FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
You may be looking to revamp an existing site, interested in a site for a new business venture or you may be in need of a little more knowledge regarding custom web design. Here are a few answers to questions I'm commonly asked. If you don't find the answer to a particular question I encourage you to drop me a line, I'd be happy to answer any questions.
Well, that depends......maybe not, but, for the most part technology on the web changes very quickly, as do styles, functionality and marketing. Your website is your online brochure in many cases and more often than not it is the first look people have of your business and your services.
First impressions are important and if have an outdated site this may encourage visitors to look elsewhere if they feel you are not representing yourself at a required standard.
The Nerve offers free consultations to review your current site and to discuss the options available to you.
I would say that there are five things to set in place when starting to think about building a website for the first time.
1. Decide upon a domain name and register it in your name. Think about keeping the name as short as possible, use your business name if you can and avoid using hyphens.
2. You will need some sort of web hosting to publish your website files onto. Feel free to do some research on current prices but the cheapest plans are not always the best. The Nerve offer very competitive hosting rates on very high quality servers. Most web designers prefer to use hosting accounts they are familiar with for software installation and other uses, I'm one of these designers but don't be intimidated by this, I would be glad to guide you through the process of finding a reliable web host.
3. Come up with a brief outline of what you want to say and take into account who will be searching and viewing the site. Having this information on hand will aid you during the consultation process. The more information the better for formulating a plan for site construction.
4. Hire the right designer for the job - one with experience, knowledge and with the ability to listen and communicate with you. I'm the designer on all the projects The Nerve takes on, I don't pass on the creative side to students or outsource to other countries. I consult with you and keep you up to date on the design and construction of your site, from start to finish and beyond.
5. Come up with a plan on how you would like to maintain your site on an ongoing basis. Websites don't have to be static and fresh content is not only good for search engines it is also good for business. Your repeat customers will love to come back and see what's new!
In today's business world you can't get by without a website. Your website is your business card, brochure, marketing tool and store front all rolled into one.
Your websites speaks for you and your business and if you don't have one people will wonder why. How many times have you had a conversation with someone new and they ask, "What's your website address?".
However, just slapping up any old website is going to cut it I'm afraid. The vast majority of people surf the web on a daily basis and are used to viewing rich, elegant and sophisticated sites. Hiring a competent and knowledgeable designer is of the utmost importance if your plan on owning a site that loads quickly, functions correctly and looks worthy of your business.
I care out the clients and projects I take on - these projects don't just represent you, they represent me as well, and that's how I like it!
I'm a great listener and pride myself on having great communication skills, this is very important if we are to have a long lasting relationship.
Talking of relationships - I currently have clients that have been with me for over 12 years. I enjoy building strong business relationships with my customers and it enriches the future of your online business if you have a good relationship with your designer.
I design and build websites on time and on budget, it's that simple - no faffing around! I have been known to "crack the whip" with some customers to get the content I require but it's for your own good.
I'm also affordable. This is because I keep the projects under one roof and I don't sub-contract.
Lastly, I believe in integrity and honesty, I've built my business around these principals. If I can't perform a particular task I will tell you right away, I'll also tell you if your ideas may not be practical. It's all about being on the same wavelength and you can't do that without honesty.
Each project I work on is as unique as the business behind it. For this reason I quote pricing based on a case by case basis. Typically I will consult with you regarding your project and send you a proposal within 48 hours. A 50% deposit is required on commencement of the project with the balance due at site launch. Maintenance and update work is billed at $50 per hour this way you are only billed for work I execute on your site, never for anything more - no retainers or unused plans.
I do offer both web hosting plans and domain registration. I'm a designer who does feel comfortable using web hosting of my own choice but this is for practical rather than monetary reasons and I like full administrative control of the server which many "general" hosting plans to do not offer. My prices are very competitive and the quality is unsurpassed.
In addition to designing and developing websites I build custom blogs, mobile sites, create and maintain shopping cart/e-commerce sites, content management systems, order forms and photographic services in addition to offering consultation and advice on social media applications. I've also been known to give discounts to people that offer me chocolates or cookies.
Once your site has been designed and built it doesn't end there - continual maintenance and interaction with social media technology is helpful in building a strong SEO ranking and giving your customer base a reason to come back to your website.
I don't offer maintenance plans as they tend to not be cost effective. However, I do maintain websites at a standard rate of $50 per hour - this way you are not paying for unused time and are only paying for the work completed. I also build the sites so they can be updated quickly and efficiently. Most minor updates are completed in 24 hours. Alternatively, you could consider incorporating a Content Management System (CMS) into your website so you or your staff can maintain it yourself.
Obviously all the sites I build are unique and custom in nature but I make every effort to submit a design draft for your perusal within 30 days from the project commencement date. After approval of the design it typical takes about 3-5 weeks to add the content to the website but much of this depends on how quickly I receive the written and visual content from you - don't make me crack that whip!
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