How To Design (Or Modify) An Organization’s Website
Do you need a website for your organization? Or maybe you have a website that needs a good redevelopment? Depending on the size and needs of the organization, you can design the website by yourself or seek professional help. This article will help you understand the key steps involved in the site design process and what types of resources you will need at each stage. Know more on Li Creative Technologies.
We will focus on making important planning and reconstruction decisions related to management and planning. We will discuss the main stages of the design process, the industry terms that you can meet with, and the tools and skills you might need on this occasion.
Stages in the process of designing a website
If the steps described below seem a bit overwhelming to you, remember that each project is different. You will find tips in the text, but adapt them to your project. If your website is small, you can skip some of the steps below or spend only a short while on them. However, large design intentions can become overwhelmingly complex and chaotic if you don’t plan them carefully.
- Initial Conversations: Begin by talking to your colleagues, directors, clients and other interested persons about this intention. It is really important to answer the following questions at an early stage of planning:
Who do you want to reach through your website and what behaviors do you want to encourage? With these two questions answered, it’s worth considering whether a website is the best way to achieve your goals. At this point, it’s also worth looking at your budget and staffing capabilities.
Are you able to maintain and update the page you want to create with the current set of employees and volunteers at your disposal? If not, you can resize your plans given your current capabilities. A simple but well-maintained site is much better than a more sophisticated, yet non-functional and out-of-date site.
Will you manage the project yourself, or will you hire a website design company? If you are inclined to the latter, it is worth it at the stage of these initial conversations to get the names of reliable and proven design companies.
How much money do you have for this project? Can you get funding for design (or redesign)? Before you move on, it is worth having the person responsible for the budget in the organization to speak about project financing.
Will you use a Content Management System or do you prefer a static HTML-based page?
Will the site be hosted on the organization’s server or will you use the services of a hosting company? The possibilities when it comes to hosting range between the option of basic hosting functions, which costs a few zlotys a month, to dedicated, managed servers, the cost of which can go in thousands of zlotys a month.
How will your target audience get to the new website? Its beautiful and functional appearance will not help those interested if it is difficult to find. The problem with website visibility can be solved by using search engine optimization techniques (SEO – Search Engine Optimization) as well as other forms of online and offline marketing. It is important to address marketing and SEO issues at the initial design stage. They can affect the software you work with as well as how you build content on your website. If this sounds overwhelming, you can always hire an SEO specialist.
Collect all analytical and statistical information on the functioning of the current site. This data will help measure the success (or lack thereof) of the new website. In other words, how does the traffic on the new page relate to the traffic on the old page?
The result of these initial meetings is the project plan and / or inquiry. A project plan usually includes a general description of the project, schedule, budget, description of the assumed results and results as well as the specification of roles and tasks. The request for quotation contains similar information but is directed to external companies to whom you will send an inquiry, so in this case, we skip the part about roles and tasks, but it is worth adding information about the organization and its goals.
- Gather your team or hire an external website design company: At this stage, send a request for quotation to several selected web design companies. Ask for samples of their previous work, references, it’s best to meet the best candidates in person. Once you choose a company, it’s best to work together on the principles of cooperation (Cooperation Specification). It is a formal commitment signed by both parties, which specifies the expectations of both parties and the expected results, as well as information on the agreed prices for services and payment methods.
Start working with your team by assigning individuals the roles and tasks described in the project plan. In the rest of the article, we will tell you more about the individual roles and skillsets that connect with the website creation project.
- Catalog existing content. Assign someone the task of reviewing newsletters, file servers, leaflets, mailing list posts and promotional materials that can be reused. If the page already exists, it’s best to assign someone the task of reviewing the content and dividing it into categories. Particular attention should be paid to subpages that are already out of date, inadequate or incomplete. Even if you have a lot of existing content, launching a new page or an improved version of an old page is a great opportunity to assess the quality of your organization’s external communications. If you are putting up the page again, prepare a plan for the content and schedule of its publication. And don’t wait a week before starting the page to start writing.