When starting a project, the most important key to success is research. With website design, you need know how your users will react based on their wants and needs. Before you start, ask your client questions about their business, their customers, their concepts, their brand and also, their competitors.
This research gives you a better idea of how to create a website the client, visitors and the customers will like, and at the same time keeping the possible competitors far behind and also beating out the competition. By doing this, you can create the website with potential clients in mind to generate more business for the client.
Grabbing a pen and creating half-page sketches of the website will help. These sketches do not need to be detailed or perfectly outlined, but should serve as point of reference or idea of the good, the bad and the ugly (what works and what don’t).
However, if you’re not into sketching, you can wireframe as an alternative. Wireframing works the same way as sketching, but you are creating a more in-depth mockup of the website’s skeletal frame.
After you complete the concepts, the next step is to finally create the design of the website.
Once you finish the design of the website, immediately present the work to your client in picture format. I strongly recommend .png format. This format help preserve the quality of the project (you can present it as a .jpg if you like). From there, the client will give you feedback and you should adjust the design until the client is completely satisfied.
However, don’t be afraid to defend your design decisions in this phase. If you feel a particular element is too important to be changed or discarded, tell the client and explain why. Clients often don’t understand the purpose of some elements, so the clients will most likely respect your wishes when you give your explanation.
Avoid codes that slow down site loading. Having clean and valid code will enable the website load quickly, and will work with most browsers. W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) will be of help to you if you are unsure about the latest standards of your coding language in this process.
One last tips is providing the client with a Content Management System (CMS) if they want to update the website themselves. WordPress is a sweet heart in the design community, but Pulse CMS is simple and easy to implement on your client’s website.
Here is an extra but optional step. I do strongly recommend doing this for every client.
“It helps building a strong and lasting professional relationship.”
Once everything is completed, simply ask the client if they need any other services or could recommend others to you. Be polite and quite diplomatic when demanding such from a client.
• Would you require site maintenance by me for an additional fee?
• Do you want any matching business cards for your business?
• Would you like Social Media Marketing or other promotional materials?
• Will you need future support from me?
• Do you know anybody that could benefit from my services?
• Would you be willing to write a short testimonial about your experience on how well or bad we served you?
You can add some humour to it, just to make them relaxed and offer the affirmative. Just asking could potentially draw in more work and create a professional relationship, and if they say no, you can simply move on and look for more clients. Although I doubt a satisfied client will turn you down.
Tell Us About Your Web Site Design Process
Now it’s your turn to tell us about your process and how you handle yours in the comment box. What do you do differently and how does it benefit you? Not every website designer follows by this exact process, but finding a process that works for you can help you create amazing websites.
Don’t be shy, leave a comment.