After many weeks and months of meetings, the decision has been made to finally replace your old website with a shiny new one. Out with the old static site from several years ago and in with a new robust, modern web application which will form the hub for your online presence. You have done your due diligence and your platform of choice is Drupal (good choice we say!).
1. Define Objectives
You’d think this would be obvious but in a lot of situations this critical part of any project is often overlooked. Writing down your objectives is crucial to a healthy development process. Are your objectives to provide better customer support, find investors, or sell your product on a mobile app?
Decide what will define the success of your project, so in the end, you can see if it was a success or still requires improvement. For example: "After completing this project, we will see a 25% increase in site traffic."
When we talk to clients about building their new Drupal website, we take a moment to discuss our mobile-first approach. Initially, there can be a look of concern as they think “our analytics states the majority of our users are not using mobile devices”. Well, let me start off by addressing this concern. Even if every single one of your users never accesses your website via a mobile device (a virtually non-existent possibility on today's web), a mobile-first approach is still the proper approach.
Every week we speak with companies who tell us the same story, it goes something like this:
"Well, we had a web design company build us our website in Drupal and we like the way it looks but there are some problems that need fixing and our current web design company doesn't appear to be able to fix them. So, that is why we called you - we figured we needed to bring in Drupal experts to solve these problems."
The typical lifespan of a website goes something like this:
- New site launch
- Site design and functionality sits still for a period of time (usually around two to three years or until a new hire takes over)
- Decision made that the site needs redeveloping
- New site developed and launched
In summary the site is developed, stagnates, then is redeveloped. This means during the site stagnation period the website no longer fulfills the goals of the business or the user.
A while ago we chose to focus on open source web solutions. Our open source framework of choice is Drupal. Here is the reasoning behind that decision:
Massive developer community
There is an army of developers contributing to constantly better the solutions in place and solve any issues which may arise. Drupal.org has over one million registered members. Any issues get spotted very quickly and resolved efficiently and effectively. All members of the community benefit from the collective knowledge of so many skilled Drupal experts.
Sharing our project workflow when creating your custom website
Starting a new project is always very exciting. It’s very important to keep your thoughts organized throughout the process of developing a new site.
Here at Thinkbean we follow these steps to create a successful website.
Research & Discovery
The beginning of a beautiful relationship this is a very important stage since it’s where we get to know your business goals and what the users of your site want to achieve.