For some weeks ago I posted two articles about web design and graphic design. After that, I have got a couple of question about that’s the most significant difference between Graphic Design vs. Web Design

It is not surprising that most people do not understand the difference between graphic design vs. web design. It is only after going through concepts of design that you can fully comprehend the difference. Both web designers and graphic designers are commonly referred to as art designers by a significant percentage of the public. This is because both of them are involved in the artistic skill and have creative ability. Most web designers start as graphic designers. However, there is a lot of differences in these two fields. Below is some information that will enlighten you on differences between the two.

Graphic design vs. web design

Graphic design refers to a process of problem solving and visual communication by use of one or more of illustration, typography, and photography. This field is considered to be part of communication design and visual communication. Designers in this industry come up and integrate text, symbols, and images to generate visual representations of messages and ideas. To come up with visual compositions, graphic designers use page layout techniques, typography, and visual arts.

Web design, on the other hand, is a multidisciplinary field with lots of different skills. The disciplines and professions in this field are used to create and maintain websites. The various areas in this field comprise of user experience design, search engine optimization, standardized code and proprietary software, web graphic design, authoring and interface design. Some designers cover all of these areas, but in most cases, people specialize in different aspects of web design.

Key differences between graphic design vs. web design

1. Visual elements


Graphic design and web design use different color codes. The former uses CMYK color code while the latter uses RGB. CMYK color code is used in graphic design because this field relies on printing. RGB is used in web design because it prevents visual fatigue that comes as a result of too many strong colors on a website.


Graphic design features more performances than product web design. The graphics size units used by both fields are also different as graphic design uses physical size concepts like millimeters, inches, and centimeters while web design uses pixels.


In graphic design, designers are usually free when choosing fonts. This is because the final effect implementation is not an issue to worry about in graphic design. However, in web design, a lot of reasoning takes place before choosing fonts. The scope to choose from is small in web design to avoid pressuring the server by the output.

2. Information spreading

The graphic design uses mail delivery, postings and sales to spread information. That is only suitable within a small range, and it involves high cost. Varying ages embrace the graphic design information dissemination means. Web design disseminates information cheaply within a wide range, but it requires support from third-party media.

3. Presentation methods


In graphic design, a presentation is static. Web design, on the other hand, involves dynamic elements in performance. That makes it livelier in terms of visual effects. It also manages to direct user’s operation, maximizing the interaction.

Visual focus

In graphic design, visual focus is more intuitive due to the strong integrity involved. And in web design, visual focus is limited by the display. There is the weaker integrity of visual focus in web design because the vital information has to appear first on the screen.


Printing is the leading media in graphic design although other material media are involved. Web design requires back-end development, network signals, and server applications among other 3rd party support resources.

4. Browse mode

There is a following browse way in graphic design. There is a whole process that cannot be presented in series. For web design, you use scroll buttons and bar to browse. Additionally, in web design, is the links which help the user navigate for more information. Therefore, web design offers more browse options as compared to graphic design.

5. Information carrier

Material media

The graphic design uses cloth, paper, etc. to display information. Web design, however, uses the screen to convey messages.

Amount of information

The amount of information that can be displayed in graphic design is determined by the size of the material. In web design, the amount of data to be shown depends on HTML. Therefore, in web design, there is no limit.

Feedback and updates

There are no means to collect timely user feedback in graphic design. There are no second updates either. In web design, updating is timeless and effortless. You can also be able to correct error messages in a timely fashion. Additionally, it is simple to collect user feedback in web design.

Graphic designer vs. Web designer – Responsibilities

  • Apply art first – vs. – Perceives art as a technology leverage
  • One-way audience relationship – vs. – Mutual audience interaction is involved
  • Involves more art using pen and paper – vs. – More technical through coding and programming
  • Highly emphasizes visual theory in their work – vs. – Engineering approach is involved in the designs
  • Focuses on how a design conveys a message to audience – vs. – Prediction about audience reaction and feel is mandatory
  • Must know how design elements translate to print – vs. – Must consider versatility for smartphones, laptop, tablet, etc.
  • Have a single shot to get a design right after printing – vs. – Can rectify even after development


Graphic design vs. web design – Required skills

  • Adobe Creative Suite – vs. – Web application development, JavaScript, User Interface design, Jquery, PHP


When it comes to tools, it’s, of course, depending much on what you should do, but also what you like to work with.

Adobe Creative Suite is by far the most used one. And I will even go so far to say that there are not any professional designer, either if it web or graphic designer that doesn’t have Adobe Creative Suite installed on their computer.

For web designer, it’s the most used software, DreamWeaver. But Adobe has now also Portfolio, Sparks Muse CC. And very often a web designer also need the use of Photoshop.

For graphic designer, it’s mainly Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign. Indesign is more for magazine/books and are today classed as a standard format in graphic design off magazine/books.