As an agency specializing in web design, we field a lot of questions about our process.
To answer a lot of frequently asked questions and give you a snapshot of how we build websites, we wrote this post elaborating on the Drive process.
When can we get started?
As soon as possible! In fact, we can start scheduling the first steps in building your site today.
However, like any web design team worth their weight, we do generally have at least a couple projects in the works at any given moment. Our current workload may have a large bearing on how soon we can devote our resources to designing and building your site.
Additionally, we typically ask clients about their readiness to get started as well. Do you already have hosting, copy, video content, and your other digital assets in order? Do you have a well-planned out SOW (scope of work), strategy and predetermined KPI?
Last but not least, before we start, it’s critical that you know exactly what your goals are with the new site. After all, building a site to attract new staff and talent is quite different than building a site to draw in more e-commerce, generate leads, or rebrand. Be sure to spend some time discussing these issues with your team and hammering out a clear vision of your goals.
How long before I can review the mockups?
Now’s a good time to outline our process, from beginning to end, so you get a sense of what-comes-when.
First things first, we aim to ensure that everyone’s on the same page and that we have clear goals in mind. We sit down with the client to define KPI and business goals for the site – these will be the compass guiding us through the whole process.
Beyond that, we’ll identify any unique UI/UX requirements, establish a sitemap, and perform some external benchmarking. In other words, we’ll take a look at direct and indirect competitors to see what’s trending, what they’re doing successfully, and what insights we can glean to best position your site to achieve your goals.
At this point, we’re really kicking things into gear – staying up late, drinking lots of coffee, and spreading our wings creatively. We know what we need to achieve, so we’re brainstorming how to achieve it.
This phase includes writing content, shooting video, doing photo shoots – you get the picture (excuse the pun).
For the sake of performance in terms of speed, security, and functionality, each website is custom developed and built from the ground up with YOUR specific needs in mind.
Every website starts somewhere. Early stages of design could be anything from scribbles on a napkin to full blown out sketched mockups. There’s a good chance we’ll develop several rounds of changes before designing a client-facing mockup. Once we have a full mock-up design, we revise it extensively until we’re 100% internally satisfied.
Next, we show it off to the client to gather feedback, which often results in further tweaking.
Once we’re certain that the client is completely enthusiastic about the copy, photo/video, and mockup, we launch into the development phase. Here, our timeline will vary depending on the size of the build, as well as the complexity of the elements. Animation, page count, e-commerce, UI/UX can all vary wildly, necessitating more or less time.
We then go through our final team review phase before shipping it for client review. Of course, we’re often making 11th-hour changes at this point, and we wrap things up with extensive testing and QA. We carefully vet the website to make sure it works wonderfully across all browsing platforms and environments, testing forms and emails, etc.
Once everything has been tweaked, tested and retested, and is ready to go, we give the client one last look at the website to ensure it matches the SOW and everything that has been approved by the client. Once we have final approval, with much fanfare and excitement, we launch your AWESOME, BRAND NEW WEBSITE!
We know that’s a mouthful, but we thrive on web design – we wouldn’t be in business if we didn’t love this stuff.
So how long does it take you to build a website?
It depends! Typically it takes us about 12-16 weeks, depending on the size or complexity of the build. Breaking that down, we usually estimate 3-5 weeks for discovery, 3-4 weeks for design, and lastly 3-6 weeks for development and launch.
However, no part of our timeframe is set in stone. Oftentimes, the whole process is expedited by superb teamwork and communication between the client and the agency.
What can we do to help ensure a great final delivery of our website?
We’re so glad you asked!
If you’re writing the content for the website, have it ready to go (pro tip from our copywriter: proofreading and editing always takes more time than you think).
Truth be told, there are only a few important dates where we need something from you. For most of the process, we’ll have everything we need and be working full-steam ahead. So you can do us a big favor by reviewing material in the given time frame and providing us with the feedback that we need when we need it.
And last but not least…enjoy the process! Your website is a huge asset to your business and it’s a fun project for everyone involved!
Contact us today if you have questions or just want to talk more about what it’s like to work with us!