24 Jul What Are Wireframes & How Do They Help Develop A Website More Effectively
As with any industry, web design and digital marketing have their very own jargon/lingo. Certain terms become considered trendy, hip, “in-the-know” etc. But for all the cool jargon, it never helps a client to figure out what is being discussed.
Often, clients can feel overwhelmed by the techie terms thrown around. At IMPROZ we feel that anything that clouds communication or potentially confuses a client is something to be avoided, or, at the very least, well explained in layman’s terms.
With the above in mind, we receive many questions from clients about certain terminology or jargon. One of the more common questions we receive regards “wireframes.” What are they, what do they do and what is their purpose.
Usability.gov defines a wireframe as “a two-dimensional illustration of a [web] page’s interface that specifically focuses on space allocation and prioritization of content, functionalities available, and intended behaviors.” A wireframe can also be created in three-dimensions, but that form is typically used for architecture, prototyping or in situations where a physical object needs to be constructed.
Wikipedia defines wireframe “also known as a page schematic or screen blueprint, is a visual guide that represents the skeletal framework of a website. Wireframes are created for the purpose of arranging elements to best accomplish a particular purpose”.
The IMPROZ definition of a “wireframe” is short. Wireframes are a sketch (digital or by hand) a blue print that captures the layout and design elements for a website. That is stripped down to the core. There are many nuances and levels to which wireframes can be developed, but at its heart, a wireframe is a map of how your site will look.
What Do Wireframes Look Like
Wireframes Can Make A Project More Efficient And Limit Cost Overruns
Utilizing wireframes can be a great way to help you visualize your site. As the web a visual intensive platform, it makes sense to create a draft/sketch so that everyone can “see” the site’s layout. Another important reason to use wireframes in website development is that it saves time. As the carpenter’s adage goes “measure twice and cut once,” you can think of the wireframe as a similar method to ensure the look and design of the website make sense, are user-friendly and further whatever goals your organization has defined for the site. But there are some other methods to help guide your site’s development.
How IMPROZ Plans Websites
Here at IMPROZ, we start each project listening very carefully to a client. We do our research on their business, industry, and trends impacting their mission – both positive and adverse – and what is their site’s mission, goals, KPIs. We firmly believe “starting with the end in mind” yields the best results for our clients. Once those pieces are connected, we often go to wireframing. But in some instances, we start with the top-level menu and work our way through the content topics and finalize the menu. This is useful where clients want simplicity, have an existing site that they want to be updated or have done some “legwork” before engaging us.
In our next installment, we dig deeper into wireframes, their elements, fidelity and more.
We love to continue the conversation and get feedback so don’t be shy. Post your questions or contact us to learn even more about building a website that grows your business.