The web design process is similar to other communication processes. A designer has to go through the following phases while designing a website:
Project Definition: The very first step in the process of web design is to identify the reasons for the existence of the site and what the site is supposed to accomplish. All future decisions, including site structure, naming conventions used in the navigation and the visual design of the site are determined at the outset of the project through its goals and objectives.
Project Scope: Crafting a transparent and unambiguous project scope plan is very crucial for a website. A project scope plan outlines the distinct activities and deliverables, coupled with the specific timelines that they pertain to. This makes it easy to set clear expectations for clients.
Wireframes and Site Architecture: Site architecture consists of the sitemap and wireframes of pages. The sitemap is constructed to ensure that all the key pages in the site have been considered. Wireframes, on the other hand, offer a meticulous insight into the content that shall appear on every page.
Visual Design: After creating a skeleton for the site through the sitemap and wireframes, the designer crafts a visual style. The visual style should be comprehensive enough to be able to form a connection between the web and all the other forms of the organization’s communications. The brand of the organization has a crucial role to play in this phase as the key brand perceptual notions will have to be visually relayed by the designers through the design.
Site Development: Once the designs are approved, it is time to develop the site by refining the old content and fetching some new ones. Moreover, the website requires good leverage which can be brought about by creating videos, slideshows, podcasts and other media that will show up on the site. Also, the HTML and CSS of the site need to be developed.
Site Testing: During site testing, the site will be shared with internal audiences by placing it on a production server. This way, any broken design elements will be caught and addressed before the site goes live.
Launch: In this phase of the designing process, your site is launched. But as soon as the site is launched, you should brace up for feedback from users, positive as well as negative. Some minor changes might be necessary, for instance, fixing broken links, editing copy and making adjustments.
Site Maintenance: As the name suggests, you need to keep your website under constant surveillance and maintain it as long as it is active. You might need to update the content regularly and make minor or major changes to the backend.