During the planning stage we’ll work together to plan the road map for your project.
During the requirements phase we’ll discuss your goals, target audience, detailed feature requests and as much relevant information as you can possibly provide. Even if you have carefully planned out your website, I may challenge a few of your ideas to help determine if they’re going to be the best approach for your business online.
Deliverable: User stories
We’ll review the structure of your website to ensure that it guides end users that need to find a piece of information quickly.
You’ll be presented with a contract agreement including payment terms and other legal details.
Deliverable: Signed contract
At this point I’ll gain access to your servers, and build the basic folder structure for your content management system. I’ll run a few tests to ensure that your server works well with the open source software we are using.
Deliverable: FTP host, username and password; control panel log-in information; database access
The design stage typically involves moving the information outlined in the planning stage further into reality. We’ll work together to design the specific templates we outlined during the site map planning phase, making revisions as necessary to get the design aligned with your company goals.
Upon completion of the design phase, the website should more or less have taken shape, with the absence of the content, special features, and interactivity.
For larger, more technical designs I recommend beginning with a wireframe or paper prototype. Wireframing is similar to blueprinting in architecture, and will help us plan the layout of information before applying a visual design.
Visual design mockups
At this point I will design visual representations of your website, or mock-ups, in Photoshop. We’ll follow an agile rinse and repeat process until we get the design right.
Once we have approved design mockups for each unique template we determined in our requirements phase we can start the initial coding of your website.
Quite often, there will be design elements that we tackle during this phase. It’s very productive to design certain aspects of a website with CSS and HTML5 as apposed to Photoshop.
Interactive elements come later: for now, we’re getting the visuals together on screen, and ensuring quality craftsmanship that will be easy to maintain in the future.
Setup the environment
At this point we’ll kick off the development process by working offline to speed up the process. Working offline allows me to see updates as a I code, making the process very productive.
Once I have a working version of your ready offline, I’ll upload it to a temporary web address, such as staging.yourcompany.com, for you to review. We’ll get on the phone to go through the website, documenting any changes or adjustments that you need. This generally follows a rinse and repeat process to ensure quality.
Training & Fill with content
Once the site is polished and ready, we’ll get on the phone and I will show you how to manage the content throughout your website. Once you have a solid understanding of the content management system you can add the content to your website yourself, or we can do it for you.
Quality assurance and browser testing
After the content has been added to the website we’ll run through the site in various web browser and mobile devices to ensure that the design is preserved, and the website professional.
Once everything is in order, It’s time to schedule the fireworks, pop the champagne, and push the big red button that launches your website live.