Over the last 10 years, we’ve been fortunate to design, build, and develop over 500 websites for small businesses throughout Maine and around the country. As our business has grown, we’ve reviewed, adapted, evolved, and improved on the processes and measuring tactics we put into each project.
When it comes to managing each website we design, build, and develop at Sutherland Weston, there are three key areas that factor into our effective management process.
- Project manager
- Project tracking software
- Design and development labor channels
The Project Manager
Inside Sutherland Weston, we assign project managers to each client and every project. This helps to provide not only consistency in our own shop but clarity in whom our clients can turn to with questions. The project manager communicates and works with our in-house graphic design team and our in-house website design team. The project manager plays a key role in determining the goals, features, and functions for each website project as well as allocating tasks to our team and clients.
The project manager will also be involved in the copy development process, the page flowchart design and keyword focus discussions for search engine optimization, and will ensure clients are familiar with how to use the websites we build for them.
Project Tracking Software
We use a web-based tool for our website design lead tracking and project management tasks. This helps to centralize our information from the very beginning and ensures as much as possible that all tasks, stages, files, goals, and pertinent information about a website design project live in a central location.
Design and Development Stages
Our website design projects are divided into seven stages of development, each with its own specific value and purpose. They are:
- Goals – communication and collaboration between the project manager and the client to map out the features and functions of the website.
- Flowchart – mapping out the menu, its main pages, and supporting pages that will make up the navigation for website as a whole.
- Interface Design – the custom process of creating the look and feel of the website based on the business brand, the goals of the project, and the intended audience or audiences involved.
- SEO Worksheet – the keyword focused approach used to ensure individual pages within the website are constructed with the purpose of being found in Google.
- Content Management System (CMS) Integration – programming the custom graphics, features, functions, and page flowchart into the content management system.
- Content Review – thorough review of grammar and spelling of the pages in the website.
- Quality Assurance – includes testing to ensure all links work as they should, the website appears as it should across multiple browsers, that the overall functionality desired is operational, and that the site is ready to be published for the world to see.