Web design always involves two fundamental elements: front-end and back-end. But do you know what each one means and how they work together? The first of the two concepts refers to the part of the website that users see and interact with, whilst the second concept designates the hidden side that nobody sees but where are all the management work goes on to ensure everything is working. The point where the two ends meet is known as the interface.


The term front-end covers the whole design of the website: its structure, layout, colours, background, sizes, animations and effects. A website needs an attractive design to ensure the user experience is comfortable, intuitive and pleasant. This side of web development has to be well programmed and accessible to end users, so it is generally developed in HTML, CSS or JavaScript.


The back-end is the other side of the story: the work that goes on behind the scenes to keep all the inner workings going. This is where the server programming happens, which basically comprises a server, an app and a database. The back-end is the area dedicated to programming the website’s functions. This is the part that hardly anyone sees, where pure programming defines how the site or database will work. It is also the area where the site’s resources and security are optimised.
Basically, in the web design world, everything the user sees is known as the front-end and everything the programmer sees and the systems used is the back-end. This means that front-end components are the ones that interact with the user, while the back-end components provide data and the basis for the app’s logic. When designing corporate websites and online stores, both ends are essential.


Both the front-end and back-end use languages like HTML or CSS to define the site’s structure and style and JavaScript to enhance it and make the website more dynamic. Front-end and back-end are both fields of design and they should each complement the other to produce an aesthetically pleasing and functional website with the ability to perform all kinds of operations. Good coordination between both ends is critical in detecting, understanding and suitably catering for each one’s needs. To give you a practical example of how they interrelate, think of a website that shows different content according to each user’s authorisations. As soon as the user enters the website they will be asked to log in. The information will be used to search the website and verify their credentials. It is at that moment when the front-end and back-end communicate to ensure the right page is displayed for that specific user.