Web design is technology wrapped in art.
Our 5 step approach
Before we start any project we like to have a free consultation with our (future) customer, to properly understand your requirements.
Although we can do websites for customers far away (We have done a website for someone in the Netherlands). We prefer to work with clients in and around Centurion. By meeting you in person we will be able to get more information about your website needs, requirements and expectations.
Content is one of the most important elements of your website. As a customer you will have to play an active role in this process.
Although we can do some copy writing. It is better if you provide us with the content and images for your website. After all you know your business best.
It is worthwhile spending time on your content, as without content it will be difficult and time consuming to work on your website. Read some more about “content first” here
After our initial consultation(s) and content gathering, we should have a fairly good idea on the look, feel and functionality of your website.
We will develop and design on a dummy domain, so you can follow the progress. During this phase communication and feedback is important.
If there are any thing you want to see changed or you are not happy with now is the time to let us know.
During this phase we will do quality control as well. You as a customer will have an important role to play here.
We use the latest technologies and standards available at the time, taking into account performance, aesthetic, functionality and budget.
Time to flip the switch and move your website from a staging environment to a live environment for your customers to discover and visit your website. We will move the site over (bit by bit in computer terms) and do quality checking again, to make sure everything still works as it should work.
Again we need your assistance as well. After all we are human and we might miss things and we might not see our own typos or errors. The following article makes for some interesting reading. What’s Up With That: Why It’s So Hard to Catch Your Own Typos
Now that your website is up and running it needs love and care to keep humming along. WordPress & WordPress plugins are updated regularly for several reasons. Improved functionality, security updates, performance improvements, bug fixes etc.
Your website needs to be checked regularly to make sure everything still works as it should be and is secure. A website is dynamic so content changes so once in a while.
That why we include a WordPress Care Plan in our hosting.
You focus on your business while we take care of your website. We will make sure that your website stays in optimal condition and works for you almost 100% of the time.
Whats up with the almost?
We love to promise the moon, but things go wrong which are outside of our control The biggest names in the industry (twitter, gmail, facebook & amazon) have had their down time for various reasons.
We rather under promise and over deliver.
Important factors in web design
High quality content is one of the most important factors for a website. Good quality content will retain visitors and help you to rank higher in search engine results.
All the big search engines like Google love quality content. If your website lacks quality content then it simply will not rank highly within search results.
Content should be updated on a regular basis as well to make sure the content is still correct and relevant. You might offer a new product or service, get it on your website ASAP. Prices change update them.
So it is well worth spending time writing content or get a professional copywriter to write for you.
Read some more about The Importance of Good Website Content
SEO or Search Engine Optimization as it is known.
If you have good relevant content on your website, 50% or more of the work is done with regards to SEO. Rankings in Search Engines are based on a combination of factors and content is the most important. Google has over 200 factors which it takes into account.
Other factors where we can have some control over are responsive design (mobile friendly), Secure Sites (https://), Speed nobody likes a slow site.
Factors where we will have little to no control over are Age of the domain and site, the amount of competition for keywords.
If there are 10 000 000 sites trying to rank for the keyword “widget” you probably face an uphill battle. On the other hand if you try to rank for “red widget centurion” competition will be far less.
One should not rely on search engines as your only source of traffic. Good old marketing is still important.
Search engines care less about design (except for it being mobile friendly), but your visitors expect a aesthetically pleasing and professional design. It will be one of the first impressions your visitors make.
The website should be responsive (mobile friendly).
Besides the website looking good, it also should be functional and everything like contact forms should be working. Navigation should be easy and logical organised.
All internal and external links should be correct. Nothing is as frustrating to click on link only to get to a non existent site or page.
Don’t hide your contact details, they should be easy to find.
Nobody has time in this day and age and people surfing the web don’t have time for slow websites.
Research has shown that website visitors leave a site if they are under the impression it is to slow.
We use several techniques to improve site speed and performance. We use best practices while designing your website to minimize page size and requests.
We try to find a fine balance between aesthetics, functionality, speed and cost.
Some interesting reading can be found here.