GETTING TO KNOW YOU
To plan and build the best possible website for your business, we need to get to know you. We kick things off with an introductory meeting and deep data analysis from your Google Analytics, SEO, and competitors. This report guides the choices to be made in your content strategy and web design.
Sitemap and Userflow
DETERMINING FORM & FUNCTION
Now it’s time to assess your existing content and website structure, and determine what to preserve and what to improve. During this phase we generate a strategic sitemap. This high-level planning tool serves as a blueprint for the overall structure of your site — what content you have, what you need, and where it will all go.
YOUR WORKING BLUEPRINT
Using the data gathered in our initial research and the sitemap, we build out a working prototype of your website. This framework is no-frills; it allows you to explore page templates, test navigation, and interact with all of your links, menus, and forms to nail down functionality.
POPULATING THE COPY
Once the layout and interactive elements of your website meet approval, the prototype is ready to be filled with all the copy that's needed to tell your story. Headlines, text blocks, CTA buttons, menu items, and more are collected in GatherContent, our preferred tool for copy collaboration.
EXPLORING VISUAL STORYTELLING
With strategy and planning well underway, it's time to start on interior decor — the colours, typography, and accents that will bring your brand's personality to life. We separate your aesthetic choices from functionality and content so that each aspect of your website's creation gets the full focus it deserves.
COMPS, GUIDES & DESIGN SYSTEMS
Taking the prototypes and style tiles, we pull together the final creative vision for your website. From homepage designs to an interior style guide, hover states, and typographic styles, we nail down the design systems that will be applied throughout your website.
Custom WordPress Development
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
Using the latest CSS3 techniques, we dress your prototype with the final design theme. The objective of this stage is to build out a custom website that's still modular and future-friendly — it can flex and scale with your business, customers, and technology without the need for full rebuilds and redesigns.
POPULATION & QUALITY ASSURANCE
Here’s where we fine-tune the site and start moving all that awesome copy into place thorough our QA process, accomplishing 30% content completion and squashing any bugs as they come up. We also migrate any existing blog content, and help you polish your site to a high gloss.
HANDING OVER THE KEYS
This is the most exciting part — handing over control and empowering you with everything you need to know to maintain your site. We take as much care in crafting your site's Dashboard system as we do designing its public-facing elements, to ensure you have a smooth, intuitive experience adding to and managing your content.
Introducing Your New Website
Now that the content is in and the site has been quality assured and tested, we create a launch plan to archive your old site and release your shiny new one to the public. We ensure analytics are in place, and that your site is submitted to the appropriate search engines so it’s ready to get to work.
BUILDING YOUR BRAND
Websites can't do all the work themselves. SEO and performance are an ongoing process, supported by techniques including social media, digital ads, and content marketing. With consistent effort and attention to your analytics, your website can make a huge impact on leads and sales — and we can teach you how.
This article was updated on April 19th, 2019. At Forge and Smith, we write more than code. We’re frequently called upon to provide copywriting services for our clients’ website redesign projects. We understand the importance of engaging, optimized copy when it comes to a successful business website. When a contractor or agency is hired to […]Read More