Web Development Basics in Cyprus

3 min read

15 June 2011,

Web Design

Web Development Basics in Cyprus

The terms web developer and web designer are used interchangeably in advertisements and in the media. However, they are two different things. Design involves what visitors see on your website while development involves the website’s functionality.

A website contains several distinctive elements.

  • Look and feel – Mainly the color scheme, graphics, navigation elements etc.
  • Content – Products, information etc. available on the website
  • Functionality – Includes interactive features which the site offers visitors and the infrastructure required to provide them.
  • Usability – The website from the visitor’s perspective. This includes things like navigation, usefulness and program interactions.

 

Look and feel

Look and feel is about the general appearance of the site. A graphic designer chooses what fonts and colors to use and the layout of each of the website pages. The graphic designer should have an appreciation for aesthetics and feel what combination of imagery and colors will portray the image which the website owner would want visitors to have of his site.

 

Content

Content refers to all the text found on a site and includes things such as the privacy policy and a sale letters explaining the benefits of a service or product. Any written text is part of the web content. It is important to have an editor and a copywriter to create good content.

 

Functionality

Functionality includes all interactive elements of website including animation. Flash can be used for animating graphics. JavaScript can also be used to create great effects such links changing colors or swapping images. Other ‘backend’ applications include content management, form processing and other administration programs. All these need to be integrated in the web page’s HTML code.

 

Usability

Usability is the site viewed from the user’s perspective. It involves testing things like:

  • Is the navigation user friendly?
  • Does the feel and look portray the proper image?
  • Does the website load quickly?
  • Does the navigation direct the visitor to the right places?
  • Do the applications work well?

 

Development versus Design

A lot of integration and overlap is needed between web development and web design. Web design is usually about look and feel and content creation. On the other hand, web development is about creating functionality and testing usability.

Web designers should be conversant with graphic design programs such as Photoshop. They also need to understand HTML so that they can implement designs. Site layout and animation is also the responsibility of the web designer. Many website owners provide website content, but a web designer should be able to rewrite or edit the content when necessary. Usually, web designers also do usability testing for site loading speed and navigation.

Web development programmers are responsible for website functionality. Much of that functionality needs to be integrated in the HTML pages of the site. Web developers also carry out usability testing for the functionality created. Therefore, they need to have some knowledge of HTML.

The web development programmer and the web designer need to co-operate to ensure that the site does everything the owner demands.