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The Web Design Process

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The beginning of a website build is an exciting time of possibilities. It’s a new chapter for your business. The web design process can be a new adventure, whether this means you are going from a social media-only presence, you are opening a new business or organization or you are finally ready for a rebuild of your old website.

You may be wondering what this web design process will look like. In this post, I’ll break down what our time together will look like.

Jenny Laine Designs Person sitting at computer typing

The Initial Discovery Call or Meeting

I will send you a questionnaire to get a feel for what you are looking for in a new website. Afterwards, we will do an initial discovery call or meeting to decide what you need and what your budget is for the project. I will ask several questions to clarify the purpose of your website and help you strategize an initial plan.

Next, I’ll send out a proposal that clearly lays out the plan we’ve created. I will include a contract for us both to sign electronically and an invoice for you to make a deposit or full payment.

Our next step will include you receiving a “Getting Started” email that will have links to our Google Drive Folder. This is where we can both share assets and folders for information included in the website such as photos, logos, copy and such.

We will do a strategy session that will include getting more detailed about the design and layout of your new website. This will take about 45 min and can be done over zoom or in a face-to-face meeting.

The Web Design Phase

Step 1 – Collect

Collecting as much information before we begin the website build lets us get off to the right start. This is where you will upload images, photos, logos, copy of text for your website, and anything else you may need. I will send you a questionnaire that will help me gather everything I need to include. My policy requires my clients to fill this out and return to me two weeks before the website build start date.

Step 2- Design

From the information you send and the planning meeting we’ve had, I will begin the design process. This is the very intentional process of creating a design journey that focuses on your ideal client.
Before we move forward with creating the rest of the website, I will send a walk-through video of the homepage for your review. After making sure we are both on the same “page” about the design, I will move forward with designing the rest of the website.

It is important that you respond within 48 hours of receiving this video. The sooner I hear from you, the faster I can move forward with the rest of your website build or make changes to your designs as long as they are within the scope of our contract.

Step 3 – Critique

After the website is designed, we will share the temporary site with you to start our revision process. I will do three rounds of revisions during the developmental phase. This includes any text or images on the site. This is not a time to completely redesign the website. However, we can make small changes to the design. You will have up to 3 business days to respond before we begin moving forward to the next step.

Step 4 – Care

Once the website is finalized, we move into the maintenance and care part of our relationship. I will do all the necessary backend processes to make your website live on the internet, as well as, get you set up with Google Analytics and Google Console. Your website is a living breathing work of art. As so, it is important that it is cared for and maintained. While it is not required to sign up for my maintenance plan, it is a useful service that will ensure your website stays as healthy as the day it was launched.

The Process at a Glance

As a way to quickly know how this process goes, I’ll show you the list below:

  1. Client Inquiry
  2. Client & Designer Contract, Invoice and Payment
  3. Client Onboarding with Questionnaire and Google Drive
  4. Plan and Prepare
  5. Begin Design Process
    1. Color and Branding Elements
    2. Fonts
    3. Header and Footer
    4. Home Page
    5. Additional Pages
    6. 404 and Legal Pages
  6. Development (of everything above)
  7. Customization
    1. Plug-ins
    2. Integrations – social, podcasts, blog posts, calendars, etc.
  8. Site Audit Checkoff
    1. Testing browsers, links, forms
  9. Finalizations
    1. Client sign-off of the finished website
    2. Adding a correct domain to the temporary staging website
    3. Making website live
    4. Basic SEO checks
    5. Basic accessibility checks
    6. Create training materials
    7. Create new website posts for social media
    8. Announce launch

Timeline is usually 4-6 weeks for custom websites and 2-4 weeks for template customization depending on the complexity of the website and how quickly I receive assets from the client.

What types of issues cause the most delays in the web design process?


Unfortunately, often what takes the longest is gathering content from my amazing clients. I also find that if you don’t know who your ideal client is, it’s difficult to write the copy to speak to that client. I have tools to help you with that challenge as well as amazing partners who will boost website copy for you. So while it may be a bit daunting, it doesn’t have to be if you let Jenny Laine Designs guide you each step of the way. My Website Framework Planner is helpful for this. (No matter what web designer you choose to use.)


Often, clients find trying to decide exactly what font to use or what colors to use stressful. As long as these are on point with your brand, and don’t affect accessibility, you can leave the design process up to your designer. 🙂 If you need help with your branding assets, try the Simple Brand Academy. (This should be done before the website build begins.) If you’d like someone to do this for you, I can connect you with awesome branding partners.

Scope Creep

What is this? It’s when the project starts becoming bigger and bigger and begins falling outside the original contract agreement. For example, when a client wants to add an additional page or additional services than previously discussed, it may cause the project to be extended past the originally agreed-upon launch date. 

However, as we work together, we can identify when this happens and create a plan to incorporate your new ideas into an additional phase after launch. All of my website clients can have access to this Website Framework Planner or it can be purchased if you plan to DIY your website.

So that about wraps it up! While this process may seem daunting, it’s what I love to do. Serving my clients and helping small businesses create a website that gets found through proper design and search engine optimization is my sweet spot. Are you ready to launch your new website? Let’s chat! I have options for all budgets. 

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