In the two decades since the Internet gained mainstream popularity and widespread adoption among the general public, a lot has changed. It is extremely unlikely that you’ve encountered a website that’s even remotely close to fifteen or twenty years old, and for a good reason – web development has advanced remarkably in that time, and not all of those advancements are readily apparent to the general public.

Technology Is Always Changing

Modern websites are sleek, user-friendly, and are now designed to be equally usable and aesthetically-pleasing on a wide variety of devices, including smartphones and tablets. Behind the scenes, more useful information is available than ever before on how your users are using your site and what changes and improvements can be made to make the site and your content even more effective. However, the first and arguably most important step to creating a modern website that works effectively for your business or organization is effectively communicating with your web developer before, during, and after the development process and launch of your website.

Building A Great Website Is Easier, But Not Easy

As we previously mentioned, a lot has changed over the past two decades when it comes to web development. In the late 1990s websites were much more basic and archaic, making web development an arduous task. Web developers often alternated between writing HTML by hand and using unrefined and often buggy design software, and older versions of the Internet Explorer and Netscape Navigator web browsers would not render sites the same way. Today, modern Content Management Systems (CMS) and their associated plugins and extensions make building complex and versatile websites easier, while development tools are much more advanced and even web hosting is cheaper and more robust. However, at least one thing hasn’t changed – businesses and organizations still can’t go with an out-of-the-box or one-size-fits-all web development solution and expect to maximize the capabilities and potential of their website.

Social Media Changed The Game

Another major change was the rise of social media, especially over the past ten years. Businesses can now utilize social media services to connect with customers, promote their business, and address customer feedback and support issues. Setting up a social media page or account is relatively easy, but unfortunately some businesses and organizations rely too heavily on social media as their primary web presence, while others believe that the process of developing a website should be just as easy and straightforward as setting up a Facebook page. While social media services and the tools they provide to businesses and organizations are extremely valuable, they don’t provide the same level of customization or even the same tools as a professionally developed website. Expecting your website development process to be similar to the uniform process of creating a social media site vastly undermines both your ability and the ability of your web developer to make the best and most versatile site for your specific needs.