WEBSITE STRATEGY AND PLANNING

WEBSITE STRATEGY AND PLANNING
WEBSITE STRATEGY AND PLANNING

START AT THE DRAWING BOARD AND NEVER LOOK BACK

In web design as in construction you've got to measure twice, cut once.

  • A THOUGHTFUL WEBSITE LAYOUT PREVENTS FALSE STARTS AND COSTLY HOLDUPS
  • STRONG WEB ARCHITECTURE SIMPLIFIES FUTURE MODIFICATIONS AND EXPANSIONS
  • WEBSITE PLANNING PRODUCES AN ACCURATE PROJECT TIMELINE AND BUDGET
  • WEBSITE STRATEGY IS CRITICAL FOR CREATING A MARKETABLE, SEO-FRIENDLY SITE
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WEBSITE PLANNING CASE STUDIES

The process of planning a website may not be the most exciting, but experience has taught us that it’s absolutely essential. By investing the effort upfront we lay the groundwork for a website that will serve as an effective marketing or sales tool for many years to come.

MECHANICS HUB

This ambitious project, the premier online resource for diesel mechanics, demanded extensive planning and strategizing. Our primary task was to accommodate a wide array of functions and to organize a massive library of content. Planning highlights for this project:

  • Careful review of the previous site to find ways to improve content organization
  • High number of screens to position every element
  • Meticulous site map and navigation flow document

BIRD CONSTRUCTION

As one of Canada’s leading builders, Bird Construction has amassed an impressive catalogue of projects. We wanted to showcase these projects in a presentation that is eye-pleasing, highly structured and simple to update through a custom CMS. Planning highlights for this project:

  • CProject hierarchy with extensive filtration system
  • Information architecture to accommodate unique structure for nearly every page
  • Large series of design screens to show the wide variety of page layouts

MEET OUR WEBSITE PLANNING AND STRATEGY TEAM

With so much riding on the website planning process, it’s vital to have input from every segment of our web design team. Each member contributes to the conversation very early on, helping us steer clear of potential pitfalls and identify potential advantages.

from our blog

Boston Pizza Franchising Website Goes Live!

This project is the first (but not the last) collaboration between ITW and Boston Pizza—Canada’s top casual-dining brand, with more than 370 restaurants from coast-to-coast. After months of planning, hard work and refining, we’re proud to be able to add this website to our portfolio. More importantly, the client is happy with the results, and early traffic statistics are promising. How it all started Before this project, franchising occupied a…

Five Must-Haves for Successful B2B Website Design

On the surface there’s not much to distinguish a B2B website from a B2C one. After all, in both cases the goal is to make a positive connection with people searching for a specific product or service. Digging deeper, though, you’ll find that an effective website is one that caters to its target audience. These five elements of successful B2B web design consider the unique needs and challenges of business owners.…

the website planning process

Knowledge underlies everything we do at ITW, which is why we kickstart every project with in-depth research and analysis. By getting to know you—where you’ve been, where you’d like to go, how you define success for your new site—we discover the best way forward. We also examine the competitive landscape to find your niche and leverage every advantage. We’ll find out what others in your industry have done well and what your new site needs in order to outshine, outperform and outlast.
Every website needs a sense of direction, an overarching plan that will help you achieve your online goal but also provide a rewarding experience for visitors. Equipped with knowledge from the research stage, we then start giving structure to your new website. First we create a detailed web architecture, which lays out the content we’ll need and serves as the foundation for every subsequent stage. Having a single document to refer back to keeps the entire web design project well organized and ensures consistency, which is a critical component of planning a website.
The approved web architecture guides our design team in the creation of a creative concept—the first visual representation of the project and one of the most exciting stages. Working with an understanding of content requirements, basic psychology and your goals, our designer establishes creative direction and website layout. This key step in the planning process can also happen in conjunction with branding efforts, whether using new or existing guidelines.
Giving function to form, our development team carefully examines and builds on the project’s previous stages. Our technical manager devises realistic, workable methods to deliver everything your website needs to excel. A detailed site map plots every potential move in the user experience, while also ensuring that website structure and layout are in harmony with desired functionalities. This document provides direction to the rest of the development team and serves as a final check in the website planning process to make sure nothing has been overlooked.

WHAT ROLE DOES PLANNING PLAY IN WEB DESIGN?

The lifespan of an average website these days may seem short, but it’s important to note that poor planning—or complete lack thereof—is usually the biggest contributing factor. In other words, it was destined to live fast and die young because no one looked to the future. Planning a website means more than incorporating the latest innovations: it means recognizing the current and emerging habits of users, as well as predicting how those habits will evolve over time. A site with a strong brand identity will ultimately carve a niche for itself among the many competitors, who will come and go with the trends.

HOW DOES PLANNING HELP WITH CONVERSION RATES?

Sure, visits are nice, but conversions are something to get excited about. That’s the way we look at web design in general, as well as the finer points of website layout and planning. Conversions are increasingly what drive business, a far cry from only years ago when face-to-face interactions and phone calls dominated the business landscape. But turning website visitors into leads and leads into conversions takes detailed planning, including research of qualitative and quantitative data.

We examine your current site, looking for telling statistics like bounce rates—once we know what turned visitors off, we’ll know how to plan a website that leads to action. These valuable insights give shape to the entire web design process, from information architecture and website layout to design and even online marketing.

See What a Full-Service Web Agency Can Do for You.

If your company isn’t succeeding online, it’s not living up to its potential. At ITW we live to produce work of unparalleled style and substance, doing everything we can to help our clients make the most of their web presence. Our air-tight process makes it possible to work on almost any kind of project, no matter how small the business or the budget.

It doesn’t hurt that we use leading project management and collaboration systems, which keep our web design projects on track whether the client is in Toronto, Tampa Bay or another time zone. But we also know that technology is only a tool. Through attention to detail and constant communication, we identify and avoid potential issues before they’re given the chance to cause delays or budget overruns.

We also structure our projects with multiple checkpoints for client approval and feedback, which ensures the project – whether web design and development, video production or digital marketing – remains true to the initial scope. For our Toronto clients that can mean in-person meetings, but we’re just as happy to meet remotely via phone or conferencing software.

To get a better idea of what we do, explore our portfolio of web design, branding, 3D, video production and other creative works. You can also contact our head office in Markham, just north of Toronto, or fill out an online request for a free, no-obligation quote.

See What a Full-Service Web Agency Can Do for You.

If your company isn’t succeeding online, it’s not living up to its potential. At ITW we live to produce work of unparalleled style and substance, doing everything we can to help our clients make the most of their web presence. Our air-tight process makes it possible to work on almost any kind of project, no matter how small the business or the budget.

It doesn’t hurt that we use leading project management and collaboration systems, which keep our web design projects on track whether the client is in Toronto, Tampa Bay or another time zone. But we also know that technology is only a tool. Through attention to detail and constant communication, we identify and avoid potential issues before they’re given the chance to cause delays or budget overruns.

We also structure our projects with multiple checkpoints for client approval and feedback, which ensures the project – whether web design and development, video production or digital marketing – remains true to the initial scope. For our Toronto clients that can mean in-person meetings, but we’re just as happy to meet remotely via phone or conferencing software.

To get a better idea of what we do, explore our portfolio of web design, branding, 3D, video production and other creative works. You can also contact our head office in Markham, just north of Toronto, or fill out an online request for a free, no-obligation quote.

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