How to Review Your Design Comps

Before our very talented web developers begin constructing and coding your new website, a multimedia designer or art director will usually provide a set of design comps showing you the overall layout and look of your new site. Design comps are a valuable tool when bringing your brand to life on the web.

One of the biggest speed bumps we hit during a website project is client review of design comps. There is a lot to look at and often clients have a hard time seeing the comp as a working web page. It is difficult to watch all of the momentum and excitement that builds at the start of the project get stalled in client review.

It is important not to hold up the development of your new site by agonizing over your design comps. At this point your website is a work in progress, and we are simply trying to finalize basic design and layout concepts in order to begin working on the details. There are certain key things you should be looking for at this early stage, so don’t get overwhelmed with too many details.

Here are some basic guidelines to make the review process less intimidating.

  1. Does the look and feel of the designs match your brand guideline? Do all of these visual design elements convey your brand? Is your correct logo visible?
  2. DO NOT GET DISTRACTED BY THE WRITTEN CONTENT AND IMAGES. We have only started to design your page and have not placed finalized copy onto the pages. You will see Lorem Ipsum placeholder text as well as placeholder images on your comps. These are used simply as a means of creating a layout and understanding how different page elements will relate to one another. You are only looking at the positioning of pieces of text, not what the text says. We will add amazing copy and images on your site at a later point.
  3. Now that we established point #2, take a look at the overall page. Do you like the way the placeholder content is laid out? Is the page easy to read? Is it attractive and appealing to the eye?
  4. Your comp should give a general idea of what information will go where. Do you like where we placed your new video? Is your phone number in a visible place? Did we include a spot for your testimonials? In the beginning you probably communicated desired homepage content to your sales consultant or designer, so make sure the comp includes those items.
  5. If you approved a sitemap for your website, do the navigation areas and menus reflect the sections you selected?
  6. Are there clear Calls to Action on your page? Will users know what to do or see the most important content when they see the page?

Because of our years of collective experience with web design and layout, we encourage you to trust us to create the design comps and your website. Still, we do welcome your feedback and opinions, and this is the stage where it is great to address any concerns or hesitations. Once you have prepared your feedback, pass it along to your contact at authenticWEB. Someone on our team will be happy to make changes or discuss reasons behind particular design decisions.

Once you have selected a design comp, we move the project into development status where the concept will become reality. During this stage we will also finalize video, graphic, and written content that will complete your site once it is coded. So don’t be intimidated by your design comps – they are just the beginning of an exciting creative process. They are a starting place from which we will be crafting your story and building the web presence that will make you more successful.

In a future post, I will discuss another phase of your project that you will participate in called Pre-Launch Review.