The first step of web development is the Design Phase. This is where a lot of the visual and structural planning comes into play. Design broadly encompasses the following: - Page Layouts - Creative Elements - Navigation / URL Structure This is often where there is the most back and forth between development and clients to get the exact look and feel desired.
The actual Development stage is yet another phase that can be broken down into smaller sub-phases. These sub-phases include early, mid and late stage development. Early stage development is taking the design mockup and actually putting it onto a working site. Mid stage development is the introduction of functionality within the working site. Items like movement, hover effects and more. Late stage development is putting in place the final items for a complete website. This includes syncing contact forms and API's for communication, optimizing responsiveness, and more. Compartmentalizing these stages helps streamline work and feedback.
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Post development is the buttoning up of website essentials that has to happen once the site goes live. Generally, these are items that need the live URL to begin optimizing. The first item on this list is generally Google Maps or any other API generated function that needs a URL claimed. Secondly, our team would be looking at a once over of SEO items that had to be done post-launch. This would also include event triggers for analytics. Lastly, this is a final "buttoning up" of functionality and anything that wasn't fully tested during the development stages. There's always more to find!
Ongoing maintenance is a crucial part of Web Development. A website is not something that is created and just let go afterwards. Websites are meant to be added to, adjusted and continuously developed to keep up with industry changes, maintain a positive user experience and more. Website Maintenance may include the basics like keeping the site up to date. CMS's like WordPress are always updating, as are the themes and plugins that come with it. Making sure your website is up to date ensures functionality and mitigates risks of security flaws. Additionally, ongoing SEO and CRO work is a popular part of maintenance work, in that it is ongoing and works with developing the website.