Web development, also known as website development, refers to the tasks associated with creating, building, and maintaining websites and web applications that run online on a browser. It may, however, also include web design, web programming, and database management.
Website development encompasses every task you do to make a website and get it up and running smoothly. This process usually includes:
Planning: Before any technical work is done, the team meets with the client to assess what they want from the website. They discuss who the intended audience is and what the website’s goals are.
Mapping: The next step is creating a sitemap that outlines all of the website’s pages. For example, you might set up a navigation bar from your home page that leads to a resources page. On this resources page, you might have the option to navigate to another page for each specific resource. The site map will outline the relationships between all of these pages.
Design: Before the building gets done, the team discusses what the site should look like. A web designer or graphic designer usually leads this process and focuses on the site’s aesthetics.
Coding: This is when the website is built. The web developer takes the client’s vision, site map, and design elements into account to code the website.
Review: Before launching a website, the team must review and test it to ensure it’s functional.
Launch: This is when the website comes to fruition. The website is uploaded to a server and becomes visible to anyone on the internet.
Because there’s so much that goes into making a website, web development is usually split into two parts: front-end and back-end.
Front-end web development, also known as the client side, is the user-facing side of the website. It includes the look and feel of the site. Front-end developers often work on website design, user interface, and user experience. While this does include technical work, it’s also a creative function focused on visual appeal.
Back-end web development, also known as the server side, is tech-heavy and focuses on everything you don’t see when looking at a website, like a website’s code. This type of development also focuses on the site’s efficiency (speed) and performance.
Full-stack web development encompasses both front-end and back-end work. These developers have the knowledge to take on any task required for building a website, whether a design application on the client side or coding work in the back end.