Web Design & Development FAQs: answers to the most common questions

If you are unsure about anything web design & development related, we’ve got you covered! You can find answers to the most common questions below!

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Web Design

person designing a website

What is web design?

Web design is referred to as the planning and arranging of content for display on a website. Web design encompasses a combination of functional element and aesthetic elements. An effective web design is a key component in developing a strong online presence.

Are there different types of web design?

Yes, there are different types of web designs. The different types of web designs are static, responsive, dynamic, fluid, adaptive, and single-page.

  • Static design – static websites are the most basic type of web design, created with pre-set dimensions. Web pages remain the same across all devices due to the permanent width dimension. Will require a separate mobile site for creating a positive user experience.
  • Responsive design – one of the most popular types of websites nowadays, responsive designs automatically adjust the design of a website according to the display size. Responsive designs are made with a mobile-first approach.
  • Dynamic design – dynamic web designs use a database of features and information to deliver different content for users. Dynamic websites are much more interactive and functional for users.
  • Fluid design – fluid web designs use flexible dimensions for a web page to ensure it fills the width of the displaying screen. While it does mean nothing gets cut off the screen, elements can be stretched or squashed to fit the screen (which can look bad).
  • Adaptive design – adaptive web design uses CSS queries so that the size of your website can be automatically adjusted to the size of the browser window.
  • Single-page design – single-page design involves websites using a single page to include all the content on a website, requiring users to scroll down. Typically, navigation will take a user to the dedicated section on the page. Compared to multi-page websites, single-page designs are not considered good for SEO.

What is involved in designing a web page?

There are many processes involved in designing a website. Different steps involved include determining the website’s goals, the site’s structure, content creation, visual elements and graphics, and optimising for SEO.

What are the seven steps to effective web design?

The seven steps to effective web design include the following: 

  1. Goal identification 
  2. Set a realistic timeframe and project scope 
  3. Start developing the sitemap and wireframe 
  4. Content creation 
  5. Create the visual style of the website 
  6. Develop the website 
  7. Test and launch 

What are the best practices for responsive web design?

There are several best practices to consider for creating a responsive web design. Some best practices to consider include:

  • Simple navigation
  • Page speed
  • Content structure
  • Mobile-first methodology
  • Call-to-action buttons
  • Use only what you need in your design
  • Readable typography
  • Make use of negative space

What is a professional website design?

A professional website design will capture a user’s attention with high-quality visuals. The content on the site will also help tell the story of the brand. The site should also be mobile-friendly to help create a positive user experience.

What are the elements of good website design?

A good web design will make a strong first impression and lead to a positive user experience. The following elements help to achieve a good website design:

  • Intuitive navigation which allows a user to easily find what they are looking for
  • Use appealing imagery and graphics
  • Content is informative and easy to read
  • Optimise for search engines
  • Visual hierarchy
  • Responsive design
  • Animations and interactivity

What are the most important principles of web design?

The most important principles of web design are that it serves the intended purpose, the web design is functional and useable, and that it promotes a positive user experience. All 3 of these principles can determine whether a web design will be successful or not.

How is graphic design different from web design?

Web design is the process of designing web pages for use online. Graphic design is focused on creating visual imagery not necessarily for use on the web. A graphic designer will not necessarily be concerned with programming or other technical concerns of a website. However, there is a considerable cross-over between graphic design and web design.

Why is visual hierarchy so important in web design?

Visual hierarchy is the process of arranging the design elements of a website to prioritise the order of significance. Visual hierarchy is important in web design as it places design elements in the order you want a user to see them.

Is web design digital marketing?

Web design is separate from digital marketing, but it does play an important role in the digital marketing process. Web design is the process of designing websites, while digital marketing is the process of marketing brands or products using digital channels, such as social media, SEO, or PPC.

Is web design and digital marketing a good combination?

Yes, web design and digital marketing are a good combination as both play important roles in attracting and influencing customers. A well-designed website that is SEO-optimised helps increase a brand’s online presence and business exposure, which aids digital marketing efforts.

