What Does a Web Developer Do? (2024 Guide)

In the digital age, websites have become integral to our lives. We interact with websites, whether reading news, shopping online, or connecting with friends on social media.

Have you ever wondered who creates these websites and ensures they function smoothly? That’s where developers come in.

In this article, we’ll explore what a web developer does.

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About Web Developer

Web development is a promising IT career option that offers continuous growth and learning opportunities. Professionals can leverage their technical skills and creativity to craft engaging, functional websites and applications, constantly pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in the digital world, a realm of endless innovation and excitement.

There are 3 main web developer types, each with distinct responsibilities:

1. Front-end Developers

These professionals write and implement the code that creates a website’s visual and interactive elements. They work directly with clients to ensure the sites offer an enjoyable, aesthetically pleasing user experience. 

2. Back-end Developers

These professionals are the invisible heroes of website development. They write the code that powers the website’s parts that users don’t see, manage the website’s databases, servers, and APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), and ensure optimal website performance, quick loading speeds, and robust cybersecurity measures, making them the backbone of the website.

3. Full-stack Developers

Mastering both front-end and back-end development, these professionals oversee the entire development process. From end-user experience and user interface design to server configuration and version control, their comprehensive skills make them the backbone of any web development team.

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What Does a Web Developer Do?

Web developers are accountable for building a product that fulfills the client’s and end users’ needs. They collaborate with various parties, including clients, designers, project managers, and other team members, to know the vision: How should the concluding website look and function?

1. Debugging

A significant aspect of web development is the constant challenge of identifying and fixing bugs. Web developers, therefore, are not just coders but also keen problem-solvers. They regularly devise innovative solutions and workarounds to keep things running smoothly, making every day a new and exciting puzzle to solve.

2. Use of Programming Languages

All web developers are proficient in particular programming languages. However, different developers work with other languages depending on their specific job titles and areas of expertise. For instance, an AI engineer would be fluent in at least one AI programming language to complete their tasks.

At a higher level, web developers are divided into frontend, backend, and full-stack types, as mentioned earlier. Now, to better understand what a web developer does, let’s zoom in on each type of coder.

What Does a Frontend Developer Do?

A frontend web developer oversees the web sections that users interact with. They use their aesthetics knowledge, design, and code to capture the web application backend functionalities in an intuitive and accessible interface and ensure a seamless user experience.

Some of the broader tasks for a frontend web developer include:

1. User Experience

As a frontend developer, you hold the key to the user experience. Your work directly impacts how users interact with the web, and ensuring an optimal and user-friendly experience is not just a task but a responsibility that can significantly enhance the value of a website.

2. Coding

You will use code to bring the project’s vision to life using your HTML, CSS, and Javascript knowledge and whatever technology stack your organization uses to accomplish this.

3. Ensuring Mobile-friendly Development

About 60% of internet usage is mobile, and most companies have adopted a mobile-first approach to web development. One of your main tasks will ensure the user experience is similar across several devices.

4. SEO Management

You will ensure all code is written as per the best SEO (Search Engine Optimization) practices. SEO is boosting a website’s visibility on search engines like Google. By following SEO practices, you can help ensure that the websites you build rank higher in search results, leading to enhanced traffic and visibility.

5. Workflow Management

Because of the projects’ scale, you will work on multiple subtasks within your assigned tasks, collaborate across teams, and use software and other digital resources. You will also spend time managing workflows to ensure no tasks are missed.

What Does a Backend Developer Do?

While working as a backend web developer, you will be responsible for building the structure underlying the web experience. So, everything the end-user cannot see will be your primary domain. This involves using your knowledge of database systems and backend languages like PHP and Python to develop dynamic backend structures for web projects and later engaging your understanding of HTML, CSS, and Javascript to ensure seamless integration with the frontend.

Some of the broader tasks for a backend web developer include:

1. Database Management 

You will use your SQL and similar systems knowledge to set up and maintain the website’s database structure. 

2. Cloud Computing

Since most organizations move their systems to the cloud, you will probably work with cloud storage systems. Cloud computing is the sought-after availability of computer system resources, mainly data storehouse and computing power, without direct active management by the end-user. As a backend developer, you will ensure these systems are appropriately integrated with the private database systems and the web user interface.

