DETAILS: Website Planning and Preparation
The first step in making a website is determining the content, organization and 'look' of the material that needs to be on your website. These decisions are informed by your website project goals and your target audience. This is a critical step whose importance cannot be underestimated in the creation of your website.
Together, we investigate multiple ideas through prototypes and sketches of what you would like before actual web pages are created. If you are a graphic designer or visual artist you may already have a clear idea of what you would like and we are happy to work from your files, layouts or storyboards.
Tips for organizing and preparing information for your website
Come prepared with a thoughtful sense of how you think you would like your information organized. It is my role to advise and guide you in this area. However the more organized you are about your needs, the better the collaboration.
- Why are you creating a website?
- What are your website goals?
- Who is your audience?
Viewers move quickly through a website. The content on your website should be delivered quickly rather than being bogged down with "bells and whistles" unnecessary for the goals of your website. A good design must stay flexible to accommodate new or changing content that can be easily viewed on a variety of mobile and desktop devices.
We suggest that you surf the web looking for websites that you particularly admire. Identify particular components that you find appealing - such as, button design, color combinations, layouts, navigation systems, readability or other features that may be important to the content for your website. Note the url of the websites you think show features that you like (or dislike). Any input from you helps me to understand your tastes and guides me in the development of your website.
Once the content, organization and design of your website has been decided, the pages that make up your website are created, coded, and then tested. We specialize in making pages that are user friendly, 'responsive', load quickly, and function on mulitiple screens seamlessly – from mobile devices to tablets to desktop computers.
Website updating and maintenance services are available at a rate of $50 per hour. You will be billed monthly for this service. Once a website is created it is important to understand that it will require upkeep to maintain a successful internet presence. Maintenance should be considered as a part of your overall budget when creating a new website. How your website will to be maintained and by whom is an important decision to be considered in the construction of the website.
I offer private instruction to individuals who would like to learn how to make their own website or re-evaluate/update/maintain/customize an existing website. Instruction sessions are done remotely via zoom or skype. The rate is $50/hr.
Often clients need graphic design services for the creation of identity and information products - postcards, stationary, business cards, print media or other visual products. I am happy to provide that service. Costs are by estimate or the hourly rate $50/hr.
Digital Imaging and File Preparation
I provide digital imaging services - slide, negative or print scanning, image color correction or retouching, image processing for print or sizing for the web and effective email attaches.
Ask for a free estimate for your project. Review the organizational tips below. Contact me at any time and I will give you a free estimate based on my conversation with you.
Q & A
Is there a way to keep costs low?
- I will provide any service you wish to create your website, but if you wish to keep the costs to a minimum or work within the confines of an economical starter website you must provide all the resource materials necessary to put the website together - images, text/content.
At what point do you begin website construction and create web pages?
- I begin creating your website when I have an approval on a prototype, have received the resource material and the down payment (see below for payment schedule).
Do you provide any copywriting or editing?
- I can provide copywriting and editing for you at a rate of $70/hr. or $30/100 word count if you cannot prepare text yourself.
What are your payment terms?
- I require a non-refundable down payment of 30% of the estimated cost of the website based on our initial consult and estimate -or- 100% of the design fee. When I arrive at 50% completion I require the next 35% to continue and the final 35% is due within 10 days after completion. Any additional costs follow the same schedule. If payments are not received in a timely fashion we reserve the right to disable your files on the server. I do accept credit cards processed through the paypal service (you do not have to have a paypal account to use this).
What consultation do you provide?
- I will guide you through the logistics of how to put together your material for your website project goals, audience, budget and the resource material you have.
How long does it take to get a website up and running?
- Generally it will take about 2 to 6 weeks (for a "small website") to complete a website once I have received the content for your website. When you are ready to begin, I will outline a reliable schedule for you.
Will I be aware of incurring additional cost?
- Yes, I will always inform you when you exceed a limit or request an action that will cost you more, prior to proceeding with the work. I will not proceed with the work until I receive acceptance of costs from you via email and in some cases additional down payments may be required.
What exactly is an "estimate"?
An estimate is a binding (for up to 2 months after it is issued) cost quote based on the information you provide. However if the information used to make this estimate is incomplete or is altered, costs will change.