Telling your developer that you need a simple business website isn’t enough to get the site of your dreams.
Your web developer needs a little more information along with a few other things to get your project started. After all, you want a site that meshes with your business goals and increases conversions naturally.
Think of it as a team effort. You provide the background details and the developer helps turn your vision into a reality.
Your Site’s Purpose
Your web developer needs to know your site’s purpose. For instance, a small business site should have different features and a layout than an online lifestyle magazine. Start by providing your developer with details on what your business does, who your target audience is and what you plan to accomplish with the site.
For instance, do you want to increase walk-ins to your local hardware store or boost email newsletter sign-ups for more effective marketing campaigns later? These might seem like small details to you, but they make a major difference in the development process.
You might not know the difference between a widget and a plugin, but if you have examples to show your developer, he’ll have a better idea of what you’re looking for. Do some research before hiring a WordPress developer to see what types of sites you like. Gather a list of your favorite sites along with what you like best about them. It could be the site’s structure, placement of widgets, page loading speeds or anything else.
Ideally, try to find a few competitors’ sites to better explain your business to the developer. List what you do and don’t like about each site. The more detailed you can be, the better.
Prepare Your Content
Your web developer usually doesn’t handle things like content creation and logo design. These might seem like minor things to you, but they’re a vital part of the development. Your content, such as text, images and videos, help the developer better lay out the site and determine the site’s structure. Naturally, you’d want your logo ready for the developer to add well before your launch date.
Consider Site Structure
While you don’t have to have this 100% figured out, you should have some idea of your site structure. The structure includes all your pages and how they link to each other. Your developer needs to know the structure before getting started so he knows how many pages to create, how each page is laid out, what type of navigation each page needs and more.
If you’re not certain about your structure, meet with a WordPress developer for help in laying it all out. Remember, this can be changed later on as you update your site.
Relevant Account Details
This one might seem surprising, but if you already have a domain, hosting and social media accounts, your developer may need access to some or all of the login information. Obviously, your WordPress developer needs details about your domain and hosting so he can upload files to your host’s server and ensure all domain mapping is correct.
If you’re adding social media to your site, your developer needs to know your social media names for each account in order to link them. Keep in mind that when providing passwords to your developer, most hosts allow you to create secondary users, so you don’t have to provide your main account details.
Must Have Features
Checking out other sites you like will help you figure out what features you want. Consider features such as a responsive design in the process. While these might not be obvious when looking at competing sites, a mobile friendly site helps with search engine ranking and visitor satisfaction. Your developer can help you with determining features once he understands your site’s purpose.
Your Desired Deadline
Your developer can give you an estimated timeline once you’ve given him all relevant details and discussed what features you want. Talk to your developer about when you want your site finished. Your developer will let you know if it’s possible and if it’s not, he’ll explain why and provide a more realistic date so the project isn’t rushed.
The more you know about what you want from your site, the easier it is for your developer to envision the site. Before hiring anyone, set up a rough draft of your pages, list of features and prepare some basic content. Doing all this will help get your project started off right.
Ready to talk to a WordPress developer about your project? Contact StuartMedia today to discuss your site.
Image: Serge Kij