We have been managing all sizes of web site development and technology projects since 1996. We have a highly effective process for defining and delivering high-quality results quickly. Every phase of a project is critical to the overall success. Following are the four major phases of any web design project. Sometimes we are hired for a specific component though more often we are responsible for the entire scope of the project.
The first phase is often taken for granted, however, if the project is not well-defined and clear to all parties involved, the likelihood of success is very slim indeed. The definition period varies depending on the needs and complexity of the project. It is more involved for a large company with many stakeholders than it is for a sole-proprietor with a very clear goal in mind. For small projects the definition phase is built into the initial interview and scope document. For more complex projects, we recommend an initial website strategy phase that is priced separately which includes stakeholder interviews, competitive analysis and defines the scope of the remaining phases.
For all projects, the definition phase results in a clear scope, an initial site architecture, a project timeline and proposal document that outlines these items as well as the cost for the delivery of the project.
This phase is where our clients always get the most excited. Every project begins to come to life with the visual design. We create alternative design options and refine these based on client input. Our design process begins with gathering visual requirements. Again this process varies depending on the client. An established organization probably already has a strong brand that we want to carry through the project. For a new company, we may be working with a design firm on establishing the brand. For a sole proprietor, we will be looking to the individual — their tastes and style. In all cases, the visual elements are a reflection of the client.
Development & Deployment
In this phase we are bringing the project to life. We take the visual designs that we have developed and that the client has signed off on and we code them. In this phase, we also refine design elements once the interactive experience is involved. We thoroughly test the user experience on the agreed upon platforms: generally Mac and PC for several browsers including IE7, IE6, Firefox and Safari. User acceptance testing occurs prior to bringing your project live.
Training & Production Support
We do not see our job as being complete unless there is a good process for content maintenance. The final component is to provide training on how to maintain the site or to put a production support agreement in place that will provide for us to maintain your site for you.