How Much Money Can I Make as a Backend Developer?
Jun 7, 2021
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Backend web developers are the coders, Java enthusiasts, and data pros who work behind-the-scenes to keep the websites and apps we love operating smoothly. Think about when you’re browsing Netflix for something to watch and you receive a list of movies especially recommended for you, or when you’re searching for a product on Amazon and get several pages of optimized results. These are two common examples of features  backend developers made possible. 

Programmers who work in backend web development design, build, and maintain the server side infrastructure of a website, optimizing servers for speed and stability, helping a site remain secure, and generating reusable code libraries and data storage solutions. They’re highly sought after by the biggest companies in the world for their knowledge and skills. For someone who loves problem solving, a job in backend web development can be incredibly rewarding.

So, what does a backend career look like? What does it take to become a backend developer? Here are some quick facts to get you started. 

Are backend web developers in high demand?

Absolutely. Web development of any kind is one of the most rapidly growing industries in the country, and the demand for developers continues to increase. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the growth rate of software developer jobs between 2019-2029 at 22%—that’s two times the average growth rate of all occupations in the U.S.

One thing to note about backend engineering is that it can be challenging and require a lot of work to learn. That’s why it is such a desirable skill set in tech. It’s a field best suited for individuals who are familiar with and experienced in coding.  

How much are backend web developers paid? 

According to Glassdoor, the median salary for backend web developers is $109k, with the low end of the pay spectrum at $74k and the high end at $160k. When it comes to frontend vs. backend salary, Glassdoor reports that frontend developers earn an average of $77k per year, notably less than backend developers. 

What qualifications do I need to become a backend developer?

There are lots of moving parts in backend that prospective web developers should be familiar with in order to do well in the field. To start, backend developers should have an understanding of CSS, HTML, and JavaScript. They also need to be fluent in more advanced programming languages, such as Java, Python, SQL, and Ruby on Rails. These languages are key to running backend infrastructure that keeps sites operational. 

In addition to languages, backend developers need to know their way around servers, databases, and database management systems, such as PostgreSQL, Oracle, and AWS DynamoDB. Backend web developers work intimately with data daily, so being familiar with the tools that move and store it is critical. 

Here are a few other concepts that backend developers need to be well-versed in: 

  • Platforms and APIs
  • Language frameworks, such as MySQL, Django, Apache, etc. 
  • Data structures and algorithms 
  • Advanced math
  • Analytics 

Prospective developers looking for the best jobs should consider gaining a wide knowledge of backend languages and frameworks to stand out. 

In addition to these technical skills, backend developers need to be excellent communicators, have good attention to detail and be able to meet tight deadlines. No person is an island in the world of software engineering. Working well in a team setting is an important part of the job. 

How do I become backend web developer?

Now you have an idea of what it takes to be a backend developer, an idea of what to expect, and you’re eager to get started. How do you do that exactly?

There are a variety of ways to gain the skills you need to excel as a backend developer, and some may work better for you than others. Many opt for a formal, four-year degree in computer programming at an accredited university to learn the ins and outs of backend. For many others, an online bootcamp is a more affordable and accessible option. If you’re looking for something in the latter category, Lambda School may be the perfect fit for you. 

This fall, Lambda School is launching a new 9-month online backend development course designed to give students comprehensive, immersive education on the languages, frameworks, and skills they need to learn backend web dev and be a standout candidate in the job market. Lambda’s backend course is taught by industry experts who will equip you with knowledge of backend languages, Java programming, data structures and algorithms, software engineering, and more, as well as help you prepare for technical interviews.

At Lambda School, you don’t need to lose sleep over the cost of tuition. Our Lambda Income Share Agreement (ISA) gives you the freedom to pay absolutely nothing until you’re hired in a qualifying job making $50k or more after graduation. If you aren’t hired, you don’t pay, simple as that. 

Lambda School’s online course option gives you the freedom to complete your education wherever you need to, and our ultimate goal is to help you find a career that you love.

Ready to launch your new career? Start your application now!

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