Signs showing that your web project requires a discovery phase

Aug
31

Everyone from site owners to developers want their web project to become a triumph. Whatever you decided to do — building a new site or app, redesign, upgrade or replatforming of the existing one — you strive for success. We do too;) That’s why we have previously provided you with key steps to delivering your project on time and budget, and today we continue giving you useful tips on how to avoid unexpected troubles during project development. Namely, we will tell you why a discovery phase is helpful and which signs show that you need it.

In what cases does your project need a discovery phase?

If you can’t define your user persona clearly

There is no sense in offering any services or goods for people if you don’t actually know who they are, what they really need and what they want. Creating user personas helps you to get acquainted with your customers represented by the end users of your software product. Discovering who your user personas are allows you to adapt the functionality and design of your site or app to the needs of your target audience to reach it and increase traffic to your web resource. Including pages and blocks that people will be pleased to see and options that they will be pleased to use makes your visitors stay longer on your site and keeps them visiting it again and again. Things like integration with different social media platforms or payment systems should be considered and included in project requirements before the project gets started.

If you are uncertain about framework, tools and technologies

If your project is building a new web resource from the sketch, the first and the most important choice to be made is about the framework, whether it's choosing an e-commerce platform or choosing a platform for a small business or for other needs. This decision will impact the whole site lifecycle. It should be based on the main goals of your company and of your business model specifics for an effective B2B site or other site.

You should be confident that your chosen platform or CMS is capable of making your ideas come true, that it’s convenient to use and has all the needed features to provide your site, portal or app with the things you require. The ability to implement custom and customized solutions is also important,  as well as the scalability as your needs will grow in future.

If you are not sure that your choice is the only right one, then it’s better to spend some more time during the discovery phase for deep investigating, weighing all the pros and cons, for example, the advantages and disadvantages of Drupal. Compare a few options to see the main differences between Wordpress and Drupal and others.

It is possible to later switch to another platform, much like a switch to another host or a switch to HTTPS protocol from HTTP, but to select the proper framework, tools and technologies among existing options from the very beginning will save both time and money.

If your project requirements aren’t clear

After you have decided on major things like platform, it’s time to think in detail about all the subsequent minor things which follow from them and draw up a technical specification. This document should set up the project requirements including concrete interface elements and their location, a site roadmap, security issues etc.

A discovery phase allows you to investigate and find out how exactly the fully functioning web resource should look like or how it should be altered and extended (if it already exists) so that it can meet your business needs and provide a positive user experience. A discovery phase also helps to make the estimation for term and investment the most realistic. The more accurately you formulate technical requirements, the less risk factors and confusion it can cause.

As you see, a discovery phase ensure the success of your project from the very beginning and saves you from additional headaches on the next phases of your web project development process. If you have any questions or are looking for a team to implement your project, or even for a single experienced programmer to outstaff, then contact us to start working with us.

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