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Forum topic by RussellAP posted 08-06-2012 06:02 PM 1160 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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RussellAP

2963 posts in 1005 days


08-06-2012 06:02 PM

My business is taking off. By that I mean I finally sold something. Now I think it’s time to create a webpage for my business.
I’d like it to be a custom home page which has thumbs of my products which when clicked on take you to an Amazon.com type preview of the product.

I wonder how to go about getting this done.

I’ve hit up some friends, and looked at some pro’s, but remain undecided.

Any advice appreciated.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.


28 replies so far

View Doss's profile

Doss

779 posts in 983 days


#1 posted 08-06-2012 06:12 PM

What is your experience with web development? From the sounds of it, not much.

You could put an ad out for local pros to help you. Either that, or find some service that has ready-made templates for you to fill in.

My constant word of advice is something is almost always better than nothing in this case.

As far as which route to go, well, that’ll really depend on how much you want to spend in the end. Having a web developer keep your site updated or having a complex site can get pretty expensive. There are several guys on here with smaller sites that serve their purposes well and maybe will do the same for you.

Your site seems fairly simple though and I’d estimate it wouldn’t take much to have a pro set one up and get you going. You could probably be done in a day or so.

You’re going to need a host for your site as well and for most people, the hosting options are pretty cheap and plentiful.

Any idea on how much you want to spend or how much you plan to be involved? Do you want a local guy? How often do you plan on changing your site?

-- "Well, at least we can still use it as firewood... maybe." - Doss

View Loren's profile

Loren

7808 posts in 2367 days


#2 posted 08-06-2012 06:15 PM

You can find somebody local to you easily on Craigslist. You might
want to use Wordpress because after it is set up you can edit the
content yourself easily. A good Wordpress web designer will be
able to set you up quickly with something that looks good and
does what you need it to do. If it is somebody local, you’ll open
up a source for referrals for your own business as well.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

3529 posts in 2679 days


#3 posted 08-06-2012 06:25 PM

Russ, my stepson is pretty darned good with the site setup stuff. He’s in Memphis.
If you’d like, PM me and I’ll contact him and have him contact you.
I have no fiscal interest in his work. Just wish I was as smart. Your call of course.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

View RussellAP's profile

RussellAP

2963 posts in 1005 days


#4 posted 08-06-2012 07:05 PM

I think I’ll try godaddy.com.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Mosquito's profile

Mosquito

5022 posts in 1011 days


#5 posted 08-06-2012 07:57 PM

I bought my domain from GoDaddy, but I host with BlueHost. I tried transferring my domain from GoDaddy to BlueHost a few months ago, since my second domain is registered through BlueHost, but GoDaddy was not very cooperative in helping me get that done, and the request was eventually refused by GoDaddy’s end. Others probably have good things to say, but I’m neutral. Other than that incident, I have no other complaints, but that’s also 100% of my dealings other than initial purchase.

Something to look at when picking a hosting company is things like the amount of storage space they’ll let you have, and the amount of bandwidth they’ll let you use. The other thing to make sure, is that if they have a bandwidth limit, to find out what they do if you go over. Some places will rack up huge bills if you go over, others will simply just display an “over bandwidth” message to anyone trying to access it. For this reason, I went with BlueHost, since I get unlimited bandwidth, at a fair price.

For something simple that won’t have a shopping cart or handle the actual selling/monetary exchange, that should be relatively easy, and fairly cheap if you hire someone. I work at a software consulting company, and I do almost nothing but web related projects. My estimate for something simple and not involving eCommerce, would probably be around 8-10 hours form someone who cares, and knows what they’re doing. Could probably be done in less time, but probably not to the same standards.

Doss does bring up a good point, though. You’ll probably want to be able to change it yourself, so making it too complicated may not be the greatest idea if you’re not comfortable making code changes yourself. It’s always possible to make something that has tools to make it easily editable, but takes more time.

It basically comes down to what you want it to look like, how you want it to work, and what you want to do with it yourself. I would suggest coming up with a clear and detailed definition of these in a form that you could present people with. Images of what you want are a huge bonus, even if they’re not polished perfect examples of what you want.

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist - www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods

View Doss's profile

Doss

779 posts in 983 days


#6 posted 08-06-2012 08:17 PM

Like Mos, I have Bluehost as my host. It’s what we run my wife’s (and by extension, my) blog off of. It’s built with Wordpress (plus a custom theme) (www.southernsprout.com).

I’d definitely recommend having something in place that you can modify yourself when you’re just starting up. Most of the guys I know that do this for a living have a monthly service fee for a set number of modifications and then you pay extra for anything over. Those are sites that update “often” though. I’d imagine on a site like your’s they’d just charge per change… that could get pretty pricey.

