A Web Design Roadmap Part 1
When you begin a web design project the first step is always to gather information about who the web design is for. The information that is collected will give you a good understanding of the company the web design is for, allowing the web design to meet the appropriate criteria. This information can be sorted into four main categories, which are: purpose, goals, target audience, and content.
Purpose of Web Design—For what reason is your web design being created? Is your web design meant to present information to customers? Is your web design meant to sell products or services?
Goal of Web Design—What is your finished web design supposed to accomplish? Knowing the goal of a web design allows you to add specific features and functions to the web design that will help to achieve this goal. In web design, two of the most common goals are to inform visitors about a specific topic and to make money off the sales of products, services, or advertisements.
Target Audience of Web Design—What are the demographics of the visitors that your web design is meant to appeal to? Knowing the age, gender, class, and location of the visitors that you would like your web design to appeal to allows you to create the web design around trends that your target demographic responds to.
Content of the Web Design—What kind of text or images will be used in the web design that will achieve the goal of the web design? Do images, text, or animations appeal more to the target demographic? To accomplish the purpose of the web design, will you need specific features such as a blog, online ordering, tutorial videos, etc.?
Planning your Web Design
Once you have collected the information about your web design—goals, purpose, demographic, content—you can begin to develop a plan for the web design process. A good starting point for planning your web design is creating a sitemap. A sitemap will act like a table of contents for the different pages and areas in the web design. The sitemap of your web design should be made in a structured, tree-like formation containing the main topics of the site branching out to subtopics, and so on.
Creating this sitemap as part of the web design planning process is essential for ease-of-use and navigation of the web design as it allows you to build a linking structure for the web design that can be easily understood by visitors.
The planning stage of the web design process is also where you decide the specific technologies that will be used in the web design to implement the desired features and functions. Things like form use, whether you will need an e-commerce aspect to the web design, and whether to use a content management system will also be decided during this stage.
In the next segment, there is information on how to create a good looking web design, and then constructing it.