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Web Design Discovery Phase – What Is It & Why Is It Important

Ivetta Ananyeva

Ivetta Ananyeva

UX/UI expert

7 min

Every year, the discovery phase saves our customers hundreds of thousands of dollars. In this turbulent business environment, this is a nice bonus for aspiring entrepreneurs, do you agree? 

If your website is a house you’re building, then the web design discovery phase is like the foundation of the construction process. 

It’s the stage where designers and clients work together to understand the goals, needs, and constraints of a website before diving into actual design and development. 

Think of it as gathering all the necessary information and laying out a blueprint before starting construction.

In this article, we will explore what web design discovery is, why you need one, and how to find a reliable partner to delegate this task. 

What is the Web Design Discovery Phase?

The Web Design Discovery Phase is a crucial initial step in the website design process. 

During this phase, designers and developers collaborate with clients to gather essential information and lay the groundwork for the project. 

We figure out the most important parts of the website or app during this phase. This is called the Minimum Viable Product (MVP). It’s like making sure a cake has all the essential ingredients before adding anything extra.

Sometimes, after understanding the company’s needs, we might find out that a website isn’t the right fit. 

Instead, they might need an app, an internal network for employees (intranet), or a network for partners or customers (extranet).

Now, let’s explore the key elements of the web design discovery process.

10 Key Website Discovery Steps

On average, B2C websites have visitors staying around for 92.33 seconds. 

B2B websites, on the other hand, have slightly shorter visits, lasting around 77.61 seconds.

Average Session Duration Benchmark

That’s not so much time, to be honest. Keeping the visitors engaged and making them your clients is a hell of a task. That’s when your website design needs to shine. Your website must be simple to navigate, yet not boring, yet not too vivid. So, how do you make sure you’re building something that’s gonna work?

That’s exactly what web design discovery is all about. 

Every web development company has its methods that work well (or not). The initial steps might be similar, but the methods, tools, and general approach may differ.

This is how we at SPDLoad approach the website design discovery process.

This methodology has proved to be a great success for our clients and even for our own website. Feel free to check out our website redesign journey, results, and costs. 

So, let’s explore the drill. 

Website Assessment

At this point, we evaluate the current website (if any) thoroughly, looking at its design, functionality, and content.

We point out its strengths, such as user-friendly navigation, visually appealing layout, and informative content.

Additionally, we pay attention to its weaknesses. We need to eliminate slow loading times, broken links, outdated design elements, and inaccurate information.

If there is any user feedback, we also consider it. This helps us understand pain points and areas for improvement.

During the website assessment phase, we better understand what aspects of the current website need to be maintained, enhanced, or completely redesigned for the new website.

MVP is a quick and low-risk way to test your business idea.

Contact us to develop an MVP to start your new venture strong.

Research

Then, we conduct comprehensive market research to understand industry trends, customer preferences, and emerging technologies relevant to the website’s purpose.

We analyze competitor websites to identify their strengths, weaknesses, and unique selling points. 

It is crucial to pay attention to design aesthetics, functionality, content strategy, and user experience. That’s why we explore successful websites in similar domains or industries to gather inspiration and best practices. Things like innovative features, effective communication strategies, and engaging user interactions always grab our attention. 

Then, we gather data from various sources such as industry reports, customer surveys, online forums, social media discussions, and user reviews to gain insights into user needs, preferences, and pain points.

This research phase provides valuable information, ensuring that the new website meets user expectations and stands out in the competitive landscape.

Website Goals Review

This stage is when we gather input from various parties involved in the website project, like business owners, marketing teams, and target audience representatives. 

Together, we discuss and outline the main goals and objectives the website should achieve.

Once everyone’s input is collected, we create specific and measurable goals for the website. 

It’s crucial to ensure that the defined goals not only support the business’s broader objectives but also resonate with the needs and preferences of the website’s target audience.

For example, if a business’s strategy includes expanding into new markets, the website goals might focus on increasing visibility and accessibility for users in those markets. 

Additionally, aligning with user needs could involve providing personalized recommendations or improving site navigation for easier access to relevant information.

Analytics Review

Once the website goals are set, we move on to examining data collected from tools like Google Analytics to gain insights into how users interact with the current website. 

Key metrics to review include page views, bounce rates, session durations, and conversion rates.

