#1 Understanding Users
Before any development was ever done, we created typical user profiles. They helped us gain better and deeper understanding of what users want to achieve and how they go about doing it.
We used those customer personas to uncover inconsistencies in the usage of the platform
#2 Sketch the platform, without writing code
Many clients come to us after a bad experience with a previous agency because the end results is often far off from what he had in mind. At this point, developers need to throw fresh code in the trash and write new one, resulting in emotional and financial frustrations for both the client and the developers.
Many developers often neglect sketching wireframes because they prefer writing code rather then questioning what could go wrong and avoiding easy mistakes. We approach our projects differently.
We spent days laying the functional foundations, ensuring that every single actions (e.g.: clicking a button, submitting a form, writing a message) resulted in the expected experience. This step was critical and it helped us reduce development time, while making sure we were on the same page with our client.
#3 Designing the visuals.
Creating the designs.
Our objective was to create an easy-to-use website while giving it a distinguishable identity. We wanted users to immediately remember the brand (colors combinations, fonts, designs) without compromising on a fluid experience.
When it comes to user experience, the trap is to reinvent the wheel. Our researched showed that users were already familiar with marketplaces like eBay, Etsy and Amazon so we worked hard to provide the kind of experience they would expect from a web platform like Expomaison.
Designing the wireframes
With a clear identity, all we needed to do was to turn the wireframes from the previous step into nice-looking, easy to use web visuals. You can try sliding the blue button on the visual below to get a feel of our work.
#4 Technical Development
Starting a project from scratch is always a challenge but it comes with the opportunity to structure the technical foundations for optimal speed and reliability. We took this opportunity.
We split the application into smaller components that we developed individually, and then assembled it together. This method allowed our development team to work together efficiently and gave us more flexibility for adding new features to the platform.
We used the latest web technologies such as NodeJS for back-end development coupled with AWS and MongoDB. This combination of services powers some of the largest startups in the world such as Netflix, Airbnb & Dropbox.
#5 Testing and Improvements
The difference is in the details.
After the first phase of development, our project managers tested all possible scenarios as “fake users” to uncover the inconsistencies. All bugs (missing data, unbalanced spacing, spelling mistakes, broken features,…) were then documented by projects managers for developers.
Through this rigorous exercise, we anticipated most bugs that real users would have found, and most likely not reported.
#5 Making the Platform Attractive to Google
We optimize the platform in a way that Google and other search engines (SEO) can easily crawl and index the site’s content (products descriptions, professionals profiles, useful documentation…). We also ensure that all of Google technical criteria were met.
To generate as much traffic as possible from search engines, we made sure to write SEO-friendly code all along the development phase. Fast loading webpages is a key aspect of good SEO.
We created sitemaps and submitted all content to Webmaster tools. Also, the technical aspects were respected (readable URLS, meta-tags, pagination …)
he more links you have to your site, the more chances you have of ranking well in search engines. We created a digital badge for our client’s partners to install on their websites, resulting in hundreds of incoming links to expomaison.eu
Côté Clair transformed my idea into a successful web project by listening carefully and adding their own expertise. The result is above my expectations.Joseph Acunzo, Expomaison’s director