How I Work
If you need a website, or already have one that perhaps needs an update, then I usually start the process with a meeting at your site or at another mutually convenient venue, if that makes sense geographically. Otherwise communication will be by telephone and email.
The aim of this initial meeting is to determine your requirements and to help me understand your business.
We'll decide if you want a simple website that will perhaps just reflect the content of your existing publicity, letting the world know what you do, where you are and how you can be contacted. Perhaps you know that you'll want to make your own regular changes to the content on some or all of your website, while retaining the basic layout and design, and if so you'll need what is called a CMS, or Content Management System. I can include that in the initial website build or it might be worth waiting to see just how much and how often your content needs changing. I can always add CMS later if we think it worthwhile. We'll then decide how complicated and comprehensive the CMS needs to be - in my opinion the simpler the better if we want to maintain standards compliance across your site.
Perhaps you are looking for a more complicated website - maybe an online shop or other eCommerce site. Maybe you want an ongoing interaction with your visitors in which case you might want to include a blog or similar. I have handcrafted techniques that I can use to build blogs and forums as an integral part of your website.
If you have your own ideas or want me to build a website based on your own design then this is the time to discuss it.
Initial Design and Build
Following the initial meeting I'll build one or more partial pages for your perusal, so you can get an idea of the sort of style I'm proposing, or how I propose to build your design if you have provided one. Once we agree that we are on the right lines then we proceed, but if we can't do that then we part company, you pay nothing and you get nothing!
I charge by the hour. That means the simpler the website the cheaper it costs. That said, I might occasionally "take a view" on accumulated charges - you don't pay extra if I have an off day! For the avoidance of doubt, I do not charge for the initial meeting or any subsequent meetings of a similar nature but I do charge for the initial design and build, provided we progress past that stage.
As a very approximate guide, a simple website with a handful of pages, with no CMS and a reasonably straightforward beginning-to-end design and build process will cost around £400.
Continued Design, Build and Development
Once the initial concept is agreed I will proceed with the design and build process for the remainder of the website. I will consult you from time to time to ensure that you are happy with the ongoing development.
The design will incorporate copy (words) and pictures and if you can provide the words it will take me less time and the project will therefore end up cheaper than if I wrote the copy. I can, however, assist with this and might, in any case, suggest how we might adjust the wording to improve search engine performance. Similarly if you can provide suitable images or photographs that I could make use of it would reduce my workload and therefore the cost. If not, I could source stock photos but you would need to pay for my time doing so and the cost of those photos if they had to be paid for.
Hosting and Domain Registration
If you don't already have a website I can assist you in identifying suitable hosting and with your domain name registration. I could do this for you if you wanted me to and would pass on the relevant costs in my first invoice. I would register and put the site ownership in your name and once the site is live and invoice paid then control of the account will pass to you, although I would continue to assist in related matters if required.
Where possible, the site development is done in the live web space as early as possible in the process, but the developing site is "hidden" from the average user. When the site is essentially finished, it can go live very quickly, after which there will be a few back-end housekeeping tasks to undertake and then the project will be complete, and full payment will be due.
Depending on the nature of the website and what was anticipated and what's been agreed there might be some ongoing development, maintenance and additions.