— February 20, 2018
When you hire an agency to design and build a website for your B2B firm, a lot happens behind the scenes that you may not realize. Designing a B2B website from start to finish involves many specialized team members and can take hundreds of hours to complete.
As the client, you see probably 20% of the entire design process, so we are providing a glimpse of what’s happening behind the scenes at your web design agency.
Different Stages of B2B Website Design
- Research (10 – 12 hours)
When it comes to B2B website design, research is a crucial part of the creative process. To create a comprehensive website design for a B2B firm, the Web Designer and Content Director will research everything including competitor websites, images, industry terms and new trends in website design. While 12 hours may seem like a lot of time, it’s essential for creating a foundational knowledge of where your firm sits in the marketplace and what your target market finds compelling.
- Content Strategy
Before beginning design work or writing copy, a content strategy is created for each page of your website. This strategy is essential for creating a cohesive website that achieves the goals desired and clearly communicates to the target market. Think of the content strategy as the roadmap for the entire website design. The content strategy is devised by the Content Director and takes into account target market, business objectives, resources, and B2B website goals.
- Wire Frames (4 hours)
Wire frames typically take up to about 4 hours of work to put together and are an important part of bridging content and design. They are low fidelity sketches that help guide both designers and writers, as to what content is needed, where it will go, and how it should be represented on the website. These serve as a type of “pre-design” sketch for the web designer to start visualizing the final design for the website.
- Copywriting (50 to 80 hours)
Because B2B purchases tend to be researched more heavily than B2C, the copy on a B2B website is of the utmost importance. Your website copy should carry out the content strategy, tell a story, create a mood, highlight benefits to the customer as well as effectively describe your products and services. Crafting compelling website copy takes time and often goes through a few internal revisions before it is presented to the client. The number of hours spent can vary greatly depending on the number of pages in your website and the complexity of your business and industry.
- SEO (10 to 12 hours)
If you’ve opted to include search engine optimization (SEO) as part of your website project, additional time must be factored in for research and incorporating keywords into copy. We perform research on target keywords to determine search volume and competition then make decisions based on relevance and right fit with your business goals. Once a core set of keywords is determined, we assign them to pages on your website and the copywriter implements them strategically throughout the copy.
- Design (50 to 80 hours)
While it may only take you a few minutes to review a single web page design, it can take hours to create. Often a website designer will spend time deliberating on the most compelling and efficient way to present content within a design and will consider things like how it will impact the development, usability, and overall experience. We do not believe that website design is created just for the sake of design. Rather, we believe that in order to be effective, a website design must be viewed holistically and to meet the end goal of the company and its clients.
- Design Revisions (20 to 30 hours)
Often, internal revisions are completed done prior to presenting the design to a client. These could be edits from a creative direction, development, or content standpoint to ensure that every design element will function as intended, will support the content strategy and meet the business objectives.
- Image /Asset Preparation (5 to 10 hours)
A website is comprised of hundreds of images – whether they include photos, icons or patterns – and these all need to prepared and optimized for the web. All images and assets need to be properly scaled and sized so they do not negatively impact page speed (load time). Page speed is one of the many factors that affect a website user’s experience and, in turn, the Google ranking of the website. As a B2B website design agency, we want to make sure that our clients’ websites not only look great and function well, but are optimized for page speed and rankings.
- Website Development (120 – 180 hours)
Web development is the coding process for actually building the website design and makes up a huge chunk of the website design process that most clients never see or are involved in. For the B2B websites we build, it can take 120 to 180 hours to develop a single website.
- Content Entry
Once the B2B website is developed and the content management system is ready, we start entering in all the content that was approved during the copywriting process. Even when there is an automatic transfer of content from the former site into the new website design, it all needs to be reviewed, checked for accuracy, and in some cases, edited to fit the new design.
- QA + QC – Quality Assurance and Control
Quality assurance and control takes place throughout the web design process, however, after development and content entry is done, it becomes a major focus. This is the step in which the design and content teams comb through the completed B2B website design to ensure the final product was executed properly and is up to the intended standards.
Behind the Scenes: It’s Busy!
As a B2B website design agency, we do our best to ensure the design and development process is smooth and seamless for our clients. We understand that it appears like our team “just whips up” a great design, but it actually takes quite a bit of thoughtful consideration and review to design and create content for an effective website that meets all the goals determined by our clients. For our custom-designed B2B websites, there are often 350+ hours of time spent strategizing, designing, writing, revising, checking, and building a single website design.