There are many steps to designing the perfect website
…. and I like to get everything right, without taking shortcuts.
The Steps in the Web Design Process
1. Meet the Clients – Information Gathering
2. Wireframing and Planning
3. Website design mock-up
4. Coding the Site
5. Testing and Changes
7. Monthly Website Maintenance
Meet the Clients – Information Gathering
Upon meeting my clients for the first time, I will ask questions geared towards finding out as much information about your company as possible. I will find out what you want to achieve from your website and what the main messages you want to display. This will involve questions like; who are your main competitors? What is the purpose of your website? What end goals you want to achieve (increase business by increasing online enquiries, information sharing or to make money)? I will also ask about your target audience, and discuss the best ways to convey information to this type of audience on your website. This will form the basis of how I move forward to achieve a hard hitting and high impact web design.
Wireframing and Planning websites
After gathering the information from phase one, I immerse myself in this information, head to the drawing board and start planning the new website. This is where wireframing for the site is developed.
Wireframing is basically designing the framework of the website before the main web design begins. The most important areas of the website are focused on in order to develop the best possible user experience. The wireframing process is vital to the success of the website as important information on your homepage should form a basis to how you want customers navigate through your website. Site design for the target audience forms a basis for how the user interface is planned.
As a web designer, I decide what web technologies would work well with your site and consult clients on the best route forward. This includes stuff like including responsive web design in HTML 5 and CSS3, typography, mobile web design, slideshows, interactive forms, newsletter sign-ups, email marketing software and so on.
Website design mock-up
Using the information gained through my research, I design the look and feel of your website. Focusing on the target audience, I design according to the design brief, coming up with creative solutions to displaying information with sound user experience. Website designs are intuitive and based around the branding of the company. Brand consistency is important, using brand guidelines as a bible throughout.
Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop are used to create website graphics, icons and wizardry. At the request of the client, I will create an offline version the site so they can login to view the progress on the website. Once the site mock-up has been designed and changes have been approved, I move onto the website build. I stay in close communication with my clients to make sure they are happy every step of the web design process and take onboard constructive criticism.
Coding websites in HTML 5 and CSS3
This is where the website is built and coded using valid HTML 5 and CSS3 conforming to the latest web accessibility standards and guidelines. Most new builds are done in WordPress so clients have full control over their website with a CMS system. This allows them to update and manage their website quickly and easily at the touch of a button. WordPress has many advantages as it provides an easy to use management system for clients to update and maintain their own website.
Website Testing and Changes
Once the website is built, the testing phase begins. I will test functionality of online forms, cross browser compatibility. I also make sure images are optimised for fast page load times.
Once clients are 100% completely satisfied with the website design, the website is uploaded via FTP to the hosting servers for all to admire and rigorously tested again. You can now promote the new launch of your website to the public!
It is now time for the website hand over to the clients. If you want to make an impact on rankings you should not however leave your website stagnant as the more unique content and interesting blog news stories you upload, the more search engines like it. I usually provide a Content Management System for you to manage your own website, but I am always happy to continue working with you. I offer very reasonable hourly and monthly maintenance packages to help you make changes to your website.
Website Monthly Maintenance
I offer monthly website updates to keep your website running smoothly. I can do everything from updating images, text, upgrading hosting, adding blogs, coding changes and site overhauls! Just get in touch with my on the form on my contact page to discuss your requirements.