Planning

Planning

Planning the website involves creating a wireframe and sitemap. This is an important step because it is kind of like the skeleton of your site. This process can take about 2-6 weeks to complete. The sitemap allows the developer to get an outline of what the site will look like, what pages there will be and how they will interact with each other. This not only helps with planning but is also beneficial to the user experience.

A user should be able to easily navigate a site, and this begins with the development of the sitemap. Before you begin to plan content, a sitemap lets you design what the structure will look like. Once the sitemap is completed, the other part of this step is to create a wireframe or mock-up. These are just visual representations of what the site will look like. This does not include the layout details. That comes next.

At this stage of the website development cycle, the developer creates the data that allow a customer to judge how the entire site will look like.

Based on the information that was gathered together in the previous phase, the sitemap is created. Here is the sitemap of the XB Software website:

The sitemap should describe the relations between the main areas of your website. Such representation could help understand how usable the final product will be. It can show you the “relationship” between the different pages of a website, so you can judge how easy it will be for the end-user to find the required information or service if he starts from the main page. The main reason behind the sitemap creation is to build a user-friendly and easy to navigate website.

The sitemap allows you to understand how the inner structure of a website looks like but doesn’t describe the user interface. Sometimes, before you start to code or even work on a design, there’s a necessity to get approval from a customer that everything looks fine so you can begin the next phase of developing. In this case, a wireframe or mock-up is created. A wireframe is a visual representation of the user interface that you’re going to create. But it doesn’t contain any design elements such as colors, logos, etc. It only describes the elements that will be added to the page and their location. It’s artless and cheap in production sketch.

The other important thing is select technology stack – programming language, frameworks, CMS that you’re going to use.

Estimated time: from 2 to 6 weeks