Learn the basics of web development and jump-start your process with the project template.

7 Steps of Web Design Development Process

Web design development is a process of creating a website, usually focusing on aesthetic factors like layout, user interface, and other visual elements. A high-level goal of web design is to make a visually appealing website, whish is also easy to use.

Why web design matters?

A well-structured and clear website not only increases traffic, but also helps visitors to understand the business, product, service by combining text, images and sometimes animations. As a result, it helps the business to reach more clients.

7 steps of web design development

A lot of things need to be taken into consideration when creating the look and feel of the website. To help you not get overwhelmed the process of web design development can be divided into seven steps:

Testing
Launch
Maintenance

Information gathering
Planning
Design
Development

Let's go through all the steps one by one.

Next, research the target audience. What is the group of people that you would like to reach first? What is their age, interests, and habits? Answering these questions will help you to determine the best design style for the website.

Designers need to get acquainted with the website content. What kind of information will the target audience be looking for on the website? Is it specific information regarding a product or a service, online shopping, or maybe something else? The content and design are directly interconnected with each other. 

Step 1: 
Information gathering

The focus of the first step is to gather all the necessary information for the project. As a design team, you should ask relevant questions to go deeper into the business needs. Carefully analyze the client's requirements, define the website purpose, and determine the goals of the website. The most popular targets are information sharing and money-making, or both of them. Your team has to think about how business goals can be reached with the aid of a good website.

When this is done, the team can create a draft project schedule with a rough plan.

Step 2: 
Planning and strategy, wireframing

Using the information gathered from phase one, it is time to put it together and make a detailed website plan. At this point, a site map is developed. Site map is the list of all main topic areas of the website, including sub-topics, if applicable. This map will clarify what content will be on the website and will help to understand the navigational structure. The future customers are end-users of the website — their journey has to be as simple as possible. The basis of an easy-to-navigate website is an excellent user interface.

Next, research the target audience. What is the group of people that you would like to reach first? What is their age, interests, and habits? Answering these questions will help you to determine the best design style for the website.

Designers need to get acquainted with the website content. What kind of information will the target audience be looking for on the website? Is it specific information regarding a product or a service, online shopping, or maybe something else? The content and design are directly interconnected with each other. 

Step 3: 
Graphical design

As a part of the design phase, it is essential to carefully and tastefully apply such visual elements as the logo and brand colors, to strengthen the brand identity on the website. During the design phase, the team usually creates one or more prototypes for the website. A prototype is typically a static image, which represents the final look of the website. The good idea is to create clickable prototypes to help the client feel the website before development begins

This step usually requires a lot of communication with your clients — e.g., email exchange, collaboration via content sharing services (Dropbox, Zeplin). The client should be informed throughout all the design and development stages to ensure that the final website matches their needs, taste, and vision. Idea exchange and brainstorming are crucial at this step.

Step 4: 
Development/build

At this point, the design itself should be ready. But it is usually in the form of static images. It requires extra development effort to translate it into HTML/CSS, and then to add a layer of animations or JavaScript, depending on the complexity of the design.

 

First, the homepage is developed, followed by a "shell" for the interior pages. The shell serves as a template for the content pages of the website, as it contains the main menu for the website. After this shell has been created, the task of the design team is to populate internal pages with content.

 

During this phase, elements such as interactive contact forms and e-commerce shopping carts should be implemented and made functional.

Communication between your team and the client should remain constant at this step. The client will need to see the changes applied to the website so that all the necessary corrections can be made easily.

 

A great advantage for every designer would be an understanding of front-end development basics. These involve writing valid HTML/CSS code in compliance with web standards and various web browsers. This knowledge will make team collaboration more comfortable and prevent any misunderstandings.

 

Once the development is finished, everything needs to be fully tested.

Step 5:  Testing

When the content and the visuals are in place, the testing process can be started. Every page has to be tested to make sure that all links are working and the website is displayed correctly in different browsers. Even the word order in titles and descriptions has an impact on the webpage performance in various search engines. Later, when you have some traffic on your website, you can apply A/B testing techniques to find the optimal combination.

Other final details of this step include plugin installation (for WordPress or other CMS-driven websites) and Search Engine Optimization activities. SEO is the optimization of your website's title, description, and keyword tags, which helps the website to achieve higher positions in search engines. Website optimization for search engines plays a vital role because it ensures that the created website is visible to people, and they can easily find it.

Step 6: 
Delivery and launch

Once you are given a final approval from the client, it is time for the website to go live. But before that, the site should be ran-through for the last time to confirm that all files have been uploaded correctly, and the site is fully functional. Besides, the website domain name should be registered, and web hosting accounts set up.

Step 7: 
Maintenance 

Once the website is live, some regular maintenance is usually required. User testing can be run on new content and features over and over to improve usability and discoverability of features. This all can lead to new design and development tasks.

The above steps of the web design development process provide only a high-level example that should be changed and adjusted for the project's needs and specifics. Remember that a good working relationship with constant communication with the client is the key to successful website design and development. Using the right tool for this job usually helps a great deal!

If you are planning a web design project, you might find our

Web Design Development template handy

It offers a comprehensive example of your workflow organization, which you can fully customize to fit your team's needs.

How to use this template?

Create a new project and choose the Web Design Development template as the starting point. All Infolio templates include some demo content. Feel free to remove it once you've familiarized yourself with the concept.

 

The tasks are split into the six phases of web design development: "Information gathering", "Structure", "Design", "Build", "Testing" and "Launch".

 

Group tasks by Status to see the progress pipeline ("Backlog", "In progress", "In discussion", "Sent for approval", and "Done"). In this view you can easily add new statuses to your workflow or rearrange existing ones. Change the status of any task by dragging and dropping it to the corresponding column. 

 

To see how tasks are distributed within your team, group the project by Assignee. In this view you can reassign tasks quickly by dragging and dropping them between columns.

If you need any further help or if you have suggestions about how to improve

this template, don't hesitate to let us know!

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