Michelle On Point

Web Design Process

I know, I know. In the past, you’ve stayed up late at night after working ALL day to DIY a website for your business. The website looks “Okay” but it’s not great.

You don’t have time, nor do you want to learn how to use Wix or Squarespace…AGAIN. 

You have gotten to the point in your business that you are READY to finally pay a professional to do it RIGHT. You know it’s an investment that will bring you more business in the long run, and it’s time your website started doing some of the heavy lifting for your business!

You stumbled upon my website because you were searching for web designers online, or maybe a friend told you about me.

You were hoping that maybe, JUST MAYBE, you could find someone who would ACTUALLY listen to you and understand your goals.

image of web design process and iMac computer

You were hoping that you could find a web designer who knows how to communicate in a language other than “GEEK” and not talk over your head or down to you for not understanding “tech talk.”

You’ve been poking around my website, and you like what you see.

I am so happy you found me! I’m betting you are too! 

How to Know if We are a Perfect Fit

If this sounds like you, then I’d love to hear from you! Please get in touch with me here: 

What's Included?

Design Process & Timeline

I’m so glad you asked!

I’m going to lay out an ideal design process and timeline. There are always variables that can speed up or slow down this process, but in a perfect world (for me anyway) this is what it would look like.

  • 1-2 Months before the project begins (Exception to the rules IF you already have ALL of your written content & high-res images. Having your content can shorten this “pre-project” timeline by a lot. If you do have your content, it would then just depend on how many active projects I have going at the time you need me to start.)
    • 50% deposit is made
    • Start date is decided
    • Contract is signed
    • Onboarding takes place
    • ClickUp Space is created for your project
    • Dropbox Folder is created for your project
    • You fill out a questionnaire 
    • Kick-off call with Strategy Session to determine goals and functionality of website
    • You start sending me stuff (by stuff, I mean images, content for each page, etc…)
    • We start communicating inside ClickUp
  • Week 1 (Start Date)
    • I get to work on your homepage with the content you have provided me based on our Kick-off call
  • Weeks 2 – 4
    • I’ll provide a video of the homepage design and a feedback form.
    • You’ll provide feedback
    • I’ll tweak the design based on your feedback
    • We will have a Zoom call with screen share
    • You’ll approve the homepage
  • Weeks 5 – 7 
    • I’ll develop inner pages requesting feedback as we go
    • You’ll provide feedback as needed
  • Weeks 8 – 10
    • Revisions, Zoom calls, final checks, tests, links, integrations, etc
  • Week 10-12
    • You’ll sign off on the site and we’ll go live!
    • This will vary depending on how long it takes you to provide feedback, images, & copy
    • Final payment is due
    • Hosting begins right before site launch

Frequently Asked Questions About Websites

It depends on a few factors.

  • schedule openings
  • complexity
  • your response time

Most website builds are scheduled to begin approximately 1- 2 months after first contact. This allows time for you to complete any text copy, take any new photos, and do the homework required for me to create your site.

The complexity of your website is another factor. While some sites can be completed in as little as a month, others, especially e-commerce, membership sites, and sites with lots of custom integrations, may take as long as 4 months or more to fully plan and build. I'll give you a better timeline during our strategy session. The final factor is your response time. During the project, you will need to respond quickly to my questions and provide feedback. Delays in your responses and or delays in you getting me the content I need will result in a delay in the launch of the website. 

On average, your investment will be $8,500 - $,15,000 on your website. In some cases your investment could be as low as $5,000 and as high as $20,000 or more.  The total investment is based on a few factors such as the complexity, scope, functionality, and timeline. The more complex the functionality, the larger the investment, as there is more work and knowledge involved in building them. Complexity also applies to strategy—a design that looks simple but has complex APIs and integrations requires more skill and know-how. The scope of work also affects the overall investment. The quote at the beginning of the project may not be the final amount as changes to the scope of work (adding, removing or changing features) may result in an additional investment. Finally, the timeline affects the price. The price quoted is based in part on the amount of time I believe the project will take to complete as well as the skill needed to create the functionality that you need.

