A total of 50 milliseconds. That’s how long your website has to get the attention of someone that lands on your page. The question is, do you know how to create a design that will grab someone’s attention?
Luckily, there is a process you can go through to create an excellent design for your visitors.
It pays to know how the website design process works before you start the process yourself. Keep reading to learn what the web design process is really like.
Determine Your Goal
It isn’t enough to throw up a website without thinking about what its goal will be. Do you want to use your site to inform people about a subject, sell a product, or increase your authority in an industry?
Without knowing your website goal, it’s hard to create the best website design for your needs. Each page needs a design that contributes to the end goal for your site.
Here are a few goals to consider if you aren’t sure of what you need:
- Product sales
- Email list collection
- Brand building
- Lead funnel
- Community building
Think about this before you start the web design process. When you do, you can tell your web designer precisely what you want to get the site you need.
Figure Out Your Audience
You aren’t finished with the planning process once you identify a goal for your website. If all you do is design a site for that goal and don’t take the people using the site into consideration, you’ll have a more challenging time convincing people to take action on your site.
Look at what your website offers and think about your most ideal visitor and customer. Here are a few things to think about when thinking about this:
- Visitor demographics
- Reason for visiting your website
- Problems to solve
Each of these things will help you create an audience persona. Once you have your persona, you have more data to use in your website design. Having these audience personas will help you design your site in a way that appeals to your audience and will make it more likely for them to become fans or customers.
Create a Website Wireframe
Once you know the who and why for your website, it’s time to start laying the foundations. Before you begin the hard work of design, you need to create a website plan.
A wireframe will help you do this. By creating a wireframe, you’re making a layout of your website before touching a line of code or creating any graphics. Doing this will help you plan the look, navigation, and user journey for your users.
Make sure you don’t create these wireframes on your own and hand them off straight to a designer. Get feedback on your idea and incorporate any ideas that seem helpful.
Create Your Design
Once you have a wireframe dealing with every part of your website, it’s time to create your design. Don’t immediately start coding during this phase. Create a mockup of your design before you make it live.
Creating a mockup will let you further tweak your wireframes. As you add color, images, and other website elements to your site, you’ll probably change your mind about some site elements. Modifying a mockup is easier to do than changing an already coded website.
Doing this also gives your designers a way to communicate what they want with developers. Programming and designing are different skillsets. Sometimes visualization of what’s required is a better way to show developers what they need to do.
Program Your Website Design
Once you finalize your design, it’s time to make it a reality. That’s where website coding comes into play.
The chances are good that you won’t start from scratch. Most web admins use website software to maintain their websites. Here are a few popular ones for you to consider:
Each one of those has a unique use case, so make sure you understand the pros and cons of each one. Once you decide on a platform, you can use a developer to code your design using a website template.
Test for Problems
The last thing you want to do is immediately launch your website once it’s complete. It’s easy to make small mistakes when developing and designing. The chances are good that there will be minor issues with your site before it launches.
Go through all your website pages to look for problems. Read your content to ensure it’s all accurate and is grammatically correct. Once you complete your content audit, look through your design to make sure everything looks right.
Of course, you’ll need to test your design on multiple screen sizes. Your designer should have created a responsive design to create an excellent experience for mobile users. Use the developer console in your browser to test those screen sizes for issues.
You can also use a process like Seamless Usability Testing to ensure everything works well for users.
Launch Your Website
Once you test your site for issues and resolve any you discover, it’s time to launch your site. However, it isn’t as simple as pushing the live button. There are some things you need to do before you’re ready to send real visitors to your site:
- Verify SEO on every page
- Install analytics on every page
- Provide training for web admins
Once you complete those tasks, it’s time to launch for the rest of the world. Come up with a marketing plan to get visitors and start taking action.
Now You’re Ready to Start the Website Design Process Yourself
It’s essential to know how a project works before starting the process, and web design are no different. Without knowledge of the website design process, you’ll get stuck wondering what to do at every step. However, now that you know more about getting a website design done, you’re ready to start the process yourself.
Of course, getting a website online won’t guarantee that people will find your site. Head back to the blog to learn more about making your website known on the internet.