The web design process can be a daunting one. There are many steps to take and decisions to make, but it is a process needed to create a successful website. Walking your client through these steps will help guide them through the process and answer any questions they have along the way.
Here’s the design process to follow:
1. Set expectations in the Statement of Work (or SOW).
The SOW is an addition to your contract with your client. It lays out clear expectations about deliverables, milestones, how many revisions are allowed, and final deadlines.
2. Onboarding your client and aligning on the creative brief.
Before any designs are done, you need to get on the same page as your client. Some questions you can ask might be:
- What are you trying to accomplish?
- What design requirements do they have?
- What is up for exploration?
- Do they have any examples that they love?
- What do we want the users to feel when they see the designs?
- Are there any important keywords that the designs should align with (like bright, cheerful, mysterious, child-like, etc)?
- Who is using this website? Who is the target audience?
- What does the target audience like and what styles are they drawn to? (We want the client to succeed, which means designing for their customer.)
3. Web design process: Researching and creating a mood board.
All good work starts with research. Look at the client’s competitors. Look at top designs trends. Look for amazing examples that do match what the client described.
4. Creating stylescapes.
At our agency, we like to create collage of sorts called stylescapes. These explore design styles, color palettes, typography, use of photography to find the right approach.
5. Getting the page’s story.
While the web design process research and exploration is going, you will need the content from your client. If the client insists on creating their content, you will need to collect it before the design phase (with tools like GatherKit.) If you are writing the content, you will need to work with your client to get the right story flow.
Most designers like to start with a rough wireframe to plan out the content, photos, and call-to-action buttons. This will help you make sure that the flow feels right before any design is added.
7. Time to design!
Once the wireframe is set and stylescapes approved, it is a matter of bringing it all together.
8. Presenting the design and refining.
The final design phase is to present the design to your client. If you can’t be in the room with them, you can present via Zoom or even a video recording they can rewatch. It’s important to share with your client your process and why you made the design decisions you did. Then you can chat together on what feels right for the brand and what could be improved. From there, it’s revisions until that final approval.
An amazing web design process is a detailed process. This will help you create a site that meets these needs while aligning with your client’s needs for brand growth, storytelling, and user experience.