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How to Choose to Be a Web Designer or a Web Developer?

At present, the boundaries between web designer vs. web developer are getting blurred. More and more designers began to learn to code, and developers are beginning to pay close attention to design theory. Is a web developer the same as a web designer? This article tells the differences in the salary, job description, skills, tools, and how to make choice between them.

Salary for Web Designer vs. Web Developer

1. What’s the salary for the web designer?

As of October 30, 2017, the average salary of web designers is $ 73,204, usually, it’s in the range of $ 62,669 to $ 83,659. However, it depends on various factors and may vary widely.

web designer salary

HR provided as of October 30, 2017

The figure above is the expected percentage of American web designer salary, which is lower than the annual salary. For example, the average expected annual salary of a typical web designer in the United States is $ 73,204, so 50% of those working as web designers in the United States are expected to be less than $ 73,204.

2. What’s the salary for web developers?

As of October 30, 2017, the annual salary for Web Developer III is $ 101,962, usually in the range of US $ 92,359 to $ 116,497, depending on various factors and may vary widely.

web developer salary

The chart depicts the expected percentage of people working for network software developers in the United States, which is less than the annual salary. For example, the median annual salary expected of a typical U.S. network software developer is $ 77,458, so 50% of those who work as network software developers in the United States are expected to be less than $ 77,458.

Requirement Difference Between Web Designers and Web Developers

Usually, people are not clear about the conceptual difference between web design and web development, there are both differences and connections between them. The most obvious is that the former is about the visual or aesthetic aspect of the site, called “designer”; the other is the invisible design of the coding side, called “developer.” In short, the beautiful web interface was originally created by web designers, and the developer is responsible for turning the nice image into a page that really shows to the visitors.

1. What is a web designer?

web designer

Usually, web designers are responsible for the design of the visual layout of websites. Excellent designers are good at the using of a variety of concepts, such as color collocation, typesetting, spatial relations and user experience.

Through the use of graphic design software and prototyping tools, web designers could create the initial version of a website. Then the completed design will pass to web developers for coding.

Design tools for web designers:

Adobe

Photoshop

Illustrator

Sketch

Prototyping tools:

UXPin

Mockplus

Job descriptions:

Responsible for the overall performance style positioning of the website and to provide an overall visual perception of users;

Responsible for the prototyping design;

Carry out the graphic design of the product catalog;

Carry out various activities of advertising design;

Assist developers in page design and other work.

In general, designers are responsible for using their own aesthetic knowledge with a variety of tools to design a beautiful page. A good designer can grasp the entire product style of the company, providing the first impression for customers. It’s lucky to find excellent designers for a company.

2. What is a web developer?

web developer

Web developers are generally considered as a group of people who use the left brain to develop the coding of products. Under normal circumstances, Web developers get the design of the page from the Web designer and then use front-end development technology to encode these pages. They do not really care if the page looks good or not, but they care about the clean code very much. Outstanding developers are always paying more attention to details and focusing on each of them.

What the skills and tools they should master as follows:

Source code management tools: SVN, CVS, Git, etc;

IDE: WebStorm, Sublime, VS Code, etc. All these are excellent IDE, you can choose and master any one of them;

Front-end development technology: HTML, JavaScript, CSS and so on

Front-end framework: jQuery, React, Bootstrap and so on

In recent years, front-end development is a hot-seat. Consequently, the skill requirements are getting higher and higher, and of course, the level of web developers’ salary also increased correspondingly. At present, it’s a good time to enter the front-end development industry.

But, Web Designer Can’t Ignore Coding Completely

web designer vs web developer

Qualified web designers should understand the code better than graphic designers and understand design better than programmers. As the creator of beautiful web pages, it is their ultimate goal to make a website that will shock users.

In addition, to enhance with superb code writing technology, it’s also necessary for good web developers to cultivate a strong aesthetic ability. Improve themselves with the more profound development of knowledge to achieve the designer’s function prototype or visual effects chart.

Conclusion

In the development of the Internet, the designers and developers are always playing an indispensable role. The debate between web designer vs. web developer, web design vs. graphic design is always non-stopped. Each profession is meaning for the development of the Internet, as well as people’s work. As new entrants, it’s smart to know the differences of salary, the job description, as well as what should you learn to devote yourself in. I hope this article clarified the differences between web designer and web developer, and will help you to decide how to make a choice between them.

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What is a Full Stack Designer in 2017? Will You Be One?

Compared to the Full Stack Designer, we seem to be more familiar with the Full Stack Developers. So what is full stack designer exactly? Can we simply think he/she is a versatile designer?

In the past, designers and developers have a clear role assignment. They rarely do the both at the same time. While with the changes in product design and the evolution of team collaboration, many web designers are able to manage web developing and UX design at present.

So there comes a question: what’s the character of the so-called full stack designer? He/She is only a designer? Also coding while being a designer? Or he/she is a designer as well as a web developer?

What is a Full Stack Designer?

In fact, the concept of Full Stack Developer came out earlier than the Full Stack Designer. But full stack does not mean to do all. Specifically, it refers to a person who masters muti-skills and he can use them to independently complete a design or product development.

That means that a truly full stack designer can build a basic conception of a project, and complete the whole design and development related works. Such as the wireframes/prototypes design, visual design, and the front coding, JS / jQuery, etc.

The Emergence

The come out of the full stack designer is not accidental according to the current situation. With the outbreak of mobile Apps and the arrival of the entrepreneurship tide, there are many small development teams who cannot set full positions. That forced the team members to play multiple characters in one position. You can always see the developers not only coding but also build prototypes with the prototyping tools (Mockplus,AxureProto.io)

The Advantages

Comprehensive thinking is the biggest advantage of the full stack designers. A designer who is familiar with the product development and design process, he knows the limitation of product design. So that he can clearly control the expectation of the product design. Familiarity with the process can make the team more convenient to understand the development, marketing, and user experience details. This will make cooperation more seamless, reduce rework and unexpected situations.

The Importance

The full stack designer can analyze and customize his own “skill tree” according to his own situation. He can clearly know the structure of the product, the progress of design and development process. He is a multi-skill person who can use user experience, design patterns, techniques, and tools to complete the product development. And then, the whole progress will be more systematically, and the product will be better.

Focusing on the whole program, that is the most obvious difference between the normal designers and the full stack designer. If you are one of them, it will undoubtedly add a great value to your team. And if you are a freelance designer, it is necessary to be a full stack designer.

What Makes a Great Full Stack Designer?

However, it’s not a requirement for full stack designers to master anything perfectly. Taking the web design as an example, you will understand well about their roles:

Assist the product manager

Complete the pre-concept for the entire project, brainstorming, mood boards, basic planning

Prototype design

Wireframes, visual draft, low/high fidelity prototypes

User research

User experience

Test

Front-end development

HTML, CSS, JS, etc.

The handover with the programmer

Understand the interface and the development of the deep demand, how the front-end code will be more matching backend and the program.

Conclusion

To become a good full stack designer, you are destined to keep learning and enrich your skill-tree. But please note that you should choose a right industry and direction to follow up the design trend and technology, new pattern, and new tools.