Based upon information gathered during the research phase, you must now create order out of chaos. Is there a metaphor that will drive the organization of the site? How should the information be organized and labeled at the highest levels of the hierarchy? What types of navigation systems will be applied? How will searching work? This is where the fun begins.
Early conceptual design meetings focus on metaphor and high-level organization. You need to present possible organization schemes, balancing the desire to reach consensus and move forward with the need to remain open-minded about alternate approaches. White boards and flip charts, high-level architecture blueprints, and scenarios are key tools at this stage. After the major issues have been worked out, later meetings involve the consideration of more detailed organization, labeling, indexing, and navigation systems. Detailed blueprints and Web-based prototypes will serve you well in these discussions.