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Web Designer vs. Web Developer

Someone posted this on Craig’s List. I thought it was insightful and educational for people requesting services in the web industry. What really is the difference between a web designer and a web developer? The author of this post makes it clear.

I’ve found that over 80% of you people who post in here looking for a web designer or web developer don’t really know what it is exactly that you need. Almost all of you seem to be requesting PHP & MySQL knowledge, yet your projects don’t even require it. I’ve also seen some other crazy requests that no sane person could/would do without you shelling out TONS of $$$ for them.

A Web Designer:

The look, design, and feel of the site is determined by them. They handle all HTML/XHTML, CSS, and Javascript coding. Websites for blogs, portfolios, e-commerce (a store) and other like sites can be created by them…and without using any PHP or MySQL. They also handle all logo creation, branding, fontfaces, and graphic design. A web designer IS capable of database coding (PHP and MySQL), but it’s USUALLY not their strong suit.

A Web Developer:

Primarily handles the internals of a website that relies heavily on database technology (PHP & MySQL). These databases are usually proprietary, or so complex in nature that someone experienced in that coding languages is needed. A secondary action for them is that they might be experienced in some of the latest and greatest mobile technologies like iOS or Android. If so, they can be used to create applications and games for these platforms as well. A web developer IS capable of knowing how to do a web designers job, but it’s USUALLY not their strong suit.

What you will NOT find is…

…one single person who knows all of Photoshop, Fireworks, Flash, Dreamweaver, HTML, XHTML, CSS, Javascript, WordPress, Drupal, Joomal, PHP MySQL, C++, C#, Python, Perl, Fortran…and so on. I’m so tired of seeing people ask for the world just because they hear these terms from other people. And if by the off chance you do find someone that knows all of that and it’s required for what you need…please believe they will not be an intern for you, nor will they be cheap.

So figure out where your needs lie (designer or developer), and THEN accurately post for what you need!