Getting your website designed or redesigned is a big decision for your business, but it’s also exciting and a great opportunity to finally have a website that does more than simply describe what you do! Now you’re going to have a site that really builds your business!
If you have worked with a web designer before, you will now that web designers have their own process for designing and building your site. It can be quite confusing as every web designer has their own way of showing design proposals, enforcing timelines, payment terms etc. It can be quite a long process to get your head around and difficult to find one that is a good fit for you.
I usually plan a discovery call with my potential clients and they all generally ask the same questions, (or some ask no questions at all, which can be a bit worrying!) My aim is to answer those questions as simply as possible to and make the web design process as straightforward as possible.
I would be delighted to chat with you about any questions you might have. In the meantime, here is a list of common questions that will avoid you emailing me or picking up the phone!
‘I HEAR YOU DESIGN A WEBSITE IN AS LITTLE AS 2 WEEKS? … HOW DO YOU DO IT?’
This is a very frequent question as the 2 week process is not that common. But you know what, it means you know exactly when we are going to start working together and when your site will be live! How cool is that?
How exactly do I design and build your website in two weeks? It’s quite simple actually! You get my undivided attention for 2 weeks. I am not juggling three or four other clients at the same time, I am all yours! This frees up my time to focus on your project without too much distraction. It means I answer your emails within a number of hours or if we need to talk on the phone I am available at much shorter notice. With this approach, projects do not drag on and everyone is happy, especially my clients. The web design project is a priority for my clients and me, and we organise our schedules accordingly.
You might be thinking that I must set limits on the number of edits on the website. Not so, my clients get as many website edit revisions as they require, within the 2 week design period. The faster my clients get edits to me, the more edits they get!
My clients are reassured by having a set date for the launch of their site. This enables them to plan their marketing and social media campaigns around the launch date. It also means they can block off this time in their diary to concentrate on the site, before getting back to their business.
‘WHAT DO I NEED TO DO TO PREPARE? IS THIS GOING TO TAKE UP TWO WEEKS OF MY TIME?’
I try to make the website process as headache-free and as simple as possible for my clients. Here’s a look at what the tasks of a client involve.
Before our 2 week design date: Complete the client homework (complete my design questionnaire and compile photos & copy into a Google Drive folder).
The design questionnaire takes less than an hour to complete, (plus this part is good fun)!
For dragging all of your photos into a Google Drive folder, this depends on how organised you are with your files, anywhere from 5 mins to an hour.
The amount of time needed to write out the site copy varies a lot depending on if you already have an existing website. For clients who want their copy the exact same as a current site, they just skip this step and I take the copy straight off of their existing site. For those who have existing copy but want to edit it a little, it’s normally up to an hour’s worth of work. For clients that need to write copy from scratch, the amount of time depends on the number of pages on their site, but if I had to guess I’d say 4-5 hours is normal. Total: 1 hour - 7 hours.
Week 1 Monday: Initial consultation call for 1 hour
Week 1: Almost no time or effort is required from clients here. In this week I build the entire site out, so clients can get on with running their business. I will advise you on which Squarespace plan to use and walk you through setting up your account. 1/2 an hour
Week 2: This is when edits may be requested. You’ll be sent a link to the site and can browse through the site normally on a computer, phone, or tablet. You then write a list of site edits and email it to me. This takes about 30 mins per list of edits. Some clients send just 1 email with edits, others send 5. It depends on the person as well as the size and complexity of the site.
Week 2 Friday: LAUNCH DAY! We jump on a 1.5 hour call for a lesson & to officially launch the site.
First, I run you through a full lesson on the backend of your Squarespace site. We aren’t looking at a sample site, we’re looking at the real back end of your site, so I teach you overall how to use your site, update and edit it, as well as focus on areas that are especially important for you.
Then, we link up any bits of functionality (eg. social media links, your email list system, appointment scheduling system, etc.) You are then live to the world and we’re all done!
