Which piece of chocolate would you prefer: one that is melting inside a dirty squished wrapper or one that is perfectly formed inside a lovely heart-shaped gift box? You’d probably go with the second option, right?
Your website visitors are similarly inclined.
They visit your website to consume your content, view your products, and learn more about your services.
However, if your website’s design could be more appealing, they will not read anything on it, just as you will not eat the chocolate inside the squished wrapper.
That is why web design is important.
“With only 15 minutes to consume content globally, 59% of people would read something beautifully designed.” by Adobe
This demonstrates that beautifully designed websites are important not only because they look good, but also because they sell better.
To begin, a well-designed plan is required to create a web design Malaysia.
In this article, we’ll show you how to plan your website design so you can create a website that keeps your visitors coming back for more.
- What is the Planning Process in Website Design?
- Step 1: Figure Out What Content You Need For Your Website
- Step 2: Decide How to Design Your Website
- Step 3: Create a Mockup of Your Website Layout
- Step 4: Develop the Brand Style Guide For Your Website
- Step 5: Choose Your CMS, Hosting Provider, and Security Service
- Step 6: Finally, Test Your Website For Bugs and Refine It
What Is the Planning Process in Web Design?
The planning process in web design refers to the steps taken prior to the actual design and development of a website. This process ensures that the final product meets the client’s or stakeholders’ goals and requirements. The following steps are typically included in the planning process:
- ◉ Defining goals and objectives: This entails identifying the website’s target audience as well as setting measurable goals such as increased sales, improved user experience, or increased brand recognition.
- ◉ Conducting a Needs Analysis: entails researching the market, studying the competition, and gathering data on the target audience in order to better understand their needs and preferences.
- ◉ Creating a sitemap: A sitemap is a high-level view of the structure and content of a website that aids in the organisation of information and the determination of the navigation hierarchy.
- ◉ Defining the content strategy: Dentails deciding on the type of content to include on the website, such as text, images, videos, and interactive elements, as well as how it will be presented and organised.
- ◉ Defining the technical requirements: Creating wireframes and prototypes of the website to visualise its layout, content placement, and overall user flow is part of the user experience (UX) design process. The goal is to provide the target audience with a user-friendly and accessible experience.
- ◉ Establishing a timeline and budget : Developing a project timeline as well as determining the resources. This includes the people who will work on the website, as well as the technology and budget needed to complete the project.
Let’s take a closer look at each of them in the sections that follow.
Step 1: Figure Out What Content You Need For Your Website
What is the first thing you plan when building a house?
It refers to the rooms in your home. Everything else, such as the size of each room, wallpaper, paint colors, and so on, is added later.
Similarly, the design of your website should be content-driven. This means that you must first decide what content your website will contain before worrying about colour and appearance.
And the process of creating content should be guided by what your visitors want to see – and what will provide value to them.
Assume you own a plumbing company and want to create a website where people can hire your services online. Here is the information (and web pages) you should include on your website:
- ◉ Your company’s introduction (Homepage): Who you are, where you are located and in which areas you provide your services.
- ◉ List of services (Services): On this page, you list your services, rates, and the packages you provide – if any.
- ◉ Contact information (Contact Us): Your phone number, an online booking form (could be a separate bookings page), links to your social media accounts or any other way to contact you.
- ◉ Blog section (Blog): A place where you share helpful plumbing tips with people visiting your site.
It will be easier to design your website once you have a general idea of the content you want to include.
Keep in mind that content isn’t limited to words. (unless you want a boring website). This means you have room for the following extra elements on your pages:
- ◉ Pictures
- ◉ Graphics
- ◉ Audio
- ◉ Video
… and other media elements are also included in the content of your website.
This includes things like:
- ◉ A hero shot of your plumbers working
- ◉ A video tutorial on fixing some simple plumbing issues
- ◉ Customer profile pictures for testimonials
… and more – all of which must be planned ahead of time as part of your website content.
