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Helping Your Developer Help You

Having developed sites for well over a decade we've had all types of different clients - from sole-proprietors running the smallest of businesses to large organizations with committees delegated to overseeing the design and development process. Regardless of whether it's one person or a whole team we're working with, to help the process go smoothly, minimize potential delays and ensure everyone's pleased with the end result, we recommend the following:

Know What You Need:

Before any work gets started, make sure it's well understood what the primary goals for your Web site are. Increased sales? More leads? Reducing the number of support calls to the office? There are no right or wrong answers, nor is there a limit to the number of goals you might set. What's important is making sure they're defined before moving forward so the development outline can ultimately address them all.

There may be various ways to accomplish these goals, but failing to specify them beforehand makes it likely some will be missed. While it's certainly not uncommon for us to make recommendations to customers, it's ultimately the client's responsibility to let us know what they need.

Know What You Want:

If you have an unlimited budget and ample time for development, by all means consider everything a "need". If you're like most people with time and financial restraints however, you may want to make a list of some things you'd like, but don't necessarily require. You can discuss costs and timelines with your developer to decide whether said wants are worth doing now, later or ever.

Be Available for Input:

During the development process there's normally quite a few times when a client's input and/or approval is required. Whether it's confirming aesthetic decisions like layouts or verifying functionality, development can sometimes be impeded when approvals are required before moving on.

Have Your Materials Ready:

Generally speaking, clients have to provide certain content and/or assets (photos, documents) to the developer to be integrated into the site. There are exceptions to this rule of course, such as when content is to be ported from an existing site or when we're collaborating with a third-party content developer.

During development, placeholder text is often used to help emulate the final look of a 'full' web site for client review, but naturally things can't go live with 'Lorem Ipsum' text where genuine copy is needed.