Graphic Design Vs Web Design | Which Is the Right Career for You?

Does Graphic design and Web design refer to the same thing?

It is not uncommon for people to confuse the two terms or use them interchangeably. To a layman, Web designers and graphic designers are all art designers since their job involves creativity and art skills.

The truth is that the two professions share some similarities. For instance, a web designer and a graphic designer both require a clear understanding of graphics, typography, and principles of design.

But are the two different pursuits? Do they require different types of expertise?

If you wish to start a career in one, you need to understand the two professions. The same applies if you want to hire a designer for a particular job.

So, let's jump right into it and find out the difference between graphic designers and web designers.

What is Web Design?

Website design involves the creation of typography, good web designs, and graphs to communicate an idea. Unlike graphic design, website design is only concerned with website graphics web development and not print. Also, another related question we get is - what are the best online web design certificate programs?

The website designers are front-end website developers who create a responsive site to loads quickly and look appealing. Unlike graphic designers, web designers face some restrictions as they must consider some factors such as image resolution, file size, etc., in their job.

Website design involves many design skills and disciplines involved in the creation and maintenance of websites. Such skills include interface design, web graphics design, search engine optimization, user experience design, etc. Some designers work on all the aspects of website design, while others will work in teams to work on various aspects.

Is web design hardWebsite creation involves a lot of programming. Programmers need to understand different programming languages, including HTML, CSS, Java, JavaScript, etc.

What Is Graphic Design? 

Graphic design refers to the use of typography, graphs, images, and graphics to communicate an idea.

As a graphic designer, you can work on both digital projects and print projects. Unlike a website developer who is involved in programming, a graphic designer doesn't do any programming. They are only involved in the creation of graphics to use in print or on websites.

Graphic designers use different techniques such as page layout techniques, typography, visual arts, etc., for visual communication. They combine symbols, texts, and images to form visual representations of ideas.

web design

Web Design Vs. Graphic Design

The two careers differ in different ways, which include:


Graphic designers and website developers use different colour modes for their work.

Graphic design uses CMYK colour modes because they rely on printing. The colour choice in graphic design is focused on visual flow guidance and visual impact.

On the other hand, web design uses the RGB colour mode due to its special imaging mode. Too many strong colours on the website can cause visual fatigue for the visitors.

colors matter

Fonts and Typography Hurdles for Web Designers 

Graphic designers are free to select the font they use during the design process, unlike web designers. Graphic designers don't have to worry about the implementation of the colour in the final effect.

All the texts will output for the graphics printing as long as you use a reliable printer.

On the other hand, developers cannot use any font. They need to consider how the text will display on different browsers and screens. The choice of font should enhance the user experience of the web visitor.

Luckily, applications such as Google Fonts and Adobe Typekit offer website developers a wide typography palette that they can get creative with.



Graphic design has more performances for the use of graphics than web design, especially for single product websites. The modular design makes a single product idea clearer, and the same applies to visual performance.

Furthermore, graphic designers don't have to worry about the final effect of the design into effect.

In terms of the size of the design, graphic designers look at the size of the design in terms of physical measurements such as centimetres, millimetres, and inches. On the other hand, web designers look at the design in terms of pixels.


Web Developers are On-going Caregivers 

A website is a living organism that goes through continuous change.

As your brand changes or grows, you also need to update the website to capture new information. You can update navigations to increase conversions, add more products to eCommerce sites, and calls to action.

One difference between graphic designers and web designers is that when a designer signs off on a project, that's the end of it. On the other end, web designers' work never ends as a website is never done.

Website design is like city planning. Like a city planner, the web designer needs to tell the expected changes of the website in the future and allocate space for the development.

A graphic designer is concerned about creativity and how the completed medium will communicate the message. On the other hand, a web designer is concerned about how different site parts are related and work together as a system.

life is easier

Presentation Methods

Web design and graphic design also differ in how they present their results.

For graphic design, the presentation is static, while for web design, the presentation features dynamic elements. The presentation is more lively with visual effects, and there is a user guide that enhances the interaction.

In terms of visual focus, graphic design is more intuitive and has strong integrity. In web design, the visual focus is limited by the screen, and the essential information has to be shown on the screen first. It has weaker integrity than in graphic design.


Finally, post-production in graphic design relies on printing, media, and different materials. Web design involves back-end development, network signals, server applications, and other third-party resource support.

Should Graphic Designers Know Web Design?

As a web designer, you need to understand the design fundamentals of a graphic designer. You need to understand typography, rules of composition and layouts, colour palettes, etc.

On the other hand, graphic designers don't need to know everything about web design. Website design requires the designer to be familiar with programming languages such as Java, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, etc.

Since graphic designers are not involved in programming and digital outputs, one doesn't need to know web design. As a graphic designer, you can purposely have general knowledge in web design such as coding.

Can You Become a Web Designer With a Graphic Design Degree?

Web design is a lucrative career that has a lot of job prospects.

If you are in graphic design and wish to join web design, it's possible with an associate's degree. If you wish to become successful in the web design field, you need a solid work portfolio.

Web design is a broad field. If you are a designer who focuses on how a site looks, you are good to go if you have an associate's degree or a high school diploma. However, employers will look at your work portfolio rather than the course work due to the work's nature.

If you wish to advance as a web developer, a professional involved in the internal structure of the site and the external look, then you need a bachelor's degree in computer science.


Graphic Designer and Web Designs Job Responsibilities 

Web Design

  • Predict how the users will react to your design
  • Coding and programming
  • Interaction with the audience
  • Understand how to draw for versatile mediums e. g phones, tablets
  • Web designs trends prediction
web designer

Graphic Design

  • One way relationship with the audience
  • More artistic by using a pen and paper
  • One-shot to get the design right
  • Know how an element of design translates to print
  • Emphasize visual theory in designs
a lot of notes


Perhaps you were wondering, "Is there a difference between web design and graphic design?" Well, don’t look further as our detailed comparison of the two brings out the clear difference. The two career paths have some similarities, such as focusing on typography, layout, etc. 

However, they differ since graphic design focuses on the output of the print design while web design is focused on the digital aspects. While both involve designing, web design requires the designer to be conversant with programming languages such as Java, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, etc. For a graphic designer, you can join the web design field with just an associate's degree.

1 thought on “Graphic Design Vs Web Design | Which Is the Right Career for You?”

  1. Thankyou for sharing with us such a knowledgeable post. I really needed something like this. I will have read once again. I am very glad to find this post.


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