IXP’s custom website design and development services help you build a website which provides substance with style — no matter what type of device your customer happens to be using at the moment.
Since 2008, IXP has helped businesses such as your develop compelling custom websites which get results. Here is a shortlist of our recent projects:
- Blue Diamond Antiques
- Dearborn Free Press
- Five More Talents
- Giesken Outdoor Advertising
- Holiday Inn Southgate Banquet & Conference Center
- Insuring America Now
- Joseph’s Way
- Lora, Chathadouangsy, & Castellanos, LLC
- Michigan Timber and Truss
- Rochester Plumbing and Heating
- U.S. Gage
- Valorware, LLC
We build websites using a technology called WordPress. WordPress is…
- A web content management system (web CMS). A web CMS is a computer program which allows you to create, edit, store, and deploy your content on your website. “Content” includes text, images, photos, audio, and video.
- Open-source software. Since 2003, WordPress has been developed in a public, collaborative manner by literally thousands of software developers around the world. This means WordPress offers unparalleled flexibility for your needs.
- Industry-standard. According to a Forbes magazine article in Sept 2012: “WordPress powers one of every 6 websites on the Internet, nearly 60 million in all, with 100,000 more popping up each day.”
- Easy to use. If you can use Microsoft Word, you can use WordPress. If you can use Facebook, you can use WordPress.
In short, WordPress puts you in the driver’s seat of your website, enabling you to harness the power of the Web. Contact us to request a free demo of how WordPress can put you in charge of your website.
Define the Project
The purpose of this phase is to set parameters and expectations and develop methods for clear communication throughout the project’s life-cycle. This phase includes Discovery, Clarification, and Planning.
- Gather information
- Understand your target audience
- Analyze competitive environment in your industry
- Develop your functional requirements
- Create a project plan
- Create a schedule
- Assign project team
- Set up staging area
- Determine overall goals
- Prepare creative brief
- Have a project kick-off meeting
Develop Site Structure
In this phase, we focus on developing and shaping the content of the website from four angles: Content-View, Site-View, Page-View, and User-View. From the Content-View, we look at the overall organization, coherence, and flow of the content. From the Site-View, “sitemapping” is the characteristic task — setting the overall information architecture of the site. From the Page-View, we want to make sure that we are presenting and organizing text, images, and UI elements in a way which is meaningful to the end user. “Wireframing” is the characteristic Page-View development task. Finally, from the User-View, we need to think about the relationship of one-page to the next, and if this is complex, we should probably develop a flow-chart showing visitor paths.
- Audit existing content
- Outline content
- Create a content delivery and/or content creation plan
- Make a sitemap
- Build wireframes
- Define key user paths
- Create user scenarios
Design Visual Interface
During this phase, the designers create the visual interface: the first thing the world sees when visiting the redesigned site, the first experience the audience has with your brand. Thanks to the preparatory planning from Phase 1 and Phase 2, this “face” of the redesigned site accurately represents the desired tone, the stated goals, and the established structure of the site in a visual format.
- Review site goals
- Develop concepts
- Present designs to you and gather feedback
- Confirm flow and functionality of user interface
- Test functionality
- Create style guides
Build and Integrate
This is the phase where we actually build your site.
- Create and populate pages
- Develop WordPress theme
- Implement WordPress plugins
- Conduct quality assurance testing
- Identify, prioritize, and fix bugs
Launch and Beyond
The focus of this phase is to smoothly transition your new website “into the wild,” from development mode into maintenance mode. During this phase, we tie up loose ends, make sure search engines know about your site, and develop a plan for measuring the success of your site and tweaking it as needed.
- Provide WordPress training
- Optimize for search engines
- Launch the site
- Confirm site security and crawlability by search engines
- Conduct a post-launch meeting
FAQs about our Process
How long does the website development process take?
Typically it is at least a six to eight week process with a schedule that looks something like this:
- Week 0 – Kick-Off Meeting
- Week 2 – Content & Functionality Review Meeting
- Week 4 – Design Review Meeting
- Week 6 – Pre-Launch Review Meeting
- Week 7 – New Website Launch
How do you make sure that my website supports mobile devices?
There are various ways to do this, depending on your needs. Typically, we develop a multi-device-friendly WordPress theme using a technique called “responsive web design.” Responsive web design allows you to have a single web design which automatically “responds” or “adapts” to the screen size of whatever device someone is using to visit your website.
Why is it important to have a multi-device friendly design?
It is becoming more and more important for websites to support mobile devices, because more and more people are using tablets and tablets to surf the web. Google research shows that 75% of customers prefer a mobile-friendly website, and Cisco Systems predicts that there will be one web-enabled mobile device per person by 2015.
Daniel D. Vos, Lead Web Developer
As Lead Web Developer for IXP, Daniel leads a website development team which includes graphic design and programming specialists. Daniel holds a B.A., summa cum laude, from Washington and Lee University (Lexington, VA), and a Web Programming certificate from Virginia Western Community College (Roanoke, VA). Daniel is passionate about user-focused, content-driven, future-friendly web design for the multi-device web. In addition to his full-time job as Lead Web Developer for IXP, Daniel is an adjunct Web Design instructor for American National University.
Douglas J. Vos, Account Executive
To each website project, Doug brings over 25 years of experience in the information technology and interactive media industries, working with organizations ranging from local businesses to regional organizations to Fortune 500 corporations. Doug has a Bachelor degree from Kuyper College (Grand Rapids, MI). Prior to his current role at IXP, he worked for Electronic Data Systems (EDS) from 1988 to 2008, gaining a broad range of IT consulting experience. During his time at EDS, Doug lead a website development team which invented patented technology for asset data collection, presentation, and management (Patent US20080086345).