Do web designers/developers create social media pages?

Web designers and developers do not usually create social media pages, although there are exceptions to this. Social media pages are usually set up and managed by the Digital Marketing team. Both web design and social media pages should be consistent with the brand image. 

Web Development

web design and web development

What is custom web design and web development?

Custom web design and web development focuses on creating a custom website that is tailored to a specific business, product, or event. Custom web design and web development are unique and tailored specifically to the needs of the customer, usually created from scratch.

What exactly is web development?

Web development is a term used to encompass all the elements that go into creating a website.  A web developer will be concerned with markup and coding, design and structure, networking configuration, and CMS and/or Ecommerce development.

Is web design a subset of web development?

Yes, the design of a website can be considered a subset of web development. A web developer will be concerned with a website’s design, layout, and structure. A web designer will often work closely with the web developer.

Is graphic design required for web development/web design?

An effective website will make use of graphics and visual elements to appeal to users. Graphic design is required in web development to create visually striking designs and imagery that will capture users’ attention and make a site more appealing.

What is a CMS?

A CMS is short for a content management system. A CMS is software that can be used to design, craft, and manage a website. Using a CMS enables a user to create a website using no or very little coding. This makes it ideal for non-developers to make necessary changes to a site.

Examples of CMS include WordPress, Magento, and Wix.


web design and seo

Does web design matter for SEO?

Yes, web design is an important part of an effective SEO strategy. A web design that is both mobile-friendly and helps create a positive user experience is vital for better-performing SEO strategies. A poorly designed website will reflect badly on search engine rankings.

What is the difference between SEO and web design?

SEO involves optimising the elements of a website so that search engines can locate, crawl, and index pages for ranking in search results. SEO involves on-site, off-site, and technical optimisation. Web design is creating the design and layout of a website, including all pages.

Web design focuses on the front end of a site, whereas SEO can focus on the back-end and front-end aspects of a site.

How can website design affect SEO?

A web design is not a direct ranking factor in SEO. However, the design of a website can still have an impact on your SEO performance. A web design that fails to create a positive user experience or isn’t responsive/optimised for mobile, will perform far worse in search engine rankings.

What is web design in SEO and its benefits?

Web design in SEO is focused on the hierarchy, design, and layout of a website. All these elements are important on-page SEO factors that can affect your SEO and ranking performance. Higher-ranking sites will benefit from increased traffic and a more positive user experience.

Is SEO more important than web design these days?

No, both SEO and web design are equally important. A good web design is important for higher SEO performance, while SEO performance will be hindered by a poorly designed website.

Why does UX design matter for search engine optimisation?

UX design is important in search engine optimisation for several reasons. Firstly, user experience is an indirect ranking factor used by Google. Secondly, UX design is important as it allows users to easily engage with your site and find what they are looking for to achieve their goals.

How does web design affect search engine rankings?

Poorly designed websites can create several problems that affect your search engine rankings. Firstly, a poorly designed website may restrict or prevent crawlers from indexing your site. Poor web design will also directly affect your ranking potential.

Factors such as popups, complicated layouts, unoptimised images, and flash are all elements that can decrease a website’s ranking potential. A poorly designed website may also have bad navigation making it difficult for users and crawlers to easily navigate your site.

Discover more about how websites and SEO work together

User experience

web design and user experience

What is user experience in web design?

User experience in web design is focused on how a person interacts with a website, the quality of the interaction, and the perception a user gains from their experience using a site. A good web design will seek to generate and enhance a user’s positive experience.

Why does user experience in website design matter?

User experience is an essential element of web design. Without considering the user experience, your web design will not be tailored to fulfilling the user’s needs. A poor user experience will do very little to create loyalty and a meaningful relationship with your users.

How does website design affect user experience?

The design of a website is the foundation for creating a positive user experience. A website with an effective design, layout and structure will encourage users to stay much longer and interact on a site compared to a poorly designed site.

