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How Is Web Design Different To Graphic Design

Anyone who’s spent a little time looking into creating a brand or website will likely have come across these two terms: web design and graphic design.


While each share some general tendencies, they’re both distinct roles that tend to focus on different skill sets. We take a closer look at each, looking at how both web designers like the Webheads team and graphic designers might play an integral part in setting up your business and developing your brand.

What is web design?

Web design includes the whole process surrounding setting up and optimizing the usability of a website. While that certainly includes things like creating graphics and organizing data and information in easily digestible formats, it also focuses on utility. A web designer is responsible for making the website look good, but also for making sure that it works well.

Web designers will generally have some experience with graphic design, but they’ll also be expert programmers, proficient in HTML, CSS, Python and maybe other programming languages. As more and more focus is placed on user experience (or UX,) web designers are increasingly focusing on how to optimize the feel of websites, making sure that it’s easy and intuitive to navigate between different parts of the website.

What is graphic design?

Graphic designers are specialists in using graphics, images, and artistic typography to communicate ideas. Unlike web designers, graphic designers can contribute to a diverse variety of creative projects, from printed books to billboard advertising. Graphic designers might be employed to help design things like company logos, and can absolutely be part of the web design process.

Graphic designers won’t generally be part of the actual building of the website; they may contribute digital copies of brand logos, or create a specific font, but it will be the web designer that integrates those designs into the website itself.

So, what’s the difference?

While both web designers and graphic designers are specialized creatives, graphic designers contribute to a wide variety of projects in a more limited, artistic capacity. Web designers are responsible for the actual creation of websites, and while they’ll design the layout of the site, specialized things like fonts and logos will generally be designed beforehand by a graphic designer. Graphic designers and web designers tend to work hand-in-hand, each carrying out an important function for businesses.

Which one do I need?

If you have a brand name and logo already and need to create a web presence, then what you’ll need is a web designer. They’ll be able to put those creative elements together and create a space for your business to advertise its products – a website. If you already have a website and know a little about web design, but you need an update to your logo design and other brand-related imagery, then you’ll likely need the help of a graphic designer.