. However, when they are looked at closely, they are actually two very separate job titles, and their duties differ greatly. So, how do designers and developers differ from each other? What are their salary differences as well? Read on to find out!

What Does a Web Designer Do?

According to A Beautiful Site.net, web designers are usually the thinkers and the creative types. They enjoy the artistic site of building content online, and they are incredibly interested in joining together with their clients to come up with stunning, visual ideas. They use these ideas to pump out beautiful designs that will be seen by loads of viewers online.

Designers are typically interested in creating stunning visuals, making use of typography, building interfaces, and creating awesome usability. Their tools of choice generally consist of Dreamweaver, Illustrator, and Photoshop. Of course, designers are also knowledgeable in the back-end aspect of the things where the HTML, CSS, and image slices lie.

What Does a Web Developer Do?

A web developer likes technicality rather than creativity. They are generally very good at solving math problems and possess a great knack for problem solving. Developers are generally familiar with a wide range of coding including Javascript, CSS, HTML, ColdFusion, Perl, Python, Ruby on Rails, SQL, and more. They spend lots of time pumping out and editing code in text editors and checking their creations using various types of web browsers.

You can simply think of web designers as the people manning the front end of things while web developers take care of the inner workings in the back end. Web designers are creative while web developers are technical in their lines of work. Web designers are often more recognizable as well in the public eye, while designers stay back and just keep things in motion on the back end.

Salary Differences

Salaries of web designers and developers differ moderately due to the difference in duties and tasks in their jobs.

In the year of 2011, the median salary for web designer was around $52,000/year. Some of the lowest paid graphic designers earned around $45,000, while some of the highest paid earned $65,000. Entry level designers that started working freshing out of college earned around $42,000, and senior designers ranged anywhere from $60,000 to $85,000.

On the other hand, web developers reaped a median of $60,000/year. Some of the lowest paid developers earned $50,000 and the highest were making $75,000. The overall range of all developers in the statistics for 2011 ranged anywhere from $55,000 to $80,000 per year for developers.

If you’re trying to decide which route is right for you in terms of web creation, just take a moment to think about the things you like to do. Do you enjoy math, problem solving, and great attention to detail? Web development is probably the route for you if so. On the other hand, if you are very keen about creating art, building navigable interfaces, impressing your audience, and working alongside clients who also have great ideas, you will probably enjoy web design more.  If you need help looking for schools, visit our Web Design School ranking article.