Digital Magnet: user-centered methodology

Our approach to Web and application development employs best practices from decades of proven success. Adapted from the Rational Unified Process, our Digital Magnet methodology is user-centered and includes four distinct phases: inception, elaboration, construction and transition. The goal of our meticulous process is simple: To create the best user experience possible for your best prospects and customers. Each phase includes key deliverables and milestones.

  1. Inception: The inception phase is for defining objectives, requirements planning, feasibility, and project scope.  Once the vision and goals for the project are defined, we break them into prioritized tasks by user group.

  2. Elaboration: In this phase, we finalize the information architecture as well as business and technical requirements. We create visual designs and conduct usability testing. We outline technology requirements and develop data models, if required. We may develop a prototype for usability testing or as a technology proof of concept.  Once this phase is complete, a blue print for the Web site is ready and a Request For Proposal may be created for the construction and transition phases of the project.

  3. Construction: Here is where we develop and test the Web site based on the information architecture plan from the Elaboration phase. The activities and deliverables for this phase are dependent on decisions made during the Elaboration phase.

  4. Transition: This phase often includes a "soft launch," where employees and select customers can preview the site before "Go Live," when the Web site becomes available to the general public.  We also update and deliver the Web style guide and technical documentation.

Intuitive user interfacing

The success of a Web site depends primarily on usability. Intuitively interfacing with your customers and prospects online allows them to find what they're looking for faster and have a pleasant experience while doing it. Having an intuitive user interface is similar to an exceptional shopping experience in a retail store, where customers can walk in, find what they want, get answers about any questions they might have and promptly check out with ease and courtesy.

The experience is the message

When a customer or prospect uses your Web site, she is engaging in a dialogue with your brand, a two-way cooperative interaction with your business. It is not a passive experience like watching a television commercial or reading an ad in a magazine. Web sites require the end user's participation. In this way, their experience becomes your most powerful marketing message.

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