A flawless website can be created only after overcoming the challenges of web design and development. It is then a website becomes the first line of communication between your business and the outside world – guests, visitors, and potential customers. Unlike traditional channels of interaction with customers through the print or other electronic media, a website is open for business 24×7 round the clock online over the Internet.
This is particularly helpful in the modern business environment that caters to a global village population across time zones. People from anywhere can get information about your business, provide feedback and most critically buy products and services any time they want to. Through websites, the focus is on offering uninterrupted service to customers, both potential and existing.
Now that the undisputed need for websites in today’s business has been established, a closer look at website design and development and web application development will be in order:
The aesthetics of a website is determined by the website design – how it looks, the content, graphics, and the way it works. Web design challenges include conceptualization, planning and building a collection of electronic files. These files determine the layout, colors, graphics, images, structure, text styles and all other interactive features that display pages to visitors at the site. A good web design company will make your website look attractive and appealing to visitors. They have the tools and technologies as well as professional expertise to make your website design stand out in the crowd and your competitors.
This part of a website consists of developing the site for the Internet (World Wide Web) or a private network. Challenges facing web development include building a website that can range from a single page to complex web-based Internet applications, electronic businesses, and social media services. Other critical aspects of web development are web content development, web engineering, web server and network security configuration, and e-commerce development.
There are two broad classifications of web development – front-end development (client-side development) and back-end development (server-side development).
Back-end development controls what activities take place behind the scenes and often generates the front-end through a database. For instance, the news feeds on Facebook that is seen today are not what was there yesterday. It is done through a script that has received the updates from a database and re-generated the front-end accordingly. Back-end scripts are written in coding languages and frameworks such as PHP, asp.net, Java, Ruby on Rails, Python, and node.js.
Web development is a complex task and you should also hire a top-line web development company to do it for you.
Web Application Development
As in web development, there is front-end development which is done through client-side programming and back-end server-side programming that creates the scripts used by web applications. Scripts may be written in multiple languages such as Java, Python, and Ruby.
Challenges to Overcome for Flawless Websites
Now that all of us are familiar with web design and development, let’s take a closer look at what challenges web designers and developers face to create a flawless websites:
Platforms and Browsers
One of the biggest challenges facing web development is the increasingly growing platforms that websites are based on. These include desktops, mobiles and presently smart gadgets and devices that have to be taken into account. Web developers have to continually carry out specific testing during the development process to know whether the site will perform optimally on designated devices as well as on the browsers that will be accessing them. Google Chrome or Firefox is not an issue but Internet Explorer due to its quirks pose web design challenges. Some features of websites that work flawlessly on other browsers might not do so initially on IE and hence developers have to be careful in this aspect.
This is at the top of the pile of challenges facing web development. In today’s competitive market, consumers will quickly move on to another site if they do not get a rich user-experience. Designers and developers are often so caught up in getting the technicalities right that they overlook the aesthetics part of a site. It is the opposite for the user for whom the feel and look of the app or site is as critical as its features and functionality. The site should be easy to use without complex features as that reduces the possibility of integration. It is essential, therefore, for developers to slot in the basic principles of design in their codes.
Let’s see what Maile Ohye from Google has to say on site loading speed. “2 seconds is the threshold for e-commerce site acceptability. At Google, we aim for under half a second.”
While it is difficult to meet such lofty benchmarks, a site that takes more than one second to load will lose the attention of the visitor. Task ranking on challenges facing web development should have this factor on priority for developers. It has to be ensured that a website or web application loads at very high speeds without compromising on the features and functionalities that have to be compulsorily included.
When a website is developed, it is necessary to estimate the workload it can withstand. Hence a part of web design challenges is to take account of the problems that might crop up later. There are usually two aspects to scalability. One is an increase in the number of visitors, more than initially anticipated, which reduces the performance and speed of the site or application. Second is generally related to e-commerce sites where an expansion of the product range adversely affects the page load time and makes inventory updates a problem.
