Omar Rabbolini | Jan 05, 2023

Web development is the act of building, creating and maintaining websites. The field encompasses a broad range of tasks including everything from coding, to technical design, to the performance of a website or application running on the internet. Web development consists of front-end and back-end components:

Front-End Web Development vs. Back-End Web Development

  • Front-end development consists of the user interface (UI) and the look and feel of the website or application. 
  • Back-end development consists of the databases, logic, APIs, servers and everything else that powers the website behind the scenes.


What Are the 3 Types of Web Development?

There are three main types of web development: front-end, back-end and full-stack.

Web development broadly encompasses the whole of a website's functionality, but the work itself is often broken down into three types: 

Front-end development is responsible for the aspects of a website that users see and interact with: the user interface (UI). Front-end developers are well-versed in HTML, CSS and JavaScript, often working closely with design and UX teams to capture both the intended look and feel of the site, while also creating a quality user experience across multiple device types.

Back-end development is responsible for all the aspects of a website that users do not see. This is also known as server-side development because back-end developers focus primarily on the behind-the-scenes logic, APIs and database interactions that power the site. 

Full-stack development is a more holistic approach where the developers responsible for the site or app take care of the entire development stack, from the inner workings typically performed on the back-end to the presentation layer normally handled by front-end developers.

Web Development Explained in 10 Minutes. | Video: Aaron Jack

Food for ThoughtFront-End vs. Back-End Development: Which Should You Prioritize?


What Does a Web Developer Do?

Web developers develop websites, specifically by creating the site’s code, connecting it to a server and maintaining its accessibility to users.

Web development is responsible for creating the sites and applications we use through a web browser in our day-to-day lives. Web developers, often working in teams or alongside other tech professionals like data scientists, UX designers and product managers, use specialized techniques and a thorough knowledge of one or more programming languages to create a foundation for where the website’s database will live, known as a back-end. 

The back-end is dependent upon the website’s server, which stores web pages and applications to be loaded into the web browser upon request.  The server acts as an intermediary between the web page or application and the data stored within the server, facilitating communication between the database and the client.

Web developers are also responsible for creating the front-end of a website through the use of HTML, CSS and JavaScript, which creates the layout and style that the user sees and interacts with when using the site.

Finally, web developers are responsible for maintaining the site's functionality and overall performance over time.


Is Web Development a Good Career? 

According to the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a web developer is $78,000, and positions are expected to grow 13 percent from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for other occupations.

The average salary of a web developer was $77,200, according to the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Additionally, web developer jobs are expected to grow 13 percent from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for other occupations.

Web developers are in high demand. There are currently more than 5,000 front-end developer jobs at nearly 2,000 companies nationwide on Built In's job board.

Related Reading From Built In ExpertsSo You Want to Be a Full-Stack Developer? Here Are the Skills You Need.

Expert Contributors

Built In’s expert contributor network publishes thoughtful, solutions-oriented stories written by innovative tech professionals. It is the tech industry’s definitive destination for sharing compelling, first-person accounts of problem-solving on the road to innovation.

Learn More

Great Companies Need Great People. That's Where We Come In.

Recruit With Us