The following is how our site-building process usually unfolds, along with the typical timeframe and deliverables at each step.
Our Approach: Collaborative and Iterative
Our process is iterative and incremental – we sacrifice big “ta-da” moments for a communication-heavy process of conversations, check-ins, and options. We build in plenty of micro-decisions which we make together, and we try to course-correct early if needed. The result is that we spend a good deal of time in the design phase to get on the same page and make sure we understand your vision. This makes the actual build process fairly quick because by then, most decisions have been made.
Step #1: Start with a Strong Brand
a. Branding Call | This is a one – one-and-one-half-hour call where we dive deep into your thoughts and ideas around your brand. This includes the brand’s development so far, the key “personality” traits, positioning within your market, and more. This is an opportunity for us to ask a ton of questions and get synched up with everything that is already in your mind about your brand.
We’ll also cover visual direction including color palette, typographical preferences, and more. There’s nothing you need to do to prepare for this call. If you’d like you can gather inspiration from other sites around the web and think about what you do and don’t like.
Time: Upon Scheduling
b. Visual Options Email Barrage | Using what we’ve learned in the banding call, we’ll send along a series of options that include some or all of the following: colors, website themes, and typographical pairings and possibly more. If there are questions or uncertainty regarding the visual direction we may spend a moment creating mood-boards to help sketch out the possible visual directions and make a confident decision.
Time: within 2-3 working days of our branding call
c. Brand Style Guide | Drawing from our brand meeting we’ll coalesce all that we talked about (positioning, colors, voice, personality) into a brand style guide. This will be a point of reference for us to see if we’re tracking with your vision of your brand and if you like the visual direction. It’s a pdf document that serves as a chance to make course-corrections.
If it’s headed in the right direction it should also serve as a resource for your brand into the future – so anyone who does anything for your brand (partners, interns, etc.) has an understanding of the brand’s core features and can create content (social media posts, blog posts, product descriptions) that are aligned with that brand.
Time: Within 1-1.5 weeks of branding call
Step #2: Make the Content Memorable
4. Site Content Discussion + Exchange | We’ll take a look at the chosen template together and see what affordances it creates for content and calls to action. We’ll brainstorm on any previous content and content priorities that will be a fit with the site. Most of the content will be written by you with lots of help and insight from us. If writing isn’t your thing, you can choose to add on full or partial copywriting to your site build package.
Time: Upon choice of the site template
Step #3: Build + Edit, Edit + Build
5. Site Build Rough Draft | We’ll start building out the site. This round of the site build is like the “rough-in” of home construction. We’ll get all the major pieces in their place, and as we do so more questions will arise. Some pieces will be rough, some buttons won’t work, etc. At the end of this phase, we have something to look at together and you can give correction and feedback on the colors, placement, etc.
Time: 3 weeks
6. Site Build Second Round + Tools Integration | With your feedback and correction, we’ll add the final round of polishing to the site as well as fix any corrections that were needed. At this point, we’ll also add integrations with your newsletter services, your scheduler, or anything else that’s needed.
Time: 2-3 weeks
7. Training Sessions | Its important to us that you have control over your site, so we’ll schedule 1-2 training sessions to get you comfortable making simple changes to language and images on the site. We’ll record these so you have them for later. These can take place whenever you’re ready and have the mind-space for them.
Time: Whenever you’re ready.