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What Is a Website Development Company?

Posted on June 15th, 2017

As the world becomes more and more digital, the need to have a high performing business website is more crucial than ever. If you don’t know how to build your own site, then hiring a website development company is the best direction you can take.

These days, web design and web development are interchangeable terms, but there is a difference. Today, we’re going to define what exactly is a web development company, and why you need one for your business’ online presence.

Web Design vs. Web Development

Though many web designers are also web developers, it’s important to differentiate the qualities between both disciplines.

A web designer generally designs the visual look and feel of the website through programs like adobe photoshop.

A web developer builds a website from the bottom up. A web developer will use custom code to build your site around your specific needs. Web development encompasses:

  • Client-side languages
  • Server-side languages
  • Database systems

A developer can specialize in the front end or the back end—in some cases, both. A front-end developer needs to be adept at using client-side languages. A back-end developer should be a master of the server side and the database management systems of a website.

Client-side languages are executed within a user’s browser. These include:

  • HTML
  • Javascript
  • CSS
  • JQuery
  • Flash

Server-side languages are used to build the backend of a website. To make things simple, think of it like this: websites need two things to function properly- a client (user’s web browser) and a web server. The client accesses the website, but all the files and data that’s associated with that website are stored on a separate web server. Once the client “communicates” with the server, all the files and data from that website are displayed on the user’s web browser. Here are a few server-side languages that are used:

  • C
  • NET
  • Java
  • PHP
  • Ruby
  • Python

Databases are needed to store the site’s data. You need a developer who is adept at using a database management system. Here are a few relational database management systems:

  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • MySQL
  • Oracle
  • Apache
  • IBM DB2
  • Maintenance

The Importance of Site Maintenance

Once the website is built, it needs to be maintained—the same way a car or a house needs to be upkept. Website maintenance is often overlooked by many, but if you want to ensure the long-term success of your website, your site needs to be in good health. A website that’s well maintained will:

  • Maintain its search engine rankings. Google’s algorithm gives preference to websites that are good condition (where pages and external links work) and to webpages that are updated regularly.
  • Give a good first impression to site visitors. A healthy website will give some assurance that you’re a reputable business, which is very important if you’re trying to leave a good first impression on new visitors.
  • Experience little downtime. Nothing can slow your online success faster than a dead page or link, so it’s important that you keep downtime to a minimum.

Conclusion

A website developer needs to build the site from the front and back end, while also providing maintenance services to ensure the website stays in good health.