The Web Site Design and Development Process:
Web page design is a process of conceptualization, planning, modeling, and execution of electronic media content delivery via Internet in the form of technologies (such as markup languages) suitable for interpretation and display by a web browser or other web-based graphical user interfaces (GUIs).
There are numerous steps in the web site design and development process. From gathering initial information, to the creation of your web site, and finally to maintenance to keep your web site up to date and current.
Remember, this is just a guide, your project may have needs that are not addressed here. If you’re ready to request your free, no-obligation quote, visit our Website Design Contact page for a Quote or give us a call at 1-860.235.9325.
We may have questions for you to help clarify certain issues and we will express those before quoting on your project.
Phase One: Information Gathering:
Needs & Analysis:
The first step in designing a successful web site is to gather information. Many things need to be taken into consideration when the look and feel of your site is created. This first step is actually the most important one, as it involves a solid understanding of the company it is created for. It involves a good understanding of you – what your business goals and dreams are, and how the web can be utilized to help you achieve those goals.
Determine if you will need any special functionality or interactivity with your visitors; consider the type of design style which appeals to you and then be sure to let us know. Here are a few questions to keep in mind during this stage of your project.
If you have not already done so, you will want to take some time to think about what you wish to accomplish with your new website.
- What is the purpose of this website? (credibility, visibility, sales, branding, information, communications, identity, etc.)
- Who is my target market?
- What kinds of visitors do I want to attract?
- What are my goals for each type of visitor?
- What will make them want to stay for awhile and also return?
- What content should I include to satisfy my purpose and fulfill my goals?
- What and how many pages will I need for the content?
Website Development Quote:
Based on the information you provide when requesting your website design quote, we will attempt to determine your needs, what you are expecting from your website, and try to get a feel for your industry. This is why it is important for you to be as detailed as possible when filling out your free, no-obligation quote.
Website Development Contract:
Once we have come to an agreement on project details, timeline and price, we will prepare a website development contract for you to review, sign and send back with your deposit.
Domain Name Registration / Website Hosting:
If needed, we will immediately secure your desired domain name (pending availability).
If you require hosting services, we can accommodate all your server needs. Many of our clients host their websites with us. We use Network Solutions as our hosting company, and they have great server uptime, lots of features as well as good customer support. This gives us the ability to offer large company support at a fraction of the cost.
The signed contract and 50% deposit is required before we schedule a time slot for your project. The remainder of your balance will be due upon project completion. Once we have received your 50% deposit we will supply you with your project start date. All projects are scheduled on a “first come, first served” basis.
Phase Two: Planning:
Using the information gathered from phase one, it is time to put together a plan for your web site. This is the point where a site map is developed.
You will need to let us know the navigation links you would like (such as home, about us, services, etc) and supply all text and/or product information to be included on your site. In addition, you may also supply material such as company logo, personal photos, etc, if desired.
The site map is a list of all main topic areas of the site, as well as sub-topics, if applicable. This serves as a guide as to what content will be on the site, and is essential to developing a consistent, easy to understand navigational system. The end-user of the web site – aka your customer – must be kept in mind when designing your site. These are, after all, the people who will be learning about your service or buying your product. A good user interface creates an easy to navigate web site, and is the basis for this.
During the planning phase, Lees Design Series will also help you decide what technologies should be implemented. Elements such as interactive forms, eCommerce, flash, etc. will be discussed when planning your web site.
If you have any sample sites you would like us to refer to when designing your site or if you have any preference as to colors, style, etc please offer that information as well.
Ideally, all of the above information should be supplied prior to us getting started.
Upon receipt of your deposit and contract (if applicable), Lee Bailey, Jr. will email you to confirm receipt of your deposit/contract, give you his direct contact information and possibly provide a list of items which will be needed from you over the course of development.
Work will commence on your scheduled start date. Lee Bailey, Jr. will contact you on that day to confirm that we are getting started.
Phase Three: Graphic Design:
Design and Graphics:
Impact prospective customers with Flash intros, Streaming Video, and high end graphics on your website and project the image and professionalism of a much larger company. Compete by employing high end new technology resources that go from showing information with images to employing audio, flash video or animated multimedia presentations with voice over!
A website that impacts SELLS MORE !
Custom Designed Website Concepts:
We will provide you a custom designed home page concept for your project. In most cases, we will be able to provide this design within 3-5 business days following your start date. Most of our clients leave the design concept up to Lee to decide.
After you have reviewed the design and approve it, we will continue to make modifications to the design until the final desired look is achieved. Once the final desired look is achieved, we will create the interior page layout, convert the design to HTML or php, add programming, etc.
In Progress Viewing:
We establish a private directory for your new website on our testing server so that you may view the website development progress at any time. In addition, Lee Bailey, Jr. will inform you via email when extensive updates to the site have been made so you can review the most recent progress.
Professional Stock Photography:
All projects include use of professional stock photography images from our current library. If a client requires stock photography which we do not currently possess, an additional fee may apply.
Phase Four: Development:
The developmental stage is the point where the web site itself is created.
at this time, Lees Design series will create and include all website development programming and coding into your new custom website design. This will also include any special features, visitor interactivity, videos, etc. needed. (Based upon quote request).
Elements such as interactive contact forms, flash animations or eCommerce shopping carts are implemented and made functional during this phase, as well.
