Plan + Roadmap
2: website design goals + strategy + sitemap + content + managing scope creep
Our clearly defined website design process involves outlining the steps that need to be taken to complete design and functionality. Following our well-defined and documented web design process cuts down on the time to complete the project, improves the efficiency and ensures that none of the crucial steps are missed. This is the most important step in the process. In this phase, we’ll create key steps to build a better picture. Steps include:
- What objective does your website need to accomplish and what problem does it solve?
- Who are the target users of your website?
- What’s the intended benefit users would get out of using your website?
- What’s your website’s primary aim – informing, selling, getting users to sign up for a service, or something else?
The answers to these questions should be included within the creative brief you prepare for us. This gives us a much-needed sense of direction to your design project, without which things would most likely go awry.
Scope creep is a very common occurrence in web development.
If the project’s scope keeps expanding and widening during the design and development phase it will extend the estimated timelines and eventually requiring budget extensions. Setting up realistic timelines and strategic planning is critical to the project’s long-term success and avoid unnecessary scope creep.
Here are main things to address within the planning phase:
Programming language and content management systems
If the website is intended to be a source of information for its users, content management systems like WordPress would likely meet your requirements. On the other hand, if you are looking to build an e-commerce website, unique web frameworks would suit your needs better.
WordPress. The main benefits of this system is the framework does not require to be built from scratch: we can adapt, add custom coding and use a theme structure with functions that are tried and tested. WordPress is an economical option to build a wonderful website.
Unique web framework. The benefits of having your unique framework is that it will perform and function exactly to your specific custom requirements. The key considerations here is time and cost as the website framework will have to be developed, built and tested from scratch.
The sitemap provides an insight into the website’s information architecture. Building a sitemap prior to beginning with the actual design phase helps you plan more effective website navigation.
- Wireframing is the foundation of a well-designed website. It provides a framework for the website’s visual design and content elements and acts as a guide to the final look of the website. The sitemap and wireframes are like the blueprint of your website that form the building blocks of the final website.
- The wireframe and the sitemap also act as a guide to the content distribution and placement within the website. The design can be focused on the most important webpages and the content silos designed for efficiency to help attain the website objectives. There are multiple prototyping tools you can pick to design your website’s wireframe.
Content is the raison d’etre for a website. The value it provides is the reason users decide to visit the website, so the importance of a well-planned content strategy cannot be stressed enough.
- Content development has to take place with an SEO strategy in place to ensure the website content reaches its target audience.
- A well-planned content strategy boosts a site’s visibility in the search engine rankings. Optimization, using tools such as Google Analytics, is a must for content creation.