Showcase Your Brand
Since 2001, we have created over 150+ websites, so we know a thing or two about web development. Below is an abbreviated overview of our process, but the actual checklist we use is over 500 different steps. When we follow these steps, the websites we build help our clients:
- Attract ideal customers
- Close sales deals faster
- Improve Search Engine Ranking
- Command higher prices
- Increase the effectiveness of marketing
- Boost business value
1. Client Discovery
At WaddyFletch, we begin every project with a thoughtful discovery process. We begin with a set of questions, a team brainstorming session, and a few executive interviews to the define specific goals and objectives. We cover many questions, some of which include:
- What’s working and not working on the current site?
- What websites do we like in terms of design, content and usability?
- What new content needs to be written and what content can be transferred from the current site (if one exists)?
2. Scope of Work & Timeline
After a comprehensive discovery process, we work with our clients to itemize a detailed scope of work and timeline. This includes:
- Project goals, key milestones and overall timeline
- Number of web pages to build
- New content to be written
- Technology to be used, such as hosting, sales CRM, video, blogs, email, etc.
3. Website Goals & Calls To Action
What is your goal? Do you want to generate more sales leads, drive e-commerce sales, or attract email subscribers? All of these conversions require a clear call to action that persuades website visitors to click and take action.
Some goal and calls to action questions to consider:
- Who is the site for? What do they expect to find or do there?
- Is this website’s primary aim to inform, sell or entertain?
Visit the home page Innerface (a site we built) to see examples of clear calls to action.
4. Sitemap & Wireframes
Once we define the scope of work and action plan, we create a sitemap and draw up wireframes to visually layout the general design of all web pages. Some basic tools we use for this include GlooMaps and Trello. These site maps and wireframes help us:
- Collect content ideas and foster team input on overall design.
- Spot gaps in content that needs to be filled.
- Agree on new design concepts.
5. Brand Identity
In an ideal world, before we build a website, we create company brands and brand guides first. This means we agree on logos, colors, fonts, photos, sales messages and more before we even begin to develop a line of code. The most successful companies work hard to create a consistent brand experience, whether through consistency in words, design, sales offerings or marketing messages. As branding experts, we help our clients develop:
- Brand standards for colors, fonts, photos, icons, imagery and more
- Messaging standards for mission, vision and values, as well web page content, such as who we are, what we do, how we work and why we are different and better
Here is an example of the branding work we did for TurboDry from website to trade show booth: Branding Work.
6. Photography & Images
Some businesses hire us to do custom photography and others decide to go with stock photography. When thinking about your website imagery, some things we help clients with include:
- Brand imagery, such as photos used in home page hero slides and social media cover pages
- Stock image versus stock images
- Free stock images: Pixabay
- Paid stock images: iStockPhoto and Dreamstime
- Employee and staff headshots and group photos
- Building photos – interior and exterior
- Product photos
- Custom photography as needed
7. Home Page Design
According to industry research, most new visitors that land on your website want to be able to understand who you are and what you do within 8 seconds. If not, most visitors will click the back button and go elsewhere. We work with our clients to mock up the home page complete with:
- Home page headline and sub-headlines.
- Brand images.
- Opening elevator pitch.
- Calls to action.
- Proof of qualifications (such as awards, certifications, testimonials, etc).
8. Content Creation
Once the design elements have been agreed upon, we move on to content by working with your team to decide what content should be transferred to the new site and what new content needs to be created. In addition, we often create a Brand Editorial Style Guide that defines:
- Brand personality and tone of voice.
- Key marketing messages and sales offers.
- Short list of target SEO keywords (based on Google keyword research).
- The content creation processes and editorial calendar.
Here is an example of a Brand Editorial Style Guide produced by MailChimp.
9. Cornerstone Content
Some web pages are more important than others, including the ones listed below. The most important thing any website can do is communicate value to potential customers and persuade them to make a purchase.
- Who We Are (brand story)
- What We Do ( brand promise)
- How We Work (what to expect)
- Why We are Different (why choose us versus the competition)
10. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
When all the design and content work is completed, we circle back to ensure the site is optimized for the right SEO keywords. This includes updating and optimizing:
- Web page titles, URLs, internal page links and more.
- Blog post categories and tags.
- Site speed and image optimization.
11. Technology and Testing
When everything is done and it’s time to go live, we test everything and setup a few important online accounts:
- Review website copy for types and spelling errors
- Test website links to ensure they work properly
- Test web forms to make sure they are working
- Accounts: Google Analytics and Google Search Console
12. WordPress & Google Analytics Training
After your site launches, we often train our clients on how to make text edits in WordPress and how to run reports in Google Analytics. We are here to make the bigger changes to your site, but some clients like to make tweaks to copy on their own.
13. Hosting and Maintenance
We usually recommend that our clients set up a hosting account at WP Engine.com, the leading WordPress web hosting company. They are slightly more expensive than the cheaper hosting services, but they are reliable and provide daily site backups and 24/7 support.