What is Waterfall Development?

When businesses reach the corporate level, their websites should reflect it. Your company cannot have a billion dollar turnover, bunch of offices with more than 1000 employees, and a simple 3-page website. There is a point when you should finally turn to a professional web design agency and ensure they create an online wonder that would demonstrate the scale and level of your business.

Some marketers or company owners treat their contractors as a black box. Usually, they come up with a list of tasks and then expect to get a great result in the end. However, often the end result doesn’t meet their expectations due to a lack of control over every single stage of the process. So, how to ensure you get the great business website? In order to keep your website development process running smoothly, there are several things to consider about web development.

Before You Start

If you are a businessman, your business probably has a website. It would be strange if not. In order to help you decide if it needs to be redone, altered, or upgraded, ask yourself the following:

  • Does it achieve your business goals (for example, accumulate human resources, attract customers, increase sales)? In other words, is it an effective instrument for your business? If not, share the information with your web design company. The more they know about your company’s peculiarities, the better website they’ll be able to deliver.
  • Does it match the scale of your business? This is a serious reason to rework the site. However, if the business image is all you need, then you must not focus on extended functionality. A bit of creative refreshment will be enough.

 

Find Out Who is in Charge

After the web design company have assigned a PM for your website creation, you should entitle a reliable person on your side. Choose your manager wisely as he or she will have to make decisions impacting the functionality and look of the end product, keep in touch with the web development team, and provide further website guidance.

What is Waterfall Method?

Generally, there are many approaches that a professional web development company may use to organize the working process. The so-called waterfall approach is the most easily plannable and straightforward for both the customer and the company. With this approach, the website creation undergoes several phases. So, let’s us look at all of them from the customer’s perspective:

1.Preparing RFP (Request for proposal). It is crucial to formulate your business goals as clearly as possible, so your web design company can calculate the timeframe and cost of the project. Do not focus on the implementation! Instead, we recommend you to focus on your metrics. Explain goals that your company aims to achieve with the site, your company values, and business vision. Providing insufficient company information or blurry instructions will make the end product just as unconvincing. Remember, a properly written RFP is the roadmap for your future website.

2.Goal setting. At this stage, you should settle the timeframe and budget of the project with your PM. During this personal communication, ask your web design agency how they are planning to create your website and try to see if they are able to treat this project from the point of view of your company.

3.Creating a Prototype. It is the rough draft of your site. Professional web development companies use prototypes so that all developers and the customer is able to catch the same tune. Don’t forget that the prototype is just a basic technical model and it does not resemble the final look of the site. However, it can show you the proposed site structure (linking, arrangement of elements, and pages hierarchy).

4.Approval of website concept. Now it is the time to breathe life into your business website. The design concept is a general visual look that resembles your market behavior, target audience preferences, corporate colors, and embodies your corporate strengths. It should be derived from your corporate goals formulated at the very beginning. In order to prevent dealing with too many design iterations, ensure to set all parameters correctly.

5.Content and materials. Content is the main course for your site visitors. That is why the process of content creation should go parallel to the website development process.

6.Approval of the final version. The purpose of the waterfall approach is that the website’s final version “flows out” of the previously approved phases. If you want it to match your expectations, you should be involved in the process along the way.

 

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Customer’s Role in the Waterfall Method

When it comes to the details – leave them to experts. Be the judge of how well the whole project copes with your business’s goals or represents it, but do not try to suggest a sequence of animations, shape of checkboxes, or the color of buttons. The web design companies expect you to give expertise and insights on your competitive environment, goals, strategy, and business processes. Based on this information, a professional web design agency elaborates concepts and prototypes. Do not try to overcontrol your contractor.

Websites without the clear strategy behind them is a waste of money and time. So pick a reliable web design studio that will make sure your site is a worthy reflection of your company.