Myth #3 Following the Three-Click Rule – Planning a New Site? Why Nailing the Wireframe Is Important
Many people start the website planning process with aesthetics. This means that they focus more on what the finished product will look like than the actual foundation upon which the aesthetic portions are built, called the wireframe. If you’re planning to build a new website for your company, there are benefits to starting with the wireframe and building upward.
The Wireframe Allows You to Clarify Things
One of the ultimate goals of website design should involve providing the visitor with a seamless experience. If you think of your website like a luxury bus designed to carry your users, then the wireframe is the network of highways upon which that bus will travel. It’s better to plan the roadways first, then decide where you’ll build individual sections of the site and how you want them to look. In short, your wireframe clarifies your site, allowing you to create a better user experience in the end.
A Wireframe Simplifies Future Growth
As a company, one of your ultimate goals should involve growth. As a company grows, its website should grow with it. Making sure you’ve nailed the wireframe for a site will allow you to visualize what could happen in the future as your company (and its associated website) gets larger. For example, you might only have a lineup of 10 products now, but if you have 100 later, it’s necessary to make sure that growth won’t impact the usability of the site. That’s exactly what a wireframe allows you to do – plan for future growth without sacrificing usability.
It’ll Save You Time
If you think that building a solid wireframe for your site will consume too much time and too many resources, think again. Making sure you build the foundation first will save you time in several ways. First, it allows the website developers to better understand exactly what they’re creating. Then, when it comes time to fill in the wires with content, doing so is much simpler. It’s possible to understand what should go where, which improves navigation in the end. Finally, everyone can remain on the same page from start to finish. The design team, the agency, and the client (and other involved parties) know how each part of the site works and how it should function.
The Proof is in the End Result
When you build a luxury bus, you can’t put the seats in without the frame, and the engine won’t stay put without the proper mounts. The same can be said for your website. You should never skip the process of wireframing your site, nor should you simply rush through it and deem it relatively unimportant. Your luxury bus needs a chassis if it’s going to be able to carry your passengers as intended, and that’s exactly what the wireframe provides.
The wireframe is the very foundation of your website, and the frame upon which things like content and aesthetics lie. Without a solid wireframe, you won’t know where to put your content, and it’s hard to accurately predict how to improve your website as your company grows.