Do I Need A Website?

Why do you need a website for your small business or your organization?

First, it is a way to have an online presence where your current and future customers can find you 24/7.  If you are an organization, it is a way of keeping in touch with your members and potentially recruit new members. Whether you are a business or an organization, a website can be an important marketing tool and a great way to communicate with your customers or members.

Don’t depend on print advertising!

Granted, there is a good reason to purchase advertising in local newspapers, magazines, the radio, etc.  Brochures and flyers are great, too!  However, not everyone reads the newspaper or magazines and you can listen to only one radio station at a time.  You have to distribute brochures and flyers to make sure that they get into the hands of your target market.

Your website can be there 24/7 working for you.  Restaurants can post their menus, Dry Cleaners can post their rates and services, and organizations can post information about how to join their organization.  It’s a win-win for everyone.

A website is not engraved in stone!

Add a new service?  Prices going up?  It can get expensive to print new brochures or flyers and then get them distributed.  The great thing about a website is that you can update it, add new flyers, brochures, menus, etc. in a matter of minutes. Postage and printing costs continue to go up. That’s why a website is a great marketing tool to have. It can save you time and money!

 Why choose Business by Design?

Have you tried some of those “freebie” website design templates?  While they are not a bad way to go, it’s time consuming if you aren’t familiar with building websites.  Instead of fighting computers and getting frustrated and throwing in the towel, I can build a website from the ground up or I can give your old website new life by updating it.

I live in The Gorge, in The Dalles. I can travel throughout The Gorge so that we can meet face-to-face or you are welcome to meet me here in The Dalles.  Since I’m local, that means those dollars spent on a website go back into the local economy. I belong to The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce and The Dalles Kiwanis Club.  I’m also involved in several local historical groups.

Here’s what I do for you:

The basic website is four to five pages.  I also have a one page package for those who don’t really need much more than that. 

  • Home page contains Welcome statement, selected images or custom graphic, navigation links, copyright statement if applicable.
  • Information pages containing About statements, your services, menus, rates, etc. bios, links, contact information, etc. When we meet, we’ll determine the pages that you actually need.  
  • Intuitive navigational links You will find that my websites are organized and easy for visitors to navigate. Documents, photos, etc. open in a new window so that your visitor never loses your main website. There’s nothing worse than navigating a website and having to click on the “back button” multiple times to get back to where you started. Even worse, accidently closing the tab and finding out you just shut down the entire website!
  • Basic image editing as necessary: including cropping, resizing, adjusting brightness/contrast, sharpening, optimization of file size to provide the best balance between image quality and download time.  And that means downloading from a modem (dial up). Even with the fast DSL and broadband, there are still people who use dial up for a reason.. I like to have digital images shot at the highest resolution or scanned at a minimum of 300dpi. While they are too high of resolution for the website, I like to start there and then reduce them for the website.

The basic package includes scanning and basic image editing for the four pages included in the package. Please note that music and videos may slow load times dramatically for dial-up users. Need a slide show?  We can do that, too! 

I will also create Word Documents and PDF files of documents when needed.  That is included in the cost of your website.  Please note, that if there is a lot of work in cleaning up documents so that they are formatted and/or cleaned up to be “camera ready” it may be at my standard rate.

Your website will be built using WordPress.  This makes it easy for the client to maintain on their own or with a little bit of assistance from me.  That cuts down your expenses of having your website.   WordPress allows a lot of “bells and whistles” as plug-ins that make it easy to add components to your website. Please note that there are basic components that I provide as part of your website package and there more complex plug ins (PayPal link, etc.) that will be an extra charge.

  • Site will be tested for IE, Firefox, Chrome browser compatibility (minor variations in appearance may be evident).
  • Search engine submission with Google: one time submission.
  • Updates and changes: I allow about 3 months for site maintenance after the website is up and running.  Any changes or additions will be charged at the standard rate.
  • Domains. The client is responsible for your own domain name. I can assist with registering the name for you if you need assistance. I highly recommend GoDaddy.com. They are easy to work with, available 24/7 and will assist you in registering your domain by phone. No computer experience is needed.
  • Host Sites I highly recommend GoDaddy.com for hosting.  I have used them for years and find that they are more reliable than other hosts because they are available 24/7.  When you have to wait for Monday morning to contact your website host to find out why it is offline, that’s valuable time lost and potential customers lost. 
  • Website Content. I can assist you with your content but I prefer that my clients at least have the basics written down and then we can work on editing. You know your business or organization better than I do. I can assists you by asking questions and helping you elaborate.  If I have to do write the content, research, etc. it will be at my standard rate over and above the cost of the website.
  • To maintain or not to maintain. That is the question!  The reason I build websites in WordPress is because it allows the client to maintain their own website.  There’s no software to purchase and load to your computer.  You can make changes on the fly from anywhere in the world as long as you have a computer and Internet.  Yep! It’s that simple!  If you would prefer to have me maintain your website we discuss your monthly needs and negotiate a rate.   
  • My Portfolio:  Finally, check out my Portfolio.  Feel free to contact the website owner as to how they feel about my work and how I am to work with.