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Need guidance embarking on new website


#1

Hey guys & girls,

First off, my apologies if I’ve posted this in the wrong section; do feel free to move it if I have.

I’m currently in the process of setting up a new website for the company I work for as our current one is awful. It’s an architectural practice so the kind of site we’re looking to set up would be one that is largely portfolio based. I’ve created a mock up via squarespace which looked good, but ultimately lacked the kind of functionality the directors dreamed of. Naturally, not being a web designer I am trying to temper their expectations a little, though have always dabbled in web-design here and there, though nothing ever as in depth as this.

Whilst I am not looking at creating a carbon copy, these two sites are very much along the lines of what I’ll be trying to achieve:

https://www.the-boundary.com/ (love a big image splash screen, but specifically the gridded projects page)

https://www.gillespies.co.uk/ (Same with this, though we probably don’t have as much “news” content)

So a responsive, gridded layout whilst using CMS for individual projects, but allowing you to filter with the use of tags - because the directors all agreed that lumping a kindergarten and university under “education” sometimes doesn’t quite cut the mustard when a client is looking for a specific project type.

So my questions before I embark on this are;

  1. Is there a template with this kind of functionality already available? I tried “Loyal” which appears to have all the right CMS, but not the look I’m after…
  2. If the template doesn’t look how I want, would it be better for me to start again from scratch or adapt it?
  3. What would you do first? Prepare your content, or mock up a design, or sort out the “back of house” CMS? I’m at a loss for a starting point.
  4. Does CMS allow me to create a “gallery” of images per project? I see it can import a single image at a time, is there not a field for multiple images - or am I missing the point?

Thank you in anticipation.

Chris


#2
  1. can’t answer this one
  2. there’s one con with templates : once you’re using one, you can’t duplicate your site without repaying for the template, event if it’s a customized a lot. So in my opinion you have three choices:
  • you’re capable of designing it but you’d like to save time by using a template: don’t buy, build. You’ll lose time now but down the road you’ll 1/ save time and 2/ have a better quality result because you understand the project better
  • you’re not capable of designing it: buy and use the template
  • you’re going to use a freelance designer to develop it and want to make hi use the template: don’t do it, give it to him as a rference and build something unique from scratch. For the reasons said above he will do a better work.
  1. excellent question. All the senarios are possible. But nailing the content model first, even making all the page, writing all the content, making all the links and menu, before doing one pixel of graphic design, is magic. This way you don’t lie to yourself, you really think about the content, its order, what your goals are… I personnaly say: paper-> CMS content model in WF -> design in Webflow.
  2. bulk adding images in CMS items isn’t possible, yet. You can ask such a feature, or vote for an already existing one, on the whishlist site https://wishlist.webflow.com/

…and you’ve been limited by the complexity of web development, wordpress and other stuff like this I assume. Now with Webflow you’re going to have a unique occasion to really bring your passion for design in the light. Webflow allows you to almost exclusively concentrate on your design and interaction, without having to deal with code, plugins, servers and database. If you’re serious about it, you can expect to produce much better graphic web design than you used to, and at the same time becoming better at web concepts. So I think that’s another argument in favor of going for the from scratch option: something you’ll undertsand and control, feel comfortable to update on a weekly basis. That’s another pro of Webflow, maintenance is easy, opening and publishing is easy, so you can start small and add things daily, weekly, monthly… No need for giant steps.


#3

Thanks for the swift reply.

I think I’ll spend a bit of time getting the content together, then the CMS stuff before getting into the nitty gritty of design.

It just occurred to me that for it to be responsive, do I have to tell the site/css at which size to break down into smaller/narrower resolution setups? Also, are these setups handled automatically?

For example, if I build my website how I want it to appear on a desktop; when I view it on my mobile will it automatically scale for it?


#4

Defining breakpoints can b hard, so many options… Webflow chose them for you so you don’t need to think about this. You switch from one to another with the buttons at the top of the Designer.

If you use % units as much as you can, you won’t have to much to do for responsivity. I’m not going to much into details here because I feel you need to watch a couple of videos about how to deal with responsivity in Webflow. You’ll see, it’s probably much easier than you think now. :slight_smile:


#5

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