There are two questions that we are almost always asked after a client has decided to have us build or redesign their website. Those two questions are:
- What will it look like?
- When will it be done?
Both questions are understandable and valid, yet neither can be given a rote answer. For this article, let’s talk about the website development timeline.
How long does it take to build a website?
Every developer works differently. At Trevellyan.biz we break down our project into nine phases. Some of the phases overlap, and some phases won’t start until the previous phase is complete, but for simplicity we’ve listed them consecutively here.
- Content Development
- Search Engine Optimization
This is the planning phase. Through interviews and surveys, we will begin to learn about the client’s business. This will allow us to design and build a website that meets the client’s needs and expectations. We typically allow one week for this phase, but it really depends on how long it takes the client to complete the surveys.
2. Content development
Using the information we are provided about the business, we will create a project outline. This outline will consist of a few main category pages and subpages, grouping similar features and topics together. For a basic website, the client will use the outline we provide as a guide for creating all content for the site. This means the client will tell us what pages they want on the website (ie: About Us, Services, FAQs, Contact…) and the client will write all the words that will appear on all the pages. The client will also supply all photos, video and PDFs. As content is being written, the client will probably want to add and remove pages from the original outline, and that is perfectly fine. In fact, it is to be expected.
We are happy to write copy, take photos, and create PDFs, but these services are additional.
If the website will include a catalog or online store, we will provide a spreadsheet that the client will fill out and return. The amount of time this phase takes is entirely dependent on the client. When the project begins, we will decide together how much time the client wants/needs to compile the content. If the client is well-prepared for this project and has already compiled all the text, images and additional files (PDFs, videos) we can get started right away.
When the client has compiled all the text and related files that will be used on the website, we will review the information and determine the best way to organize that information. We will use a combination of convention and creativity to make sure that site visitors can find the content they need quickly and easily. We typically allow one week for this phase.
Once all content has been provided and architecture has been approved, we will create a custom desktop and mobile design that best suits the functionality requirements of the business and best usability practices. In previous phases we will have talked extensively about likes and dislikes, reviewed other websites, and have a solid understanding of the basic design elements that are desired, including but not limited to horizontal vs vertical navigation, color scheme, fonts, images. We typically allow 2-3 weeks for this phase.
When we’ve received approval on the desktop and mobile designs, we will move to implementation. This is where the approved design becomes concrete and we add site-specific features. We allow 2-6 weeks for this phase, depending on the complexity of the project.
At this point in the project we take the content and insert/format it in the content management system. We allow 2-6 weeks for this phase, depending on the amount of content.
7. Search engine optimization
We will perform basic optimization. We will also add share and like buttons to make it easy for visitors to share content. We allow 1-2 weeks for this phase.
Final testing to ensure that everything is functioning. The client will be able to test the site at this time, too. We allow 1-2 weeks for this phase.
Once we have final approval, we will launch the site. This marks the end of the project. Allow 1 week for this phase.
Please let us know if this article “How Long Does It Take To Build A Website?” was helpful by leaving a comment below. Learn more about our website development services by visiting this page. If you’d like to talk to us about your own website please call (518) 392-0846 or email us.