by Greg Birch

Six core steps to building a custom website

Building a website is a lot like building a house—there’s a process that needs to be followed.

You don’t add tiles to the roof before securing the frame to the structure. In the same way, you shouldn’t skip steps when creating your website.

Below are some basic steps we follow when building a custom website for our clients:

  1. We find out what you want to achieve with your site
    This is where we investigate the types of things you want your website to do. For instance, how do you want to be perceived as well as what are the one or two things you want to get your prospective customers to do once they land on your new masterpiece? Buy something? Join a mailing list? Contact you? Does your website need to integrate with other third party sites or software?
  2. We plan out your site map
    Armed with the above information, it’s time to put this down on paper so you can see a more visual outline of what will be the final product. Here, we write out the pages you want in the top menu and any subsequent pages underneath. It’s a good idea to note the ‘type’ of content that you think you would like or can provide. Ask yourself, “Do I want just text and images?” How about, “Can I slip in some videos for a more engaging experience?” This is also the time we help you think about the navigational logic—what journey do you want to take the user through to get them to where you want them to be?
  3. We plan your home page layout
    This is related to step two above but as the home page is the front door to your site, we ensure special consideration is taken so that users aren’t confused and leave your site before progressing any further. After all, the home page is typically where the main navigation starts.You only have a handful of seconds for people to find what they‘re looking for before they potentially get turned off, so you need to engage them quickly with relatable imagery and content headings. You can have the best product or service in the world but if your site is confusing then you’ll lose a user’s attention and ultimately their business.
  4. We design your website’s look and feel
    Consistency in branding is important here—and by branding we don’t just mean your logo. A logo is just one part of branding (admittedly, probably the coolest part), but what about the fonts or colours that are used? Or the imagery and even how formal or informal the content is written? Is this consistent with other marketing tools you already have like your business card or brochure? We’ll work with you to ensure your website branding is on point.
  5. Development and functionality
    This is the techy part and generally the behind-the-scenes stuff. While the functionality ‘requirements’ will be clear if step one is done correctly, step five is actually where we start to build the site and integrate all those third party plugins or services. It’s crucial that these are seamless and work in accordance with your business’ processes.
  6. Test and go live
    Making sure everything is working properly and as expected before you go live is a no brainer here. We test everything including taking orders and receiving any form submissions that might be on your site. Once you’re happy, it’s ‘green light time’!

The above steps are not exhaustive, as it can get quite a lot more complicated especially when we start talking about best practice for conversion in your industry or developing a customer persona to help with website relatability, or how your website will look on mobile devices—but these are topics that can be left for another post…

However, the outlined steps are key steps that do need to be considered when having your site built.

If done right (which is what we’re here for) you’ll ultimately have something that you’re proud of, and that’s fit for purpose, easy to work with and engaging for your clients.

We’d love to chat to you about your website project and show how we can improve your business. Give us a call on 08 8223 3099 or use the contact form below 🙂

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