Website architecture is the practice of planning the aesthetics and functionality of a website. It involves such things as wireframes, a sitemap, interaction, coding and domain name. The reason website architecture pre-planning is so important is because it not only has to function as intended, but has all the necessary on-page SEO.
You might ask what is a website wireframe? Or what is a sitemap? Well, let’s examine and explain the fundamentals of what goes in to envisioning, developing, producing and launching a site on the Internet.
The Goal of Website Architecture
Just like building a home, there must be a blueprint to build a website. And website architecture is developing that blueprint or what’s known as wireframes. A wireframe is a rough “sketch” of what a site will look like when it goes live. Of course, this is only a visualization tool and does not perform any functions. But it is useful in helping to establish where elements on the pages go.
Google needs to understand the structure and content of your web site. By creating a Sitemap…you inform the engines when your site was last updated [and] how important one page is relative to other pages on your site…Huffington Post.com
The goal of website architecture is to lay a foundation to review and reference when creating the site.
It isn’t unusual to have many revisions along the way to help incorporate items inadvertently omitted or to eliminate elements that aren’t truly necessary. These changes only serve future site visitors better and help to improve search engine optimization.
Fundamentals of Website Design
There are a few fundamental website design processes which are routinely followed by site designers. And that process is called website architecture or information architecture. There are three fundamental elements in website design:
- Sitemap. Think of a sitemap as a digest or index system that includes the pathway to every page on a website. This is often the first “working” visualization drawn up because it helps to establish the order of pages. It is often drawn in a triangle shape, consisting of boxes labeled with the page’s individual name. Once the site is actually built, a sitemap is included in the code to update to search engines about changes as they occur on the site.
- Wireframe. The wireframe is a drawing, usually depicting the home page. Additional wireframes can also be drawn for other pages. Wireframes show where functional and aesthetic elements will appear on the page. These include things like business logo, search box, widgets, call outs, slider, images, etcetera.
- Interactions. Interactions are a mock-up of how pages relate to one another, including the home page. Interactions take into account the navigability of the site and sub or child pages in relation to the main or parent pages. It is website architecture in it’s most quintessential form.
The importance of website architecture is much like taking a road trip without a map. You might eventually arrive at your destination but not without a considerable amount of detours. Professional site developers use website architecture to keep the process streamlined, thereby keeping cost down.
If you want to launch a website but are unsure about the process, then contact us. We can help your business conceptualize and develop an eye-catching, fully functional website that is search engine friendly from the day it’s launched.