A Website Design & Development Project Checklist (Repost)
Posted by: Eric Key in websites, web design, marketing on Nov 19, 2008
Another great post by Shaun is this one:
A (Nearly) Bulletproof Web Design & Development Project Checklist for clients and designers.
If you're aiming to agree a fixed price for the development of the website, as we do, ensure the project goes smoothly before you start, by communicating with your client at the outset.
They'll appreciate you for it, there will be less surprises, and you may be able to start making a profit from fixed cost website design jobs again;
Prices can change even for a fixed cost website
Web Design Costs are dependent on how many hours is spent working on a design and how many times the client asks for changes to it
Show the client your portfolio - that's the type of sites you build, do they like it?
Has the client supplied examples of the sort of site they are looking for?
Estimate a cost for a job, based on early discussion.
Ensure the client knows you can quote for a job only on the information you have available to you at the time
Confirm a job cost on reviewed client requirements
50% of job before start, 50% on completion
Ensure the client knows you are costing the job by hours and you do have other clients
Make sure all your costs are approved before starting a job (remember VAT)
Ask the client to send you an email notifying his acceptance of the project scope and cost
It's impossible to make a site that will look the same in all browsers;
Specify which Resolution / Screen Size the Website Should Be Designed to
Specify a fixed width or fluid layout
Inform the client which browser versions you support
Ensure the client is aware of website font restrictions or recommendations and web page download considerations
Ensure the client is aware websites look different than on paper
Content should be supplied by the client in a form easily used
Who is supplying the text?
Who is supplying the images?
Get the client to supply all text, photographs and content in electronic format
Make sure text supplied, if formatted, is in a web-ready format
The client should supply an example site-plan, in a bulleted list
The client needs to specify any specific functionality required at the outset
âMilestone' dates for the project should be agreed
Communicate missing any milestone date for supplying content / adding new content will have an impact on launch commitments and costs - both of you have businesses to run
Agree content delivery date
Agree Site Architecture Freeze Date
Agree Site Functionality Freeze Date
Agree Design Freeze date
Agree Launch Date
Changes to the brief should be communicated and costs agreed / timings considered in electronic form
No Favours - The road to hell is paved with good intentions and the bodies of well meaning web developers
Everything should be charged out, agreed and accountable
Websites can go down every now and then
Who hosts the current site?
Get Contact Details
Hosting is a recurring annual charge
Domain transfers sometimes go a bit Pete Tong
You are at the mercy of third parties
Who controls current domain(s)?
Domains need registered every year
Get Contact Details
Emails might go down for a period of perhaps 24-48 hours
Who controls current email(s)?
Get Contact Details
How many email accounts to you have/need
Launching a website can be about pressing buttons and.... waiting
Websites Get Hacked
All CMS needs kept up to date
In most cases hackers seek to deface the site
A hacked site can mean disaster in Google
A site that has been hacked can be rescued
Who's in charge of security / CMS updates
Agree maintenance fees
A Winning Website Is never âFinished'!
The client should keep his site up-to-date with news if he has a CMS
Training for the CMS should be costed if required
A website is subject to Laws of The Land and the client should investigate these
The UK Companies Act
UK Distance Selling Regulations
Website Accessibility Recommendations
Agree ongoing responsibilities
Who is responsible for the client's email, hosting and domain management
Do you âguarantee' a website is fit for purpose for say 1 year?
When will annual billing start and occur
I'm sure I've missed some things out, but I wanted a post on the site I could point my clients to, to educate them on some of the less talked about aspects of developing a website. I expect to modify this page every now and again.
Take responsibility, agree the scope of the project, recognise the requirements to meet the brief within allocated time-frame, and bill for your time.
I've learned this the hard way. Now I aim at all times to communicate with the client as much as possible to ensure any web development job doesn't get out of control.
Original Post: A Website Design & Development Project Checklist