What is UX web design?

User experience (UX) web design is how a website is designed so that users can engage and interact with a website. UX web design is important for creating relevant and meaningful experiences for users. UX web design includes the design, function, and usability of a site for its users.

How important is web design and user experience?

Web design and user experience are extremely important for helping achieve your business goals. A strong user experience can provide the foundation for developing a strong online presence that will allow you to attract more traffic and increase search ranking performance.

How can I check whether a website is user-friendly?

To test whether your website is user-friendly, use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool. The tool allows you to enter a URL or specific code to test. The tool provides a score, alongside recommendations for improving the mobile-friendliness of a page or website.

What is the role of UX in responsive web design?

Responsive web design uses a single web design that adapts the interface according to the device and screen size. A responsive web design helps create a positive user experience by making your website useable and interactive across all different devices, including mobile.

What is the role of a UX designer in web development?

User experience is an important ranking factor for SEO and for fulfilling a user’s needs. The role of a UX designer in web development is to ensure that the experience of using a site is satisfying and accessible for your users, and will help to achieve the required business goals.

User interface

web design and user interface

What is the difference between web design & UI design?

Web design is focused on the overall design of a website, and is typically the foundation for the look and feel of a site. UI (or user interface) is concerned primarily with the visual and graphic elements of a design that affects the experience and interaction of a user. UI design can also apply to other software interfaces, not just websites. For example, game design, mobile apps, and satnavs, all require UI design.

What is the difference between UI and UX?

UI (or user interface) focuses on the visual and graphical elements that a user will interact with on a site. Examples include buttons, navigation menus, and other interactive elements. The user experience (UX) is how a user feels from their experience using your site.

What are the most important aspects of web UI design?

The most important aspects of web UI design include:

  • Easy navigation
  • Responsive design
  • Accessibility and useability
  • Use of a visual hierarchy
  • Minimal loading speeds
  • Reflects the brand for consistency and familiarisation
  • Intuitive and easy to use

Is the user interface design necessary for a website owner?

Yes, user interface design is important to allow website owners to better understand how users interact with their site. A user interface design is also necessary for creating an attractive and effective website for users that helps achieves your business goals.

Web Browsers

Web designs and web browsers

What are the best browsers for web development?

There is no single best browser for web development. When developing a website, you should consider a wide range of browsers. While Chrome is the dominant browser, a website should be developed and tested using different browsers and engines to cater for all users.

Should I care about old browsers when designing a website?

While outdated browsers provide security concerns, many people still use old browsers such as Internet Explorer (approximately 28 million worldwide still used IE in 2022). However, designing websites with older browsers can limit the design and functionality.

While it is important to not alienate the percentage of people still using old browsers, many features are limited or not supported in older browsers. For example, many HTML 5 tags are not supported in Internet Explorer as HTML 5 was developed after Internet Explorer stopped receiving updates.

Why do web developers support older browsers?

Web developers still support older browsers as many people still access the web on outdated browsers, such as Internet Explorer. Older, outdated browsers have limited support for JavaScript, CSS3, and HTML 5 features. 

How does browser caching affect web design?

Browser caching is the process of storing resources on a user’s device for recently visited websites. Caching resources helps improve loading speeds and limits the resource borrowing cost. Elements such as images are stored this way.

Web design elements that rarely change, such as your company logo, are ideal components of a design to set for caching in your script. Static content should be cached for a better experience using a website.

How to design for different browsers and devices

Nowadays, many browsers use web standards to ensure a website will render and display the same across devices. However, browsers with different engines may have very slight variations in how a page is loaded. Consider a CSS reset to help minimise this problem.

How to make a website look the same in all versions of browsers

Creating a responsive web design that is coded with HTML, CSS and JavaScript can help to ensure your website will look the same (or as near as) across all versions of up-to-date browsers. This becomes more difficult with older browsers as features are unsupported.

Which browser has the best developer tools?