Step 2: Decide How to Design Your Website
A website is not something that can be created for free. You’ll need to pay for web hosting and a decent website template at the very least.
There are two ways to build your website, depending on your budget and time constraints:
Option 1: DIY
Here are two methods for creating a website without any design or coding skills:
- 1. Install WordPress and purchase a template: WordPress is the most popular CMS (content management system) for building websites on the internet. In its official store or other online marketplaces, you can buy a beautiful WordPress template for $50 – $150, install it on your site and have your design ready in less than 5 minutes.
- 2. Use A Website Builder: The drag-and-drop interface is popular, and it can be found on a website builder tool. A website builder makes it simple to create a website. You can either start with a pre-designed website template or, if you’re feeling ambitious, start from scratch.
These are the two cheapest and quickest ways to design your website.
It is important to note that learning the technicalities of both WordPress and website builders will take some time.
Let’s move on to a more sophisticated (and expensive) method of website design.
Option 2: Hire A Professional Web Designer
If you own a business and have the necessary funds, you can hire professionals to build your website. (but not the time or skills). Web designers can help you achieve your goals much more easily because they can see what you’re thinking.
The first thing you’ll want to know in this case is how much it will cost.
The answer, as irritating as it may sound, is: it depends.
Hiring a web designer to create your website from scratch, prototype it, and then have a back-end web developer implement it can cost you tens of thousands of dollars.
When hiring a professional web designer, avoid compromising your website by lowering the price. You will always get what you pay for.
Step 3: Create a Mockup of Your Website Layout
Nothing is more frustrating than building a website only to discover a design flaw. It’s a costly and time-consuming error that will result in your hard work being wasted.
Unless, of course, you create a wireframe or mockup of your new website.
There are two primary methods for creating a website mockup:
- 1. By hand: If you’re building your website on your own, you’ll already have the theme or template on hand. You can create a rough design for your website on a piece of paper. It’s an excellent time to decide on things like the width of your website, the placement of your menu, the images you’ll use, and all of the other essential elements of your page.
- 2. Using web design software: If you hire a web designer, you can request that they create a low-cost mockup for your website using Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, or Sketch. This will include designing the homepage as well as at least one internal page.
This allows you to see how your website will look before paying a web developer to implement your design or spending countless hours working on your template or theme yourself.
One thing you (or your web developer) should pay special attention to is developing your website’s navigational structure.
This means you must decide what and where you will place links on your website.
In general, there are four main areas on your website where you can place links to different pages:
- 1. The primary menu bar is usually located on your website below the logo but above the content. In other words, it’s in the top section of your website!
- 2. Optional secondary menu bar: If the primary menu does not have enough space, or if you want to link to several pages, you can do so in the secondary menu bar, which can be found above or below the primary menu bar.
- 3. Sidebar: Your sidebar remains visible regardless of where your visitors are on your website. You can use this section to include links that your visitors may find useful.
- 4. Footer: The final place on your website where you can add links to different pages is in the footer, which is at the very bottom of your website.
This information is critical to the web design planning and design process. Including a sitemap on your website is also important because it can aid in search engine optimisation (and other SEO tools), making your site more visible in search results.
Step 4: Develop the Brand Style Guide For Your Website
What distinguishes your website as uniquely yours?
The answer is straightforward: branding.
The branding on your website will have a significant impact on the design of your website. It is the main feature that will set your website apart from the millions of others.
‘Brand,’ according to the Cambridge Dictionary, is defined as:
“the set of characteristics that people associate with a specific product or organisation”
A brand style guide should include the following six elements, according to 99Designs:
1. Brand story: Your brand story will explain who you are, why you exist, and what you do to the world. If you don’t know the answers to these three questions, you don’t have an identity.
And without an identity, you don’t have a brand. If you’re not sure where to begin, Simon Sinek’s excellent TED talk will provide you with the direction you need to develop your brand story.
