Website development is separate from the design of the visual aspects of a site. This is where the development team focuses on the features and functionality. It is all about coding and programming so that the website will function exactly how you want it to. Having great website development is something that will give you competitive advantage and boosts your online presence.
In this first step the focus will be to gather all the necessary information for the project. You need a clear and defined understanding of what the purpose of your website is and the goals of it. One of the most important aspects needed in this step is your target audience. Curating and providing the development team with as much information as possible will help them to develop the best strategy possible.
Once all of the goals, purpose of the site, and target audience is clear, the next step is a well thought out plan for the website. Using the information gathered from the first step, a sitemap and wireframe are developed. The sitemap is a file where there is provided information about the web pages, images, videos, files, and the relationships between all of them. It will show how all the pages coincide together and how the overall navigation will be structured. Wireframes on the other hand, are essentially blueprints of the website structure laid out and helps the programmers and designers with the project. They are also known as mockups of the website. They don’t show any actual design and are just a backbone. Researching and gathering information on your target audience will also be done, determining the best design style for your website.
Next is the design phase. This is where your website begins to take shape. All visual content such as images, videos, logos, etc. is created. The website page layouts will come to life and work in harmony with one another. The target audience, goals, and purpose will be factors that are taken into consideration during this step. Features, integrations, buttons, animations, graphics, etc. will be created by the team and will give your website its overall functionality. Communication between you and the development team is crucial during this step and should be constant so that the best website can be achieved.
This part of the process is often intermingled during the design stage but it is something that should not be overlooked or underestimated. Content writing is the essence of communication to your audience as it relates to the user interface of the website. It is the process of adding calls-to-action, headlines, and any text on the site. Website content may include but is not limited to: landing pages, product or service descriptions, testimonials, reviews, case studies, about info, blog posts, videos, images, newsletters, white papers, and social media posts.
Coding is the next step in which development finalizes. With all of the elements created in the previous steps, purpose, goals, wireframe, design, and content, the development team will code everything into a functional website.
Once the website is fully developed, testing it is the next step and it is an important one. Every page has to be tested to make sure that all links are working and that everything is displayed correctly among different browsers and platforms. It’s important now more than ever that a website doesn’t just display properly on a computer, but that it also does on tablets and phones. There should be a series of rigorous tests to be sure that there are no bugs. There should even be a spell check test performed on the site. Every single last detail is checked in this phase before it can do live.
After your website is launched, the work is never done. Websites are not just a one and done type of thing unfortunately. They require constant care, attention, and maintenance. Does that mean that if you don’t pay attention 24/7 your site will break down or have issues? No. However, you should regularly check on your site and it is important to continually update content, keep up to date on features and software used, fixing broken links, running security tests, etc. All of this is important in having a successful website.
Web development is something that everyone is in contact with almost every single day without even knowing it. Think about how many websites on average a person is on every day. Each one of those was built with website development. The website development process consists of many essential stages necessary in creating a stunning and effective website.