Domain name: A domain name runs about $15 - $22 per year. You will need to renew this each year to keep it yours. You can buy a domain name at SiteGround or other domain registrars.

WordPress Hosting: I require hosting to be set up with me when I build a website or redesign a website. The reason for this is that your website performance largely depends on excellent hosting. Also, a website needs to be maintained, and secure. I use an amazing hosting provider that assures the site is backed up every day and has premium security features to keep your site safe from hackers. (This is VERY important!) I have several plans to choose from starting at $99/mo depending on the website needs. E-commerce websites require a higher tier hosting due to security needs for customers shopping online, etc

*prices subject to change 

The short answer is "It depends."  It depends on what your needs are. However, I will break it down for you based on my opinions.

I have worked with Woo Commerce, Big Commerce, and Shopify. I like them all, but each for different reasons.

Depending on your goals, I can recommend one over the other. Once we have our discovery call, I will have a better idea of which one to recommend for you.

Woo Commerce: Woo Commerce is open source (free) with WordPress themes. I like it because it is highly customizable. If you need a booking feature, or the ability to sell downloadable products, or other custom functionality, this is my favorite option of the three. It does require an SSL certificate with PCI compliant hosting. The standard SSL certificate is included with each of my hosting plans. Shopping cart hosting starts at $150/mo (depending on size of store and hosting requirements).

Shopify: If we are developing an eCommerce site with Shopify you will be paying a monthly fee for your Shopify plan. Most new eCommerce sites fit comfortably in the $29 per month plan. They do have other plans that are $79/mo and $299/mo depending on your needs. You can save money by paying for the year up front. There are no other fees with Shopify, except for the additional apps needed that add to the functionality of the site, and these can add to the monthly cost.

Shopify Premium Themes: There are a handful of free Shopify themes to choose from, but if you'd like more features and advanced designs, you can choose from a larger selection of Shopify themes that range from free to $180 for lifetime use. I highly recommend paying for a theme, as the free ones in my experience are just lacking many features that you will need.

A word of warning with Shopify: They do have a lot of "apps" that add to the functionality of the website that cost anywhere from $5 and up per month. These can add up, and you don't always know what you will need until you get in there and start building out your store.

Big Commerce plan: The monthly pricing and theme cost is similar for Big Commerce, with three tiers. $29.95, $79.95, and $249.95 depending on your needs. I have found that Big Commerce comes standard with more features for free than Shopify which reduces the need for paid apps which add to your monthly fees. There may be some that you will need, but probably not as many. Big Commerce also has fewer premium themes to choose from than Shopify, but the prices are similar. After we go over your needs, I will be able to recommend which shopping cart I believe will best suit your needs.

Big Commerce Premium Themes: Big Commerce also has a selection of themes ranging from free to $250 for lifetime use, depending on your needs. Just as with Shopify, I highly recommend a premium theme here as well.

All of my websites hosting plans include an SSL certificate. That's a given! 

In addition to that, I have partnered with Astra Security and have a great plan that I provide for my clients. The current yearly investment for a firewall on your website runs about $236/year. Be sure to ask me about this. I include it on SOME of my premium hosting plans.

I normally don't go over 4 at one time, but there is often some overlap as one is about to launch and another one is just beginning.  I am strategic in how I plan out my time so that I can give each client the time they need and deserve. 

The short answer is NO.

 

BUT...

 

There's a caveat. You Should.

 

Maybe.

 

To help with this, I have a team of copywriters that will write all of your content for you if you need it. Of course, if you can (ie: have the time, desire, and ability) write your own content, I always recommend it because it just comes out so naturally and sounds so much more authentic coming from YOU. But it not, I have backup.  

 

Do not let "not having content" stop you from getting your website done. 

 

Done is better than perfect. Always.

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