Website creation process

6 stages of webdesign and webdevelopment

/ Webdevelopment, Webdesign

Most people outside of this field don’t have a clear idea on how websites are made and what stages the entire project has to go through. So I decided to write down this article, so that even you have the opportunity to glimpse behind website creation. To illustrate this, I’ll be using an example where the client needs a brand new website.

  1. Getting information
  2. Preparation
  3. Webesign a revision
  4. Website coding
  5. Testing
  6. Launch and technical support

Getting information

Stage 1 – Getting information

The first step is, naturally, a contact with my client. In most cases it begins with an e-mail, and later we can communicate via phone or, if distance permits, personal meeting.

I’ll talk with the client about their website and what they are expecting to gain from the website. To get the most accurate quote, I usually send my customer a simple questionnare about their website. It will help me understand what the client needs and will help me get comprehensive information. At the same time it forces the client to think about their website in depth and they will get a clearer picture of what they want if they’re unsure. This way we also eliminiate or minimize the need for too many revisions and unpleasant surprised. After I evaluate the questionnare, I might have some additional questions for the client. Client’s sketches also help.

If my client does not have a domain or webhosting, I will help them choose the right one for their needs.

 
 
 

Preparation

Stage 2 – Preparation

In this step I’ll take all of the information I have and transform them into visual shape via a simple pencil and paper. I don’t sketch in too many details, only the basic layout and main elements.

If my client needs a custom made logo, I also sketch a few variations.

 
 
 

Webdesign and revision

Stage 3 – Webdesign and revision

Webdesign itself comes in phase 3. I work with the Corel Draw X3 graphic editor. It consists of a vector editor (Adobe Illustrator alternative), bitmap editor Corel Photo-Pain (Photoshop alternative) and other useful tools. I’ll make a first design according to client’s specifications. If my client hasn’t yet provided any materials I could use (texts, images), I’ll use the Lorem ipsum filler text and stock photos, which can be bought later or switched with client’s own photos. More about webdesign here.

Then I’ll send the finished first draft to the client to get feedback. If they like the design and they have no other problems with it, I’ll design the rest of the pages and continue onto phase 4. If some things are not quite right, I’ll make the changes and send the corrected design back. The maximum number of revisions is 5; the questionnare should eliminate or minimize any revisions. If more revisions are needed, then we have to go back to step 1.

 
 
 

Website coding

Stage 4 – Website coding

At this point we can leave the design process and begin coding the website itself. At this stage I know what my client needs, so I can choose whether he needs a Content Management System (CMS) or a simple website without any. I’ll code the website by hand and if necessary convert it into a CMS template. If my client sent me the content to use, I’ll edit it in. More about webdevelopment here.

 
 
 

Testing

Stage 5 – Testing

Before launching the website, it is absolutely necessary to test it. First I test the website myself, then I’ll provide access to my client. Two pairs of eyes are better than one, and any mistakes or errors I might have missed can be then corrected.

If my client requests a responsive webdesign, I also test the website on mobile devices and smaller screens.

It’s necessary to test websites in all modern browsers (Firefox, Opera, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer 8-10) and W3C validity testing.

 
 
 

Launch and technical support

Stage 6 – Launch and technical support

Once the website passed all the tests, it’s launched into the internet for everyone to see. The client is given access details. If the website uses a CMS, I can provide an user course on how to operate it (in person, Skype or email) and can provide self-written documentation.

Our teamwork does not end when your website is launched, I can offer the client free technical support.

Do you have any questions? Don’t hesitate to ask!

photo Marjan Krebelj (flickr), Henry Söderlund (flickr)


Webdesigner Dana Svedova

I'm a freelance webdesigner and my hobbies include reading, writing and music. During my experience in this industry, I have participated in a variety of projects. I pride myself on personal communication with my clients, responsible and thorough approach to the project.

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