Drupal is a great CMS for creating a website. A small business web presence website can run on Drupal, and then have functionality added as it grows. Being a full stack Drupal developer, I can handle this process at all stages:
1. Project Discovery. The planning part. This is where I want to hear from you what you need, interact with your ideas from my developer’s perspective, and come up with a clear technical plan of the deliverable functionality and time frames. If you have an existing design, it can be reviewed as well at this point. As a result of Discovery, we produce an approved specifications and deliverables to build the website around. Also, a detailed bid is producted as a result.
2. Design. The creative part. I create responsive designs in Photoshop with the Bootstrap in mind. I favor clean functional designs aimed at achieving their goal and stressing the content’s value. Alternatively, you can bring your own designer or a ready design. Before a Photoshop design is created, I use wireframes to get the UI and content placements approved.
3. Building and Theming. The technical part. This is the actual technical work. I build the functionality using existing Drupal technology, existing modules and extensions, and build my own modules in cases of need. Once the functionality is ready, it’s themed to fit the site’s overall look and feel. This stage is usually the longest of all stages.
4. Testing. The test and feedback part. This is where the site is given a test drive. We test the functionality of the site, the operation of the site, and the compliance with the deliverables. Your feedback is welcomed at this stage.
5. Adding content. After the build has been tested, actual content needs to be added. Some clients prefer to have their editors trained and add the content in-house, some prefer to pass it over to me. For the long term maintainability, the first is better.
6. Launch. Once the site is production ready, it is moved over to hosting.
7. Education. A screen sharing session (or a series of sessions), where you or your team are educated how to use and maintain the website, add content, etc. This point can come before launch if you need training to be able to add content by yourself.
For the larger sites, or the sites that are built in steps and enhanced over time, I use the approach of steps, where the Minimal Viable Product (MVP) is identified and delivered first, and then each iteration and step goes through the 5 steps above. Thus, your more complex sites won’t have to wait till everything is built, but can be integrated continuously.