In today’s world, well-designed, highly functional websites aren’t just nice for businesses to have -- they’re essential. And when you’re dealing with something that provides such a vital link between you and your customers, it’s important to partner with an agency who truly understands your business and can help you get the results you need.
TRAFFIC is a full-service agency that aims to support our clients with all things digital, including web design and development, SEO, and paid media. We’ve worked with businesses in a wide variety of industries and sizes, from small law firms to international corporations, and are always looking for new clients to work with. Over the years, we’ve refined our internal processes to ensure we’re able to help our clients succeed in the most effective ways possible.
Even though TRAFFIC is based in the Metro Detroit area, we work with clients based in other parts of the state and elsewhere in the country. While we enjoy being able to meet with clients face-to-face, regular in-person meetings aren’t always practical so we use a variety of digital collaboration tools to offer transparency every step of the way, no matter where a client is located. We believe in the idea of working with you, not for you. You know your business inside and out, so your input helps us deliver the best possible results.
The Tools of the Trade
When you work with TRAFFIC, you never have to worry that we’re just going to disappear and leave you in the dark. The collaborative tools we use make it very easy to stay in the loop and participate throughout the entire process. Basecamp is one tool all of our teams use as a central point of contact for questions, project updates, and sharing other information. On Basecamp, you’ll often see our team sharing links to Google Drive files, which we use for many different purposes, like drafting title tags and meta descriptions, writing new site content, and making recommendations to optimize existing site content. Using a cloud-based service like Google Drive not only helps our team collaborate internally, it gives clients a way to leave comments and make changes as needed without having to worry about which version of a file we’re working off of.
When building new sites, Slickplan and Miro make it very easy to actively collaborate with our design team. Miro is a virtual whiteboard program we use for brainstorming and working out ideas while Slickplan helps us create sitemaps and organize content. With both of these programs, clients have the same level of access as our team does. You’ll be able to sign in, see what we’re working on, and do things like leave comments or add and edit content. If you find some inspiration for your new site, just add it to your Miro board to share it with our designers.
Once the visual direction for a site has been established, our design team creates site prototypes with InVision. Unlike traditional wireframes, creating prototypes gives clients a more vivid picture of what their new site will look like by including important details like which colors, fonts, and imagery will be used. Prototypes are also more interactive than wireframes. InVision lets us add links to site prototypes, so you’ll be able to see what your site will look like and get an idea of how your site will behave and how people will interact with it. This also gives our team a chance to spot any potential UX problems early in the process so that they can be resolved right away.
Prototyping also allows us to create animations that show kinetic movements on a site, like hover interactions, on-scroll animations, and how pages load. Combined with visual design components, these types of user interactions play a role in building a strong, cohesive brand persona and help elevate the experience of visiting your site.
Regardless of which platform you want to use for your new site, we’re prepared to build it out. Our development team is platform agnostic with experience working with platforms like WordPress, Magento, Shopify, ModX, Sitecore, and more. We work with the most up-to-date technologies available, including Webpack, React, Vue, Tachyons, and Tailwind. Any tech stack that meets a client’s needs, we’re willing to work with. Our developers work closely with the designers throughout the design, development, and QA stages of building a new site.
Our workflow allows our design, development, and marketing teams to closely work together from day one to launch. We never just take shots in the dark about what will work and what won’t. Every decision we make is based on insights from our marketing team. Those marketing insights help shape decisions made by the design team, and the decisions made by the design team affect the work carried out by the development team. This way, sites are positioned for a strong start after launch.
We don’t believe in one-size-fits-all strategies. Every client we work with has their own unique needs, and once we know where you want to go, we can figure out the best way to help you get there.
Research & Discovery
In the early stages of working with a new client, we ask lots of questions and do extensive research to get a strong understanding of your brand, the products/services you offer, and what you hope to achieve by working with TRAFFIC. In addition to doing competitor research, stakeholder interviews are a very valuable part of our process. With stakeholder interviews, we talk to multiple people in a company to get their honest opinions on the current website and find out what they want or need from the new site.
During our research and discovery process, we take insights from competitor research, stakeholder interviews, and site strategy and use them to begin planning the information architecture (IA). Information architecture refers to how content is organized on a site, so it plays an important role in determining site navigation and creating a site that is both user friendly and search engine friendly. During the IA planning stage, our marketing team organizes content into appropriate silos and performs keyword research that informs decisions regarding things like URL structure, content section names, and writing new content when needed.
After our initial research and delivery phase, our design team gets to work on developing the visual direction of the site. To start, we gather inspiration from other websites and design pieces and post them to Miro. Since Miro is collaborative, clients can easily provide feedback on what we’ve found, helping us get a better idea of what they’re looking for so that we can further refine their design persona. From there, we continue focusing on things like layout, typography, color palette, and style.
Ideation & Prototyping
Ideas are brainstormed and iterated through prototypes until everything is just right. We start out by building a story outline to make sure the template includes all necessary types of content and that the content is organized correctly on each page. From there, we move on to grayscales, which give clients a chance to visualize how the site will look and function. Since grayscales don’t include detailed design elements, they keep the focus on how content is displayed and what the overall experience of the site will be. Once everything has been approved, we move on to creating full-color comps and prototypes.
Once the visual direction of the site has been finalized, we start bringing it all together. If new content is needed, our copywriters start writing and design assets are handed over to the development team so that they can begin building the front and back-ends for the new site. We build front and back-ends from scratch, ensuring they will be easy to manage and support your workflows. Our marketing team also takes steps to help sites perform well by optimizing meta data, drafting new meta data when needed, and setting link redirects to retain the value from your existing site.
After a new site launches, our work isn’t done. Our marketing team carefully monitors site performance, which not only reinforces decisions made early in the process, it gives us a chance to look for additional opportunities for improvement.
Ready to Work With TRAFFIC?
Whether it’s time for a brand new website or you want to optimize your existing site to improve search engine performance, TRAFFIC can work with you to help you reach your goals. Take a look at some examples of our work to see how our SEO, design, and development teams came together to make things happen. Get in touch with us so that we can learn more about your project.