Web Development Process: Steps to Creating an Effective Strategy
Web development is the process of designing and creating the coding of web pages. It is a combination of both front-end design and back-end programming.
When creating a web development process, the best approach is to identify your customer and their needs and then begin to brainstorm a solution. At this point, you'll need to know the project's goals. Then, you'll need to define your customer's expectations. This includes knowing the number of pages, the kind of content that you will use, and how long the site will be live.
Afterwards, you'll also need to create your strategy for the development process. If you're developing a website that serves multiple purposes, you'll want to look at it from multiple perspectives.
It would help if you considered many things when you're building a website, but one of the most important things you can do is create an effective strategy for developing the site. A strategy is a plan that shows how your site will function as a whole. It's an essential step in the web development process.
A good website strategy should include several factors, such as your goals, target audience, objectives, user experience, and more.
7 Steps of the Web Development Process
Step 1: Information gathering
A website is a complex structure. It must function appropriately with high usability, load speed, and user security. You'll miss the mark with any site if you don't know the best way to create a site that delivers the desired results.
It starts with the basics:
- Research the audience. What are the demographics of your target audience? Where are they? What are their needs, wants, and interests? How do they use the internet? What problems are they having? What products and services are they looking for online? Do they like to browse? Buy? Search? It would help if you answered all of these questions before you began development.
- Build a plan. You don't want to spend hours building something that won't reach your intended audience. Identify your goals and the steps you need to take to achieve them.
- Write and edit. Your writing and editing skills are critical to the success of your website. You must be able to communicate what you are offering in a clear, concise manner. A writer who can't explain a concept or idea is not a good fit for your business.
- Build your strategy. Now that you know your goal, you must develop a plan for getting there. What does your plan look like? Where will you find information on your subject? Who is your competition?
- Test and test again. The last step is to implement the plan and see if it works. After a few weeks or months, look at how the site is performing. Are the goals being met? Is the content converting to sales? Does your site meet your visitors' needs?
The result is a well-planned, well-written, well-tested site that meets your target audience's needs.
Step 2: Planning and strategy, wireframing
For most web development projects, the answer to the question of planning and wireframing is “yes.” Most websites are created from a wireframe template, which means they start with the skeleton of the design. The goal is to understand where the website is going, what you should include information, and how navigation should work.
Wireframes are typically made on paper, so they are easily lost if they aren't appropriately captured. As web designers and developers, we work in an increasingly digital world where many of the details of a project are more visible online.
How Can Wireframes Help Us?
Although some designers say wireframes are for “fear mongers” and bad for business, they're invaluable in reality. You can use them to test assumptions, identify problems, and ensure that what the client wants is being implemented.
For example, if you're working on a website for a restaurant, the first step may be determining the types of food and drinks offered. Wireframes can help you ensure the layout is easy to navigate and presents this information.
In addition, wireframes can help a developer visualise how to implement certain features and show the client what the final product will look like. If you're working on a website for a client, it can be beneficial to have them look at the wireframes to see what they might want to change or add.
Wireframes are not for final designs; they're for testing purposes. If you use a wireframe as a template, you'll have to adjust the layout and content, but the structure and primary navigation of the site should be the same.
If you've successfully tested an assumption, you'll know if the client and team members can understand what you've designed. It's impossible to tell until you build the site, so getting feedback at this stage is critical.
Wireframes are not for final designs; they're for testing purposes.
Step 3: Visual design
Web Development requires different skills, such as knowledge of graphic design, programming languages, and HTML, but without visual design, your website will look like any other boring page. Web design is the first step to creating a unique identity and providing a beautiful, functional website. Users who view your site should know what they expect from your business.
Web design encompasses several different aspects of creating a user-friendly, interactive website. Most importantly, web design includes a visual design that is a significant part of the overall experience of your website.
When someone visits your website, they need to understand what your business is and what you offer quickly. Users won't have a good impression of you or your company without a clean, professional website. In other words, your website's visual design will be the first thing they see, and it's the most crucial element of your website.
To ensure your website looks great, you must understand what visual design is and why it's crucial. Visual design is a large part of your website's success, and the first thing visitors notice.
What is Visual Design?
The visual design consists of all your website elements related to its appearance, including graphics, images, and text.
