What is front-end and back-end, and what are the differences between them?

Do you know what are the differences between front-end and back-end? Although they look like programming terms (and actually they are), these concepts are crucial for your Digital Marketing management. Continue reading this post to get more details about them.

Updated: February 12, 2021
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Having a website is essential for every kind of business. As an owner or manager, you must know how each part of your site is built, which includes understanding the difference between front-end and back-end.

If you’ve never heard of it before, don’t worry. Actually, you don’t need to know these concepts in-depth in order to manage the Digital Marketing applied on your website: the general knowledge we bring here is enough to start.

Let’s imagine a real situation: you need to have sales knowledge to track your salespeople’s work, right? In addition, you must follow up on your customer support team.

The same applies to your website management: you should know the theoretical principles of programming a website to check if it’s done according to good practices.

In this content, we’ll deal with:

Keep reading!

What are the differences between front-end and back-end?

Front-end and back-end are two well-known terms, even though some people don’t know exactly what they mean. Basically, they both are related to software engineering and website development.

Front-end refers to what someone sees when they access a website, and the back-end is what exists behind the curtains — that is, the code responsible for all elements of the website.

Front-end and back-end may look quite different, but in reality, they complement each other. In fact, the same way a website must be very well coded in all its functionalities via the back-end, it also needs to deliver a pleasant and well-designed interface to users, which is the front-end job.

Now, let’s check more details about each one!

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What is front-end?

Front-end is the part of the website that allows users to view resources and interact with web functionalities. It involves everything the user can see, touch and experience.

The web designer‘s role has experienced significant changes over the years, but the main functions of website development remain the same.

As we said, the front-end is what the user sees. So, it involves everything that people who visit your site can see and interact with. If in the past these functions were attributed only to the web designer, in current days business owners are also able to perform front-end actions on their websites.

Since front-end specialists do not deal with codes, they just make your site more beautiful. However, if you are planning to insert a feature or even create a shortcut that makes it easier to insert functions on your site, you’ll need a back-end specialist.

What is back-end?

Some entrepreneurs also see the back-end as “the work of a programmer”, which makes sense because it deals with the part of the website that is essential to keep it functional, even if the user doesn’t see it.

For example, a visitor clicks on the “download the e-book” button; the icon is created by the front-end, while the code is developed by the back-end.

Furthermore, we can say that the back-end is the website’s part that doesn’t make any contact with the user. Nevertheless, it’s essential. Do you know when a user clicks on a link but they are directed to a page with no content?

Well, this kind of problem is solved by the back-end, and it must be done as quickly as possible to preserve the user experience and the company’s reputation.

Also, if you need to add to your website a very specific function that requires extra resources than the ones provided by your WordPress plugins, you are likely to need the support of a back-end specialist.

The same might happen if you need to adjust your website structure in order to improve conversions, implement shortcuts or add new product pages, among other examples.

Why do companies need to understand the differences between front-end and back-end?

We point out below why it is so important to understand front-end and back-end functions.

Do entrepreneurs need to know how to program?

Now that you know the difference between front-end and back-end, you may be asking yourself: do entrepreneurs need to know how to program?

The answer is: they don’t need to be experts, but they must know at least basic concepts of programming. Actually, this is one of the reasons why we’ve written this article.

Indeed, as an entrepreneur, you don’t need to know how to program a line of code with a scripting language. The important thing, for you, is to identify who to rely on according to each situation.

For example, if you have some doubt about a code line, the back-end is the area to contact. However, if the layout of your website doesn’t match your company’s visual identity, the front-end is more qualified to deal with.

How should entrepreneurs deal with front-end?

Front-end is simpler for entrepreneurs, especially when their websites are built on WordPress (either on their own or with solutions like Rock Stage) and have tools such as a visual builder.

According to the website’s template, you can create pages within your website just the way you want. Some templates are even based on the “drag and drop” tool.

The best part is that you can do it without knowing a lot about programming. Also, you don’t need to call your IT team, neither to outsource web design services.

What is the connection between marketing and programming?

We see that business owners who run their own marketing actions need to have at least a minimum of programming knowledge. This ability is important in order to continuously adapt to market changes, which is fundamental in entrepreneurship.

Understanding fundamental programming concepts is a great support to your strategy. Now that you know what front-end and back-end are, check out how to create a WordPress site without coding!


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