What is a Website Wireframe?

Think of a website wireframe as a skeleton of each web page of your site. It’s the framework. It’s the rough outline. It provides you with a visual for how your webpage will be laid out. It provides you with the structure for where images will be added to each webpage along with verbiage, headlines, testimonials, accolades, etc.

In this blog, we’ll be showing an example of a website wireframe so you get a better understanding of what this looks like. We’ll also share the mock-up we constructed based on the wireframe. We’ll let you know whether or not you need to be a designer to put together strong wireframes. After reading this article, you should have a better understanding of website wireframes and how they can successfully guide your website design process.  

Website Wireframe Examples

Below is an examples of a website wireframes that our design company put together for Boss Gal Beauty, a MedSpa and Beauty Bar. This visual will provide you with an idea of how a professional wireframe looks. A wireframe should be uniquely catered to your business and industry. 

A wireframe is a two-dimensional illustration of a page’s interface that specifically focuses on space allocation and prioritization of content, functionalities available, and intended behaviors [source]. For these reasons, wireframes typically do not include any styling, color, or graphics.

What comes after a wireframe? 

After the wireframe is completed and approved comes the mock-up. The mock-up is where you fill in the additional details from the wireframe, such as styling, color, verbiage and graphics. The mock-up will give you a strong representation for how the actual web page will look once it’s live on your site.  A mockup is a static design of a web page or application that features many of its final design elements but is not functional. 

The mock-up is exciting as it brings your project to life with colors, photos and text. Once the mock-up is approved, the webpage can go into development. For both the wireframe and mock-up, it’s very common for the client to have feedback. Adjustments need to be made based on the feedback so the finished wireframe and mock-up can match and exceed the clients expectations. 

Why are wireframes important?

Imagine a developer spends 20-hours working on the homepage of your website. The process has taken several weeks. After it’s presented to your team, it misses the mark and your developer has to start from scratch. This just costs you a lot of time and money.

We view the wireframe, mock-up and development as a three tiered process. The wireframe lays the groundwork to ensure you’re on the right track.

It also takes a lot of time and effort to gather photos and content. The wireframe allows for the project to move forward even without this information. It also helps with organization. Once the wireframe is completed, you’re filling in the blanks with pictures and text, which moves the project forward. 

Note: When you are looking for a web design company, it’s important to understand whether they have multiple people working on your project. If it’s just a developer, the project could miss the mark from a design perspective. If there isn’t a project manager, overall organization and speed of the project could be derailed. It’s a common misconception that a developer is a jack of all trades and can do the design, project management and development. This often times isn’t the case.

How Wireframes are Put Together

We have graphic designers on our team that use Adobe Photoshop and In-Design for wireframe creation. This tool allows each designer to customize the layout of each page.

For some clients, we build custom sites, meaning the wireframes are customized. For other clients, we build the site based on WordPress themes. We take the general framework from a theme as inspiration for the layout. This saves the client time. 

A lot of people are under the impression that the theme will be a cookie cutter layout. This is not the case. We always customize the layout of the theme to ensure it’s unique for each client.

If you don’t have designers at your disposal, a great tool for wireframe layout is MockFlow. Non designers are able to construct wireframes within MockFlow. The cost is free if you only do 1-UI drawing project. For unlimited design spaces, the cost is $14/month

How Wireframes Help Developers

When a web developer is able to look at a wireframe and mock-up, they are able to focus on what they do best, which is code and development. A lot of people hire a web developer thinking they’ll be able to do design, development, project management, etc. They are often disappointed by the design work. Providing a wireframe will help keep the developer organized. 

Can you get wireframes for inspiration before deciding to build a website?

Absolutely. When we have prospective clients on the fence of whether or not we’ll be the right fit for their company from a design perspective, we recommend our designer puts together a wireframe and mock-up. This allows them to see the general framework and design. This is a less expensive option to show them that we’re the right fit for the project.

If you’re deciding between companies for a web design project, wireframes are a great way to vet them. Just remember, you’ll still have to pay for this work to be completed. 

In Closing

Wireframes are an integral part of the beginning stages of the website design process. You will save time in the long run by having wireframes, which provide the general framework for your website structure.

We recommend working with a designer on your wireframes and mock-ups to ensure the highest level of professionalism. If you don’t have the budget for a designer, MockFlow is a solid option. 

If you need help with wireframes for your website project, contact The Media Captain!

Jason Parks

Jason Parks started The Media Captain in 2010. He’s grown TMC into one of the largest digital agency’s in Ohio over the past decade.The Media Captain has worked with hundreds of small, medium and enterprise clients on digital marketing and development projects.The Columbus Based Digital Marketing Agency has received numerous accolades. TMC was named a Top 1% Agency in the U.S. by UpCity in 2019 and 2020. They also won the “Best PPC Campaign,” which was a national award from DashThis. They were also the recipient of the Top 10 Social Media Marketing Agencies in Ohio.

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