Why is it best to develop a website in phases?

Years of experience have shown that large projects are best created in phases (with each phase invoiced separately):

  • The success of each phase allows both parties to verify that the project is on track, and to know what is the next step.
  • At each stage, both parties have tangible proof of commitment, in the form of completed work and cleared payments.
  • Cash flow is improved, by spreading out payments over the entire project, which helps accounting and budgeting. Prompt payment of invoices is especially critical for small businesses such as mine. If I do not receive a milestone payment, then I stop working on the project.
  • After each phase, both parties have a chance to provide timely feedback, thus minimizing risks and maximizing both parties' engagement in the process.
  • Each phase can be started when I have received payment for the prior phase and the client has decided on all of the work that she would like done in that subsequent phase.
  • Estimates are more accurate, because it is easier for Web developers to provide accurate quotes for smaller amounts of work.
  • Overall website delivery is faster, because some parts of it can be launched while others are in development, thereby preventing a single part from stalling the remaining parts.
  • There are more marketing opportunities, because each new feature can be publicized when it is launched, thereby motivating the public to visit the website again to try out the feature.