Behind-the-Scenes: Branding and Building a Website
Creating a fresh website can be an exhilarating process—especially when working with an outside creative vendor. We get it: From determining your audience to coming up with content, it’s a lot to consider. But how do you walk the line between exciting and overwhelming? This behind-the-scenes peek at our process with Go Girl Designs shows you what to expect.
Bracelets and Blueprints
Go Girl partnered with us to build an ecommerce site for their primary product, the Busy Girl Bangle, a fashion-forward bracelet that holds your hair tie. To help the mother-daughter team behind the company get their site up-and-running as soon as possible, we started by taking a look at their brand. Brand development is the blueprint for everything your company outputs; it’s a vital part of your organization’s foundation. Our initial branding conversations covered Go Girl’s history, design aesthetic, target audience, and more. Once we familiarized ourselves with their story, we moved forward with their website. Our process generally includes:
- Pre-discovery to discern what the client is generally looking for in their site
- A detailed discovery session
- Presentation of the design to the client
- A meeting with our copywriter for content creation
- Final reveal to client for edits and feedback
- Train the client and launch the site
Here’s a closer look at how we do it:
1. Pre-Discovery research
We kick things off with a pre-discovery session. This is an important first step, especially for clients that partner with us on a new project. To get a general idea of what Go Girl was looking for, we asked them to gather a few items before we met:
- All logo files
- Image assets
- Colors that they liked/didn’t like
- Other sites that they saw that they liked/didn’t like in their industry
- Other sites that they saw that they liked outside of their industry
This gave our team time to dig into similar sites, possible themes and builds, and any additional research.
During the discovery session, Go Girl Designs’ stakeholders and our BigWheel team (typically the project manager, designer, developer, and copywriter) met to discuss overarching goals, website needs, website wishes, and estimated timelines. Knowing their goals helped our team prioritize their needs and wishes.
On average, it can take up to three months to create a simple website, so constant communication is crucial. In order to meet Go Girl Designs’ timeline, it was necessary to deliver the website in two phases. The first covered the goals and needs while the second will address the wants. This will allow Go Girl Designs to get their most viable product of the new site up-and-running before the holiday season.
3. First Look
What’s after the discovery session? The second meeting revolves around the look of the site. For Go Girl’s case, we presented a choice of three Shopify themes after researching the best route based on budget and timeline. Their stakeholders were able to see how the site would look and function. Although we generally recommend building custom websites, Shopify was the best option for Go Girl.
Once the foundation of the site was approved, our copywriter met with Go Girl to discuss the necessary content. This process is crucial, as it helps refine their online presence. Then, our designers worked with our copywriter to edit any layouts specifically for content. Design and content must work together to create a terrific website.
5. Next Steps
The penultimate step will include the reveal of the site to Go Girl and a continued discussion on edits, feedback, and any new ideas that pop up. Once there’s final approval on design and content, the developer that was initially a part of the discovery process will work any development needed, test for any issues, and then launch the site. Usually, BigWheel tries to train the client’s key stakeholders on admin use before launch.
Building a website requires the hard work of many team members both on the client’s side—and BigWheel’s side. Sure, it’s a long process, but the end result is always fulfilling.