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Web Developer vs. Software Developer: What’s The Difference?

Web Developer vs. Software Developer: What’s The Difference?

Start writing People use web and software development interchangeably. Since programming has grown so much, there’s been no clear definition of what both mean. Many people wonder if there’s any software developer vs web developer difference. But truth be told, both of them cover a really broad scope of activities.

If you want to make a career in programming, it is important to know the difference between a software developer and a web developer. Both of them may pursue the same education — Bachelors or Masters in Science or Engineering, but their careers can have two totally different directions.

This article will highlight the key differences between software developers and web developers, address the pros and cons of being a web developer and a software developer, and focus on the different activities that both perform.

Software Developer vs. Web Developer: The Difference

The subtle differences between a software developer and a web developer can confuse anyone. But it is crucial to know because both perform different activities and play separate roles in product engineering and development.

Software developers work mostly at the backend and are involved in computer programming using different programming languages. They ideate, create, document, test, and launch software solutions for desktop and mobile devices. A software development company has a team of software developers who program products using advanced technology, programming languages, backend frameworks, libraries, and more.

On the other hand, web developers are involved in developing interactive and dynamic websites and web applications. They deal mostly with the user interface, front-end, and appearance of the application. A web developer is also responsible for deploying different functionalities in the website or the web app. Their primary focus is to deliver a great user experience to everyone who visits the website or uses the web application.

Checkout: Customized Software: What is it, Types, and Examples

A software application development company will have a team of software and web developers for different projects based on the requirements.

Let’s understand the advantages and disadvantages of being a web developer and a software developer.

Pros and Cons of being a web developer

Becoming a web developer is an amazing opportunity for programmers who have an interest in creating dynamic and interactive websites.

Pros of Being a Web Developer

Here are some of the pros of being a web developer -

  • Lucrative career choice
    Web developers are in high demand as the entire world is going online — and almost every business needs a website. Therefore, they get a higher salary — according to Indeed, the average salary of a web developer in the US is $70,000. If you have a higher number of experience, you can earn anywhere between $100,000 to $150,000. Freelancing projects are also easily available for web developers, which they can charge in the range of $35 to $60 per hour.
  • Affordable education
    Another good thing about being a web developer is that the educational path to becoming a web developer is really affordable. Many people go through a 4-year program to become engineers and software developers. However, by attending a web development bootcamp or a training program, anyone can easily become a web developer and start their career.
  • Interesting work
    Web application development services are interesting and creative work. Developers get to design the layout, understand how different functions would look to the user, and deliver the best experience. A lot of their working hours are focused on brainstorming ideas to make the most suitable website or application. Web developers also learn new technologies in the process and hone their skills with each new project.

What are the Disadvantages of Being a Web Developer?

While web development is a great job, there could be a few disadvantages of being a web developer. They are more like challenges that can help developers grow but may become troubling at times.

  • You may have to work for longer hours than usual.
  • There’s a lot of sitting at one place for extended periods.
  • You have to multitask according to the client’s requirements.
  • Sometimes, the entire design may be changed by the client.
  • A lot of content and requirements can be menial and boring.

But these are just a few challenges that get overpowered by the number of advantages that the job provides. Now let’s look at what software development brings to the table.

Pros and Cons of Being a Software Developer

A lot of programmers are choosing to become software developers. The growth for engineers in the IT industry is booming, which means that this is a lucrative career choice — just like web development. However, there are a few pros and cons of software development that you should know before delving deeper into the field:-

Here are a few advantages of becoming a software developer:-

  • High-paying profession
    Truth be told, working at a software development agency as a software developer is much more financially rewarding than being a web developer. Software developers that work with different languages, software, and technologies get paid differently. For example — data scientists can get paid in the range of $100,000 — $200,000 per year.
  • Satisfying career
    Software developers are more involved in creating a software program that is used by hundreds or even millions of people. They are developing something unique from scratch — and it gives the ultimate satisfaction to see the software working. There are a plethora of opportunities to be creative, collaborate with teams, and take responsibility for the work you do.
  • Entrepreneurship opportunities
    There are a number of software developers working at any software development firm who choose to leave their jobs and start their own company. They can build a software product from scratch because they have complete programming knowledge and don’t have to wait for anyone. Many people start their own software development company or become entrepreneurs with great software products.

What are the Disadvantages of Being a Software Developer?

Similar to web development, not all is hunky-dory with software development as well. There are certain challenges that developers have to face which can throw them off track.

The biggest con is the long working hours due to the high demand for software across the globe. Some clients may even want the software developers to work over the weekend, which could easily disrupt the work-life balance.

There’s also the possibility of getting stuck in one place if there’s no opportunity to learn new technologies. Therefore, it is essential for software developers to constantly

learn unique and innovative technologies that could boost their careers. It might seem time-consuming, but it is important to survive and stay relevant in the industry.


A lot of confusion prevails when differentiating between a software developer and a web developer. Both of them work at a software development company — which is why a lot of people may use these terms interchangeably.

However, both form an important part of the development process — software developers take care of the backend while web developers work at the frontend. However, both are good career choices depending on which field of development you want to choose.

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