Welcome to part one of our “How to Hire a Website Developer” series! Having a good website developer is incredibly important for your business. In this series, we will provide insightful information on what to look for when hiring a website developer.

In this first part, we explain the differences between a web designer and a website developer. If you’re preparing to have a new website built for your business, it’s a good idea to understand the differences.

Know the Difference Between a Website Designer and a Website Developer

Many people use the terms “website designer” and “website developer” interchangeably, but the two jobs are in fact different. You don’t want to hire someone thinking they will provide the services you need, just to find out they don’t offer those services. So, let’s go over the differences between the two.

website designer and website developer

What is a Website Designer?

A website designer primarily focuses on the visuals and the appearance of a website. They focus on designing attractive websites that are easy to navigate. Having a beautiful and organized website is very important today. You want your website to stand out from your competitors’ websites and keep people browsing for as long as possible. Website designers are usually very creative and knowledgeable about current website trends and styles.

A good website designer will strive to capture the website owner’s style and goals during the design phase of the website project. They use their knowledge of graphic design to create visual elements within their clients’ websites. Their goal is to design a welcoming and aesthetically appealing website for its visitors. To summarize, a website designer’s job is centered around what the website visitor will see when they visit a website.

Additionally, some website designers will not build a website at all, and will only provide the actual design. Then, the developer will take that design and build the website accordingly. If you hire a website designer, and expect them to also build the website, be sure to clarify this before you hire them.

What is a Developer?

The main difference between a designer and a developer, is that a developer is the one who actually builds the website.

Website developers generally have more responsibility than a typical website designer. This is because website developers both design websites for their clients, as well as work on the back-end coding of the websites. They not only focus on the appearance of a website, but also its functionality and programming. Website developers often need to work with advanced code to make their client’s website function exactly as desired.

Many developers also help with SEO tactics, which is very beneficial for the website owner. Google and other search engines look at the way a website is coded, to determine how that website should rank in a Google search. A great website developer will help their clients set up a website that follows SEO best practices.

Website Designer vs. Website Developer

Career Foundry explained the difference between these two jobs best by using car manufacturing as an example. They said a designer would be responsible for the comfort of the car’s seats, convenience, and exterior design. On the other hand, the developer would be responsible for the engine and transmission, making sure the car is built correctly and runs smoothly. A developer will also make sure the design of the website will work well and not hold the site back from being functional. Both jobs are very important for website owners, but the two roles have different duties and goals when it comes to website functions.

We hope this blog post cleared up any confusion you may have about website designers and website developers. Stay tuned for the next section of this seven-part series to learn more about hiring a website developer.


Joshua Lyons Marketing, LLC was established in 2015. Since that time we have provided digital marketing services to business and professionals. We help our clients increase their online exposure as a means to increase sales and revenue. Our core services include search engine optimization (SEO), website development and content creation. We also provide other online marketing services, such as email marketing, marketing consultations and various types of advertising. Our team is based in the Milton, Pace and Pensacola, Florida area. However, we work with clients throughout the United States. Read More



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