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The launch of a new website is an exciting moment for any business. And an effective website will perfom as the centrepiece of a digital ecosystem, not only setting the bar now but having the potential to continue to do so for years to come.
Identifying and using appropriate systems and platforms to provide a base for development allows us to focus our efforts in the areas that best deliver against our clients' business objectives. So depending on the needs of our client, we typically use three different approaches to building a website.
For a project whereby we choose to use a theme we would first select an off the shelf CMS, usually Wordpress or Umbraco, and then enter a process where we select the best available theme to apply based on the outcome of our IA (information architecture) and design phases. Once the theme is chosen we would install it and begin a configuration process to adapt the theme to best meet client's needs
A template build looks to address some of the downsides of the themed approach. Instead of adopting a full theme, we would go through an extended IA process that would allow us to select an HTML Template instead of a packaged theme. Having not already been joined with a CMS, an HTML template is much easier for us to adapt and customise to project needs from a design point of view as it is best thought of as a kit of pre-built parts. Finally the adapted theme would be integrated with a chosen CMS system by our in-house team of developers.
A bespoke approach starts the process by looking at clients' exact requirements and then designing a solution around those needs. The IA, wireframe and design process sets a blueprint, which our in-house development team use to create the site completely from scratch. We use tools and frameworks to accelerate this process as much as possible, and in most cases we would advocate the use of an existing CMS system to store the content of the website. All design and features of the website are fully bespoke to clients' requirements.