There are a few browsers a web developer should consider for extensive developer tools. Mozilla Firefox Developer, Brave, and Google Chrome all provide high-performance and comprehensive developer tools for creating a website.

Code and Coding

Web design and code

Is HTML used only for web design?

Yes, HTML is a markup language used for creating websites. Browsers use HTML (alongside other markup languages) to determine how a webpage should be displayed in a browser.

Why are XML and HTML important for web development?

Both HTML and XML are markup languages that provide the main structure and format for the content on the web. HTML works alongside CSS to structure and format a web page’s design and layout. XML is primarily used to store and transfer data in a website, such as for RSS feeds.

What are Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)?

Cascading style sheets (CSS) is the code that is used to describe how markup languages, such as HTML, should be rendered and displayed on the screen. CSS is a style sheet language that is added to a markup language so you can create appealing and attractive web designs.

What are the types of cascading style sheets?

There are 3 types of cascading style sheets. These are:

  • Inline – sets a specific CSS style to a specific HTML element or tag. Inline styling is ideal for just changing the design or a single element of a web page, such as the layout or images.
  • Internal or embedded – uses the style tag within the head section of HTML to set the style and design for a single page.
  • External – the CSS is stored externally and linked to the web pages. External style sheets are created in a rich text editor and can be used to change the design and style of a whole website.

What are some web programming languages?

There are many different web programming languages, including HTML, CSS, Java, Python, SQL, PHP, JavaScript, and .NET.

Which is the best programming language and why?

The choice of programming languages will depend on the needs of your website. HTML and CSS are commonly used for the front end while the back end will use PHP, JavaScript, Python, or .NET.

Is Java still used for modern web applications or websites?

Yes, Java is still widely used for modern web applications and websites. It is estimated around 12 million engineers and developers still use the Java programming language.

Web Design Agency

web design agency

Should I use a website builder or hire a professional agency?

Website builders operate a drag-and-drop system to create websites easily without any experience. However, these websites can look very similar to other websites due to the heavy usage of templates. SEO optimisation may also be limited, hindering your online presence.

A web designer can create a custom and tailored website that matches your brand and goals. A web designer will work towards helping you achieve your design goals and can implement site features beyond a website builder. A professionally designed website will also be better optimised for SEO.

What can a professional web agency do for me?

A web design agency helps businesses to design and create an online presence through a website. A web design agency will work with clients to develop a website that meets their goals and matches their brand.

What does a web design agency do?

A web design agency specialises in the design, creation, and management of websites. A web design agency will have the knowledge and experience at designing websites for a range of needs or industries and will be up to date with industry practices and trends.

Why should you hire a web design agency?

There are several reasons why you should consider hiring a professional web design agency. Reasons include:

  • They can help you develop a strategic online plan
  • You’ll receive a high-quality website
  • SEO services are often included with web design
  • Your website will work on all devices
  • Save time and money
  • Your website will match your brand and help achieve your goals
  • Faster website that focuses on user experience

Find out more about why you should hire a professional web design agency

How do you hire a web design agency?

Hiring a web design agency is not an easy decision and shouldn’t be taken likely. When hiring a web design agency, you will go through a process of research and consideration.

  1. Conduct an online search for possible agencies
  2. Explore the services offered by each web design agency
  3. Look at the reviews and testimonials
  4. Consider the length of time they’ve been in business (the longer the better)
  5. Cut down your list to a few possible candidates based on your business needs and goals
  6. Contact the agencies to see if they are a good fit
  7. Try and check out some of their work
  8. Get some quotes
  9. Make your final decision

What makes a good web development agency?

A good web design and development agency will offer a range of digital services, including digital marketing, SEO, web design & development, alongside branding. A good web development agency will be open with clients and provide clear plans, reports, and info on projects.

Did we answer all your questions on web design and development? A well-designed website is essential in today’s digital landscape to ensure you stand out in search results, attract visitors, and convert leads. Without a good website, you’ll be up the creek without a paddle!

Web design & development FAQ
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Web design & development FAQ
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