How is Web Development Different from Software Development?


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web development vs software development

In the computer programming world, several aspects didn’t get much time to develop consistent meaning for themselves. As a result, most of such terms are often used interchangeably and are often incorrect. This creates confusion, especially for people who are looking forward to starting a career in the programming industry.

One of the most common similar misconceptions is between web development and software development. To a casual speaker, both of the words mean the same. That said, both the terms are related to programming something or coding, for the web. We are busting the common belief today, and have tried to explain the difference between software development and web development for better understanding. Whether it’s web development or software development, you need to hire dedicated developers.

What is Web Development?

Web Development refers to the process of developing engaging websites and web applications that are easy to use. It helps develop web-based programs that are easily accessed from a web browser. Web development service providers host applications on the web. It includes web design, writing computer programs, hosting on web servers and managing databases.

Two types of web development are listed below.

  • Front-End Development

Client-side development refers to everything that a user sees on a website and the things with which they interact. The front-end development involves designing the interfaces of websites. The elements included in it are buttons, images, menus, and links. That said, it refers to the things that help a user interact.

  • Back-End Development

The server side of an application is referred to as the back-end, i.e the things that happen behind a website. When a text is clicked or double-clicked by a user, the required data is retrieved by the backend. After the user request is fulfilled by the backend, the frontend of a website ensures that the information is provided to the user correctly.

Data management systems are used by a backend developer and they leverage several other systems for proper functioning. It includes programming languages, server hosting tools, some backend frameworks to ensure the proper functioning of the web pages.

What is Software Development?

Software development refers to the process of developing computer systems. It refers to the design, ideation, documentation, coding, error documentation, debugging, etc. Software development refers to a program that establishes a connection between the user and the device. The software development company has the expertise to cater to such needs.

The software division has two major divisions that refer to system software and application software. Advancements in computer technology are responsible for the creation of different kinds of software. Let us know a few of them.

Also Read: 5 Challenges Faced During Custom Software Development and Their Solutions

Difference Types of Software Development

  • Application Development

It involves designing applications for a specific task such as video calling, editing or writing, scheduling jobs, or even playing a game. You can choose to host an app developed on numerous platforms such as on TVs, mobiles, web browsers, smart devices, etc.

  • System Software

System software refers to software development at a level of a particular system. For example, risk management, operating systems, hardware management, and services. It is the process of designing system applications that are needed for managing the system and hardware itself.

  • Web Development

As stated above, web development is one of the famous fields of software development that works to the migration of businesses on the internet. It includes the development of web apps and websites that are hosted on a server. You need an active internet connection and a web browser to browse through the website or web app.

  • Cloud Computing

Cloud development is the development and management of cloud storage and all services related to it. A few popular examples of cloud computing are Google Drive or Dropbox. Cloud computing is a very beneficial field of engineering since it ensures that you will have to keep the storage of your device to a minimum.

  • Security Engineering

Security engineering is also known as hacking and it is a growing field of software development. With increasing concerns related to user privacy, the demand for security engineers is increasing as well. They find loopholes in software related to its security so that it stays protected from all malicious activities.

  • Mobile Development

This type of development refers to the process of developing applications specifically for mobile devices, such as smartphones, smartwatches, tablets, etc. You can hire dedicated developers to get apps built for Android or iOS as per your requirement.

  • Embedded Systems

The field of embedded systems in software development deals in the process of code writing for non-computer devices and hardware. The softwares are embedded in devices by the engineers, such as in digital watches, microwave, or also in more complex applications. The evolution of the Internet of Things has resulted in massive improvement of Embedded systems.

  • API Development

APIs are extensible software programs. By having the right APIs, you will have a fully functional application. Usually, developers code a single feature like the payment gateway and then integrate it into any application.

Web development and software development are performed by separate individuals who are known as web developers and software developers respectively. They both differ from each other on some grounds.

Web Developer Vs Software Developer: All You Need to Know

Roles and Responsibilities

The roles and responsibilities of software developers and web development service providers are different.

Responsibilities of Software developers include:

  • Coding application logic and development of algorithms.
  • Comprehending the scope of the project and picking up the tools and technologies.
  • Establishing and updating databases.
  • Creating software solutions as per the specific needs of the clients.

Responsibilities of Web Developer:

  • Creating web apps and websites.
  • Converting designs and wireframes into an interface that works as a website or web app.
  • Testing websites and debugging and solving possible errors.
  • Manage servers and databases, code application logic with the help of web frameworks.

Key Skills

The key skills required to perform the responsibilities of web developer and software developer are different. The skills a software developer requires, include:

  • Data structure and database management system.
  • Mastery in programming concepts.
  • Working with code editors and IDEs.
  • Writing efficient, clean, and readable codes.
  • Documentation standards and programming.

The skills required by a web developer include:

Javascript and its libraries and the frameworks required for dynamic content.
Testing and Debugging.
Knowledge of markup languages, CSS, and HTML for building layout.
Version control to keep a track of your code.


The salary of the profession depends on the skills and the experience of a candidate. Also, it varies a lot based on their location, profile, and the company they work in. Though, there is not much difference in the pay scale of a web developer or software developer.

Final Thoughts

We have covered the basic difference between a web developer and a software developer in this blog. By now, you must have had a clear idea of the two aspects and know which one will be beneficial for your project. You can hire a software development company to get software or a web app built for your business. Both software developers and internet developers are required in the online world to make the most of it.

Vikrant Bhalodia
An Avid Writer by nature. People Ops & Marketing Strategist: Leader with 15+ years of experience in Organizational Capability Building and Marketing Success. Having passion towards technology and with multi-functional experience at WeblineIndia, a leading Software Development Company based in USA and India, Vikrant loves sharing insights on optimizing the success and internet visibility of the customers’ businesses.


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