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The Important Difference Between Web Development & Web Design

One of the questions graphic designers get repeatedly from clients is “do you build/design/develop/make websites.”

…the short answer is probably ‘yes.’ Most graphic designers have a rudimentary knowledge of how to build a website and can probably throw something together. There’s lots of apps, tools and DIY options out there that have increased a graphic designer’s capability and let them dabble into the world of building websites.

HOWEVER…Would you ask your mechanic to fix your plumbing? Or gardener to cook you a gourmet meal?

It’s not that your mechanic can’t fix your plumbing or your gardener doesn’t know how to cook…but they aren’t the right person for the job.  And while are some aspects of each task that do overlap. Cooking requires herbs and a gardener can grow them, but he probably isn’t the go-to resource if you want to grill the perfect steak.

Web development and website design are two peas in a pod, they are both vitally important to make a beautiful, functioning website. Yet…time and time again we see the aftermath of some major misconceptions surrounding website design and website development. Business owners trying to save money by expecting a designer to be a web development expert is one of them.

Design is a big part of the website development process, but there’s so much more than meets the eye when it comes to creating an optimized, functional and beautiful website. It’s important for anyone looking to build a website that you consider all of the technical aspects of website development as well as design when you search for and ultimately hire someone to design and build a website.

What you need to know about website development.

Website Development encompasses all of the technology and inner workings of a website. It goes way beyond just what you see when you type in a specific URL. It is the technical, structural and functional (back-end: behind the scenes) aspects required to make your website load quickly, run smoothly and work the way you intend it to.

Website Development Includes:

  • Proper Website Hosting & Domain Setup
  • Configuring a CMS platform, Theme and Third-Party Integrations
  • Installing Plugins & Customizing Functionality
  • Optimizing Performance and Security
  • Content Organization and Site Structure
  • Back-End Development & Custom Code
  • Implementing Branding, Design
  • User Experience (UX/UI) Analysis and Design
  • Website Maintenance and Updates

The list goes on!


What is included with website design?

Once you have a strong framework, thanks to a website developer, you can start to incorporate design. Website Design is the specific design and flow of information that creates the visual and interactive side (front-end: what you can see) of your website including:

  • Adding a Logo
  • Brand Colors & Typography
  • Design Elements
  • Layout of Information (Page Design)
  • Information Hierarchy
  • Patterns & Textures
  • Images & Videos


In short, website development makes the site work and website design makes the site user friendly.

Here at Pursu we have an integrated team including developers, designers, SEO experts, copywriters and UX/UI engineers that seamlessly work together to build the best websites possible. Aligning design and technology with our your goals to help you achieve more from your new website like establishing credibility, increasing conversions and strengthening brand awareness.

If you would like to learn  more about our website design and development process and how you can create a custom website that helps your business grow, let us know! We’d love to chat with you about developing a website for your business.

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