Also like Mos said, please have a design ready to go. Even if it’s just sketches on how you want it to look. The last thing you want to do is either let the developer do it how they want to do it (which they will do if you let them) or have constant back-and-forth revision sessions with a developer. I say this as a developer b/c I know how frustrating that can be on both ends and, again, how expensive that can be.

You don’t need a rockstar dev to do this… just someone that shows some competency and has good referrals.

Make sure to get a portfolio of their work (usually by visiting the sites they’ve made) before hiring!

-- "Well, at least we can still use it as firewood... maybe." - Doss

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

5191 posts in 1296 days


#7 posted 08-06-2012 08:23 PM

For transactions I use Paypal and find that my customers are agreeable with this set up
as most people already have Paypal accounts. It makes it easier for both parties.

View RussellAP's profile

RussellAP

2963 posts in 1005 days


#8 posted 08-06-2012 08:39 PM

An old friend of mine offered to help, he designed Sprint.com. I think we got this one in the bag. He even said he’d do it free.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Puzzleman's profile

Puzzleman

345 posts in 1663 days


#9 posted 08-06-2012 08:42 PM

I have used godaddy in the past and they are good for what you pay.

I currently use 3dcart.com for my e-tail site.

-- Jim Beachler, Chief Puzzler, http://www.hollowwoodworks.com

View huff's profile

huff

2807 posts in 2004 days


#10 posted 08-07-2012 06:03 PM

Russell, I’m not a web developer or will even pretend to be one ( but I am married to one! LOL). I don’t try to sell my work on the internet, but I do use it for a place to direct people to see some of my work, etc. I see what my wife goes through when developing a web-site for a client and realize there is a lot more to a web-site then what meets the eye. If you really want your web-site to work for you, then I would probably suggest getting someone professional to help you with it. You can still be envolved in it, but if you don’t understand the coding, how to validate your site, how to grade your site for errors, how to optimize your site, etc., then you will not get the most from your site. I’ve seen a lot of sites made with templates (nothing wrong with that), hosted by good hosting companies and the site really looks good, but when you look at the internal makings of the site, you find all kinds of errors and not even validated. It may look good on the outside, but it’s not really working. If you decide to hire a professional developer, don’t take it for granted they know what they’re doing either. There’s a lot of level’s of quality in that field also, just like there is in woodworking. Make sure you check them out and ask a lot of questions. Good luck and hope you have a ton of success

-- John @ http://www.thehuffordfurnituregroup.com

View RussellAP's profile

RussellAP

2963 posts in 1005 days


#11 posted 08-07-2012 06:12 PM

Thanks Huff. I do have a professional and I plan to do it just the way you said it by directing customers to it and have them do paypal or cash.

-- A positive attitude will take you much further than positive thinking ever will.

View Knothead62's profile

Knothead62

2364 posts in 1680 days


#12 posted 08-07-2012 08:51 PM

I’m looking at weebly. It was recommended by a friend.

View bruc101's profile

bruc101

587 posts in 2261 days


#13 posted 08-08-2012 03:12 AM

I think I’ll try godaddy.com.

Godaddy is one of the worst hosting companies in the industry. We flushed GD down the toilet several years ago for any and everything they offer.

http://www.webhostingreviews.com/go-daddy-reviews.htm

-- Bruce http://plans.sawmillvalley.org http://www.sawmillgirls.com

View dnick's profile

dnick

937 posts in 1101 days


#14 posted 08-08-2012 03:38 AM

I hired a company about 5 years ago to design my website & it was a disaster. Good friend referred me to somone who could correct the mistakes. Find someone you trust to point you in the right direction.

-- dnick, North Hollywood, Ca.

View GPM's profile

GPM

26 posts in 1549 days


#15 posted 08-08-2012 05:35 AM

Russell,

You are facing what countless others face when they realize they truly need a web presence. I am an engineer as well as a wood worker. My company built a large commercial website three years ago and the headaches and disappointment that went with trying to figure out the universe of website creation was terrible.

However, we managed over time to put together a skilled and effective team for our project. Soon friends and associates began to ask us to loan them our team. So, we decided to create a site that helps people figure out what they need, what level of features, what pricing, and what customization. We have made the process of setting up a website, whether it be quick and simple or complex and full featured, a very straight forward process and a great relief to anyone who has ever attempted to do this on their own.

You can read about it at http://www.solutionsxyz.com/Web_Programming_Services.html On that page you will see links to our web hosting, domain names, web designs, etc. It is at www.WebSolutionsXYZ.com We offer 24/7 support and lease our solutions from the largest web hosting company in the US.

If nothing else you can get some guidance by reading the pages and part of what we do is to help people make the best decisions for their particular situation and budget. I am happy to help if I can.

Greg

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