2. Logo: Everyone recognises McDonald’s iconic curvy yellow ‘M,’ Apple Inc.’s bitten apple, and Nike’s simple tick (or swoosh). That is why you must also create a visually appealing logo. It will serve as a silent ambassador for your company.
3. Color palette: The colours you choose for your brand will be used on your website, logo, and other marketing materials. As a general rule, you should use four or fewer colors, such as a light colour for backgrounds, a dark colour for text, a bright color, and a neutral colour.
This website will show you how companies such as Amazon, Domino’s Pizza, and Nintendo use this approach in their websites and logos.
4. Typography: Famous UX designer Oliver Reichenstein once said, “Web Design is 95% Typography.” This means you should take your time deciding which font family or font combination to use on your website.
5. Imagery: The images on your website allow you to convey the emotions you want. You can customise it by applying a specific set of colors, rounding it off, or adding special effects or filters.
6. Tone: Every website has a distinct tone. Some ‘talk’ in a lighthearted manner, while others are strictly professional. Your website should speak in a tone that is appropriate for your brand identity and target audience. This useful guide illustrates various tones that you can use on your website.
Working on these six items will help you create a strong brand style guide for your website – and everywhere else, including social media, ads, posters, and banners.
Step 5: Choose Your CMS, Hosting Provider, and Security Service
Your work is still incomplete. It is critical to conduct research during the planning phase:
- ◉ Which CMS will you use to add and remove content from your website?
- ◉ Which hosting company will you use to host your website?
- ◉ How will you safeguard your website against online hacking attempts?
Choosing a CMS
Our content management system (CMS) is the software that allows you to add and manage content on your website.
You won’t have to worry about this if you go the DIY route. The tool you used to design your website will serve as your CMS because it also allows you to add content to your site. If you wrote the HTML for the entire site, you can add content by using a web development tool like Visual Studio, which has many web application tools embedded.
If, on the other hand, you hired a web developer and web designer to build your website using web design software and custom code, you’ll need to select one of the popular CMS options available.
WordPress, Joomla!, and Drupal are currently the top three CMS.
Check out our CMS guide to find out which one is best for your company. We compare all three CMS and discuss their advantages and disadvantages.
Choosing A Hosting Provider
It is simple to select a hosting provider. Check that they have consistent uptimes, great hosting packages, and excellent customer service. Here’s our guide to selecting a hosting provider for your website.
Choosing a Security Provider
While this isn’t strictly related to ‘designing’ your website, it is still necessary to plan your website and keep it secure. We have a security-related blog on HostPapa that covers a variety of topics and questions, such as why websites are hacked and why you should care.
Step 6: Finally, Test Your Website For Bugs and Refine it!
It’s a good idea to test your website after you’ve implemented your design and it’s live.
There are two major areas to test for:
- ◉ Browser and device compatibility: Access your website through the most popular browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera, and Safari. To test your site, always use the most recent browser versions and avoid using outdated software such as Internet Explorer. Check to see if it’s working properly and for any crashes. Remember to test your website in multiple browser versions on various devices, such as a phone, tablet, laptop, PC, and so on.
- ◉ Usability testing: Ask people around you to test your website, or hire a professional tester. Their insights can show you how well your websites are received by visitors. Usertesting.com is an excellent resource for this. Aside from this website, actual user testing is another method for identifying bugs or other issues with your website design.
These two tests will reveal any bugs or anomalies in your website. After spending some time ensuring that everything works as it should, it’s time to start the website creation process. Make sure to write engaging content to reach your target audience – and use the best precises we discussed earlier to grow your audience from every angle when you design website Malaysia.
Planning your website’s design in this manner from start to finish will ensure that it looks – and works – exactly as you intended. It lays the groundwork for a successful website that speaks directly to its intended audience. The planning process is largely the same whether designing a website for a small business, a large corporation, or any other organisation and should not be overlooked.
Looking for a company that specialises in Web Design Malaysia? Contact us at Digitalfren and begin your web development journey with the help of our team of expert that will meet your every need for a web development.