Visual design isn't just about how things look on the screen. It also includes your choice of colours, fonts, images, and your website's overall look and feel.
As you begin your website design process, you'll need to know about the different types of web design and what each of them is used for. This section will cover the essential elements of web design and how to put them together to create a beautiful, functional website.
Web design begins with choosing a theme appealing to your target audience. A theme is a general style applied to the entire site, including the page's navigation bar, logo, and other items. Themes come in various styles, colours, and patterns, and you can choose from dozens of pre-made themes.
Once you choose a theme, you'll need to pick a layout. You can use either a two-column or a one-column layout, and the choice of the latter is based on the look you want your site to have.
In addition, you'll need to choose a colour scheme. The colour scheme refers to the colour of the text and the background on your website. This is a crucial element in creating a visually appealing website.
Finally, you'll need to add a logo to your website. This image is usually used on the home page and will tell visitors who you are and your business. You can use either a static or a moving logo.
The final component of web design is content. This refers to the text and other items on the pages of your website. These items include the text that describes what your business offers, the headlines on the pages, and any other items displayed on the page.
With these three parts of the design process, you're ready to start designing your website. Now that you know the basics let's take a closer look at the steps you can use to design your website.
Step 4: Development/coding
The web is an increasingly essential part of modern life, and web development has become a highly lucrative career path. With more websites, data, and content being produced daily, it's a big deal to get it right—and that's where you come in.
Coding is a crucial aspect of every website. It helps ensure that the information on a site is displayed correctly, allowing people to find what they're looking for and engage with the site. This is why so much emphasis is put on coding during the web development process.
When it comes to web development, a few steps go into getting a website ready for the public eye. You'll need to think about the user experience from the beginning. If you have a lot of users and visitors, you'll need to ensure that the navigation is intuitive and easy to use and that the site layout is responsive.
Once you've ensured that your site's primary navigation and layout work well, you'll need to consider how to organise the content on the page. What kinds of information will people want to see on the page?
This is an excellent opportunity to add your voice to the site or customise the design. For example, you could include your logo on the site or change the colour scheme. Or, if the site is a blog, you can write something about the site and its purpose, and you'll be able to let visitors know what to expect.
Once you've made the content and the design, you'll need to set up the technology to support your work. This can be tricky, but there are many different ways. For example, you might have to figure out whether to use static pages or a CMS (content management system). You could opt for a CMS, a software program that allows you to create and update pages without coding.
However, you may have to write a little code to make things work. A website needs a variety of features to be successful. You'll have to consider things like security, performance, and usability.
The web development process is a never-ending cycle of innovation. You'll have to keep up with what's happening in the industry to ensure that your site meets its visitors' needs.
You might also have to look for new and exciting technologies, such as HTML5 or CSS3. These are the latest versions of the standards that define how the web works, and they offer some exciting new features. For example, HTML5 can add interactive elements to the site, while CSS3 enables the site to be more flexible.
With these new tools, your site can be more engaging and fun. You can also use them to create more personalised experiences for your users, making them feel more involved and engaged with your site.
As you can see, the web development process is a significant undertaking. The best way to ensure you're doing it right is to think critically about the user experience, navigation, organisation, and technology before diving in.
- McFedries, Paul (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 848 Pages – 05/15/2018 (Publication Date) – For Dummies (Publisher)
Step 5: Testing
Every website has a unique set of requirements and potential challenges. Before you begin the development phase, taking stock of what you're building is essential. The first step is to conduct a functional website audit. This will help you identify any potential issues or challenges before they arise. It also helps you avoid wasting time later in the process.
What Is a Functional Web Site Audit?
A functional website audit tests the site's functionality on all the devices and browsers it needs to support. The goal is to identify any issues with your website before you build it, so you can fix them before launching. A functional website audit includes testing for:
- Browser compatibility issues
- Screen resolution support
- Support for the most commonly used features and design patterns
- Page load times and speed
- Functionality and usability
- Content accessibility
If you think you might have an issue or challenge with your website, perform a website audit early to ensure you get everything right the first time. If known issues affect your website or content, you can correct them before your launch.
What Is the Difference Between a Usability Audit and a Functional Web Site Audit?
