Digital Marketing

Website Development Process – The Life Cycle Steps

The system development process can follow a number of standard or company-specific frameworks, methodologies, modeling tools, and languages. The software development life cycle typically comes with some standards that can meet the needs of any development team. Just like software, websites can also be developed using certain methods with some changes and additions to the existing software development process. Let’s look at the steps involved in developing any website.

1. Analysis:

Once a customer begins to discuss their requirements, the team engages in preliminary requirements analysis. Since the website is going to be part of a system, you need a complete analysis of how the website or web-based application will help the current system and how the site will help the business. Furthermore, the analysis should cover all aspects, especially how the website will be integrated into the existing system. The first important thing is to find the target audience. So, all hardware, software, people and data present must be considered during the analysis time. For example, if a company XYZ corp needs a website to have its HR details online, the analysis team might try to use existing data on employees from the current database. The analysis should be done in a way that is not too time consuming or too uninformative. The team must be able to perform a full cost-benefit analysis, and since the plan for the project will be a result of the analysis, it must be realistic. To accomplish this, the analyst must consult designers, developers, and testers to come up with a realistic plan.

Input: customer interviews, customer support emails and documents, discussion notes, online chat, recorded phone conversations, model sites/applications, etc.

Output: 1. Work plan, 2. Cost involved, 3. Equipment requirements, 4. Hardware and software requirements, 5. Supporting documents, and 6. approval

2. Building Specifications:

Preliminary specifications are developed covering each and every element of the requirement. For example, if the product is a website, the modules of the site, including the overall layout, site navigation, and dynamic parts of the site, must be included in the specification. Larger projects will require higher levels of consultation to assess additional business and technical requirements. After reviewing and approving the preliminary document, a written proposal is prepared that outlines the scope of the project, including responsibilities, timelines, and costs.

Input: Analysis team reports

Output: complete requirements specifications for individuals and customer/customer representative

3. Design and development:

After the specification is built, work on the website is scheduled upon receipt of the signed proposal, a deposit, and any written and graphic content materials you wish to include. Here, normally, the layouts and navigation will be designed as a prototype.

Some clients may only be interested in a fully functional prototype. In this case, we may need to show them the interactivity of the app or site. But in most cases, the client may be interested in seeing two or three layouts with all the images and navigation.

There may be many suggestions and changes from the customer, and all changes must be frozen before moving to the next phase. Reviews can be displayed again via the web for the customer to see.

As needed, customer comments, feedback, and approvals may be communicated via email, fax, and phone.

Throughout the design phase, the team must develop test plans and procedures to ensure quality. It is necessary to obtain the approval of the client on the design and plans of the project.

In parallel, the database team will sit down and understand the requirements and develop the database with all the data structures and sample data will also be prepared.

Input: requirements specification

Output: Site design with templates, Images and prototype

4. Content writing:

This phase is mainly needed for websites. There are professional content developers who can write industry-specific and relevant content for the site. Content writers to add their text can use the design templates. Grammar and spell checking should end at this stage.

Entry: designed template

Output: site with formatted content

5. Coding:

Now your programmers turn to add their code without altering the design. Unlike traditional design, the developer must understand the interface and the code must not disturb the appearance of the site or application. So the developer must understand the layout and navigation. If the site is dynamic, the code must use the template. The developer may need to interact with the designer to understand the design. The designer may need to develop some graphical buttons when the developer needs, especially when using some form buttons. If a team of developers is working, they should use a CVS to control their sources. The coding team must generate the necessary test plans as well as the technical documentation. For example, Java users can use JavaDoc to develop their documents to understand their code flow. The coding team can also prepare end-user documentation, which can be used by a technical writer who can understand it and write helps and manuals later.

Input: the site with forms and the specification of requirements

Output: database driven features with site, coding documents

6. Tests:

Unlike software, web-based applications need intensive testing, since the applications will always work as a multi-user system with limited bandwidth. Some of the tests that should be performed are integration tests, stress tests, scalability tests, load tests, resolution tests, and cross-browser compatibility tests. Both automated testing and manual testing should be performed without fail. For example, it is needed to test fast loading graphics and calculate their loading time, since they are very important for any website. There are certain testing tools as well as some online testing tools that can help testers to test their applications. For example, ASP developers can use the Microsoft Web Application Testing Tool to test ASP applications, which is a free tool available for download from the Microsoft site.

After doing all the tests, it is necessary to perform a live test for the websites and web-based applications. After loading the site, there should be a complete test (eg test links)

Input: The Site, Requirements Specifications, Supporting Documents, Technical Specifications, and Technical Documents

Result: completed app/site, test reports, bug logs, frequent interaction with developers and designers

7. Promotion:

This phase is applicable only for websites. The promotion needs preparation of meta tags, constant analysis and submission of the URL to search engines and directories. There is a details article on this site about site promotion, click here to read it. Site promotion is normally an ongoing process as search engine strategies can change quite frequently. Submitting a site’s URLs once every 2 months may be an ideal submission policy. If the customer is willing, paid clicks and paid shipping can also be done at an additional cost.

Entry: site with content, customer emails mentioning competitors

Output: submitting the site with the necessary preparation of meta tags

8. Maintenance and Update:

Websites will need fairly frequent updates to keep them up to date. In that case, we need to re-run the scan and all other lifecycle steps will be repeated. Bug fixes can be done during maintenance time. Once your website is operational, ongoing promotion, technical maintenance, content management and updating, site visit activity reports, staff training and mentoring are required on a regular basis depending on the complexity of your website. website and the needs within your organization.

Input: site/app, content/features to be updated, rescan reports

Output: Updated application, supporting documents for other lifecycle steps and teams.

The steps mentioned above alone are not strict for web application or website development. Some steps may not be applicable for certain tasks. It depends on the cost and time involved and the need. Sometimes, if it is an intranet site, there will be no promotion of the site. But even if you are a small development company, if you take some planning along with these web engineering steps in mind, it will definitely reflect on the quality of the output.

Check out the flowchart “How do we do web development at Macronimous?”[PDF format]

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