Before you hire a church website designer, it is critical to know what you are receiving for your money. I have developed a four phase plan I use with my clients so they know exactly what is happening throughout the website design process.
A website is much more than just a website, and you should know what you are receiving. Any web designer can throw together a site in a few days and make it look good to the naked eye. But if you are not receiving all of these basic services that go with a custom church website design, it’s time to think about finding someone else. I wouldn’t ask the designer if they do “x, y, and z”, just ask them what is included. I think you’d be hard pressed to find a church website designer that lists all of these as basic services for every website design.
Phase 1 – DISCOVER
- Gather information about the company and industry as well as the goals and purpose of the website
- Understand design specifications and style, look and feel, and layout of the site
- Develop a wire-frame that lays out the site structure including number of pages and navigation
- Logo and other necessary artwork is collected from client
- Client signs off on wireframe so design phase can begin
Phase 2 – DESIGN
- Design the site in Photoshop per the design specifications, navigation, and wireframe structure
- Allow the client to make up to 3 minor design revisions
- Client signs off on the design so development phase can begin
Phase 3 – DEVELOP
- Develop the site in DreamWeaver using standards compliant XHTML/CSS markup
- Build out and fill in content for approximately __ pages
- Content to include text and 2-3 images per page of content (to be provided by client)
- Integrate basic search engine optimization techniques within the code and structure of the site to maximize exposure on search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Live, etc.
Phase 4 – DEPLOY
- Beta test and debug the site to confirm it is in perfect working condition before official launch
- Confirm that the site looks perfect and functions correctly in all major modern browsers including Internet Explorer 7+, Firefox 2+, Safari, & Opera.
- Confirm the site is standards compliant for maximum usability and to protect the integrity of the design and functionality against future changes in browser rendering (more info)
- Publish the website on the Internet
- Provide a free 1-year warranty on all design code created by me. This means that if the site “breaks” (doesn’t look right or function correctly due to future browser changes), then I will fix it at no cost
Note to website designers: Feel free to use this for your clients, but please email me first to ask permission. Thanks.