How easy is that, right?!
‘DO YOU OFFER MONTHLY MAINTENANCE PLANS OR MONTHLY SUPPORT PLANS?’
I do not offer monthly maintenance plans because frankly you don’t need them.
With WordPress websites, yes, having a developer on call is highly useful, with a Squarespace site that’s really not necessary. The Squarespace team in Dublin and NYC takes care of system updates, confusing security things, and adding new site functionality. You pay once a month or annually to them for your Squarespace plan, and they take care of the rest.
All my clients (even those who swear they are not ‘techies’) edit their own site content, swap out photos and create new pages themselves. After our lesson, you’ll be a confident Squarespace user!
'CAN I HIRE YOU ON AN HOURLY BASIS IF I NEED YOU?'
Yes, of course!
If you need a new site functionality, a new complex page design, or want some business cards designed, by all means send me an email and I can look after that for you. We’ll find a date that works for you, and enables me to still dedicate myself properly to my current client.
‘WHAT DO I NEED TO PROVIDE FOR MY WEBSITE?’
You’ll need to provide your site copy (text), and photos. If you need some help crafting some fabulous copy, I can put you in touch with a wonderful copywriter, Meadhbh Hand. If you don’t have photos, the Welcome package you’ll receive upon booking will point you in the right direction to purchase or download copyright free photos online. If you would like to get some custom photography done (which I highly recommend), contact Eadaoin Curtin, one of the best in Dublin!
‘WILL IT BE DIFFICULT TO UPKEEP AND MAINTAIN MY NEW SITE?’
No, it won’t! I promise :)
If you want to create your website, leave it and never touch it again, a Squarespace website is perfect for that. It requires no work on your part to keep it up.
If you want to edit prices on your site, that might take you 5 minutes. Upload a new photo to a gallery? About 2 minutes. Add a blog post - if it is written in advance, it takes about 10 minutes to add it, with categories, an image and some SEO.
You will be able to carry out all these tasks yourself after I show you have to use the site. You will not to email someone and wait for them to get around to it. Bang, it’s done!
If you forget how to do something I showed you in our lesson, you can look back at our screen-recorded video call to watch the steps over again.
‘DO I NEED TO KNOW ANY CODE?’
The back of your site will look a lot like the front of your site that visitors see. Except as you hover over areas of the page you’ll see little buttons for editing. Squarespace sites are built using ‘blocks’, text blocks, image blocks, gallery blocks, event calendar blocks, it’s really quite simple.
Sometimes I will use code on a site for specific styling effects, but nothing that won’t hinder you making future style changes yourself.
‘WHAT ABOUT THE DOMAIN? WILL YOU LINK THE SITE TO MY URL?’
I will look after this. Most of my clients have purchased their domain with a provider such as LetsHost, Blacknight or Irish Domains. Once I have your log in to your account with your provider, I will do the confusing techie stuff in the background to link your domain to your new Squarespace site. I will call your domain provider, if necessary, so you do not need to worry about this.
‘HOW DO WE START? WHEN DO I PAY? DO WE SIGN A CONTRACT?’
When you’re ready to get started, complete the ‘Booking Inquiry’ form on the bottom of this page, and be sure to include your preferred design date. If you’re ready to get started right away, let me know in the form. If you want to chat first, let me know in the form and we’ll set up a call time.
Once you’re ready to book in, I’ll send you a link to a contract & a link to make your deposit payment. To save your preferred design date, you’ll pay 50% of your package price, and e-sign your contract.
Once you make your 50% payment and sign your contact, your preferred design date is saved with your name and becomes unavailable for anyone else to book. The 50% remainder is due on the last day of our design period (the 2nd Friday).
AND FINALLY, HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
The cost of designing and building your website will depend very much on the number of pages and scale of functionalities you require. We will discuss your requirements at the outset and I will give you a price based on an agreed scope of work.