There is no question that your business needs a web presence. Regardless of your industry, too many people get their information from the Internet for an entrepreneur, business owner, or company to ignore that space. Clients often understand this, but building a website is still a new, and often confusing, adventure.
To make it seem more familiar, we like to say that building a new website is like building a house—with many of the same benefits and frustrations.
The Plot of Land – Hosting
When you want to build a new house, you first need a plot of land. When searching for one, many factors can be involved. Chief among those are how much will it cost and how safe it is. If the land is prone to flooding or in a dangerous area, you probably need to keep looking. Hosting is the land we’re going to build the website on. Choose the wrong hosting company and you could have problem after problem dealing with downtime and server security. No use building a beautiful home that gets flooded twice a week, right?
Your Mailing Address – Domain Name
Your house’s mailing address determines where you can be contacted as well as which services are available to you. Certain electric or wireless Internet companies may or may not service your particular address. The same is true of domain names. This is where you can be reached online, and it may determine who can reach you and how visible you are. For example: which mailing address would you rather have? 1515 Jackson Road or 473625 George Andrew Mountbatten-Windsor the Third Boulevard? It can make a big difference—one is easily remembered, the other is impossibly confusing.
The Foundation – Platform or CMS
A house will not stand without a solid foundation. So it’s incredibly important it’s done the right way. The same is true of a website platform, it’s the building block upon which everything else is erected. In the case of a housing foundation, it allows for walls to stand on top of it, flooring to lay evenly, etc. The platform we use at Gatorworks is mostly WordPress, a Content Management System (CMS) which is powerful but user-friendly. It is highly customizable and allows us to do everything else so much more seamlessly.
Let’s See the Blueprints – Wireframes
If you’re building a house, you probably have an idea of how you want the layout. Living room next to the kitchen? Long hallway to go to the bedroom? Two stories or one? These are all valid and interesting questions that need to be addressed before the building ever really starts.
Wireframes function as the blueprints of the website. We create them for clients to approve very early on in the process. This gives them an idea of the website’s layout, the navigation to move around the site, and how content and images will be displayed. Gatorworks remains in contact with the client throughout this process because we want to be sure that the “blueprints” match their expectations and needs.
The Construction Phase – Website Development
This is the part of the building process where so many people get shafted—both in homes and websites. You can get something that is presentable but which is not structurally sound. Or it could be solid as a rock but as ugly as can be. You want a house built to stand the test of time and be beautiful at the same time. For that, you need to find professionals who know what they are doing and who respect the process.
At Gatorworks, we take great pride in our work and enjoy helping clients to create beautiful and functional websites. We respect the process. We know what we’re doing. Our website development team works hard to make this happen.They remain a resource even after the website launch, to fix little issues that might appear later on. Just like the construction phase of home building, website development takes time if you want it to be done right.
Interior Design – Website Design
People build homes to be comfortable and beautiful. They want homes to convey a sense of personality and style. This is true of websites as well—which is where our website designers come in. They take your wants, ideas, and little touches and turn them into design reality. Think of this as the phase of home construction where we’re painting walls, picking doorknobs, and deciding which windows we want.
Moving In Furniture – Content Migration
If you had an old website, you will want to move in your old content, which can take time but needs to be done right. If it’s a brand new website, you’ll need content. We can help you “move in” with copywriting services, just ask!
Build a House That Lasts
Gatorworks has, on plenty of occasions, worked with clients who come to us because someone else messed up their website. We can clean up the mess, just as a good contractor can fix a problem in an existing house. However, we are at our best when we get the opportunity to participate in the home building process from start to finish. When we build a website, we give coherent design elements and functional goals across all phases. We want to build something you can be proud of. Go see what we can do.
Gatorworks is a full-service digital marketing and website design agency based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Our various capabilities allow us to help clients develop strong web presences and online marketing capabilities.