3. Operating System Control and Management 

The digital space makes use of many operating systems on the front and back. On the end-user side, users might be using Windows, Apple, or Linux, and database and service providers could be running Unix or Linux systems. Your duty will be to ensure the user experience is similar irrespective of underlying or user operating systems.

4. Building and Maintaining Content Management Systems 

You will build content management systems that make maintaining and updating website content easy for someone without technical experience.

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Also Read: Top 100 Web Development Interview Questions and Answers (2024)

What Does a Full-stack Developer Do?

As a full-stack developer, you are a versatile player in the web development game. Your expertise spans both the front and back end, making you a valuable asset in larger teams. However, even in smaller organizations, you can handle projects involving front and backend development, showcasing the depth and breadth of your skills.

Your duties combine front and back-end development. Based on the project, full-stack will be performing any of the following:

1. Designing Frontend User Experience 

As a full-stack developer, you will be using your knowledge of wireframing software and frontend languages like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to create intuitive and accessible sites and web applications.

2. Backend Programming 

You will also use your knowledge of backend languages like C#, Ruby, and Python to write logic and scripts that tie the front-end interface with back-end capabilities and functionality.

3. Database Management

You will use your knowledge of databases like SQL to offer safe, secure, and accessible storage for all the sensitive data generated by that website.

4. Design Internal and Integrating Third-Party API Functionality

You will ensure that all cross-browser integrations with third-party APIs from providers are adequately integrated into every web installation. You might have to design a few yourself, too.

5. Consulting

As a one-person team, you will spend much time meeting with different project stakeholders. You will also choose designs from UI/UX teams, consult with the data administrator to learn the data architecture’s intent and purpose, and present the project to end-users or clients upon delivery.

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Key Responsibilities of a Web Developer

Web developers may handle the execution of end-to-end website development projects. A web developer’s job description can include responsibilities such as:

  • Following design concepts and creating robust websites
  • Providing creative and design recommendations for projects
  • Creating and managing microsites
  • Working on multiple client website development and maintenance projects
  • Designing intelligent user interactions and navigations that generate traffic
  • Working with server scripts, web hosting, and web app installation
  • Integrating data from various backend services and databases
  • Creating new CMS (content management systems) environments from scratch
  • Designing web assets following the branding guidelines
  • Working closely with clients to maintain and enhance web assets
  • Reviewing code and maintaining the health of the codebase
  • Contributing to intellectual property through patent generation
  • Ensuring the brand, legal, and process compliance
  • Migrating websites from one environment or server to another
  • Solving cross-platform and cross-browser issues regularly
  • Reporting on technical matters, debugging and fixing problems
  • Possessing knowledge of new technologies and using them for operations
  • Optimizing trackers and metrics on the website
  • Reviewing, editing, and optimizing primary content on the website

Based on their role and seniority level, a web developer may focus on frontend coding tasks like user-facing design, backend tasks like server configuration and database integration, or both as a full-stack developer. If you also want to be a web developer in the future, read our blog on how to become a web developer in 2024.

Also Read: Is Web Development a Good Career? 2024 Guide

Key Skills and Qualities

Given the complex mix of soft and technical skills required to thrive as a web developer, specific innate qualities and abilities are advantageous. 

Some of the most vital competencies are:

1. Communication Skills

Web developers use solid communication skills to discuss website plans with clients, present reports, and collaborate with internal and external stakeholders. 

2. Computer Programming

You will write the code that controls applications and websites using HTML, CCS, Python, Java, and other coding languages. You must also understand version control systems like Subversion, Git, and Mercurial to track changes and collaborate with team members. 

3. Web Testing and Debugging

Web development is a continuous process of writing code, testing it for functionality, checking for errors or bugs, and upgrading websites and applications to improve the user experience. 

4. Design Skills and Creativity

Building accessible, enjoyable applications and sites requires an eye for design and an imaginative mindset. 

5. Analytics

Often, web developers integrate analytics tools to monitor end-user interactions and help their organizations reach new audiences. 

6. Writing and Presenting Reports

Web developers write reports about development progress, difficulties and obstacles encountered, bug fixes and updates, and site performance.

7. Search Engine Optimization

Web developers should understand elementary SEO strategies. This helps them to integrate SEO best practices and collaborate with SEO specialists to develop high-ranking websites.

