Founders & Startups: What is Hiding Behind Back-End Development?
What Is Back-End for Founders?
Every business needs an engaging website nowadays. Since everyone is online right now, having an online store or site where customers can order products, avail of services, or learn about your company is crucial.
But your website shouldn't just look good - it should be functional too. We highly recommend that founders hire back-end developers to handle the technical side of web development. That way, anyone who visits your site gets a complete and comprehensive experience. Not only does it make it easier for people to learn about your company, but it also improves business, especially in the digital age.
Back-end development refers to basically everything that happens behind the scenes of your website. While front-end developers focus on the overall web design, back-end development primarily deals with the different programming languages used to establish your website's functionality.
It's important that founders are familiar with the back end of their application. While this doesn't mean learning everything you can do with a certain programming language, having basic knowledge of back-end development goes a long way.
When you understand back-end development, you'll have an incredibly easy time communicating with your team and streamlining the entire app development process.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about back-end development for founders.
What Is Back-End Web Development?
The components essential to an application’s backend largely depend on the technological stack and the app’s needs. That said, there are still some common parts that you’ll find in most backend applications, which we’ll dive into below.
Kicking things off are servers, which are responsible for running backend applications and replying to user requests, giving the relevant data, and performing appropriate actions. Servers are either standalone hardware or cloud-hosted servers which use virtual computers.
Next up are databases. Most back-end programs use databases to store and manage information. Typically, databases are relational (like MySQL or PostgreSQL) or non-relational (like MongoDB and Redis). There are many ways non-relational, or NoSQL databases vary from relational ones. Here are some ways these two databases differ.
Relational databases group rows and columns according to a predetermined schema. With non-relational databases, there are either no schemas or very flexible ones, allowing them to store various data formats.
Another thing to note about relational databases is that they are vertically scalable. This means that as the workload increases, you can add more powerful hardware sources to the server. With horizontal scalability, you manage higher workloads by adding more servers, which is one of the benefits of non-relational databases.
The next aspect of backend applications we’re talking about is data linkages. These are essential for data integrity enforcement in relational databases. With non-relational databases, data is stored in denormalised or nested forms, so they don’t need explicit relationships while improving efficiency.
An SQL, or structured query language, is used in relational databases for various tasks like data modification, insertion, retrieval, and deletion. The query strategies for non-relational databases range from non-relational databases to key-value graph-based and column-oriented queries.
If you want organised data with set schemas and predetermined relationships, relational databases could be ideal for you. These databases offer much more data flexibility. You may be better off with a non-relational database if you want semi-structured, unstructured, or polymorphic data.
Relational databases are required to adhere to ACID, or the Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability criteria. On the flip side, high availability, horizontal scalability, and eventual consistency shine in non-relational databases.
Both relational and non-relational databases offer advantages and disadvantages, so you must choose one based on your individual needs. Before selecting a database, consider the data you work with, the size of your database, query frequency, and the level of data consistency you need.
One very important factor in backend development is application programming interfaces, or APIs. These components make data and functionality available to other apps and front-end components.
Frameworks are another common component of backend development, and they are comprised of libraries and tools that are already created. These shorten the development process by providing uniform structures and features that are ready to use.
On top of that, it’s important for the backend to include authentication and authorisation. It’s important to authenticate and authorise users, which is a task handled by background programs. These programs are in charge of checking IDs, restricting access based on the user, and maintaining sessions.
Another key component of backend development is business logic. These are the application’s rules and algorithms that you can find in the backend. The logic controls all the data processing, manipulation, and execution. In fact, even data integrity is taken care of by logic.
Lastly, many back-end programs employ a method called caching. This is done to speed up the time it takes to access data frequently while saving resources by preventing multiple database requests for the same data. There are also backend programs that have additional duties independent of front-facing functions. Examples of these are data processing, email alerts, and report generation.
Popular Back-End Programming Languages
The programming languages you use in back-end web development play a huge role in your site's or app's functionality, scalability, and maintainability. That said, back-end developers have unique preferences when it comes to programming languages, and your back-end developer will likely choose a programming language based on your app's overall purpose and needs.
To give founders a better idea of what languages to use for your app, here's a quick look at the different back-end programming languages developers use.
Typically, developers use runtime environments like Node.js to run the language on the server side.
Nest JS is a Node.js back-end application framework designed to work seamlessly with TypeScript, enabling the development of efficient and scalable server-side applications.
By using TypeScript in Nest applications, we benefit from compile-time error detection, which ensures the integrity of our code and minimises errors when working with multiple microservices that share the same response mode.
With NestJS, we can create exceptional microservices that are well-organised and lightweight. The framework enforces a structured approach where controllers, services, and repositories are written in specific locations and conform to a defined pattern.
This streamlines the development process, mitigating the need for extensive code refactoring in the future and allowing us to focus more on designing endpoints rather than the intricacies of the application's structure.
Express.js is commonly employed in tandem with Node.js to establish a server framework that empowers Node.js to serve as a back-end scripting language. This powerful amalgamation enables the development of resilient server applications and efficient handling of HTTP requests.
Python is another versatile programming language with many uses, and it's also a nice option for back-end development. The language has a unique readability to it, and with all the pre-built modules available, you won't have a hard time using Python for back-end development.
Java is one of the best programming languages for enterprise-level applications. This is one of the most secure and stable languages for back-end development, which makes it such a great option. So, if you're looking to build this type of app, make sure your back-end developers consider using Java for development.
