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What Does a Web3 Developer Do?

Published on 
January 5, 2023
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Web3 Dev
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It's early days, but web3 is predicted to become a $68 billion-worth industry by 2026.

The proof is in the rising demand for blockchain and crypto-related roles.

Job listings for tech roles in web3 and crypto increased by almost 400% from 2020 to 2021, and the biggest tech firms and global brands are taking notice of this monumental paradigm shift as they ramp up their web3 efforts.

So, if you’re looking for a job in web3 as a blockchain developer, software developer, or web development professional, you’re just in time: there are plenty of opportunities for in-demand web3 talent, as evidenced by the number of open positions on job sites and crypto job boards.

Best of all, compared to the traditional developer and tech-related roles, starting salaries for web3 developers are significantly higher.

For instance, the average base salary is $70k for junior web3 developers to a maximum of $200k for experienced web3 developers. On the other hand, the average base salary for a smart contract developer ranges from $60k for junior Rust developers to $180k for experienced smart contract development professionals.

That said, what do web3 developers actually do, and what skills do they need to succeed in this brave new era of the decentralized internet powered by blockchain technology, smart contracts, and cryptocurrencies?

Read on to find out.

Who Is a Web3 Developer?

To build apps and develop smart contracts on web3, aspiring web3 developers need to have a good working knowledge or a solid background in traditional web development and software development skills.

An aspiring web3 developer must have the requisite knowledge of programming languages involved in smart contract development, a good understanding of how smart contracts work, how to write smart contracts, and how to build decentralized apps (dapps) across blockchain platforms.

This requires technical skills such as Rust, Solidity, JavaScript frameworks (React, Vue, Svelte), knowledge of smart contract platforms, front-end programming skills, and programming language experience in C++, Python, and Go.

Moreover, a strong understanding of data structures and data algorithms is also a prerequisite every web3 developer must possess.

Web3 developers also need soft skills such as time management, organization, and effective communication skills to succeed in the field.

What Languages Does a Web3 Developer Work With?

Web3 professionals devote significant amounts of time to learning programming languages – one of the most essential skills to transition and become a web3 developer.

That said, choosing one to master requires quite a bit of trust that the chosen language will gain popularity and mass adoption in the future of blockchain development.

The best hedge for aspiring web3 developers is familiarizing themselves with several languages.

Nowadays, developers have learned popular languages such as Solidity, Rust, JavaScript (and JavaScript frameworks), Python, and C++, among others. Developers with traditional web development backgrounds trained in the most relevant languages will find the career shift from web2 to web3 more manageable.

Two of the most widely-used programming languages web3 developers use in dapp development and writing smart contracts are Solidity and Rust, which exist for different blockchain networks.

Solidity powers smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain, while Rust powers smart contracts on the Solana blockchain.

Let's take a high-level overview of the basic properties of these primary languages used in creating smart contracts for web3.


Rust is a general programming language used by blockchain networks such as Solana, NEAR, Polkadot, Elrond, and Zcash, to name a few.

Moreover, Rust is seen as an ideal smart contract language due to its type-safe and memory-safe characteristics.

This language enables web3 developers to write and edit low-level code, implement controls, and manage memory, leading to a natural coding experience for the Rust developer.

These factors make Rust a leading programming language that many blockchain developers add to their core dev skills.

Metacrafters courses are starting with Rust, as it is a foundation of one of the fastest-growing and performing blockchains, Solana.


Solidity is a widely-used smart contract programming language in web3.

Solidity enables web3 developers to write and deploy smart contracts across any Ethereum Virtual Machine-compatible blockchain, including Ethereum, Avalanche, Polygon, Arbirtrum, Polkadot, BNB Chain (Binance Smart Chain), and many others.

Solidity code is Turing-complete and object-oriented due to its heavy influences derived from C++, Python, and JavaScript, making it an excellent choice for traditional web developers with prior experience to get started in developing smart contracts for web3 right away.

Moreover, if you decide to learn Solidity and become a Solidity developer, you will gain access to the largest web3 ecosystem with the widest selection of developer tools and support resources. Solidity is a great place to start for new web3 developers due to the versatility of its smart contracts, devoted community support, and established coding practices.

Typical Web3 Developer Roadmap

There's no one-size-fits-all roadmap on how to become a web3 developer because there are multiple different ways to approach it. Much of it will be decided by your current skill set and relevant web development or software development experience.

Each individual has their own unique path, but in general, here is a practical approach that many experienced and fresh developers have used to crack into web3.

Go Where The Growth Is

Pick a web3 area where there is a lot of growth, and go all-in on that.

For example, the Metacrafters course is focused on Rust (at the moment) as it is one of the fastest-growing programming languages and is loved for its safety, speed, and efficiency.

Last but not least, it is the main language of Solana - a very promising blockchain that many predict a bright future!

This is a great way to focus your development efforts as you will be able to learn and grow with the language rather than playing catch-up.

