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Website Design and Development Process

What is the Typical Process of Delivering a Website?

Let’s face it: in this digital age, your website is one of the most visible parts of your company’s public persona. Even if you have brick-and-mortar locations, your website remains an important place where customers can learn about and purchase the services and products you offer.

Plus, your website gives potential customers a lasting first impression that they won’t easily shake. This makes website design a critical part of nearly every industry—poorly designed websites will frustrate and deter visitors, while well-made and responsively designed websites will boost web traffic and bolster your brand.

While there’s no formal consensus about the stages of website development, the typical process almost always includes four main phases: planning, designing, creating, and launching.

At Valley Of Digital, we’re planning nerds—web designers committed to our detailed five-step process of web design that consistently yields extraordinary results that are both within budget and in line with the client’s vision. Let’s take a deep dive into our website development process to share more about the pros and cons of our approach.

Our Values

Although we’re big believers in the importance of set plans and processes, our values govern everything we do and deeply influence our approach. That’s where our process really begins.

Good Communication

We invest time and energy into establishing effective lines of communication with our collaborators. For us, good communication means:

  • Transparency – To build and maintain trust, we tell you what to expect from day one and make our progress (from status to budget spend) easily visible and trackable. We believe that complete transparency is a key factor driving healthy communication.
  • Clarity – Making impersonal pitches with jargon blabber is not our style of doing business. Instead, we communicate with you clearly and politely to ensure we’re as straightforward and understandable as possible. We always want to be on the same page. And on the off chance we aren’t, we’ll reach out to clear things up instead of making assumptions that could lead to further misunderstanding.
  • Checking in – Good communication is also about listening and checking in. We use email and channels like ClickUp to keep you in the loop and make ourselves available for any questions, clarifications, or concerns along the way.

Attention to Detail

For us, the design is in the details. We’re proud of our work and care much more about producing a few high-quality digital products than dozens of average-quality products that don’t meet our standards.

Our fantastic team of developers and designers use their skills to deliver dazzling websites with impeccable performance. We care about every pixel and every line of code.

Planning Ahead

“On-Time and On-Budget” is our motto, and our project managers ensure that each project is on the right track. When we built our own website, we learned first-hand that timelines and deadlines were absolutely necessary for success.

The initial planning stages are critical for defining the goals, outcomes, timeline, and budget so that each project, no matter the size, can stay organized.

Website Design & Development: Our Approach

Speaking of planning, we’ve honed our approach for website design and development to create our unique five-step process. Also called the web development life-cycle, this process outlines the steps we take for each project.

We begin by getting to know you and your company and establishing the project scope, budget, and timeline. We then work diligently to design and implement your dream website. Once it’s complete, you can rest assured that we’ll be with you over the long haul to maintain and optimize your live digital product.

As inspired by our values, this web development process establishes a genuine collaborative partnership that fosters the kind of honesty, creativity, and innovation necessary to create world-class websites that are both visually stunning and highly functional.

So, how do we do it?

Step 1: Onboarding & Kick-off

This first step in our website designing and development process really sets us apart. Rather than jumping into a planning stage, we want to get to know you! Our project onboarding consists of a face-to-face (or screen-to-screen) meeting with our CEO and your dedicated Project Manager, who will facilitate the early planning and preparation phases.

To give you transparent oversight over the project and its progress, we’ll:

  • Walk you through all of the steps of our process in detail
  • Introduce you to the project management tools

With this step in place, we get to build our partnership and kick off the project on a strong, authentic foundation.

Step 2: Discover & Plan

In this step, some of the most important work of the project takes place, and it’s highly collaborative. After we’ve built that foundation in Step 1, we want to dive deeper into exactly what it is that you’re looking for. At this stage, we will:

  • Get to know the ins and outs of your company and your brand
  • Establish your goals for a website
  • Determine the needs of your target audience online
  • Introduce your team of designers—depending on the project’s needs, that usually includes two UX/UI designers working in tandem to cover most user-related challenges
  • Outline the project’s objectives
  • Confirm and finalize your official project scope, budget, and timeline, which are created using information we received during the sales and onboarding processes

In other words, this step results in the creation of a detailed roadmap for the project. With this roadmap, you and our team know exactly what’s coming and the budgetary and time constraints surrounding the next steps.

Step 3: Design

Once you’ve reviewed the scope, budget, and timeline and given the project an official “green light,” the Designer begins the work of conceptualizing what your new website will look like. Using Sketch and Invision software, they’ll create an early mock-up of your vision, usually starting with a partial webpage that you’ll review in detail.

By seeking out early feedback and confirmation, we can confidently incorporate your vision into the entire project. Typically, we enlist a second designer after the initial webpage approval, as this allows us to complete your website more efficiently. But even as we move forward with the next phases of design, we remain as agile and collaborative as possible, always in constant communication through comments on Invision and Clickup.

This is also a step that includes considerable collaboration for the Designer and Developer on your project team. The Developer, who will code and build out the actual digital product in Step 4, will be consulted in Step 3 to ensure that the aesthetic and functional aspects of your website are harmonious.

Step 4: Implement

Because the Developer has been a part of the project team from the beginning and worked in tandem with the Designer in Step 3, this step is simply an implementation of the vision. The Developer will write the code to create the website exactly as:

  • The Designer imagined
  • You approved

Because attention to detail is the name of the game, our QA (quality assurance) team will make sure that any bugs in the code are discovered and fixed during this step. By the time you review your brand new website, it’s pristine and has that wow factor you’re looking for.

The final component of this step is the online equivalent of a red carpet ribbon-cutting ceremony: the launch. We’ll deliver your product on time so that you can have your website up and running just as planned.

Step 5: Care & Optimize

Once your website’s live, we stick around to make sure that your product continues to give you what you need. During this step, we:

  • Provide website maintenance
  • Assist you in SEO or SEM (search engine optimization or marketing)
  • Implement new security measures to better serve you and your online visitors
  • Add new features or changes

We take our partnerships seriously, so we won’t ghost you as soon as we deliver your product. We’re in the thick of it with you, attending to your red alerts and mitigating future problems by behaving proactively.

The Pros and Cons of Our Approach

Our approach is all about taking the necessary time to establish a relationship with you so that we can deliver the best digital product possible. While we believe this process works, it may not be the right fit for every client.

The Pros

Because we have a robust team that combines the best of both the tech and creative worlds, we’re able to deliver the right blend of design agency and webshop. This results in websites that are:

  • Visually sleek and striking
  • Remarkably easy to navigate

As a smaller organization, we also pride ourselves on our individual approach. We can engage with you on a level (and regularity) that you won’t find with bigger companies. This means we can more effectively:

  • Focus on the people behind your company
  • Capture the essence of your brand

With a better understanding of who you are, we can channel your brand into everything on your site, from the images and color palette to the typography used.

The Cons

Our five stages of web development are meant to establish an authentic partnership and open and clear lines of communication. It’s an approach that’s both collaborative and hands-on. This means it may not be the best arrangement for clients looking for:

  • A more hands-off approach
  • A website for the lowest price and the quickest turnaround possible

If you’re looking for a web design agency that specializes in high-converting website design, contact Valley of Digital today. Our team of experts can help you create a website that meets your business goals and delivers results. Whether you need a new website design from scratch or want to improve the performance of an existing site, we can provide customized solutions tailored to your specific needs.