For getting around these problems a lot
Website security is one of the most common challenges facing web development. Sites with low-security levels face threats that include buffer overflow, cross-site scripting, shell injection, and session hijacking. To keep these at bay, security measures should be incorporated at every stage of web development. Hence, developers should focus more on the security elements of a website by updating the OS and patching their frameworks more often.
Maintenance and post-launch challenges
Once a website has been launched or even ready to launch, designers and developers face a new set of challenges. They have to cater to a whole lot of things that a client will want in the future because there will always be issues with the live version, even after thorough testing. For instance, spammers might sign up for user accounts which developers have to manage on behalf of the clients to make sure that the functionality of the site is not affected. Developers, as a part of maintenance, have to keep on resolving problems as they arise.
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Above are some of the biggest challenges of web design and development. Usually, top rated designers and developers are well-learnt about overcoming these and delivering a high-performance website. Now, let’s look at the benefits of investing in top quality web design and development.
Quality web Design and Development – Benefits Galore
Wondering how can top-of-the-line web design and development helps establish your brand, increase traffic to your site, and push product sales? Below is how!
- Easy navigation – This is one of the key benefits of an optimized website. Any information on the website should be easy to access. Further, it has to be ensured also that the site has fast loading time and developers should continually test the pages to remove bugs so that the site functions well. Good and easy navigation is a guarantee of more organic traffic.
- SEO for higher rankings – If your website does not have a very visible online presence, the very purpose of the site is defeated. Searchers looking for your products and services should be able to quickly find your site on the top of results pages of major search engines. This is what Search Engine Optimization sets out to do. From the design and development angle also, a site that has gone through SEO is an indication that the key elements of a website are embedded in it – title tags, keywords, links, image optimization, and “call-to-action” buttons. This is definitely one of the challenges facing web development.
- Higher conversions – An attractive site draws in traffic leading to more sales and conversions. This is more so after the exponential rise in e-commerce sites where sales are expected to grow by 22% year on year. Through websites, promotions can be carried out, discounts offered and a personalized interaction can be established with existing and potential customers leading to greater business growth and sales.
- Increased customer loyalty – As your business expands into unchartered territories, it is critical to have loyal customers to support you as they have always done before. You cannot do this with poor strategies and it is here that a website has an important part to play. Webmasters retrieve metrics from the site to monitor visitor activities and identify customers loyal to the brand. You can then create plans and approaches to have lifetime clients for your business.
- Reaching out to more clients – One of your business goals should be to grow your customer base. This can be achieved in a number of ways with a user-friendly website. First, it helps to increase and spread brand awareness and more so for startups and small businesses. With the Internet at the disposal, the website can be on a global platform and even little known organizations can reach out to customers across the world.
- Increasing user engagement – Conventional brick and mortar stores have always found it difficult to maintain after-sales interaction with their customers. But that theory has gone for a toss in the present digital world. With websites, businesses can keep continual rapport with customers, provide updates on new product launches and price changes, and give instant reply to any queries. With most services automated on the website, clients are assured heightened interaction and round the clock services and ensuring this is one of the key web design challenges.
- Useful marketing and advertising tool – The days of print and electronic media and billboards for advertising and marketing are long gone. A website is a useful and cost-effective tool for the same purpose. On a website, you can display all the important information about your business like products and services offered, pricing, location of business, contacts and much more. You can also post attractive offers and discounts.
Additionally, amazing discounts and promos can be updated instantly without any downtime unlike putting up advertisements as in the past. Further, through advanced tools and analytics, you can identify areas on the site that are drawing in more traffic and which are not and make changes accordingly. This is marketing at its best!
In a nutshell, web design and development is basically the fundamentals of business growth and development today.
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On the whole, it is crucial to keep in mind that even though there are web design challenges as well as unique challenges facing web development, it is worth the time and expense to create a highly optimized and performing website. With more innovative web design and development tools and technologies being introduced regularly, there will be more challenges to face in the future. Contact a leading web design and development company if you want to have a high-performance website. Get in touch with us at email@example.com for more details.