01/03/2018 | Web Development | 5 minutes
Iterative web design is a practice which involves a repeated process of:
•Identifying a user need
•Developing a prototype to meet that need
•Testing to check the prototype works as efficiently as possible
•Amending the design
This method results in an MVP (Minimum viable product), aka a core platform that’s well designed and fully functional, which can then be improved based on data gleaned from user behaviour.
One of the main benefits of iterative web design is that decisions to change elements of the website are supported by real customer data. Usability testing takes place throughout the process, with heat mapping software such as Hotjar providing valuable insights. These can then be used to revise and revaluate various elements of the site, because the reality of user behaviour is that it’s unpredictable. This is where iterative design sets itself apart from a more traditional design method, as building a website without feedback is unlikely to meet user needs the first time around.
If your business goals change at any point in the process, iterative web design allows you the flexibility to adapt your website to attain these goals. For example, if your data shows that your customers may not be in a purchase ready state whilst using your site - perhaps you're seeing a large number of abandoned carts, or users are displaying research behaviour without conversion - you could adapt and test your standard "buy now" call to actions to "try before you buy" and offer a trial period or free sample of your product.
From a budgeting perspective, iterative design is also useful in that not all of the budget is used up in the launch, meaning that you aren’t left with any glaring problems yet no budget to fix them with. The more modest sums required for incremental changes are therefore easier to come up with as and when appropriate.
The fact that the website is always being modified allows stakeholders to see progress over time which results in them being happier with finished product. This also means that there is no huge jump between the old and the new website, which could be potentially off putting for users. Iterative web design is also beneficial to stakeholders, as they can share their input at regular intervals which reassures them that their thoughts are being heard.
By gathering feedback and making modifications after each phase, new usable features can be added much more quickly, for example in a matter of weeks as opposed to months. This allows you to stay ahead of the competition and not miss a timely opportunity.
Adding new features regularly also provides interesting content for blogs or social media posts, and creates excitement in users. It also helps bring about a positive relationship between businesses and their website users by keeping them up to date with what changes they can expect.
Iterative web design offers superior outcomes for both clients and agencies, and achieves your business goals through the team being able to learn from the data and adapt the website accordingly.
Our friendly and proactive support and development team can work closely with your business after a website rebuild to ensure your website is working efficiently, and ensure that users of all abilities have the best possible experience.