Getting the facts right:
It is a good idea to start by first gathering all the fact about the website. The process of information retrieval is essentially a two-step process. First is when the client provides the information for the website, like the requirements and sample or reference website links. The second step is when the designer reviews the requirements and after having prepared a mock-up of some kind in their mind request further information from the client.
Establishing the goals:
This is the stage when it necessary to understand what the client really requires from you as a development company. Furthermore it is necessary to determine whether an existing website requires remake and to what extent or make some decisions regarding the scope of the new website.
All in all the best way to determine this is to ask yourself a few questions like:
What are the visitors searching for?
What do you have to offer to your visitors?
What are your expert areas?
It is possible to have insight into the bigger picture in this way by looking at things from a different perspective.
Understanding the overall concept of website:
Getting this right is harder than you can imagine and many people get it wrong. It may be easy to gather the requirements but there is much more to just retrieving all the requirements and designing the layout. It is necessary to understand the requirements by correctly analysing them. Besides which it is also necessary to establish the targeted audience early on and understand what their requirements are.
To correctly understand the requirements one should ideally be aware of the domain of the website. For example if the task to develop a website for a college or educational institute it would be a good idea first gain some insight into the world of an educational institute instead of diving straight into designing the layouts and functions. An educational institute is a unique domain and has unique features, options and functionality that can be portrayed in a nice way on a website if you have sufficient knowledge about them. There are several ways in which this can be done, but doing this is absolutely necessary to make a good website and makes all the difference.
Designer’s 6th Sense:
Designing a website or a custom layout for a firm is more than simply creating a layout or reading the list of requirements set down by the client. Besides gathering and understanding the requirements it is also necessary to spend some time brainstorming the project.
Here is how one can do this:
Get to know the firm a little bit of history and what the future holds.
There may be certain aspects of the business that haven’t been revealed since they were not relevant at the moment but required in the future.
Designing the website in a way that makes it future proof is part of the job.
It helps to understand the additional technical requirements as well.
As a designer it is necessary to have knowledge of how to layout is going to be utilized. The project might require some functionality as well. This requirements may be fulfilled using an open source software or core programming like core PHP, etc. Thus if an open source is being utilized then the designer should ideally study the characteristics of the open source and design in accordance with that.
For example if the website is to use ZenCart open source the design can be optimised for that in such a way that it make it easy to integrate and use the existing flow of the open source. If WordPress has been chosen then the designer can design keeping that in mind including necessary sidebars and footer options as well as making use of widgets.
Other existing websites:
Designers are usually always been encouraged to search for websites with the similar topic on the internet. However this often results in copying and simply using “Cut and Paste” to make a similar website for their own client.
It is a good idea to spend some time researching on the internet to get a good idea of how others have done it. This can help the designer gain valuable inspiration when it comes to the images, website colors, and even typography.
At times even the client themselves will provide several reference links to help you gets started. It pays to analyze these links carefully.
Defining Web Design:
Web design is a lot of things that includes several elements like graphic design, typography etc. but is there a clear definition?
Website Design is not the following:
A Website is different from a book hence Web design is different from book design.
Website design is also different from poster design since it is more than just a poster.
Website design is not about making a smashing design.
What website design is:
Website design is about creating a layout in the digital environment that encourages human activity.
Website design is that which reflects the business and adapts and changes over time.
Website design should maintain and complement the business identity.
Website design is a work of art (similar to building architecture) that fulfils the requirements of the client and is in keeping with the domain (topic).
Website design is about making a smashing design as long as it is relevant for the domain it is being designed for.
Designing good websites:
Responsive design is constantly gaining in popularity as we head into 2015 this it is likely to be used by more number of websites and influence more website designs. Responsive website design though good from the overall business perspective is not necessarily good from the design perspective as the Website designers will be aware off.
Thus it is necessary to create a balance between the two and work with the restrictions of responsive website design if so required.
Alakmalak has been developing websites since a while and there have been several trends changes in website design over the years. This makes the designers well prepared to deliver new, creative and innovative designs to our clients.