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Cracking of the deadline code and excelling under pressure - Recap

July 20, 2023By Philip Ciaccio

Topics: Website Design & Development, Marketing Strategy, Project Management

The original article appeared in the Passionate Marketer.

When I first discussed this topic, I likened the commitment of a deadline to a ski line. Both require a certain level of skill and careful planning, depending on the difficulty or uniqueness of the approach. I explained the importance of conducting a thorough discovery process and establishing short-term milestones to meet long-term project deadlines successfully.

However, it is important to address what to do during unexpected challenges. For instance, if a critical team member goes on leave or the client significantly adds or changes the project scope. It's like a binding popping lose halfway down the run. These situations can occur, and it is necessary to plan for them and anticipate some degree of change to maintain project momentum and ultimately meet the deadline or launch within an agreed-upon timeframe.

All Hail the Change Order!

It can be challenging yet essential to address a situation where a client presents ten new ideas for a website or campaign not initially included in the scope. Knowing how and when to issue a change order is crucial for effectively managing a project or campaign's overall budget, timeline, and launch. For example, a change order is necessary if a client requests three new variations for a video marketing campaign or asks for a chat feature on the website that was not part of the original plan. This powerful tool pauses the typical project flow and allows everyone to synchronize their priorities. By ensuring that these changes align with the original objectives established for the initiative, the project can stay on track and meet the agreed-upon deadline.

Mind the Gantt

Once the initial plan is in place and work has begun, tracking progress, monitoring hours, and centralizing approvals consistently become crucial. At Trailblaze, we rely on the efficiency and effectiveness of Wrike Project Management software. Numerous excellent options, such as Basecamp, Trello, Asana, and Monday, are available. However, it's important to note that the success of these tools depends on the managers diligently inputting the required information and maintaining effective communication with the production team.

If done well, the basis of future project estimates can be generated from historical project data. This streamlines the entire process from sales to delivery. 

Project Management Checklist

(Sample Checklist for an Ecommerce Website Redesign)

  1. Outline project scope and goals: Determine the project's specific objectives and identify the website's desired features and functionality. Additionally, define the target audience for the project.


  2. Conduct market research: Explore the current trends in e-commerce and identify the features and functionality that are most important to your target audience.


  3. Create a comprehensive project plan: This plan should include a well-defined timeline, budget, and a detailed list of tasks. It is advisable to input this information into a project management tool or smart sheet for better organization and tracking.


  4. Assemble a team of experts: Consider hiring professionals, such as web developers, designers, copywriters, and SEO specialists, who possess the necessary skills and expertise to execute the project successfully.


  5. Collect all required content: This involves gathering product descriptions, images, and videos to be incorporated into the website.


  6. Design the website: Pay attention to aspects such as the website's layout, color scheme, fonts, and overall look and feel to ensure a visually appealing and user-friendly design.


  7. Develop the website: This stage involves coding the website and implementing all the desired features and functionality.


  8. Thoroughly test the website: Ensure that the website functions properly on all devices and browsers, guaranteeing a seamless user experience.


  9. Launch the website: Promote the website and employ effective strategies to drive traffic to it, maximizing its visibility and potential reach.


  10. Continuously monitor the website: Track website traffic and sales regularly, making any necessary changes and adjustments to optimize performance and enhance user engagement.

Here are some additional tips for managing a complex e-commerce website design project:

  • Communicate regularly with all team members and the client. This will help keep everyone on the same page and avoid surprises. Schedule these out for the duration of the project. 

  • Be flexible and adaptable. Things sometimes go differently than planned, so be prepared to make changes as needed.

  • Set realistic expectations. A complex ecommerce website design project can take a long time to complete, so don't expect it to be finished overnight.

  • Celebrate successes along the way. This will help to keep everyone motivated and on track.

Looking to leverage results-driven digital marketing for your business? Contact us today and let's get started!

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