Focus solely on one blockchain at the start

There are more programming languages decentralized networks use than just Solidity and Rust. However, most web3 developers begin coding on Ethereum, considering it is the development environment with the most maturity and web3 developer mindshare in the blockchain space.

The heart of Ethereum is the EVM, or the Ethereum Virtual Machine – which platform developers use to create smart contracts for all sorts of decentralized applications, such as decentralized finance (DeFi), NFTs, and other programs.

Another reason to begin on Ethereum is its massive blockchain developer community you can seek guidance and learn from.

Harness the power of web3 IDEs/SDKs

SDKs (Software Development Kits) and IDEs (Integrated Development Environment) make creating web3 apps and smart contracts so easy by automating the development process and eliminating the need to code everything from scratch – across various platforms or needs.

Participate in web3 developer communities

There's no question that web3 development is an exciting, constantly evolving technology at the forefront of change.

But the challenges are real – especially for noobs.

If you go on the web3 developer journey alone, you can lose literally years trying to progress. There will always be fellow web3 developers miles ahead of your development and willing to impart their knowledge to you – and you will find them across the global network of web3 communities. You will find them on Discord, Telegram, Github, and Reddit, apart from many other social platforms.

Metacrafters has a lively Discord community of over 15,000 aspiring Web3 developers, who are ready to help and share the obstacles that they are facing

Engage, contribute, and participate – part of the beauty of web3 is the spirit of supportive collaboration.

What Projects Do Web3 Developers Work On?

Web3 is still a fledgling technology – it's so new that the projects web3 developers build constantly change.

However, web3 developers have created several standards and projects that are doing quite well for themselves in the form of projects that someone who wants to become a web3 developer would need to create at a point in their career.

These blockchain projects help you gain a greater appreciation of the bigger picture and learn frameworks, patterns, pros, and cons.

Here are some projects that you'll learn from the fast way.

Launch New Tokens

Ever wanted to launch your own cryptocurrency? It's easier to create new tokens than you may think. Cryptocurrencies have opened a slew of opportunities to create value and generate revenue streams, and what better way to address the steep learning curve than learning by doing?

ERC-20 is a standard used to create and issue smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. Consequently, all cryptocurrencies on Ethereum that use ERC-20, making it among the primary projects web3 developers work on. The knowledge that you will gain from launching your own new token will serve as the foundation from where you will build other web3 projects in the future.

NFTs and NFT marketplaces

Now that NFTs have become widely known, launching an NFT collection or an NFT marketplace offers fantastic opportunities for web3 developers who want to have the prerequisite knowledge of how NFTs are made. They can use this knowledge whether they work for a brand, a client, or freelancing as a web3 developer.

Additionally, they'll learn how to use the Interplanetary File System (IPFS), a decentralized storage provider used heavily by web3 devs, as well as oracles, which help pull live market price data for web3 marketplace frontends.

You can learn how to make an NFT in one of the Metacrafters intro modules

Smart Contracts

Smart contracts refer to programs stored on a blockchain network that are automatically run when predetermined conditions are satisfied. They are essentially smart contract code deployed on-chain, written in a language that the blockchain network can run.

From fungible cryptocurrencies to non-fungible assets, smart contracts can do them all. They also take up a good portion of a web3 developer and their responsibilities, so a firm base on Solidity or the language of your choice will be extremely valuable.

Decentralized Applications

Decentralized applications or dapps refer to programs built over blockchains composed of the following components:

  • a standard front end created using web development skills like JavaScript and HTML;
  • a Solidity/Rust backend, which determines the moving parts that interact with the blockchain the program is built on.

Frontends need an interface to interact with the blockchain. That's where JavaScript libraries focused on web3 like ethers.js and Web3.js come in,

Web3.js is used to create clients that interface with Ethereum and read data from smart contracts, and write smart contracts. Ethers.js is a lightweight but comprehensive interface for Ethereum, which can be seen as a general-purpose library to create decentralized applications. Creating dapps is an essential part in the life of a web3 developer.

Decentralized Exchange

Last but not least, decentralized exchanges (DEX) are yet another keystone project web3 devs work on. They enable permissionless P2P buying and selling of transactions governed by smart contracts.

A web3 developer who has had experience with building a decentralized exchange will have demonstrated the requisite web3 skills and knowledge needed to put together a safe, secure, and up-to-date exchange. Examples of decentralized exchanges to draw inspiration from include Uniswap. And if you hit a road block in attempting to make one, just look at their open-source source codes to see how they did it and how you can make your own changes to it.

Key Takeaways on How to Become a Web3 Developer

Web3 is still in its earliest phases, and the industry offers a myriad of opportunities for professional growth, advancement, and career prospects.

You'll have a chance to work with some of the leading companies and use the latest technologies to create interesting, worthwhile projects as a web3 developer.

And if you've already been working in tech, you have a distinct advantage – and web3 development is a fantastic step in elevating your traditional web development knowledge and experience.

With the right mindset and skills, you can become a web3 developer and enjoy a rewarding, exciting career at the forefront of tech.

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