Here at AS we are constantly searching for new ways to approach web design in more effective ways. The newest approach is called Data Driven Design.
Traditionally a web design project has a very distinct approach. 1) Set a discovery/planning phase for strategy, messaging, overall site structure, & look and feel. 2) Create Wireframes 3) Create UI Designs 4) Development 5) Beta 6) QA Testing 7) Deployment
Most people are used to this approach and thus it’s challenging to think about a different way of doing things. Data Driven Design is a much more agile approach that has 3 main tenants
The First tenant is Strategy. You can’t avoid a discussion surrounding this newer approach. You can’t avoid planning and you can’t avoid talking about your goals. This is just a sound way to create a roadmap for a website project. That being said you should not consider your plans set in stone.
The Second tenant is building a scaled back website. Your focus for a new website should be creating a site that looks better than the one you currently have. Obviously there will be very specific needs, but it’s a good rule of thumb to understand there will be time to change following once the website is live.
The Third and final tenant is Test and Iterate. Now that you have deployed this new site, you can begin adding, deleting, and changing the site over time. This should all be guided by analytics, and user feedback. Your website is now a living breathing tool to promote your business.
So what’s the catch? Truthfully there is no catch. This new approach will just require the vision to rely upon an innovative approach to the redesign process. Instead of applying your budget to a one and done website project, you will have to split your budget between a scaled back website and a period of testing and changes following deployment.
So what’s the benefit? The benefit is, you will have a new website up in half the amount of time and then you’ll have the ability to change your website after it’s deployed and feedback is given. You will have the ability to understand the importance of certain parts of your website and and the lack thereof in others. Finally, you will be able to continue to create the perfect website over time rather than crossing your fingers to hope your best planning has created the website that satisfies all your users needs.
This concept makes a ton of sense, but we understand that it may be a hard pill to swallow and may not work for everyone. We hope this post creates some conversation surrounding this approach and we are happy to discuss at any time.