Hosting, Design, Development – Websites Require Planning & Thought (Part 2 of 3)

Welcome to part 2 of our 3-part series: Hosting, Design, Development. This month we will tackle design. 

You’ve got your domain, your hosting is secured (preferably through WP Engine for your WordPress site), now it’s time to design your website. How exciting! First, you must plan. Building a website without a plan is like building a house without the blueprints! Important features won’t be included, items will be in the wrong place, and so many other things can go wrong.

Before you start the actual design of a website, it’s a good idea to create a mock-up. This can also be called a wireframe. It’s basically the outline of your website, the framework. Use placeholder text for pages, and don’t spend too much time on the details. The purpose of the wireframe is to give everyone an idea of what the website will look like. This can be done in a program like Photoshop. Not an artist? It’s ok! Use a pen and paper. Once you have the general idea of how you want your website to be, off to the web designer/developer the wireframe goes.

If you’re not comfortable with creating a wireframe for your designer/developer, view different websites for what you like and dislike. Make a list (include the URLs) for your designer/developer. Include items like colors and fonts. Be as specific as possible.

When you (or your designer/developer) designs a website, usability and aesthetics needs to be at the forefront. A nice-looking website that’s easy to navigate is the CCL Designsgoal! There are a few basic concepts to keep in mind:

  • Make navigation easy to find and understand
  • Use easy-to-read fonts
  • Choose a background color and text color that contrast
  • Make sure your site always fits the screen (developer)
  • Meet (or exceed) Google’s Page Speed Insights (developer)
  • Ensure your site has the proper structured data (developer)
  • Place the company logo and tagline in a prominent position
  • Keep styles consistent throughout the site
  • Make copy clear and concise
  • Place important information on page above “the fold”
  • Keep clear notes for your style sheets
  • Always design/develop with the future in mind

There are parts of design where design and development walk hand-in-hand. It’s important for your designer and developer to work together to ensure smooth sailing. Keep CCL Designs in mind for all of your web design and development needs.

Once you have a nice design, it’s time for development! Stay tuned …

*This 3-part blarticle (blog article) is very simplistic in nature. A lot goes into web design and development.