Is your website not creating traction for your business? Are you questioning what goes into the website design process?
It might be a lot more than you think. Every company takes a different approach when it comes to creating a new website, however, below we have listed out the process our experts at Hey Now! Media take to create a site that looks beautiful and creates quality leads and sales. Let’s dive in!
1. Wireframes and Homepage Design
A website always begins with a clear understanding of its desired goals and the research that accompanies it. A detailed wireframe is created to help organize both the content, layout and general flow of the website. Here’s an example, say you’re doing an event with a landing page in which you want to attract lead generation. We would then decide to put contact forms on different parts of the page so that wherever your user is at on your site, they see a spot to sign up. You also want to include a strong contact form in the top right corner – this way when the page loads the user can immediately see this form and can put in their information.
A wireframe also allows you to do a top-level look at a site without worrying about graphics and colors. This ensures that you are getting the website’s point across without worrying about the attractiveness of the site – we can do all that later!
Next, the homepage is designed. The homepage often acts as a general guideline for the site’s core styles and settings. You’ll have a lot of elements, this could include colors, that all elements have a border around them, and more – the possibilities are endless, but the homepage covers all of that. It is often designed first so we can share the finished product with the client for approval. This makes things a bit easier since many things on the homepage will flow into the subpages. Depending on the complexity of the homepage, we will then also work on mobile and tablet layouts as well. Some companies design this first, however, we just find it a bit easier for clients to visualize the site on the desktop first!
2. Subpage Design and Responsive Breakdown
After the homepage has been created and client approved, we then move on to subpages. Subpages are designed according to the unique layouts to conserve time. This means one product page layout will be designed to accommodate the complete catalog for a client.
All information pages we create use a single layout and content setting, there is no use making a bunch of different pages! We design one subpage and add content at a different date whenever we are ready. This saves time and energy for everyone involved.
We then will begin creating responsive breakdowns. This means all pages are concurrently designed in mobile and tablet layouts to ensure all aspects of the pages remain cohesive regardless of the device. This takes a little bit of time but ensures that whatever you choose to design is viable across all sizes. This is not just helpful for the designer, but for the developer as well – as they are a part of this process!
3. Development and Quality Assurance
After all client approvals, we then move into the development and quality assurance phase. Our designer works hand in hand with our developer to ensure all key actions and elements of the website are explained in full. This way the designer can describe their full vision and work on any problem areas now before the developer gets deep into coding the site.
Throughout and after the development phase, the designer will then engage in an extensive QA process that involves testing across multiple platforms, devices, and screen sizes. This is for quality assurance. Regardless of how airtight you think your site is – someone could come in and break it. So, therefore, why not go in and try and break it yourself – if you can’t, you should be good to go!
The design process typically only takes a few weeks to complete. While that part may be relatively quick, the development process often takes a lot longer. Developers have to build the site not only so it matches what the designer has asked for, but also so that it can be easily edited in the back end using your CMS. There is a lot of work involved in building a site, and it’s not something that can be built in a week.
However, this will all be worth it in the end! When your site goes live there is almost always an immediate increase in conversion rate and there should be no issues updating the site years into the future. It’s better to spend the time now and get it right!
Not sure if your website is up to par? Check out our list of the Top Ten Signs You Need a New Website to find out!