8. Project Management

Web developers maintain organized records about ongoing projects, prioritize tasks by order of priority, and manage their time adequately to meet deadlines and quality expectations. 

Developers who demonstrate these technical and human strengths tend to excel.

Salary of a Web Developer

For a web developer, the average salary is ₹16,702 per month. They can work as full-time, part-time, or contractual professionals. Web developers may also choose to work full-time until they have gained enough experience to work as freelancers. The salary of a web developer may differ based on the city in which they work or the type and size of the project on which they work.

Also Read: 20 Best Web Development Tools in 2024 (Web Dev Tools List)

Career Opportunities and Job Outlook

Web development provides a diverse range of career opportunities, from front-end to back-end, full-stack development, and specialized roles. The job outlook is not just promising but also provides a sense of security, thanks to the ever-increasing demand for web-based applications and websites.

1. Growing Demand

With the swift growth of the internet and the digitalization of businesses and services, the need for web-based applications and websites is rising. According to [industry report or statistic], the web development industry is projected to grow by [percentage] in the next [number] years. Companies of all sizes and industries want developers to build and maintain their online presence, indicating a promising job outlook for aspiring web developers.

2. Evolving Technology

In the field of web development, the only constant is change. New technologies, frameworks, and tools emerge regularly, offering an exciting challenge for developers. This dynamic environment requires proficient developers adapting to these changes and apply them to projects, inspiring a sense of continuous learning and growth.

3. Remote Work Opportunities

The web development is not just about coding; it’s about freedom. Most developers have the option to work remotely, empowering them to choose work arrangements that align with their preferences and lifestyles, providing a sense of control over their careers.

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4. Competitive Salaries

Skilled developers are in high demand. This has driven competitive salaries. Companies are willing to offer adequate packages to attract and retain top talent.

5. Freelancing and Entrepreneurship 

Many developers work as freelancers or start web development businesses. This entrepreneurial aspect of the field lets individuals build their client base and control their projects and schedules.

FAQs on What Does a Web Developer Do

1. What do web developers do? 

Web developers build websites and web applications. Depending on their specialization, they focus on building aesthetic, user-friendly user interfaces(UI), writing a few advanced functionalities in code, or building and managing databases and configuring cloud connections.

2. Do web developers code all day? 

No. While coding will be a big part of your day, you will perform other chores like debugging, code reviews and edits, taking part in meetings and briefings, collaborating with third-party service providers, etc.

3. What’s the difference between a web developer and a web designer?

A web developer is primarily concerned with a website’s features and functionality. They might also be involved in the site’s design, particularly in terms of its usability and user experience. Web developers usually work with computer languages like HTML, JavaScript, Python, and PHP. 

A web designer, on the other hand, is more focused on a site’s art direction and aesthetics. They create the graphics, logo, and layout that convey a website’s look and feel. Web designers typically employ software tools, such as Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, for their work. While a web developer could also design a site, a web designer is a specialist in this area.

4. How do you qualify as a web developer?

Qualifying as a web developer necessitates a blend of education, experience, and skills. While education from coding boot camps, software engineering, or web development courses is a good start, it’s important to remember that learning doesn’t stop there. Gaining practical experience through internships, open-source projects, or entry-level positions is crucial. Equally vital is the continuous development of skills. Mastering the skills in the first two sections is just the beginning. Dedicate your spare time to further development to stay updated with the ever-evolving field of web development.

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So, the answer to the question of what a web developer does is build the virtual structures nearly every business or organization on the internet “lives” in. It’s a fast-paced, cutting-edge, and exciting career. 

Life as a web developer is full of variety; it requires a healthy mix of independent coding, creative problem-solving, intense collaboration, and continual learning daily. Impactful work and substantial compensation make web development an appealing long-term career choice.

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  • Ashima Jain

    Ashima Jain is a Content Editor and Strategist at WsCube Tech and has been in the content marketing industry for 6 years. She is a writer by day and a reader by night. It was actually her love for reading that made her try her hands at writing. She has completed her postgraduation in Economics and Financial Management and has also done diploma courses in Journalism and Digital Marketing. When not working, you can find her in a cafe enjoying a cup of joe and a book.