There are two types of website audits: usability audits and functional website audits. Both include the same basic testing and look for similar issues. Still, a usability audit focuses on improving the overall experience, while a functional website audit focuses on ensuring that your website functions correctly.
- Yayici, Emrah (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 100 Pages – 04/09/2014 (Publication Date) – EMRAH YAYICI (Publisher)
How Do I Conduct a Functional Web Site Audit?
Here is a list of questions before beginning a functional website audit.
- Do you know your site's purpose, audience, and goals?
- Are you confident that your website addresses your audience's needs?
- Have you defined your target market or demographic?
- Do you have a clear understanding of your user's goals and expectations?
What Are the Types of Tests that Can Be Done?
There are three main types of tests that you can do:
- Usability tests
- Functional website audits
End-to-end testing is designed to identify problems with the end-to-end user experience. You can test the site's functionality from the moment a visitor first opens a page to the point they close it.
In addition to the browser, your website should run on any mobile device. These days, it's not unusual to find visitors accessing the web from a smartphone or tablet. A functional website audit should test whether the site is optimised for these devices.
If your website does not run well on mobile, you can optimise it for mobile and desktop by taking advantage of responsive web design.
Usability tests evaluate how easy it is to complete a specific task on your site. You can use them to measure several metrics, including:
- Error rates
- Navigation errors
- Ease of use
Usability tests help you assess the effectiveness of your site's navigation, organisation, and user interface. They help you identify areas that need improvement and ensure that the information is presented in a way that is easy to understand and use.
Usability tests may involve:
- Evaluating drop-down menus
- Comparing and contrasting two pages
- Testing different navigational patterns
- Evaluating the readability of text
Functional website audits are a more thorough, in-depth test that covers more of the site's functionality. They look for any errors that could cause a visitor to leave your site.
They cover such things as:
- Error rates
- Page load time
- Page speed
- Performance in mobile
- Compatibility with other devices
What Can a Functional Web Site Audit Find?
The results of a functional website audit are often surprising and can uncover many issues that would otherwise go unnoticed. Some common issues include:
- Incorrect content
- Broken links
- Poor loading speeds
- Missing content
- Poor readability
- Outdated content
- Confusing layout
- Inaccurate data
The information you discover from a functional website audit will help you make improvements in advance. You can then avoid having to redesign or rebuild the site later.
Do You Need to Conduct a Functional Web Site Audit?
You don't necessarily need to conduct a functional website audit to create a successful website. However, you may want to consider doing one if you have the following:
- Poor traffic numbers
- Poor conversion rates
- Website changes made without testing
- High bounce rate
- Unable to reach your goals
- Not seeing the expected ROI from your website
If you decide to do a functional website audit, the following questions can help determine which tests to include.
- What is your budget for the project?
- What are the most effective ways to improve your site?
- Who will be responsible for reporting findings and recommendations?
- Do you have an existing team of developers?
- What is the estimated timeline?
- Is this something you want to work on over several months or years?
- Do you have a dedicated development team?
Step 6: Delivery and launch
After all, you don't build a website overnight. It usually requires months of planning and design work before it finally goes live. But many developers and clients assume that the launch of the finished site will happen after the website is done. In reality, that is far too optimistic.
Launching a website is essential in the development process, but it shouldn't be the only step. It is one of the most dangerous steps. The website launch can create a false sense of completeness, making it easy to think that everything is ready for launch when there may still be many errors and problems.
Let me explain why launching the website can be dangerous:
It may take more time to fix the launch issues.
When launching the website, you need to perform all kinds of tests. These tests should include usability, performance, security, and so on. But if you only perform some of these tests, the results will likely show that your site is functioning well, even though there might be some problems. In other words, these results might give you the impression that the site is ready to go live.
You might discover that there are some problems later on.
Initially, the client and the developer might want a rush to launch the project. They might launch the site before all the necessary tests have been performed. After all, they have done the work to develop the site and want it launched.
This can often be the case with the launch of a WordPress site. Because WordPress is such a powerful CMS, it's easy to add a few plugins to a site. This can make the site a bit more secure but more challenging to test its performance.
In addition to the problems with the actual launch, there are also potential problems that arise from the fact that it is too early to launch the site.
For example, the site is going to need time to load fully. When users first visit a site, the files are downloaded from the server, and the images are loaded. If this doesn't happen smoothly, visitors won't be able to access the site.
