We have developed websites for a wide range of clients, from an AmLaw 100 law firm with thousands of pages of content to a one-person medical practice whose site was under fifteen pages. Our role is typically a combination of project management, editorial oversight and acting as liaison with the client. Or, to put it a little differently, we trams;ate the client’s vision into the specific technical and design work performed by the team, which means managing two wildly disparate groups. They key to doing this balancing act well is ruthless organization and constant delegation to people you trust. You cannot get too deep into the weeds, but you also have to be able to manage the details you need to make decisions.
When a partner doesn’t like the picture we shot of her because she’s wearing too much makeup, we handle it. When a content management system begins to buckle under the load and slow the site down, we handle it. Our job, in the end, is to deliver results across many different dimensions, from design to information hierarchy to copywriting, and to integrate them into an attractive, up-to-date, secure and effective site. Boiled down, we are responsible for:
- Making sure the project gets done on time and on budget
- Getting all the subcontractors (designers, coders, writers and everyone else) to play nicely together
- Explaining what’s going on to the client, and vice-versa
A few of our basic principles:
- We make the site, to quote Albert Einstein, as simple as possible but not more so. We particularly dislike loading up landing pages with Flash, animation, video or unnecessary complications.
- Usability is everything. Information architecture, overall design and site coding are all done to make the site as usable and efficient as possible for its intended audience.
- We overcommunicate.
- We always use graphic designers and strive to avoid cookie-cutter sites. Each site we produce looks different and unique, and has design that serves its intended purpose.
- We work with professionals we know, whose work we trust, and who are the best we can find. We tend to have long-term relationships – there are a number of designers, for example, we have worked with for over a decade
- We work very closely with the client in designing sites, and determining their functionality. We never simply deliver a finished product and say “here it is.” Often this means educating the client. Fine with us.
A few examples of sites we’ve built: