Designing Usability

Sites that are easy to navigate, with information that is easily found by the user, translate into less inquiry-based phone calls to your office.

Web Pricing and Planning

Web Pricing and Planning

Pricing

Web Services's pricing is reasonable. We charge $32 per hour for graphic design, site structure, site analysis, site prep, and consulting, and $16 per hour for migrating content from your old site to a new site. Some outside vendors charge up to $100 per hour. We can convert small websites (approximately 20 pages) to the new campus template starting at only a couple hundred dollars.

Submit a Project Request

We provide a wide range of web-based services and applications to the campus community at special campus rates. Use our online form to submit a project request to Web Services for site redesign, development of a web-based application, or other service. We will contact you and set up a meeting to discuss your needs.

Planning

Our design and development process helps guarantee you the best possible website in a reasonable amount of time. Our service takes into account your department's needs, and the needs of your specific audience, to then produce results that are easier to navigate and easier to use. Some sites will not require all of the steps below.

Step 1: Kick-off Meeting

We meet with you to discuss your current website (if one exists) and your reasons for wanting something new, perhaps your site looks outdated or has grown so much that everything is too hard to find? In this meeting we will establish your major needs and overall goals and then outline the processes we will perform to meet those needs.

Step 2: Project Cost Estimate Approved

When we have a clear idea of the scope of the project, we will provide you with a written cost estimate and proposed project timeline. Before we proceed to the next step, you will need to review and approve the estimate and timeline. You can approve by simply sending us an e-mail and a charge authorization form (CAF) which will be billed at the end of the project or fiscal year.

Step 3: Site Structure Review and Analysis

Once we've met with you and reviewed your existing site, we will have a much clearer idea of exactly what you need, and can then proceed to develop the structure (information architecture) of the new site.

Based on your needs and the known best-practices for university websites, we'll make detailed recommendations for the organization of your site, including a complete site outline.

Step 4: Site Structure Approval

Your site's structure will be the blueprint upon which the site is built. Changes during construction can cause major delays and can potentially increase your estimate. As a result, we will meet with you to present our recommendations and receive your feedback. At that point, you will get a chance to approve the structure before we proceed.

Step 5: Design Development

The design development process can vary widely depending upon whether you want a standard site based on a university template, a modified university template, or a custom design. In this step, our designers develop a site identity to fit your needs while maintaining all University branding and style standards.

Step 6: Design Approval

Our designers will typically create two to three "comps" (compositions of various design options) for you to choose from. Based on your feedback, a final design will be created. Once we have your final design approval, we can begin to build your site.

You can view sample comps that were created for University Housing & Food Service.

Step 7: Site Development

The site-development step is simply the process of converting the comps, which are just graphic images, into actual web pages in the Web Content Management System (WCMS) that houses all University websites. Once this step is done, the site is ready for your content.

Step 8: Content Input and Editing

Clients are responsible for developing new content or telling us what content in their current site they would like to be moved into the new site; if simply moving from old to new, the client needs to make it clear what content can be imported "as-is" and what needs to be updated. It is important that all content is current and factual and is the final version. Changes made after the content is put into the site can potentially extend the project timeline and cost.

Plan ahead! Once the site's structure is approved (step 4), you can begin collecting, writing, and organizing your content to fit the new structure. The earlier you start gathering content, the sooner we can move along on your site.

After we receive your content, we will edit, format, and insert it into the site.

Step 9: Proofing and Final Site Approval

Proofing requires several stages. First, we will ask you to look over the site and verify that all of your content is present and in the appropriate place. Next, we will review the site and check for information flow, design, grammar, style, punctuation, bad links, etc. Lastly, we will ask that you review the site in detail one last time before we make the site 'live' to the world. We cannot launch your new website until all proofing is completed and the site is approved.

During this step, it is recommended that you sign up for WCMS training if you plan on maintaining the website yourself. Or if you prefer, you can contract with us to maintain your site for you.

Step 10: Go Live!

Once we get your final approval, we'll flip the switch, and your brand new website will instantly replace your former site. You will receive a CD backup of your old site in the campus mail shortly thereafter, we will also keep a copy on hand just in case something was missed. If you wish, we can set you up to receive a weekly report of your new site's usage statistics through Google Analytics.

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