Building a website looks as simple as setting up WordPress and slapping a theme on it, but in reality it’s much more involved. You need to plan, strategize, and decide how you want the user experience to look like before you can even begin coding. Here are the top 10 steps for successful website development.
Establish Your Goals.
Whether you are building a website for your business or for personal use, it is important to establish your goals before getting started. Ask yourself questions such as what do I want my users to do on this website? How do I want the user experience to look? What tangible results should the website generate? Answering these questions will help guide you through the development process and enable you to create an effective website.
Research Your Audience and Competition.
Understanding your target audience and competitors is a crucial step for effective website development. Spend time researching current trends, understanding user behaviors, and exploring the competition’s website design, look and feel, content, engagement techniques and more. Having this knowledge will help you build a website that is tailored to your audience’s needs and one that stands out from the competition.
Design a Relevant Website Structure and Navigation Plan.
The website structure should make sense for your target audience and create a great experience for them. Designing relevant navigation paths will ensure users can find what they’re looking for quickly and easily, making the user experience much more enjoyable. Identifying popular pages and key content needs from both a user and SEO perspective is important when designing the website structure to ensure all user journeys are catered to and that discovery of key pages maximizes opportunities to rank in search engine result pages (SERPs).
Develop a Responsive Web Design.
Responsive web design (RWD) is rapidly becoming an absolute necessity for businesses who want a professional website that caters to all devices. With millions of users browsing the internet on their phones, tables and other mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly version of your website is key to providing a seamless user experience. RWD ensures that your website scales to the size of the device being used and provides users with an optimal viewing experience. Designing a responsive website also helps reduce errors and improves page speed which can lead to higher rankings and happier customers.
Take into Account Speed for Performance And Usability.
Speed is critical when it comes to web development. A user’s attention span is short and they expect websites to load quickly. Taking into account speed involves optimizing your website for performance and usability. Performance optimization focuses on reducing the amount of code used so that it doesn’t take too long to render the page. Meanwhile, with usability optimizations, you can improve user experience by structuring your site elements in a logical order, enabling efficient navigation and allowing users to find what they need quickly and easily.