How to Plan Website Design

How to Plan a Web Design - Optional Extra's

Below you will find a list of additional web-related services you should consider when planning your web design and the specification requirements. The web design companies who quote you will let you know which services they can fulfill.

Keyword Research

Check that on-page optimisation is included (it should be) and see if they provide a keyword research service or, do it yourself and give them the details for the meta tags for each page you want optimised. Make sure your content is optimised for the same keywords in line with your meta tags.

Content Management System (CMS)

If you are having a content management system (CMS) to allow you to add/edit/delete page content then it will be up to you to write your own ontent, optimise it and proof it for good grammar, spelling and punctuation.

If you are not having a CMS then you will need to provide the page copy to your web designer exactly as want it to appear on the web pages, for both text and images, including any links within.

Web Page Copywriting Services

Check to see if they offer a web page copywriting service if you don't want to do it yourself. If you do this, it would also make sense for them to also prepare the meta tag details.

Buying Hosting and a Domain Name

Hopefully you will already have registered your domain name and be preparing to sign-up for some reliable UK-based hosting - reliable in up-time and reliable in customer support. Your web designer will see from your specification what type of hosting you need and should make a recommendation. This could be Windows or Linux. Check before buying the hosting!

Do not feel obliged or pressured into taking your web designer's hosting. It should always be optional. If you do, ensure you are first provided with a full back up of the web files. You should receive this as standard but do request them if you are not provided with them on completion of the website design. Also, never let your web design company register your domain name in their name. (This does not apply if you are renting a domain or website or buying on a pay monthly basis).

You also need to know how much disk space and bandwith you will need to buy, though you can simply upgrade your level of hosting if you find you need more resources. Most start ups and small websites will manage quite fine on a shared starter package which costs around £30 per year for a quality service. If you do upgrade, your web host will usually off-set the cost of what you have already paid for and used, against the upgrade cost, so you don't lose out.

When your web designer is ready to upload your website to your hosting, you will need to ensure the domain is pointing to your website. Your web designer should tell you how to may do this or do it for you if you give them access. You will also need to set up your email account so you are ready to start using email.

Website Bug Fixing

Bug-fixing to repair website issues that come to light within the first few weeks should really be complimentary and included in your overall costs, not added as extra. After all, you will expect the website to work and if there are any technical glitches then your web designer should fix them free of charge - at least in the first 4-6 weeks.

This repair period would not normally include any issues that are caused by you or a third party tampering with the web files! Be careful not to touch anything you are not 100% sure of and don't give access to other well-meaning helpers - this may well invalidate the bug-fixing service...and yes, your web designer/host can tell if someone has been in to the web files or hosting panel and fiddled with something!

Website Maintenance

You may have decided to either maintain the website pages yourself, especially if you are having a CMS, or you may want your web design company to keep it up-to-date for you. Ask what service levels are available once the site is launched if this is what you require. 

Front End Design

You will need to sort out your branding and logo before you commence the website design aspect. Once that is sorted, you can provide the details to your designer for when they produce the mock designs for your website. Normally they will produce at least 2 different concept website designs that reflect your brief and you choose one to work on and make the revisions you require.

Ensure that any graphic design which your designers create, comes with full copyright ownership. This goes for logo's, stationery, brochures, and front end web design. This prevents people from having the legal rights to copy your designs. If you do not secure ownership to copyright of the design, the ownership will stay with the designer who created it.It is not an automatic right just because you have paid for it so check this out!

Internet Marketing and External SEO Services

These services include external search engine optimisation and internet marketing activities such as link building, blogging, article writing and submission, social book-marking, forum posting, banner advertising, e-newsletter campaigns and directory submissions.

You should also ensure your website uses Google analytics as a minimum (it's free) which the web designer adds to your page code. This allows you to track and monitor your website visitors page by page. Remember to ask them to do this for you, as you need to provide the code and they will guide you on how to get this.

It is crucial that you submit your website to the main search engines Google, Yahoo! and MSN as a minimum so that the spiders can crawl your pages and index them as soon as possible. This is the start of getting your web pages ranked so that once you start building links you can earn your website some PageRank. Again, check to see if your web designer will do the submission for you.


Problems with your website or website designer?


To date we have a 100% success rate of successfully dealing with problem websites - things that are broken and not working properly on your website such as links, or has not ever worked such as an email contact form.

We also have the same 100% success rate of obtaining the login details and website files from previous web designers who have made it difficult for clients to have absolute ownership, control and access of their website.

Perhaps your web designer doesn't answer your calls or emails, or is slow to respond or implement things you have asked to be done on your website. You feel as if you are stuck with them and paying their hosting fees, which are often higher than elsewhere (definitely more than we would charge you!) and you feel locked in to them.

There is a way out, and on your behalf, we deal with getting your website into your control using professional tact and diplomacy at all times. We deal with them for you - all we need is your permission.

Our clients stay with indizine because they want to, and not because they have to.