Are you stuck trying to develop your own website? Well, don’t be too tough on yourself. Unfortunately, building a website that is a valuable asset to your business isn’t that straightforward.
Whether you build a basic and simple-looking website from scratch or use a CMS, you still need to find the perfect hosting, acquire domain names, think about the security features, and whatnot. Indeed, there is a learning curve to building a successful website, and it will take time to master. Besides, you will have to navigate through countless options and figure out what is best for you.
However, creating a website development checklist can prove pretty useful and streamline the entire development process.
Website Development Checklist
Buy your domain name as early as possible. Because once the domain name you require is gone, there is a possibility that it’s gone for good. Besides, with domain hoarding at its peak, your shortlisted domain may get pretty expensive if you wait for too long.
Hosting services affect loading performance significantly, which is an essential criterion in search engine ranking. Therefore, depending on the project, you need to set up web hosting and storage options for your files and scripts.
Besides, it is standard practice to code and deploys sites offline during the developmental stage. Therefore, set up the web hosting and storage options as early as possible, and make sure it is big enough to handle all your scripts and the technology you employ.
SSL certification is something you need to take seriously from the beginning. A Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificate will enable your website to encrypt confidential user data including, credit card information and email addresses.
Without HTTPS, hackers can intercept data with ease. So, make sure to register an SSL certificate along with your domain name.
Web development is not an entirely isolated process. Regardless of what your project is, it will definitely require some level of design expertise. So, yes, design considerations too belong in your web development checklist.
Therefore, be certain to talk to your designers and map out the project accordingly.
Features and functionality
Gone are the days when basic and static websites used to work. Today’s users want to do so much more with websites than just get information, and their expectations are getting higher day by day. For instance, your website can be interactive, real-time, with a Chatbot integrated to provide AI-enabled chat communication or multimedia content to catch visitors’ attention.
It would be best to have a clear idea about all the features you wish to include in your website and then proceed towards development. Although you can always add on new features, being clear about the initial requirements will surely save you time and perhaps chaos.
UX and Responsive design
Most users often access the Internet with their mobile devices. However, sadly, multiple websites fail to display correctly on mobile devices. This makes mobile users leave these sites and hop onto websites optimized for mobile phones and desktops. So, mobile responsive web design is no longer an option.
Further, designing great user experiences for websites requires UX designers to think out-of-the-box to solve UX problems. Try to understand the expectations of your target audience and run a guerilla test to figure out what works for them.
The more pages of good quality content your website has, the more likely your website will attract traffic from the search engines. Besides, an abundance of engaging content glues the audience to your website. So, always write content keeping your target audience in mind.
Your website can only be successful if it is optimized for search engines. So, be sure to consider page speed, analytics, right meta tags, and other SEO factors. Doing thorough R&D is the key here. Get some initial nits and grits on search engine optimization and plan your web development roadmap subsequently.
Creating and maintaining a sitemap is a significant task for your SEO strategy. A sitemap summarizes the entire website and helps bots and users find all web pages in one place.
Without a sitemap, your website will not get indexed since search engines will not crawl it correctly. So, make sure you make sitemaps a key point in your web development checklist so that you can implement them properly and reap the benefits.
Error handling strategy
Sometimes, even the best coders have to deal with significant bugs and errors, so you should not fear errors in your code. However, when errors or bugs show up in your code, you need to be ready to handle them and fix your code at the earliest.
Besides, web development is an ongoing process, and even though you manage to code an excellent website today, you will certainly have to update and maintain it in the future.
The Bottom Line
Building an exceptionally profitable website is certainly not a cakewalk. It requires expertise, constant learning, and sometimes lots of trial and error to get your dream website finally.
Besides, many factors influence the success of a website, be it web design or web development. Hence, you should keep a checklist to streamline your entire development process. Keep your goals in mind, and you can create a checklist of yours based on what factors matter to you the most.