In this post you will learn about a very inexpensive way to work out the basic layout, functionality, and content areas of your website before you actually start building the website.
Have you ever wasted a bunch of time or money creating a website when you didn’t even really know what you were trying to create? Experimenting and conceptualizing website design and functionality while actually building your website can be a recipe for disaster. And the bigger or more complex the website you need, the larger the disaster can be!
There Is Hope
There is actually a cheap (can be virtually free) way to plan out the basic design and functionality of your website before you ever start to actually build the thing.
The solution is called wireframing. What is wireframing? It is basically drawing out the basic layout of your website (either electronically or on paper) before you write a single line or code or install the first plug-in. These wireframe sketches are great because:
- You can show how you want content and design elements to be arranged on the website
- They cost little to nothing to create
- You can get your thoughts down on “paper” before you start investing in an expensive and/or time-consuming design and build process
- You can make as many revisions or alternative sketches as you want
- You will have something tangible to take to a website designer/developer when you are ready to start investing in the actual website
- You will have something visual to show to friends or co-workers when you ask for their ideas and feedback
When you start wireframing a website, don’t become too attached to your first sketch. Be willing to make changes and consider alternative ways of accomplishing your goals. But as you make changes, don’t delete or throw away your previous ideas and sketches. You never know when you might come back to an earlier idea! Start out with a “quantity” mindset, and then slowly narrow down toward a “quality” mindset.
Are you ready to learn more about wireframing? Check out this blog post by Hope Armstrong: http://blog.teamtreehouse.com/learn-to-wireframe.
Have fun planning!