Creating a website that will add value to your business but isn’t an overnight job. After all, we’re talking about an asset that has to attract, convert, and retain customers for years to come, so, just like baking a cake, it’s a process that can’t be rushed.
With that in mind, we’ve put together this handy guide to help you understand the website building process a little better, and how long a purpose-built custom website can typically take.
Bear in mind, the timings we’ve quoted are a general indication and how soon your website will be ready depends on multiple factors. These include the complexity of your design, your internal reviews process, the type of website you want to develop, your target market and the products or services you offer.
A quick overview of the website design and development process
Designing a website is a collaborative process between client and developer.
Phase 1 involves getting to the crux of what you need your website to do, as well as how you’d like it to look and feel.
Next comes design.
This is where we translate the ideas we discussed into visual mock-ups of the user interface on desktop and mobile.
After this follows the web development stage (when your website actually gets built) followed by a testing phase, when we ensure that it works, and iron out any issues.
The average timeline for website design and development
Taking all of the above into account, it probably won’t surprise you that designing and building a website from scratch can take anything from a few weeks to a couple of months.
With that in mind, we’ve broken down the five stages of a website build in more detail, and included estimates of how long each process can take.
Identifying your needs and creating a plan (approximately 2-3 weeks)
Commonly referred to as the defining the scope, this is when we nail down your requirements and explore what your website needs to do.
If you have an existing website, we’ll ask what isn’t working. If you’re coming to us for a first-time website, we’ll probe a little deeper into the functionality and features your website needs to have.
We’ll also use this phase to get to know your customer and brand a little better.
The design phase (approximately 5-6 weeks)
The design phase is when you’ll get your first glimpse at how your website will look on screen. We’ll provide wireframes for you to review featuring the fonts, colours, and layouts we’re proposing.
If everything is ok we can progress to build stage. If there are tweaks needed, we’ll update the designs accordingly.
Developing your website (approximately 4-8 weeks)
Once the web designs are approved, we can begin developing your website. This is the most technical phase and involves creating the code that will enable your website to move and function.
Review, testing and snags (approximately 2-3 weeks)
Once we’ve reached the review stage we’re almost at the finish line. But before we can push your website live, we have to first check that it works.
We’ll test it on a combination of desktop and mobile operating systems, to ensure it displays correctly on all devices and functions as it should.
If there are any bugs, we’ll see that these get fixed.
Launching your website
When we’re done testing, there’s nothing left to do but make your website live. We’ll do this at an agreed date and time, so you can align your marketing strategy accordingly.