One of the newest programming languages for back-end developers right now is Go. This is a young language developed by Google specifically for web applications. Since it's designed for web applications, Go is a simple, easy-to-use, and scalable web development language. On top of that, this programming language is very commonly used for server-side development, so you may want to ask your back-end web developer if they want to use Go for your web app.
What's the Difference Between Back-End vs Front-End Development?
While they seem similar, front-end developers and back-end developers are very different. Front-end developers focus mostly on everything you see on a website or application. On the flip side, back-end developers are experts on the server side of the app and web development.
While there are some back-end languages and front-end languages that overlap, these types of developers have a unique skill set and offer different web services. When developing an application, it's best for founders to have a good development team that contains both front-end developers and back-end developers or a full-stack team.
How to Find the Best Back-End Developers
There are always new apps and websites in development. This is why you won't have a hard time finding tech professionals in the UK or EU ready to handle your app's back end. However, it's important to take your time to find the right back-end developer for your project.
Your web developer has a huge impact on the final functionality and performance of your website. But with all the options available, it's sometimes hard to pick the best one.
So, here are a few tips to keep in mind to help you find the best back-end developer for your app.
Understand Your Needs
The first step in choosing the best back-end developer for your needs is determining what type of web development you need. Typically, your back-end developer specialises in a specific type of app or website.
Some developers may focus on website applications, while others can help you build an online store or even a business portfolio. So, before even considering your options, try to figure out exactly what type of web development services you're looking for.
Whenever you choose a back-end developer, it's important to consider their experience. Server-side development is really complicated, and you'll need more than just classes and education to become a back-end developer.
The best back-end development professionals have been in the field for years. If you're looking for the smoothest experience when building the server side of your app or website, it's best to contact and hire an experienced developer for the job.
Consider Soft Skills & Technical Knowledge
While front-end developers focus on the website layout of your website, back-end web developers need to understand different server-side languages and have a basic understanding of front-end languages, too. So, when choosing a professional for full-stack development, make sure to test out their technical skills and know-how.
If you're interviewing web developers, we suggest asking questions like what back-end programming language they use, what server-side software development they've done in the past, and more. That way, you get a full idea of how well the backend developers can build the server side of your web applications.
On top of that, back-end developer skills should also include soft skills. Examples of soft skills for back-end developers are communication, punctuality, compatibility with the rest of the development team, and others.
Developing websites and web applications take a lot of work; most of the time, your developer should be able to do much more than just write code.
Take Your Time
One of the biggest mistakes when hiring a back or front-end web developer is rushing the process. Remember, many developers claim to offer a seamless user experience. But if you don't take the time to learn about their skills and experience, you might choose a poor fit for the job.
So, don't worry if finding full-stack developers takes longer than usual. The more care you take when choosing the right candidate, the better the fit will be. Also, it will save time in the future development itself.
Different Types of Back-End Developers Based on Experience
There are different types of back-end developers, and it's important to choose one that fits your needs.
Here are some of the different classifications for back- and front-end developers based on their experience.
Before people become full-stack developers, they need to apprentice as junior developers. There are junior developers for both back- and front-end development. These individuals only know one or two back- and front-end programming languages and have just a few years of field experience.
Mid-level developers have spent a bit more time in the field and have much more experience in back-end programming languages. When you hire these individuals for backend development, you can trust that they've worked on various projects and can handle whatever task you throw their way.
These are the highest-ranked back-end developers based on experience. These individuals have had extensive field experience and usually have experience working on large-scale projects. As a result, they should know various programming languages and can easily handle heavier, labour-intensive projects.
Basic Skills for a Backend Developer
A good back-end developer or software engineer should have a certain set of skills to be able to handle the job. The back-end developer skills you need can vary from project to project.
However, here are some of the most basic skills that any back-end developer would need to take on a job.
- Proficiency in various back-end programming languages (understanding how front-end works may be a good bonus, will increase the efficiency and velocity of the team a lot)
- Knowledge of databases and data storage
- A good understanding of API development
- Proficiency in version control software
- A full grasp of data security
- Proficiency in SQL (Structured Query Language) to manipulate the data in SQL databases
- Comprehensive understanding of web development
What Are Back-End Developers' Responsibilities?
When you hire a professional for the back end of your app or website, they will have different responsibilities than the front-end developer you hired for the face of your app or website. Before choosing a professional for the job, it's always best to understand their responsibilities.
So, here's a quick list of the different responsibilities of a backend developer.
- Design and develop the app or website's architecture
- Integrate databases and data storage into the project
- Ensure app scalability
- Maintain the app
- Write clean and efficient code
Let Datamix Take Your Project to New Heights With the Best Back-End Development Services on the Market
If you're looking for a top-tier team to handle your back-end development needs, we've got you covered.
DataMix has a team of some of the best developers in the game who can help you develop the app of your dreams. We ensure all our clients receive the service they're looking for, so you can trust us to tailor our approach for your project.
To learn more about our services or set a meeting with our team, contact us today!
What is a back-end developer?
Your back-end developer is the person that focuses on the server side of app or website development. These professionals know how to use various programming languages and ensure the best user experience for your clients.
What skills do back-end developers need?
Your back-end developers need to have good knowledge of web development, know which languages to use for different situations, and understand how to troubleshoot some of the problems you may encounter during development.
How much does it cost to hire a backend developer?
The cost of backend development varies depending on the team you hire and the type of project you're launching. However, it's always best to take your time to choose your back-end developer and don't hesitate to make an investment for the best possible services.
What are some of the basic tools for any back-end developer?
Some of the basic tools that all back-end developers use include:
- Design tool (Postman, Insomnia, etc.)
- Integrated development environment
- Web server
- Testing frameworks
- Version control system
- Database management system