Content can mean any creative work, such as text, graphics, images or video.
Content is by far the biggest challenge our clients face. Some times it’s better to hand that off to someone else. We can recommend someone if it’s an issue.
Some websites are quite simple, while others have many pages, supporting documents, forms, and functionality.
At a minimum, you would need to be available to guide us in the right direction.
With WordPress based websites, there are lots of little tasks to attend to, like setting up a cloud account (DropBox) to store backups, setting up an account at WordPress.com so we can use Akismet, and Jetpack. Then there are various plugins that you might need. As an example, the Friends of the Swampscott Public Library website utilizes a donation plugin, and an event plugin.
We’d need you to help select graphic elements, like photos, logo, etc.
If you’re selling things online, there will be product shots, descriptions, pricing, and lots of little details to enter into the database.
We are happy to do any and all of these tasks on your behalf, or any mix in between.
Just about the last thing we do, after all the pages and posts are created, is to create an XML sitemap and submit it to Google and Bing which will kickstart your presence with the search engines.
Of course we do manipulate images and graphics on a daily basis. The most common task is cropping and optimization for the web. Photoshop is our preferred tool, but there are other tools available.
We have great resources for logos, royalty free images, and other graphic elements which we’ll share with you when the time comes.
We use FreshBooks (www.freshbooks.com), a paperless online service to track time, and to create and manage invoices. Clients can login at any time to view/print invoice/statements, etc, and can view the time spent daily if curious.
We bill by the minute
For each task, we start off with 1/10th of an hour admin fee, then whatever time it takes beyond that.
Your invoice will show a detailed history of every task completed.
No hosting fees until the site goes live
It sometimes takes months to get a new website ready. If the site is hosted on our server, we do not start billing for hosting until it goes live.
If a client has an existing website on a different server, we develop the new one using a staging account with a URL something like http://staging.yourwebsite.com. It’s only visible to you and people you share the URL with. For extra protection, we can password protect it. Your customers and search engines are not aware of the new site until we go live.
We generally do the same thing with new websites.
Most of our requests come in via email, but we actually answer the phone and reply quickly to questions.
Seeing is believing
We will often provide screen shots with notes to help the client visualize the issue at hand. Another handy tool is screen sharing which is especially good when time or distance is an issue.
We switched everyone over to Google Apps For Work (now G Suite) and it’s been an excellent experience.
Non-profits get the complete service for free! Businesses pay about $70/year per email account which can include multiple alias accounts eg: you might have [email protected], but have [email protected], [email protected] all connected to the primary email address.
We can set it all up for you, or you can do it on your own. The best part is that they are there 24/7 to assist. None of this chat room or email support ticket junk, they will actually talk to you on the phone.
Of course you get way more than Gmail. Check it out at www.apps.google.com
Since I started doing web design in 2004, I’ve received zero bid specifications for a new or rebuilt website. Most people wouldn’t know where to start, and for good reason. The internet landscape changes constantly – it’s hard to keep up with it.
– Tom Rogers
Some clients are highly organized, and are able to do a lot of the grunt work. While others can’t make up their minds, request multiple edits, and have no time to spend (which is understandable).
So for that reason, we will provide a rough idea of the cost based on similar projects, and collect a deposit based on that. But from the get-go, it’s all time and materials.