Inside a web development agency

No ifs and buts about it, you need to have a website to promote your business and improve your bottom line. While there are a lot of do-it-yourself options out there, you know that your best bet is to get the services of a web development agency so everything about your new website, from the aesthetic side to the technical side, will come together smoothly. You understand that a professional-looking website will go a long way in building your brand’s credibility and discoverability. Potential customers can learn about what you are offering 24/7 and can get in touch with you whenever, wherever.

Unlike DIY site builders, a web development agency can create a site that is custom-made for your needs whether it is for informational use only or for generating online sales. It will make sure that the visual elements of your site like the text, colors and graphics will grab attention and communicate your message. The agency has access to the newest technologies and latest trends that can draw traffic to your site and make it stand out from the competition. It can also optimize your website to make it appear first in the search engines’ rankings, then do continual maintenance to keep the site current and relevant.

So how can a professional web agency like the one of www.keen.com.mt create a site that suits your business? Keep in mind that a web developer is well versed in designing programs and applications that can build websites from the bottom up. He or she can formulate a custom code that answers the unique needs of your site. It’s not like a do-it-yourselfer who will casually register a domain name, look for a web template, and borrow a program to construct a site. A web developer is familiar with web programming languages, software programs, web applications, and computer and web server operations to make a website functional.

The first thing the agency will do in creating your website is to gather information as to your purpose, primary goals, and target demographics. The developers will ask you to expound on what your business is all about, who are your intended customers, and what you hope to accomplish with the website. You have to be clear with where your website is headed, what your principal objectives are, and who do you want to draw to your site. Obviously, a website for honeymooners won’t have the same look as those for kids the same way a business portal will differ from a religious website.

After knowing your requirements and goals, the web development agency moves on to the planning stage where a team consolidates the project’s parameters to have an idea of how the site will look like. Based on your business objectives, the agency will come up with a strategy to meet those targets using its expertise and best practices.  The sitemap is created at this stage showing the key pages in the site and their relationship to each other. It will serve as a guide as to what content will be included in the site, and the kind of navigational system to be used.

Once the blueprint is finished, it is time to determine the look and feel of the site. Keeping the info you gave in the first phase in mind, the web development agency will choose images, photos, and videos to come up with a visual mockup of the website. The design prototype containing colors, logos, and other visual content can give a passable inkling of the future product. As the client, you will be given an opportunity to view the design and express your likes and dislikes until you are completely satisfied. It is your call to approve the final design.

FiveGrid from TrendyTheme on Vimeo.

Overlapping the other stages of website development is content writing wherein the very essence of the site is communicated to the audience through text with added calls-to-action. The subjects of the articles, the keywords to be used, the preferred writing style, and the number of words per article are determined taking into account the website’s end goals. This includes copy editing and proofreading to remove any errors in the content such as irrelevant information, spelling and grammar lapses, and punctuation and sentence structure mistakes. Again, your final approval as the client is needed before it is used in the website.

The development stage is where the web development agency creates the actual website itself. Using the sitemap as a sequence guide, the home page is made first followed by all the other sub-pages. This is the coding part wherein the developers work with coding languages such as JavaScript or HTML to convert the design into a dynamic, interactive website. The developers lay out the main sections and content starting with the header, footer and content area, then adding the text and image content. Valid code is also critical for search engine optimization so your website will rank high in Internet searches.

The site is then shared with internal audiences for rigorous testing of functionality and performance. It is reviewed on multiple browsers (Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer) and multiple devices (smartphones, laptops, and tablets) to ensure that the site can be viewed properly. All links are tested to make sure there are no broken links that can lead to an error page. Images are checked for resolution and file size so they won’t take forever to load. Even a spell-check software is used to correct any typographical blunders. After the tests and reviews, and upon approval by all stakeholders, the site is ready for launching.

But a web development agency’s task is not done after the site is launched. There is the matter of maintaining and updating the site to ensure that everything works fine, and everybody is satisfied. It can be done for a limited time period, or prolonged on a regular basis by offering a range of continuing support options for changes or concerns that may arise in the future. This includes protecting the site from would-be attackers and spammers.

 

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