There is a lot of confusion about web designers, web developers, front-end or back-end. What does it all mean? If you are looking for a website you have three choices.
Do it yourself.
Have a friend do it for you.
Employ a web designer to create on for you.
Where does development come into it? A developer is a specialist. I am a front-end developer. Yes, I design websites as a web designer, but I can also create a website from a picture or take a content management system, (like WordPress or Joomla), and develop a child theme to allow the owner of that website make changes to the website after it has been passed off to them.
A front-end developer deals with what you see. A back-end developer creates database connectivity, interactivity using side-server technologies and is experienced in many programming languages to suit the website owner’s requirements.
Normally, as a client, such terms will not concern you. For example. If I have a client that needs to collect data securely from their website, I will cost in a back-end web developer into the price. If a back-end developer gets a job that requires a website being built from a photoshop demonstrator, they will cost in a front-end developer like myself.
It is useful to know what these terms are. It is also useful to know, why sometimes a website can cost so much more than was quoted by a web designer who could not do the job you were asking for when the job was fully briefed to them. The expense is usually incurred when a specialist developer is required. We are not cheap because our jobs are normally very time-consuming and labour intensive.
Another thing to bear in mind when engaging developers as part of your design team. We usually charge third-parties an hourly rate. If you have a professional web designer working for you, they will usually break down the costs where you can see how many hours are estimated for developers.
Why can you not go directly to a back-end developer to have them do your whole website for you? You can, some will be able to do everything for you, many will not. Design is visual art. Many developers are happier dealing with code rather than the interpretation of a customer’s wishes. It is not everyone’s cup of tea.
I hope this article has perhaps helped with the term front-end developer.