Do you need to build a website for your business? Is your current website looking a little like a 90s Yahoo-esque text mess? If so you’ve probably considered developing your website into something a little more modern, and engaging, not to mention easier for your customer to use. Well before you start tackling the wonderful, and sometimes mind bendingly frustrating world of web development, it is worth reading this little introduction from the agency that Patches up company websites for a living.
What is web development?
A sensible question to start with, web development is actually not one thing. Rather, it is an amalgamation of numerous skill sets, usually comprising multiple specialists. Design, copywriting, animation, layout, user-experience, customer-experience, coding, and good old fashioned pen and paper planning are all facets employed in good web development. This doesn’t even include all the SEO components to consider. So in summary web development is an art form much like any other industrial design pursuit, and maybe not entered lightly as a solo-operator.
What do developers do?
A unicorn developer will generally have amazing experience in nearly all (if not all) of the above areas, but for the purposes of understanding how the industry is partitioned, you could fundamentally state that developers come in three different castes.
Front-end developers: These developers generally work in HTML or CSS, and focus on making the website look pretty. Making sure all the buttons and animations are working properly, and that the website functions well on multiple devices.
Back-end developers: A little more analytical, Back-end developers tend to focus on the actual coding that makes up the core of the website’s functionality. Their coding ultimately makes up the backbone of the site so that when users input data, the functionality just does what it is supposed to.
Full-stack developers: The unicorns I mentioned above, full-stack developers do a bit of both and everything else. They can play across design and coding functionality, and as such generally make good overall supervisors of web development activity, at least after a few years of experience.
What is desktop web development?
Ensuring a website functions well on desktop computers (laptops, and many times touchpad included), is the bread and butter of web development. This is because for many years desktop computers were the be-all-and-end-all of where you would see websites. Nothing really beats seeing a beautifully designed website in all it’s glory on a giant 16:9 monitor.
What about Mobile web development?
Of course over a decade ago now, things changed for the desktop’s dominance, with the introduction of the smart-phone. And now many businesses even have a mobile-first policy when it comes to web design and development. This is because mobile has become for many industries the main starting point for consumers searching for products and services. So the trick for a good web developer is to ensure that the website works smoothly across both mobile and desktop. Which is of course much harder than it sounds. Luckily a lot of web building sites automatically convert your desktop layout so that it works on mobile, but like many automatic processes, this isn’t always optimal.
Ultimately, we hope that this introduction has showcased that designing and developing a great website that works smoothly on all devices and has a fluid user-experience is in itself, an art form at its best. So if you are hesitant to spend time skilling yourself up on multiple disciplines and being pummelled by a series of unforeseen technical issues, then it might be time to reach out to the creative young developers at Patch Agency today. Let us do the hard work for you.