We will completely test all items on your website prior to it’s launch.
Based upon your contract and the final design you selected, we create as many static or dynamic pages as needed to complete your site.
Navigation links or drop down menus, and rollover effects, if desired, are completed.
Incorporation of your logo, photos and text content is included in all projects. Custom logo design is available for an additional fee, please inquire if interested.
Response Forms / Email Contact Forms:
We always recommend at least one contact form for your visitor’s convenience. Using a contact form, a visitor can email you directly from your website without needing to open their email program. This is especially convenient if a visitor is not using their own computer when their email program is not available.
For E-Commerce sites that require us to enter products for you, we will need you to supply an Excel spread sheet listing the following: Product Name, Unique Product ID Number (if any), Product Description, Options (if any – size, color, etc), Price, Approximate Weight, Number in Stock, as well as the product photos named in correspondence with the Product ID Number on the spread sheet.
CSS Stylesheets are used to define font faces, styles, sizes and colors for consistency throughout the site.
Creation of a site map page is done which includes easy one-click access to all pages of your site.
A favicon is a small image that displays in the address bar and on the favorites menu when someone bookmarks or adds your website to their “Favorites”. Creation of a favicon is included in all custom website development projects.
Phase Five: Testing:
At this point, Lees Design Series will attend to the final details and test your web site. We will test things such as the complete functionality of forms or other scripts, as well testing for last minute compatibility issues (viewing differences between different web browsers), ensuring that your web site is optimized to be viewed properly in the most recent browser versions.
Search Engine Readiness Check:
Meta Tags, Page Titles, Page Heading, Alt Image Tags, Link Text, and Page Body Text evaluation and adjustment where needed throughout the website. At no time can we guarantee when or where the search engines will place your website within their search results or directory. However, we strive to get you the highest rankings possible.
Browser Compatibility Testing:
Your website is tested on a variety of operating systems and browsers to insure proper display and functionality.
Grammar & Spell Check:
Before the website is launched, a grammar and spell check is performed to insure there are no mistakes.
Dead Link Check:
A thorough check for misdirected links and missing files is performed just prior to as well as after the launch of the website.
Forms / Programming:
Any email contact forms and/or programming features included in your project are tested to confirm they are functioning as required.
Before the website goes live, any interactive programming and scripts are tested to verify proper function. Since the design and testing phase often occurs on a different server, it is very important to once again verify that everything is working correctly after taking the website live.
Phase Six: Delivery and Launch:
All necessary website files and scripts are copied to your domain and databases are setup.
Minor Adjustments / Changes:
Minor adjustments to the website are included at no charge for up to two weeks after the website has launched (maximum of up to 3 hours labor). Minor changes include adding changing text, adding or changing photos, etc. Any major revision requests may require additional discussion and possibly incur a fee.
Final payment is always due before we take the website live on your domain. Upon receipt of final payment, you will be emailed a final/paid in full receipt.
Search Engine Submission:
Hand submission and automated search engine submission occurs after launching, testing and fixing any issues there may have been. We submit your site to over 100 search engines worldwide on a regular basis in order to keep your ranking in a top position.
Phase Seven: Maintenance:
The development of your web site is not necessarily over, though. One way to bring repeat visitors to your site is to offer new content or products on a regular basis. Lees Design Series will be more than happy to continue working together with you, to update the information on your web site. We offer maintenance packages at reduced rates, based on how often you anticipate making changes or additions to your web site.
CMS (Content Management System):
If you prefer to be more hands on, and update your own content, we can provide a CMS (Content Management System) that can be implemented to your web site. This is something that we would need to decide upon during the Planning stage. With a CMS, Lees Design Series will utilize online software to develop a database driven site for you.
A web site driven by a CMS gives you the ability to edit the content areas of the web site yourself. You are given access to a back-end administrative area, where you can use an online text editor (similar to a mini version of Microsoft Word). You’ll be able to edit existing content this way.
It’s really up to you as far as how comfortable you feel as far as updating your own web site. Some people prefer to have all the control so that they can make updates to their own web site the minute they decide to do so. Others prefer to hand off the web site entirely, as they have enough tasks on-hand that are more important for them to handle directly.
That’s where the help of Lees Design Series comes in, once again, as we can take over the web site maintenance for you – one less thing for you to do is always a good thing in these busy times!
SEO and SES:
Lees Design Series offers other important maintenance items which include SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and SES (Search Engine Submission). This is the optimization of you web site with elements such as title, description and keyword tags which help your web site achieve higher rankings in the search engines. The previously mentioned code validation is something that plays a vital role in SEO, as well.
Optional Add-ons pricing will vary. To obtain pricing, please inquire about the specific add-on you wish to include. Optional Add-ons may be limited by what programming languages your host supports.
Flash Design and Animation:
Adding a flash video to your website can make your web site come alive while increasing your conversion rates. We offer several website video products in the form of video presentations, online video spokespersons, flash video banner ads, flash video headers, flash video PowerPoint presentations, and much more. Having a flash video on your website allows you to introduce your company with your own custom message.
Secure Forms with Database Back end (SSL Encryption):
RSS Feed Aggregator:
Contact us for a FREE no obligation quote, give us a call at 1-860.235.9325 or use our secure communications form.