Having a website is a lot like having your own business which means that your website needs to be customized to perform specific tasks.
There is no standard procedure to follow when you want to make a website but rather it’s a customized process that requires your input to be built specifically for your business.
In this step-by-step guide to the website development process, we will show you what the general stages are so that you can input your own specifications while having a clear plan for the Website development process.
Here are the general stages of the website development process:
- Information Gathering
- Design Layout
- Testing & Launch
Step 1: Gathering Info
This specific stage is the part of the process entirely dedicated to discovering and researching, as well as determining how the following steps will be like. At this point, the most important thing is to clearly understand the future purposes of your website, the main aim you wish to achieve through your website and the audience you wish to attract through your website. Making such things clear while developing your website, helps you to come up with the best possible society for further project management.
Sites designed to convey news vary from entertainment websites, websites made for teenagers feature different things than sites made for adults. People use different websites for different purposes, this means that when designing a website the technologies used in making them should be according to their purpose. Additionally, in this step, you should have a clear idea of who your targeted demographic and audience is.
Step 2: Planning
In this step you put together a plan for your website, for this, you should use the information that you gathered during step 1. This is the step I which you will be making the sitemap. Making a site map means making up a list of all the main topic areas on your website, along with a sub-topics, if needed. A site map is a guide for you that tells you about what content will be featured on the website, it is also an important step to come up with a consistent and easy to understand navigational system for your website.
While you’re designing your website it is important that you keep the consumer/viewer in mind and don’t make your design unnecessarily complex and hard to understand. A friendly and simple user interface makes your website easy to navigate, after all the simpler your site is the easier your viewers will be able to understand about the services and products you offer.
Step 3: Design layout
This step is the step in which your design the layout of your website and your website takes form. In this step, you create all the visual stuff like pictures, videos, and into videos. All the information you gathered in the first step should also be kept in mind when coming up with a Design layout in the website development process. Your customers and the audience that you’re trying to attract should be kept in mind while you’re designing material for your website.
Designing the layout is the designer’s work. It can either be a graphic sketch or even an actual graphic design. Your website’s layout should be designed in a way that your visitors find it easy to understand and navigate. If any aspect of the design of your layout is not satisfying for your customer then it should be changed and redesigned by the designer.
Step 4: Development
In this step the website is created and is developed for working. At this stage, the web designer will take all the graphic elements and designs from the previous prototypes and use them to create a functional website.
The first step in the website development process is developing the home page, which is followed by a “shell” for the interior pages. The shell is a part of the site which serves as a template for the content pages of your site, as it is in control of the main navigational structure of the website. Once the shell is made, after that the designer will take your content and distribute it on the site in the appropriate areas for that content.
In technical terminology, a successful website a good understanding of front-end web development is also needed. This includes writing valid HTML/CSS codes that comply with the current web standards, which maximizes functionality, it also maximizes accessibility for a large number of an audience as possible. Additionally, this is the step in which all site elements are integrated into the site which includes CMS services like WordPress, interactive contact forms or e-commerce shopping carts
Step 5: Testing & Launch
This step is about testing all the links available on the site to make sure that not even a single link is broken. This is the most routine part of the whole website developing process. Every script and every form should be checked, you should also use a spelling-checking application to see if there are any possible typos. Code validators can also help you to check whether your codes are according to the present web standards.
You should cross check your website. After you’re done checking your website, it’s ready to be uploaded to a server. FTP (File Transfer Protocol) software is used for this purpose. After you’re done developing the files, you should do another final test, just in case, to make sure that all of the files have been installed correctly without any error.
Step 6: Maintenance
Don’t think that once you have your site up and running the need for a developer is over. After a website is launched you’ll need constant help to maintain, update and keep the site organized if you want it to work properly. Luckily, most developers will offer a reasonable discount to carry out maintenance on a site but if you’re someone that wants to take a more hands own approach to maintaining and updating your site then going with a CMS (Content Management System) is your best option. A CMS like WordPress will let you update security, make changes and add new content as well as products to your site without the need for support from a developer.
The decision to whether to choose a CMS or website developer to maintain your site depends on what you’re comfortable with. If you have time on your hands then going with a CMS is a great idea but if you need to direct your attention to more important matters, then letting a developer handle maintaining the site for you is the best option.
Content Provided By Garry Miller, marketing manager of Vironit.com
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