Sites Web

The "No Jargon" Logical Approach to Website Design

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Take a free initial consultation with me at your computer, during which time, using live examples on the internet, I will demonstrate exactly what is needed for your website to be successful. I will show you exactly what I am able to offer you through my personalised service and I will explain why I take many extra steps to ensure that your website is designed, registered and optimised down to the smallest detail.

Website Maintenance and Ongoing Costs

Stay Up to Date

So, you now have a professional eye-catching website that is performing well in the search engine results. But you want to...

Keep your website fresh and current
Remain at the top of the search engine results
Generate more visitors and more clients
Keep your existing clients coming back

To achieve these goals even the smallest website requires a basic amount of maintenance at the very least, even if it is only posting your latest news or special offers from time to time.

The Importance of Website Maintenance

Imagine an average young pop-singer releasing his first single, (the umpteenth cover version of a well known pop song) for the teen-age market. Then imagine a talented musician with a fresh sound, writing unique songs for a particular genre of music lovers. Both are competing for a top spot in the charts but chances are, even if the young pop-star reaches the higher spot at number one, he will quickly slip back down the charts and eventually his name will disappear altogether. However, the talented musician may reach position 2 or 3 in the charts but will stay there and by releasing regular new records for his fan base he will always do well in the charts and will remain popular for years to come. However, even the talented musician needs to put in work on a regular basis if he wants to stay at the top.

Your website works on a similar logical principal. You want your website to be the talented musician with a unique, fresh and popular sound, reaching potential clients that are interested in your product genre and you want your website to stay at the top of the search engine charts for years to come. You do not want to be the "one hit wonder" that has an initial boost of success only to disappear once the novelty wears off.

To stay at the top needs regular work in the form of website maintenance. The amount required to keep you at the top of the search engine charts will vary considerably depending on your business activities, but even the smallest site requires some basic maintenance at the very least and for a business in a competitive market, the more maintenance the better.

Essential Ongoing Maintenance

One cost that cannot be avoided is the annual renewal of your domain name and hosting and this must be accounted for right from the start. It is also very highly reccommended to re-submit your website, test all your links and check your optimisation on a regular basis.

Search Engine Registration

With most major search engines it is not enough to register or submit your domain name when the website is launched. They need to be reminded that you are still there and that your website is current. It is recommended for a medium-sized business with alot of competition, to re-submit your domain name every month. This takes roughly half an hour if you account for trawling through the e-mails you will receive asking you to confirm the submission.

Outside Links

Search engines love outside links and back-links and you should take time to try and acquire and maintain a good number of quality links from your website to other popular and relevant sites. However, companies can change their domain names, change their activities, move their location or even go out of business, so it is important to check now and again that your outside links are working properly. Search engines hate broken links and a few broken or bad links can have a negative effect and send your website further down the list of results. Like the rest of your website, it is essential to keep your links fresh and up-to-date. Searching for sites to link to should take around half an hour to an hour as you really only want to link to websites that are attaining a position within the first couple of pages.

Testing your links only takes a few minutes but adding and deleting links must be out-sourced as these are in the page coding. However, send me a new link and it only takes 1 or 2 minutes just to add it or delete a broken link. As the cost is negligible, it is easier to include the testing with the updating.

Search Engine Optimisation

In a constant bid to keep the best websites at the top of the search results, to prevent "keyword spamming", and of course, to keep ahead of their own competition; the major search engines are continually changing the way in which their spiders and robots indentify a good website. It is highly recommended that your optimisation, both in the HTML code and content is tested regularly. If you would like the reassurance that your optimisation is always up to date, this element is included in my basic maintenance package.

Social Networking and Promoting Your Site

Complimentary Advertising and Directory Listings

Depending on the nature of your business, you may want to advertise on other websites (i.e. holidays in France for a B&B, the local tourist office, a relevant forum, etc.) or list your website and business details in specialist web directories. Depending on your business needs, this could take several hours for your initial research. Then, whether these offer free inclusion or not, you will need an hour or so of time on a regular basis to monitor your listings periodically and keep them up-to-date.

Social Networking

Making changes now and again to your website and posting regular news items on your blog, if you have one, are essential. However, doing this will have no effect whatsoever if you do not encourage existing and potential new clients to take a look. Facebook serves a great purpose here if you have a good circle of friends or followers as you can post links to your website and blog every time you make changes or do an update. Group e-mails and forums are another great way of announcing your latest news and encouraging potential clients to follow your links.

Search engines love good blogs and facebook. Most medium sized enterprises find that a good website with a blog page and a facebook business page is sufficient to meet their business needs as regular updating can be time consuming. However, some businesses feel the need to be linked to every current social media platform (Twitter, LinkedIn, Google +1, Pinterest, etc.) and this a great if you have lots of spare time. But it is worth noting that, the more you build your presence on social networking platforms, the more time you need to spend keeping everything organised and up to date. When tempted, I always remember that if I decided to change my business name, I would have to change it, not only on every page of my website and blog, but on every single piece of supplementary advertising and social networking profile.

Basic Website Maintenance Package from €20 per month

Covering your search engine registration, link testing and search engine optimisation review, the basic website maintenance package will give you the peace of mind that these essential elements are taken care of on your behalf on a monthly basis. The package also includes quarterly verification of your technical code to highlight any changes in W3C coding standards. Any minor content changes you wish to make to your current website pages is also included.

The basic website maintenance package is payable monthly and costs from around €20 to €30 for a 5-10 page website to around €30 to €40 for a 10+ page website with a french version. If you are arranging your hosting and maintenance through Sites Web you can opt for adding your hosting and domain name to the website package and spreading the cost over 12 months (annual contract required).

Website Maintenance Extras ~ €20 per hour

If your time is precious you may want to outsource some of your research and/or some of your updating. You may want a facebook business page but do not know how to create it. You may need a little one-to-one online training on how to use and update your blog or do your search engine submissions. You may even want as much as possible done for you, including researching your best outside links and arranging your supplimentary advertising on other websites and forums.

Who knows your website better than the person who created it? I am happy to take on whatever website maintenance or research work you require and provide on-line training where needed. However, as each client's needs will be different and most extras will be on an ad-hoc basis, it is impossible to estimate a cost in advance. Therefore, I work on my normal hourly rate of €20 and supply a detailed timesheet as with the initial website design.

Planning for the Future

Most businesses will have some plans to develop their website in the future, whether that is simply adding a new product photo and paragraph into a content slider, a new web page for a new activity, a few scaled down mobile-frendly pages, or a complete french translation.

However, it is important to bear in mind the fact that computer devices and digital technology is advancing rapidly all the time. The W3C consortium may make some changes to their coding standards. The search engines have to keep up with these developments too and are also in constant competition with each other to keep the best sites in the best positions.

These factors have an impact the way in which search engines read and interpret websites and as a result, this can sometimes lead to the need for some technical changes in the HTML coding and/or the search engine optimisation contained within it.

Whilst I take every step possible to account for the future in your website design, nobody can foresee what major changes technology could bring in the more distant future and you should allow for the possibility that you may have some future costs relating to technological upgrading.

If you would like a free no obligation consultation regarding any element of website design or a free SEO analysis of your current website or if you just have a question or would like to leave some feedback please do not hesitate to   e-mail me    comment on my blog   or give me a ring on 0555 08 48 89.