Two people you are guaranteed to need as a WordPress site owner; a WordPress designer and a WordPress developer. When you might need either depends on the plans you have for your website and your goals. 

But when it comes down to it, you have to be clear on your site’s goals to figure out who exactly has the skills to implement the goals between a WordPress designer and developer. 

In this article we are going to talk about the difference between a WordPress designer and a WordPress developer. By the end of the post, you will have a better understanding about which WordPress professional precedes the other where different goals are concerned.

What is a WordPress designer? 

A WordPress designer is a WordPress professional concerned with the visual aspects of your website. This is the person that will create a custom layout that fits your brand and make your website look good and professional. 

WordPress designers use rely on different visual aspects and tools to take your website from basic to having a defined look. Using different WordPress front-end elements, website designers manipulates these pieces to the best of their visual functionality. Specifically where WordPreass is concerned, WordPress designers are skilled in CSS, Javascript and HTML coding languages. 

It is worth noting that sites come with access to free and paid themes which makes it possible for you to design your website yourself even with limited coding skills. But what makes a WordPress designer worth it even with this alternative route is that a WordPress designer will have expert-level experience and insight.

When to hire a WordPress designer?

A WordPress designer will bring together the visual elements that make your website easy on the eye. Which is why you should hire a WordPress designer when you are concerned with how your website looks and perhaps even establishing your brand identity through your website.

Being a WordPress designer goes behind just being WordPress proficient. Designers need to be proficient in different elements that work together to make a website achieve necessary goals for a business. So you want your WordPress designer to at least be proficient with the following:

  • Topography 
  • Use of graphics & visuals
  • UI and UX
  • Branding
  • Calls to action
  • Navigation
  • Responsiveness
  • Usability

What is a WordPress developer?

A WordPress developer is a WordPress professional who implements, maintains and manages WordPress sites hosted via WordPress developers also design plugins and themes that contribute to many website’s design structure.

WordPress has a front-end and a back-end. The front-end system is concerned with the visual aspects and the back-end is where most coding takes place. A WordPress developer will use code to make the best out of these WordPress systems. A WordPress developer, using code, will also refine what a WordPress designer has implemented on your website to achieve the best functionality.

A developer is concerned with the functionality of your WordPress system as a whole.

When to hire a WordPress developer?

Many WordPress site owners are totally capable of handling WordPress on their own. Usually, the need to hire a WordPress developer comes with the growth of the website i.e. website traffic, necessary site features, site’s objectives, etc. 

If you use WordPress for business related purposes, hiring a WordPress developer may be a necessary need without question. This is because the functionality of a business website directly impacts a business’s success. Sometimes businesses need specific functionality and features to achieve set objectives.

Whatever your reasons for hiring a WordPress developer, it is important to hire a developer with key skills

Take aways 

The main difference between a WordPress designer and a developer is that a designer deals with the visual aspects of your site while a developer is concerned with the WordPress system as a whole. 

We hope this article provided the insight you needed. There are many things to consider before choosing a WordPress developer/designer. You are also welcome to reach out to us for a chat while you figure out the best route for your needs. Our services fit the full-time dedicated WordPress hire. 

John Hooley
President, Steward

John is a graduate of 10,000 Small Businesses, a certified Customer Acquisition Specialist, and a Zend Certified Engineer. He speaks and writes on connecting digital strategy to association goals. Outside of work he's an avid traveler, climber, diver, and a burgeoning sailor. He also volunteers with Rotary and Big Brothers Big Sisters.