We have long been accustomed to living on the Internet: here we communicate, get to know each other, study and work, call a taxi, order food … And almost everything on the Web was created by web programmers. But with the profession itself, there are still many misconceptions, often contradictory.
We will analyze the most popular of them and tell you what web development really is and for whom it is suitable.
Web developers only deal with websites
Actually, yes, web development is about the “web”, about what we use on the web. But on the Internet there are not only websites, but also a bunch of other things: cloud storage, applications for smartphones, instant messengers, various online services. Web developers are also involved in their creation.
The concept of a site is generally quite conditional. For example, Google Drive is like a website, it has a URL that can be accessed through a browser. And at the same time it is a web service with complex logic and structure, servers and applications for PCs and smartphones. The same applies to many other sites – social networks Instagram, Facebook, Google mail, Amazon marketplace or music Spotify.
Even online stores are not just websites. They have tools like shopping cart, order comparison and tracking, as well as integration with other applications and programs such as CRM systems.
And sites in their pure form are, perhaps, only business cards of companies or personal blogs, simple pages with a minimum of interactivity and information.
It turns out that web developers are not only concerned with websites. They create algorithms for the operation of servers, think over how applications will interact with users, ensure the protection of information on the Internet, and a bunch of other things, like front-end development. Everything is just like with regular programs, only elements related to the web are added.
Web development is not programming at all
Web development is often confused with web design, which is far from programming. Let’s see what the difference is.
Web design is the creation of the design of a website, application or service. The designer draws windows, selects colors, thinks over the arrangement of elements – makes the site beautiful and user-friendly. It happens that a developer is well versed in UX / UI – he understands which site is suitable for users and which is not. Still, design is a separate profession, not directly related to programming.
For a site or web application to perform its functions, it is not enough just design and layout. Code is required to manage all the logic and animate the interactive elements. For example, a good online store has a shopping cart, registration and payment, a subscription form, SMS confirmation, geolocation, a choice of delivery method, a cost calculator, and possibly much more.
Websites can be made according to ready-made templates, there is almost no need to learn this
There are many Internet services that allow you to make a completely working website without programming skills. For example, on the WordPress platform, you can choose a visual design, add plugins for registration and trade and get a ready-made online store – just read a short manual or watch a couple of tutorials on YouTube.
It is even easier to assemble a site, as if from cubes, using one of the building services: Tilda, Wix or, for example, Vigbo. Ready-made blocks – cover, buttons, photo gallery, text, header, menu, application form, page list and other elements are added to pages with one click.
But there is a nuance: not always ready-made solutions are suitable for a specific business. The shopping cart may work a little differently than you would like, the ready-made theme may not fully correspond to the corporate style, and for some important function like a test to help in the selection of goods, there is no suitable plug-in at all.
This means that you have to finish something – rewrite or develop from scratch. And here you can certainly not do without layout and programming languages – you need a professional web developer or back end development company.
And there are things that you cannot collect on templates at all. For example, no constructor will allow you to create an application for a taxi service or a large online store like Aliexpress.