The site needs to be optimised for SEO. All the page titles, descriptions, keywords, and other elements that make up the HTML code must be optimised. The developer might even have used some tools or templates designed for SEO, but these might not have been applied correctly.
The site needs to be optimised for usability. Users often have clear expectations of how a site should behave. So it's vital to ensure that the site is optimised to meet those expectations.
These are just a few of the problems that can arise from the fact that the launch is too early. It would be best if you remembered that launching a website is essential to the development process.
So make sure you start the testing process as soon as possible and don't rush the launch. Don't wait until the site is finished; you can perform all the tests. Instead, ensure all the necessary tests are performed as soon as possible.
Can I Use A Website Launch As An Opportunity For Business Growth?
Yes! Even when a project is completed, it's never too late to turn things around. If you've built a website that isn't performing well, consider what problems you can fix and how to improve the site's performance. If the site is struggling, there are ways to make it better.
For example, you can change the site's content so that it's more focused on the goals of your business. You can improve the navigation of the site so that it helps users find exactly what they're looking for. You can enhance the site's security so that people don't have to worry about whether the site is hacked. You can improve the site's user experience so that people find it easier to use, find the information they want, and so on.
Step 7: Maintenance
You can't become an expert web designer overnight. However, if you invest in good web design practices and get to know the tools, you'll start to understand how to build a successful website. Learning as much as possible about web design is essential to make the best possible choices for your users.
But it doesn't stop there. You can add to your knowledge by asking questions, reading online articles, and sharing that information with others. There's always more to learn, so you'll be able to keep improving your skills and the quality of your websites.
Why Is Maintenance Important?
As your audience and competitors continue to develop and evolve, your website must be able to keep up. Maintaining your website means keeping it updated with the latest content and adding features that make your site more valuable and accessible.
When you update your site, you ensure that your content is current and that your visitors can find what they need quickly and easily. You also make your site more secure, protecting your business from security threats.
Another way maintenance helps your website is by ensuring that your design is optimised for search engines. When you use a WordPress theme designed to make it easy for search engines to find and index your site, your business will appear in the results when someone searches for your products or services.
To keep your site's appearance fresh, you should regularly upload photos and images and review the content of your pages. It's essential to remove outdated or incorrect information before publishing new content.
What Are the Best Tools for Maintaining a Website?
You can use many tools to keep your website up to date. The tools that work best are the ones that are simple to use and that offer value.
A content management system is one of the best tools for maintaining a website. A content management system is a software that allows you to manage your site's content, including updating your content, posting to social media, and setting up new pages.
You can use a WordPress-based content management system, such as WordPress.com, or a self-hosted WordPress installation. If you decide to host your WordPress installation, make sure that you use a web hosting service that offers free or low-cost options.
Another excellent tool for maintaining your website is a web analytics package. Web analytics packages are software programs that allow you to collect and analyse data about your site and its users. They can help you measure your success, learn more about your audience, and make strategic decisions about your website.
As a Web Developer, you must remember that your web development process is just as important as your web design. While designing and developing a website may seem simple, it's easy to overlook some crucial aspects.
A successful Web developer should be able to keep the client's project priorities in mind. This includes everything from web page designs to website functionality.
There are many steps involved in creating a website that is often overlooked. To avoid losing clients to competitors, it's essential to be aware of these steps and to create a plan to ensure that each step is completed.
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What's the most common misconception about web development?
The most common misconception about web development is that it's easy. It takes considerably hard work.
What's the best part about web development?
The best part about web development is that it's a never-ending process. You always learn something new.
What's the worst thing about web development?
The worst thing about web development is that it's very fast-paced. You have to keep up with technology, which can be a challenge.
What advice do you have for someone thinking about web development?
Web development is a great career choice. It's also a great way to make money. So, if you are interested in web development, I would encourage you to do some research. Look into the business and ensure you're doing something you want.
What best advice can you give aspiring web developers?
The best advice I can give aspiring web developers is to find a mentor. Learn from someone who has experience in the field.
What's the best way to learn how to code?
You can learn how to code in a variety of ways. You can take online classes, read books, or attend a coding boot camp.
Last update on 2023-12-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API