What is the Web Design Process?
The process of designing a website is much more than just the technical aspects like coding and creating new layouts. There should be planning in all aspects of the process to design a successful and profitable website. The first step in planning for the design of a website is determining you wish to accomplish with the webpage. Do you want it to directly sell products or services, build a brand name, or provide an online application? Once you have decided on the central purpose of your website you want to stick to that throughout the process as it can be adapted to other specified goals later on.
Give your Site a Purpose
When deciding on whether or not to hire outside help to build and develop a website, you should take a look at the budget and determine if this will be a long term or a short-term site to promote the business or product. With a long-term webpage there will need to be an easily update design in place to allow for updates and new content to go into the site opposed to a site that has a short lifespan. With a short-term strategy you won’t want to put as much money or resources into it as the profitability of the site will be only open for a short period of time. The site’s strategy will determine the quality of designer that is chosen and the designer should be well informed of the purpose of the site to accurately design a page to fit your needs.
Incorporate your Marketing Strategy
While working with the designer you should be sure to incorporate details of you marketing strategy such as your target audience and your planned method of promoting the site. After the website is completed by the designer, you will usually have to take the competed design to a coder to have everything coded and implemented unless you find someone that does both. In most cases designers and coders work independently but there are some that are knowledgeable in both expertise or if you hire a firm to create the site they will typically provide all of the service required in house.
Develop a Clean and Captivating Layout
The layout of the site should reflect your strategy and should obviously be user friendly or at least usable for the viewers you intend to target. Most sites should have a site map to be easier for users to navigate especially if the site is larger and has several navigable pages but also more importantly is search engine friendly.
The site should be appealing to users but also it should be optimized for the search engines, which is the source of most traffic unless you already have a well-established name in the industry. SEO or search engine optimization is one of the greatest strategies to have when designing a web site because of the traffic that originates from this method is free once you have been established and ranked in the search engines.
While designing a webpage you should keep in mind the methods you will use to drive traffic to the website whether it is paid traffic though advertising banners or paid searches through the search engines. You can also utilize SEO or search engine optimization to build free traffic through the site’s rankings in user searches. Purchasing advertising if in the strategy or budget permitting, the site’s design needs to be setup in a way to accurately track the sources of traffic so you know exactly where it is coming from so you can eliminate advertising that is not working and increase what is working. Social media can be a great tool to integrate into the strategy to accomplish the goals of your site.
Facebook, for example is a great way to build followers with a page and drive more traffic to your site through buzz and word of mouth that is passed around the popular networking site like wild fire. Facebook also has a great advertising section of the page to create short ads that will display to users when they are browsing other people’s pages. The results for paid Facebook advertising are unique in that the results are very quick and the amount of target demographic information available to choose from is much more than any other sites like the search engines.
Twitter is also another great tool to use to build buzz around the web about your company or webpage. With Twitter you can also build followers than will continue to check in on your page or website for updates or new products which is a great method of building a long-term business strategy.