The structural nature of heterointerfaces in core-shell semiconductor quantum dots (QDs) plays a crucial role in tailoring their optical properties. In this work we have focused on using surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy as a nondestructive tool to investigate the structural evolution of such interfaces in CdSe/CdS and CdSe/Cd0.5Zn0.5S colloidal QDs. A comparison between the two systems shows significant structural variation across the core-shell interfaces for the two different materials: a smooth interface for the former and an abrupt interface for the latter. This structural difference modifies the electronic structure within the QDs, which directly dictates the confinement behavior of the electrons and holes. The implications of this translate to a better understanding of why graded CdSe/CdS/Cd 0.5Zn0.5S/ZnS QDs are so lucrative for linear and nonlinear fluorescence-based applications.