Key Differences Between A Website and Web Application

Key Differences Between A Website and Web Application

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This is the bare truth: It would be very difficult for the end user to tell the difference. It's easy for them, type the URL and boom, your results are there. What really matters for the user is, Is the site able to perform it's required task? If yes, then End of story for them.
Now, from a more technical approach, there are some differences between the two. Although you might find some conflicting opinions amongst some top professionals, I will try and highlight some of the key differences:

Website

YOUR WEBSITE.png A Website is a collection of related web pages that contains images, text, audio, video, etc. It can be consist of one page, two pages, and n number of pages. It provides both visual and text content.
We have many types of websites:

  • Dating website
  • Blogging website
  • Community website etc.

Examples of websites : YouTube, Amazon, eBay, Yahoo, etc.

Web Application

YOUR WEBSITE (1).png This is a piece of software that can be accessed by the browser. In other words we can say Web applications are websites with functionality and interactive elements. They are extremely customizable and can perform a wide range of functionality, they are generally more difficult to build and require an experienced team of software developers.
Examples: Twitter, Facebook, Gmail, Adobe CC etc.

Key Differences Between Website and Web App

  1. USER INTERACTION
    A website provides visual and text content which user can view and read, but not affect it's functioning.
    In the web app, the user not read the content on the page but also manipulate the data, the user can interact one on one by either filling forms or required data.
  2. AUTHENTICATION
    In a website authentication is not obligatory for information websites. the user may get asked to register to get regular update to access additional options and that's it.
    In web application they need authentication as they offer much broader scope of options than a website. This means you have to have a username and a password to access your account.
  3. TASK AND COMPLEXITY
    A website will only display collected data and information on a specific page as searched by the user.
    In a web application the functions are quite higher and complex compared to those of a website.
  4. CREATED FOR
    A website mostly consist of static content. This means that the information is publicly accessible to all visitors.
    A web application is designed for interaction with the end user, this means that without the required credentials you might not be able to access any data.
  5. DEPLOYMENT
    When dealing with a website, small changes never require a full re-compilation and deployment. You just need to update the HTML code and everything will be updated.
    Now when it comes to a web app, all the changes made will need the project to be re-compiled and deployed again.

    Conclusion

    To find a developer who can developer website for you is a simple process. However developing a web application, requires more knowledge, more experience, and more planning.
    Now that you have a clear understanding of the differences between websites and web applications, you also have a better understanding of what you really need. And also what you interact with on daily basis.

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