Webcoda, Web development, Website Design & SharePoint consultants in Sydney, Australia
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Design, test and iterate: That thing smart Sydney web designers do

Categories: Web Development
Sep 29
Design, test and iterate: That thing smart Sydney web designers do
Sydney web designers come in all shapes and forms. We’re influenced by the context of a beautiful city and the availability of ideas in the technology scene. We enjoy that strange meld of inner city buzz in places such as Surry Hills, Newtown and Redfern. And we still find ourselves breathless as we cross the Sydney Harbour Bridge into North Sydney and out at the many beautiful Sydney beachside suburbs. From Blacktown to Wollongong, Bondi to Brooklyn, there are so many ways this beautiful city can capture a designer’s eye.
It’s not only the natural beauty though that grabs us. It’s the professional clients we meet across government, NFP and businesses. It’s about the organisations looking to change the lives of people through innovation, infrastructure and information. 

And it’s about honouring the city in which we live, the companies with which we work and providing the solutions their customers love.

Let’s lift the lid on Webcoda’s processes and talk about why design, test and iterate is the smart thing that Sydney web designers like us do!

Like a city, we map the process

Using Sydney as our analogy, think of the parts of the city where places grew without much planning. Think of the winding, often confusing streets of the Rocks. Or the traffic snarls on King Street or Parramatta road. Imagine how much better these areas would be in terms of public transport and mobility if proper planning leads the process. If the future of a busy, vibrant and popular city could be foreseen, perhaps traffic congestion wouldn’t be such a problem.

Sydney web designers know the importance of developing designs that look past the present and right into the future. Planning out your website in a visual format helps makes better design decisions. And considering how and where the website will find its way into your organisation’s marketing and internal customer processes is part of that. But the first process begins with better navigation.

The first design step we take at Webcoda is to sketch out the visual layout of your website. Sydney web designers refer to this process as the wireframes. Like a map or grid, your wireframes are the visual guide to your future layout.

So that you can visualise the wireframes in relation to your future website, we create a quick static interface of your website. We outline key sections and menus so you can see how content will be presented to your customers. This wireframe becomes the basis for discussion, feedback and ideas between the Webcoda team and your team of interested stakeholders.

This is a mix of sketches and digital wireframes so that you can see the potential through mapping out the future.  

Making places richer with prototyping

All large scale projects have an inherent amount of risk. Just ask ex-Mayor of Willoughby, Richard Harnett.
Chatswood was a suburb with a whole lot of vision without a reality realised in its inventor’s lifetime. Richard Harnett was the Mayor of Willoughby and the man behind the idea of Chatswood. He was so deeply invested in turning a wooded area of Sydney into the future of the city, he named it after his beloved wife, Charlotte. Her nickname was Chattie and he felt that Chat’s Wood would be the future of opening up trade in the north.

To modern Sydney dwellers, Chatswood makes brilliant sense as it’s wonderfully positioned, has major transport and is easily accessible from the northern suburbs as well as the city.  But in the days before the Harbour Bridge, not many people could see Chatswood as a potential commercial hub. Harnett pushed for the vision of a commercial centre in 1876. It struggled until 1890 when rail was introduced but didn’t begin to thrive until the Harbour Bridge was finished in 1932.

Sadly, Harnett never saw Chatswood past the struggle and into fruition. He is definitely one of the people in Australian history that saw the potential for a grand design well before it could be realised.

These days, life is a whole lot simpler when it comes to testing an idea as any good Sydney web designers can tell you. Prototyping tasks out much of the risk involved in building big projects, online and off.  

When Webcoda applies prototyping to our projects, we use it as an interactive visual guide for the product we are building. What we present to our clients replicates almost all parts of the product we’re building. But it might lack style elements such as colours, images and typography. This is for web design and development, apps we build, intranets and pretty much every digital project we build.

The format for the prototype can be paper or digital. The aim of the prototype is to create an interactive version of the product which can be used for communicating interactions, testing and feedback. The detail may not be as rich as the final product, but it works well as a tool to inform project stakeholders.

The proof is in the user testing

All the research and prototyping in the world cannot create a world-class city like Sydney. It has to come down to combining the practical and integrating what the city dwellers need.

Thankfully, Sydney has begun to innovate itself into a vibrant city by listening to the people that live there. The Western Sydney of today is a great example of that.

There’s no denying that Western Sydney gets some terribly hot days. We live in a time where urban planning and many facets of design are influenced by climate change. Sydney web designers look at these urban planning changes with eagerness because we know how influential the built and natural environment is when it comes to other kinds of design.

That’s why seeing projects where technology is being used in conjunction with design to create safe, comfortable and heat proof shelters in public are interesting. Using smart technology and watching the usage of green spaces in conjunction with design principles, Nepean bus stops are changing to help reduce the risk of passenger fatigue in the hot sun. By using data from the local hospitals, from temperature gauges and more, the Cooling the City Strategy is designed to help keep people safe in extreme heat and to reduce the impacts of climate change on Western Sydney residents. Planning a place like Western Sydney requires a lot of data and input from the people that live there, whether they realise they are giving this data or not.

Sydney web designers like Webcoda do similar intelligence gathering to plan our online infrastructure projects.
We bring in the customer to the equation via user testing. Exercises and scenarios allow us to bring in the potential customers to test the product or prototype. By performing certain tasks and thinking aloud while doing so, using eye-tracking and investigating applications such as virtual reality, we can get a much deeper understanding of the challenges faced by your customers. We can look at their experience of the web design, app or project and incorporate their feedback in real time.

This makes for smarter, more relevant and infinitely more usable projects and products to be built by iterating concepts with proper feedback.

Time to get visual

Liveability is a huge part of Sydney’s design going forward. Humans need green spaces. We get stressed by concrete, long streams of traffic, pollution and the built environment. So a big part of moving Sydney forward is considering liveability and visualising a future.

Planning online projects and executing the work of Sydney web designers is not much different to the visualisation process that a healthy city needs to go through.

For town planning and visualising a city, it is in the form of computer modelling, 3d concepts, illustration, vectors and virtual reality. For a web design or app, there is the addition of style elements to wireframes or prototypes and make its visual aspect as close to the actual product as possible. We can also use the exact same tools available to a town planner, real estate developer, and council or government department to show our web designs.

In fact, Webcoda have found our understanding of these sorts of technologies have helped us build hospital upgrade websites, sites like real estate website LJ Hooker and or property investment website Investa with ease. We use the same visualisation principles to help customers understand the designs and opportunities happening in the built environment by using the same idea with the web.

It’s a mock-up of what’s possible that becomes a fleshed out concept.

The online version of real world architecture

When you think about it, the online world is just as challenging as our built environment. We’re helping people navigate, find what they need, accept concepts, ask for help and add what we build to their daily lives. That’s why it’s so important to develop in the digital space using input from real humans. To think like the customers and to bring their knowledge and feedback into the centre of the process is to plan for success.

There are many Sydney web designers to choose from but none quite as passionate about building an online world that is as beautiful and liveable as the city we live and work in.

Want to create an icon in the online world that Sydney-siders know and love? Choose Sydney web designers and app developers Webcoda now.

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