Okay, so you have a great website idea…
…and now you want to find someone who can build it for you. But standing in your way is this cavernous gap between your language and the language (ie. technical jargon) that your web design, developer speaks. How do you go about bridging that gap, and communicating in such a way, that it gets the point across without spending 20-100 pages worth of time on writing every detail of every feature you can think of?
Luckily for you, RazorIT has developed a great way for keeping it simple. It goes like this… Instead of trying to explain what you want, explain how you want your user(s) to experience your site. Here is a simple example…
Wrong way : I want social media integration.
Right way : When a guest reads an article they should be able to click a like button and share that page on X social media site.
What is the difference? Well “social media integration” can mean one thing to you, and another thing to the person doing the work. But when you switch the conversation from talking about “my feature list” to “user experience”, then you change the game. Now both you and the worker have a clear understanding of the goal, and don’t need to guess at what the end product will be like for the user.
And now for the advanced lesson…
How then do you turn this into a document that you can get an estimate on from a web developer? Easy, easy, easy… (not only that but it will help you really plan out your website in detail too)…
Start each sentence with who the user or user group is, and then say what they should be able to do. If its a lot of stuff, break it up into three phases (design, build, and marketing), and sub group within the phases by page. Start with the homepage, focusing simply on what that user or user group will do once they are there. From there just branch off into the next page and the action for that user there. This will give you a complete picture in your mind, and in your developers mind how a complete user experience will work.
Semi-Long Example :
Phase One : Design (Blue Prints)
- Founder of EXAMPLE.com should receive unlimited revisions until he is 100% satisfied and approves the look and feel for a homepage, search results page, categories list page, business listing page, user registration page, user dashboard page, and site template page.
Phase Two : Programming (Build Out)
- A guest should first and foremost be directed to search for xyz products using the name or brand and get to a search results listing page.
- A guest should secondarily be asked to fill in their email and password (and nothing else) to quickly register for an account, and once filled be taken to their User Dashboard Page.
- All guests should be presented with a big number showing the number of customers already using our product.
- Search Results Page
- A guest should see a list of products and product images, and be able to get a quick summary of each product their search result returned.
- A guest should be able to click on the image or the product name and go to a single product page.
- User Dashboard Page
- A logged in user should see a link to their order history that when clicked takes them to a list of all of their previous orders.
- A logged in user should see a link to edit their profile which takes them to their edit profile page.
Phase Three : Marketing (Show me the money!)
- A Google user should find us when they search for terms like, “example product”.
- Our Twitter followers should get an update each day with a link to our newest sale items.
- 10,000 females aged 20-35 should receive an email blast notifying them of the newly launched site.
If you’d like to see a full project description for the purpose of an estimate, you can find one by clicking here.