If you’re a business owner or blogger, it’s important to know the ins and outs of developing and designing your website. In a nutshell, website design and development is a common phrase used to describe the process of creating a website. While web design is aimed at crafting an aesthetically pleasing website and determining its look and feel, web development is all about how your website functions. In order to move forward, you need to know what you’ll need to get started. Fortunately, you’ve come to the right place! Below, we will answer the most commonly asked questions about what this includes, an overview of the process, and everything in between.
Do you have a specific question in mind? Feel free to skip ahead using our helpful table of contents listed below:
Table of Contents
What is Website Design and Development?
Website design and development refers to the aesthetic and functionality of your site. In other words, it’s how your customers will interact with your brand. The importance of this can’t be overstated, especially since it’s what will help bring your brand to life.
What is good web design?
A good web design is all about creating a website where customers can get to know your brand and interact with it. Good web design involves:
- Choosing eye-pleasing colors
- Making your content easy to read
- Making sure the layout isn’t cluttered
In fact, according to Adobe, “38% of people will stop engaging with a website if the content or layout is unattractive.”
At web design’s core is the ability to make your website attractive, user-friendly, and stand out amongst the competition. However, what role does web development play in customer retention?
What does web development include?
There are three main types of web development:
- Backend web development – this involves everything that goes on behind the scene such as storing and organizing data and returning it back to you. An example of this is when you fill out a form on a website or make a purchase and once complete, you receive a confirmation/greeting that your information has been saved or that your purchase was successful.
- Full-stack web development – this involves all the processes of frontend and backend development. As such, it stores and organizes all the data on the site while also maintaining the development of the website’s design elements
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What is the Difference Between Website Design and Development?
The biggest difference between the two is not only the skills required to pull off both functions but how it creates an overall experience for the user. Like I mentioned earlier, web design focuses on the front end of the website – i.e. what the customer sees, but web design is how the user engages with the features on your website.
Web development and design work in tandem and can’t survive without the benefits of one another. While the web designer is responsible for choosing the color scheme, layout, and typography of the website, it’s the web developer’s job to bring those assets to life. Unsurprisingly, because of this, web designers are usually familiar with things such as HTML and CSS in order to create a live mockup of a website.
The Importance of Custom Website Design and Development
One of the main reasons why having a custom website is so important is that it helps you to set yourself apart from the competition. In fact, that’s one of the main reasons why WordPress is often the preferred CMS by users because it has a huge selection of design templates to choose from — over 1,000 in fact.
Customization gives users more options when it comes to creating a website that appeals to their users. This is why adding plugins to your WordPress website is an important step in customizing your user’s experience. You have over 50,000 different WordPress plugins to choose from, all of which can help you build custom forms for subscriptions, email marketing, payments, Google analytics to customize your content strategy and to help optimize your content with SEO best practices.
Remember, when it comes to customizing your website’s design and development, you must also have your intended audience in mind. Look at your website’s analytics and send out marketing surveys to find out what your users are searching for and engaging with to help you stand out in internet search results.
How to Start a Website Design and Development Business
Understanding the ins and outs of developing and designing doesn’t always just have to do with wanting to bring your website to life. In some cases, you might be curious about how to start a website design and development business. If this sounds like you, here are a couple of tips to keep in mind:
- First and foremost, figure out who your target audience is. Are you looking to work with those in a certain industry? If so, who would their audience be? What kinds of designs do their prospective audience engage with most? This will help you build a design and development strategy you can bring to potential clients.
- Determine how much you’ll charge for your services. Conduct research into what other companies and/or freelancers are charging for their services to get a better idea of what the going rate is. Be sure to take into consideration how long each project will take and don’t forget to account for sick days, vacation days, and taxes when building your pricing model.
- Determine what you’ll offer prospective clients. Which content management systems will you use? How long will certain tasks take and for what size companies? Will you offer to build brand new websites or redesign existing ones?
- Network with potential clients and get the word out. Start with people you know and spread the word on social media. Remember, word-of-mouth referrals, especially on the internet go a long way when you’re first starting out. Once you’ve built up a success rate with customers, the more business you’ll be able to bring in in the long run.
- Always get a contract in place. One of the most common mistakes those who are looking to start their own web design and development business make is forgetting to have all parties sign a contract. A contract will not only protect the other party, it will protect you in the event that a client backs out and tries not to pay.
Whether you’re looking to start your own web design and development business or simply want to learn how to go about it yourself for your own company’s branding, knowing what each process involves is important. When it comes to website design and development, the most important tip to remember is that they yield the most successful results when used together. With the right CMS and knowledge by your side, you’re ready to design and develop a website that is built for the long haul.