Agile Vs Waterfall – What is the Best Approach to Website Development?

If you are looking to hire a website design and development agency, then there are probably hundreds of questions in your mind. What are the most important pages? What should my budget be? What is the best approach for website development?

The Two Broad Approaches

At Modifyed, we currently have two broad approaches for website and web app development – Waterfall and Agile.

In the Waterfall approach, we design and develop the entire website in one go, starting from the website planning, sitemap design, information architecture, user flow, etc. moving right into the development.

In the Agile methodology, we breakdown the entire project into a product development backlog. From the backlog, we prioritise and combine features that need to be released  into sprints, usually lasting for 1 month, with specific outcomes at the end of each sprint.

Each method has its pros and cons. In the Waterfall approach, the entire project goes into development and after the completion of the project, the product (be it a web app, website or mobile app), goes live. In the Agile approach, the development happens in pieces, with the minimum viable product going live, and then ongoing development via sprints leads to addition of feature sets.

When is the Waterfall Method Recommended

We recommend clients to adopt the waterfall method when they are extremely certain of their business requirements, and the feature requirements from the digital product that they want to develop. In many cases, a client’s target audience might not be able to make purchase decisions, or be able to buy from the client after seeing a limited number of pages or features on their website. They want to see the entire website in action – About the company, portfolio of services, case studies, products offered, testimonials, and more – before being able to make a buying decision. Hence, for most of our corporate clients, we generally adopt the waterfall approach.

When is the Agile Methodology Recommended

For clients which have a highly technology supported business model, Agile is hands-down the way to go. In most tech-oriented business models, ongoing development becomes mandatory has the business models keep evolving, which lead to changing requirements. In such a scenario, features with the maximum number of use-cases or those which have high priorities, are developed first and made live, so that the client’s audience can buy without waiting for months before the project is launched.

In a number of tech-enabled businesses, such as e-commerce platforms, products or services go live one by one. In such situations, its better to have a good to go digital product live, rather than waiting for the perfect one to get developed (which usually takes months).

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