There are so many web development tools out there it sometimes gets a little overwhelming…Well, worry not my friend! here is a list of some of the best tools out there (and our favorites) that will turn your agency into a web developing machine 🙂 :
Prototyping and Design – Sketch
If you have been living under a rock for the past four years, you might find it hard to believe that Adobe’s complete control over the design software market has been challenged. A young Dutch company called Bohemian Coding has been doing wonders with its flag software Sketch.
Sketch has a simple and clear user interface and is especially tailored for web designers with features like : easy exporting, art board sizes of different devices, symbols and much more. We use Sketch for all the design work we do (with the exception of lettering logos we do). it’s one of our favorites web development tools ever as it simplifies the design process in the best way possible. Another bonus is that Sketch has a large community of developers building great plugins so you can be sure any design issue you might encounter will have a great and simple solution.
Animated Prototypes – Framer
Framer is a creative tool that helps build interaction an animation prototypes. it is a great way to bring your design to life and start making great micro movements. Framer works with coffee script, which is a simplified version of Java script so you will have to learn a little bit of code, but the result is well worth it. Framer is super useful when you are prototyping for a client and you feel that the static design just doesn’t cut it.
Design/Development Collaboration – Zeplin
Zeplin is a collaboration tool between designers and developers that makes working together easy and frictionless. Using the Zeplin Sketch plugin is a breeze. The designer simply exports his design into Zeplin which immediately makes all the specks, sizes, guidelines and even the assets included in the design accessible for the developer. And all of that with a single click! a great tool and we use it a lot.
General Collaboration – Slack
Slack is great way to stay in touch with everything your team is doing. Slack is an excellent group messaging app that enables you to create multiple channels with your team in which you can chat, transfer files and snippets. it also supports videos and audio chat (when needed). You defiantly have to learn how to use Slack and adjust your expectations, it will not replace e-mails but it will make your team much more efficient.
Client/ Developer Collaboration – Webscope
Webscope is a great tool for your client communication. Full disclosure, Webscope is a product we developed for our agency and it was so great we decided to put it out there for other people to use. With webscope you can forget all those annoying e-mails full of notes, cluttered with attached screen shots or what have you. Webscope is like a visual feedback tool on steroids, It enables you to give feedback and create conversation right on a live website. You can also manage your tasks and keep your client updated about his project’s progression. Webscope reduces friction with your clients and allows you to focus on what you do best. Build great digital products.
Development – Php Storm
We love the JetBrains IDEs because they are ridiculously powerful and rather simple to use. We chose PHPStorm because our agency do a lot of WordPress projects and we love the PHP support. We have tried using text editors in the past such as Sublime Text and Atom but they required an extensive amount of configuration for each project. When you are working on one product, it may make sense to configure a text editor specifically for that project and run with it, but when working in an agency more often than not a person will work on several projects simultaneously. Therefore, we found that sticking to an IDE that does it all is the best way to go. It really enables us to get going with a NodeJS project, a WordPress Project, or a Larval Project, and even doing Android development feels like home. We use Monokai-Sublime as the theme and Anonymous Pro as the font.
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