Before we start to think about design, or how we're going to implement the build-out of your web project, we first define what "done" looks like. We learn the nuances of your organization and then develop desired outcomes for your project. With the use of our project management portal, our clients know how their project is progressing every step of the way.
We have a comprehensive process that we use to develop your website creating purpose for each stage of the build. This process allows for a better experience with our customers, and transparency as we work through their projects.
Before any development takes place, we enter a communication phase with all of the project stakeholders to define initial planning and expectations. Too often, web development is seen as a problem for the developer alone to solve, when in reality, the people behind the vision should be at the core of the process. Working with you, we will define the target audience, site functionality, appropriate software architecture, hardware requirements, timeframe, budget, project stakeholders and liaisons, and a basic plan for marketing and maintenance.
Content and Navigation
We understand that content is the most important part of any website. For the best efficiency and highest usability, we define the types of content that will appear on your site and the relationships that exist between them. With the content defined and categorized, we develop a navigation system and a basic interface to demonstrate how your site will be organized.
Once the interface is complete, we begin construction on a site prototype. A prototype is a working model of the site in development, without any major graphical design yet. The prototype is a chance to test the navigation of your site and hammer out any details that were missed in the initial planning phase. We use Drupal for faster prototyping and more powerful results. At the end of this stage, you will be able to see a fully browsable version of your site.
When the clients are satisfied with the prototype, we write any necessary custom code not already in the site. Using input from the previous stages, we prepare the site for final beta testing, content creation and visual design.
Beta Testing and Content Creation
At this stage, stakeholders in the project will have the ability to add their real content to the site, as well as report bugs and issues they come across before development is complete. Developers and project owners will continue to work together to make the site easy to navigate and free of issues.
An integral part of the web experience is a site's visual appearance. At this stage, we form an overall graphic design for the site, form a design for each element, and set out a graphical design specification. See the Design page for more details and examples of our work.
Marketing and Promotion
The Internet is a vast ocean of billions of web pages, all competing for the same visitors. Unfortunately, if you build it, they will not necessarily come. Bringing people to your web site takes a concerted effort and is not a matter to be taken trivially. ActiveLAMP has the experience necessary to get your website to its target audience.
Depending on the complexity of your site, you will likely need some level of training regarding how to add content, edit content, and keep your users happy. We can provide training in-person via teleconference, telephone or plain old email.
After all the required preparations are met (beta testing, load tests, training, and marketing) and the clients are happy with our work, we will launch the site. It's important to us to see each launch go as smoothly and successfully as possible.
Maintenance and Updates
Many people make the mistake of neglecting allowances for maintenance in their site budget. The Internet is a fast-moving and dynamic place. Not only will you want to have your software up-to-date, you may even discover features you want added to your site later on. ActiveLAMP is willing to keep long-standing relationships with its clients.