Getting Started

How I'm Going To Build Your Web Site

What I Need To Get Started

1. Your Logo. Original source files are best. If you have a PSD or any vector format, like .ai, it will work best. If you don’t have a logo, one can be designed for you for a nominal fee, either by myself, or you are free to hire a third party to design a new one for you.

2. Your web hosting login information. I won’t need it right away to start developing your site unless you are unsure if your web host supports WordPress. If you don’t have a web host, I am able to make several recommendations, such as SiteGround or WP-Engine. You may also opt for a cheaper host like GoDaddy or HostGator, but please note that this will impact web site performance.

3. Current Website Login. If your site is already a WordPress site, giving me access will allow me to make a copy on my development server so I can make changes without interrupting your live web site. If you do not have your current web site login, but do have access to your hosting login (this is more common than you might think), I can bypass your WordPress login if you are able to provide me with an FTP login.

 

4. Any images or pictures you want to use on your new web site. I may be able to supply stock photography if needed, but this takes time and costs money. Try to have what you need ready, or tell me in advance what you need. If you want to use free stock photography, I recommend StockSnap.io.

5. Brand Style Guide. Do you have specific company colors you want to use? Any special graphics or logos that need to be on the site? Make sure I have this information prior to getting started.

6. Text Content. A web site is useless if it has no content, right? Please be sure to have this information ready before I get started. You will need to specify what content goes on which page, and if you wish it to be displayed in a specific manner, you must tell me.

7. A Signed Contract And Deposit. Since I do my best to provide the best service possible, this means that both you and I need to be legally protected during the course of the project. I typically send contracts via HelloSign, which allows us both to digitally sign documents. The deposit is required before I begin work, and final payment is due prior to release of the finished product, unless otherwise specified.

All files can be provided via email, or via Dropbox. If you wish to use Dropbox, you will need an account. I will share the project folder with you and allow you to add files that way. It’s best to go over this checklist before signing a contract with me or making any payment. If you have everything on this list, the project will go much smoother, and much faster.

The Design Process

Initial Development

The first step is getting everything in place. I start by building a development prototype on my own local server. I assign a temporary subdomain so you can see the work as I go. I start with a basic theme, and tweak it to style it to your specifications, and create any necessary graphics and special code needed to make it work.

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Content & Testing

Once the basics of the site are completed, I begin adding your content. Some more design changes might be needed to make everything fit together. After the content is added, I test your site across various platforms (mobile, tablet, desktop) to make sure everything works properly.

Deployment & Configuration

Once the site is ready to go live, I deploy it to your web host using a WordPress migration plugin. Once it is on your server, I verify that everything is working as intended, including any functions that send emails or save data to your database. Once everything is verified as working, I harden the security of the site, and tweak settings for search engine optimization and performance.

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