Designers create wireframes to use as an important part of the website design process. Although it is up to designer to create the outline of the wireframe to begin the stages of building a website, it’s a process that shouldn’t be done alone. When your wireframing process is a collaborative effort, you’re ensured to create a website that fulfills every aspect of the clients needs. After all, friends don’t let friends wireframe alone.
What is a Wireframe?
A wireframe is a two-dimensional illustration of a webpage’s interface. Wireframes are the essential structure and backbone of a website layout. It displays the functionality of a website, much like how a blue print maps out the layout of a house. Before you start building a website, or a house, you have to have a strong design outline to reference as you build from the bottom up.
As a designer, it’s my job to design with the client in mind, but to also put myself in the consumer’s shoes to design the perfect, personalize consumer experience. We take into consideration not only responsive design and functionality, but space allocation and content hierarchy as well. Keeping the space, content and functionality in mind is the first step in the process to help determine the majority of the navigation and it’s interactive elements at the most basic level. This is why you won’t see any styling, graphics or color. The house has to have a solid blueprint before you pick out the wallpaper.
Wireframes are a valuable tool, but start to lose their value when done entirely in isolation. That’s why at Groove we use wireframes act as a visual tool to communicate in a collaborative setting to further develop ideas. When it becomes a collaborative effort, the wireframe starts to evolve! To ensure that all of our client’s needs are met throughout the website design process, it’s essential we include those who will have a hand in the creation of the website.
Who You Should Include in Wireframing
When we design wireframe, we know it’s important to incorporate those who will be a part project from beginning to the end. At Groove, a wireframing project team would consist of a:
- Content Writer
- Frontend Developer
- Project Manager
- Marketing Specialist
We like to have a specialist from every department that will take part in the website’s development to provide insight on what to consider when planning. Having them involved in the beginning stages of planning helps address any roadblocks early on and provides a clear direction of where the site is headed. The client is listed last, NOT because they are least important, but because they are THE most important!
We know that clients provide valuable insight on their industry and audience that is crucial into how to we help make their business stand out. While we have our industry experience, they have their personal business experience, which can’t match our team experience. The client gives us their insight to help us do our best to serve their needs and address their concerns. This is also the perfect time where we educate the client on our process. Involving our clients not only relieves any stress of confusion, but also gives them the confidence to move forward throughout the creation of the site.
At the end of every wireframing session, we make sure everyone on the team should walk away knowing:
- Every specialist is included and is a part of the project
- Client is educated on our process and comfortable moving forward
- Everyone shares the same vision and understanding for next steps
It’s important to confirm those three things at every session to ensure the project can positively move forward. After all, if your foundation is unstable in the beginning, the house is not going to hold up in the final stages.
Final Tips for Wireframing
A house is never built by one person, but by a team and the same goes for wireframing. With a diverse team planning together, you can cover all the needs of a website from the beginning stages like responsive design to later stages, such as marketing to coding, right from the start. At the end of the day, it’s critical to consider all of the client’s needs and concerns. Listening to your client helps you address problems and develop solutions. Your website wireframes are your foundation and can only be established when you understand your client’s vision.
If you have any questions on Groove’s design and development, feel free to contact us today!