Experienced web developers are able to very accurately convert a design into code with a minimum of compromise and for most browsers.
Web Design Is Pixel Specific
Web design, very much like graphic design, involves making lots of very specific and often subtle decisions about sizing, spacing, color, and typeface. And with the internet being only 72 pixels per inch, very low compared to print, websites are a small canvas to work with.
As a result, web design has to be pixel specific. A 3 pixel border really does look very different than a 2 pixel border.
Web Programmers May Not Be Detail Oriented
Unfortunately, it’s very common that web designers see the exact thing they are being paid for get completely muddled by an inexperienced or rusty programmer.
Web designs used to be far less complex and subtle, and many programmers have little experience building the graphically rich and textured websites that are the current standard.
Web Designers May Not Know Programming
In most cases it is possible to exactly replicate a design with code, pixel for pixel. Design elements are measured and recreated one by one. However, experience web developers know that it’s not that simple.
Many web designers who don’t do any programming aren’t aware of the challenges their designs may present to developers. As a result, there are often compromises that a developer has to make when converting a design. However, those compromises should not very often have to be significant.
Cross Browser Testing
Making a website look exactly the same in every browser is not practical, if it’s even possible. There are simply too many to test. For that reason most people doing browser testing are concerned with only the browsers used by 90-95% of people.
For example, IE6 is now on the way out. With only about 4% of people using the browser it’s no longer practical to pay for testing.
With a simple piece of code it’s now possible to easily make coding changes for specific browsers. For that reason, getting most websites to look almost exactly the same in the majority of browsers should be possible.
Unfortunately, IE6 – IE8 simply don’t render certain modern programming elements, such as rounded corners or shadows. However, it’s very often possible to use images instead of code to exactly recreate these design elements.
How This Is Supposed To Work
Given the importance a website can have for any project or business, it’s critical that people find web designers and developers with a minimum of experience and savvy.
Experienced web designers know how to structure their designs so that developers can easily convert them to code. And experienced and up-to-date web developers are able to build websites that very closely follow a design, with as few compromises as possible.
Ultimately, the design the client approves should be the website that is delivered.