Before you even consider hiring a developer to build your site you should have some preliminary requirements worked out. This will help you find the best company, or individual, to build your site. Also, you will have a plan in place for measuring your site’s success!
Who? What? How? Why? These are the basic questions to ask when you’re trying to determine functional requirements for your site.
User X can offer some help here with a free consultation.
What are you trying to accomplish by creating a website? You should have at least two goals for your site that can be measured to determine if your site is successful or not. A simple example is brand recognition which can be measured by incoming traffic from search engines. These key performance indicators (KPI) can be measured using Google Analytics to determine what is working and what isn’t. With regular evaluations, you can determine your site’s success, or make adjustments if necessary.
User experience (UX) & design requirements
How are users going to find their way around your site? Where’s the navigation? What screens are you going to need to provide the information your users are looking for? As you compile a list of requirements for your website’s user experience and design, look for other sites with layouts and UX that you’d like to emulate.
User X is dedicated to providing the most effective and easy-to-use products to promote awesome user experiences. Find out how we can help take your site to the next level with a free consultation.
Will you be handling sensitive data from your users like credit card information or personal details? If so, then you will need to beef up your security with an SSL certificate. Writing quality code also helps prevent security holes. Be sure to address these issues early on in the process.
Documentation & Training
This doesn’t seem important until you need it, but not having proper documentation when something stops working can be extremely frustrating. How will you handle questions from your users? Will future developers be able to work on the site easily? Documentation will ensure that your site can be maintained easily and effectively.
User X offers up to 2 hours of training for free! If you plan on building a site that requires regular updates you will want to have the best support possible. User X is here for you!
Maintenance & Support
Where will you turn if something goes wrong? Be sure to have some sort of fallback plan just in case. The success of your website depends on your ability to handle issues as they arise.
User X offers a great maintenance plan that has you covered. We don’t charge minimum rates like most companies. You have an issue, we fix it, you get a bill at the end of the month. No issues? Then we did our job right the first time and you don’t have to pay us for “insurance”.
If your website is supporting your professional needs then you need a professional building your website. It’s as simple as that. Once you have all of your requirements gathered you will have everything you need to determine a budget for your project.
Use your site goals to calculate how much a successful site will earn you. In the example above we were measuring brand recognition by incoming search engine traffic. How much are 10,000 new visitors seeing your brand worth? How much would you expect to spend on monthly maintenance? Will you have the time to update your site regularly or will you need to pay someone to update the site for you? This is how you determine the value of your site and this should dictate how much you’re willing to spend.
Recap on web development requirements:
- Functional: Who, What, Where, Why?
- Site Goals: How will you measure success?
- UX & Design: What’s the experience like for users?
- Security: How secure does your website need to be?
- Documentation and training: How do users learn?
- Maintenance and support: Who keeps the website running?
- Total Investment: What do you have the budget and time for?