We delve deeper into user behavior data to identify patterns and trends. This includes analyzing the paths users take through the website, common entry and exit points, and interactions with specific elements like forms or buttons.

For example, we’ve conducted a user behavior analysis that reveals that a significant portion of visitors navigate from the homepage directly to the pricing page before exploring other sections. 

This pattern suggests that pricing information is a primary consideration for users, meaning we need to focus on designing clear and accessible pricing details.

User Persona Creation

A user persona is like a character or a profile representing different types of people who might visit a website. It helps website developers understand who their users are, what they want, and how to make the website better for them.

It’s important to create user personas when developing a website because they help focus on the needs and preferences of real people. By knowing who the users are, designers and developers can design a website that’s easy to use and meets their needs.

Here’s an example of the user persona creation process. You can use this as a guide when identifying your target audience. 

Creating User Persona in 8 Steps

Site Structure Creation

This stage involves creating a visual representation of the website’s overall structure, including main navigation, subpages, and content hierarchy. 

The goal is to organize information logically and intuitively so that users can easily navigate through it.

Before we prototyped our new website, we paid attention to the information architecture

There are a few reasons we did so:

  • Sitemap is important for technical SEO;
  • Website structure is important for visitors’ behavior;
  • An optimized website leads to a higher ranking, but without engaged behavior signals, Google won’t uprank the website.
SPD sitemap

Wireframes for Page Design

Wireframes are basic, skeletal layouts that outline the placement of content, navigation elements, and functionality on a webpage. 

They serve as a blueprint for the website’s design, focusing on layout and user flow without detailing visual aesthetics.

Suppose we are building an e-commerce website. Our design specialists will create wireframes for its product detail page, showing the location of product images, descriptions, pricing, and add-to-cart buttons. 

This helps visualize the page’s structure and ensures a seamless user experience.

User Flow / Process Diagrams

User flow diagrams visualize the paths users take as they navigate through the website, from entry points to desired outcomes or conversions. 

These diagrams help identify potential bottlenecks or areas for improvement in the user experience.

For example, when creating a website for ResoX, a platform for dispute resolution services, the goal was to create an easy-to-use platform that matches users with suitable consultants. 

We started by mapping out the user flow and illustrating each step, from entering personal information to confirming the account, filling out a questionnaire to find the best matches, and facilitating communication between users and consultants. 

This helped streamline the registration process and reduce drop-off rates.

Implementing the platform allowed ResoX to launch quickly and gain clients within three months. 

creating a website for ResoX,

Functionality Requirements

In the final step of planning a website, we decide on all the specific things the website needs to do to meet its goals and make users happy. This includes features like forms to fill out, buttons to click, search functionality, and more.

For example, if it’s a website for booking vacations, we’d make sure it has a search bar for finding flights and hotels, maps to explore destinations, and a secure way to pay for bookings. 

These features make it easy for people to plan and book their trips.

Each of these stages plays a crucial role in the website development process, helping us create user-centric and effective digital experiences for our clients and their users.

It’s like laying the foundation before constructing a beautiful building! 

We Are Crafting Intuitive Interfaces for Seamless Experiences

Explore our UX&UI design services

Ready to Get Starget Your Website Development with SPDLoad? 

We’re excited to start working with you and turn your vision into reality!

If you are looking for a dynamic team of experts passionate about web development and design – you’ve just found your match! 

We specialize in creating innovative, user-friendly websites that align with your business goals. Whether you’re launching a new project or revamping an existing site, we’ve got you covered.

Here’s how we can kickstart your website development journey:

  • Discovery Phase

We’ll dive deep into understanding your vision, target audience, and business objectives. This phase sets the foundation for a successful project.

  • Strategic Planning

Our team will collaborate with you to define clear goals, assess existing assets, and outline the project roadmap.

  • Design Excellence

From wireframes to visual mockups, we’ll create a stunning design that resonates with your brand identity and user experience.

  • Development Magic

Our developers will bring your website to life using cutting-edge technologies. Expect seamless functionality and responsiveness.

  • Launch and Beyond

Once the website is ready, we’ll ensure a smooth launch. Plus, we offer ongoing maintenance and support.

Drop us a line now, and we’ll transform your ideas into a captivating website!

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