Which Comes First? The Content or Design?

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Today’s topic revolves around your sitemap and your website content. Your sitemap is the pages on your website and how they are organized. A great sitemap also details the user flow and how pages are linked. Content is all the text and media that will be on the site. There are two main schools of thought for web design about when content comes into play for a project. 

  1. Design first, content second.
  2. Content first, design around the content.

Guess which school of thought we fall into? If you chose #2, then you are correct. I like how Slickplan explains this:

“Great websites start with great content! Create and organize your content first so that it drives design, not the other way around… More efficiently planned content leads to less time and money spent, fewer revisions, and a reduction of coding do-overs.”

They pretty much hit the nail on the head. In our experience, beginning to build or design a website without at least rough text content leads to many more revisions down the road. In essence, we cannot design around content that we cannot see. We cannot determine the best layout for a section without knowing if we are working with a paragraph, a title plus a list, one image, or three images. We will guess based on assumptions and more than likely guess wrong. This guessing game becomes frustrating for all involved.

Some agencies work design first and it’s not wrong! It’s just not our style.

So, if you are looking to work with us, start thinking about your content before signing the dotted line, because we are going to ask you for it. If you need help with this, let us know! Our content strategy team loves to dig in with working brainstorming and planning sessions. We also have copywriters to help you put pen to paper. Let’s figure it out together!

 

White Label Development Services

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We’re there supporting your business and keeping your clients happy.

GruffyGoat has built a strong reputation as a designer, developer and host of affordable business websites. A large piece of our core business, however, is providing “white label” development services to our partners who want to offer similar services to their customers, too. To help make this aspect of our offering more clear, we’re going to take a deep dive into what white label services are and what they can mean for your business.

If you’re a marketing firm, creative studio, or advertising agency that offers website design and development, then you know the difficulty and expense of providing those services to your clients. Your creative staff might have the design part covered, but you still need a highly-trained team of back-end developers and support personnel to build each site’s architecture, host and maintain all client sites, and handle a never-ending stream of customer requests and changes.

It’s not easy, and for a lot of firms who want to provide these services, the expense, trouble, and added resources are often too much to justify the investment.

Partnering with GruffyGoat to sell white label development services is a great solution to this dilemma, and gives you a lot of business options without a major capital outlay. We do all the behind-the-scenes work so that your company can focus on what you do best.

What do we mean by “white label”?

The term has its origins in the old “generic” brands that emerged in the 70s and 80s as a way to cut consumer costs. Back then, you could buy products such as groceries that were literally in plain white packaging with black letters, with no images or graphic design on the packaging. The idea was that stores could offer these products—typically still made by the “big-name” manufacturers—at discount prices because the marketing expense wasn’t factored in to the cost.

These generic brands eventually evolved into the “store brands” we see on shelves today. You can buy good old Cheerios, made by General Mills, or you can buy an identical product in a plainer box with the store’s logo, often for half the price or less. Same product; completely different relationship with both the grocer and the consumer.

White label development works in a similar fashion. As one of our partner firms, you can offer full website design, development, hosting, and maintenance services to your clients—provided by the professional GruffyGoat team, but totally repackaged with your firm’s branding. 

How can GruffyGoat help you?

You can quickly and easily outsource your website design and development needs to GruffyGoat. You land the projects, you manage the client relationship, and we handle the rest. You get all the business benefits of an in-house web team without the expense and headaches.

To the end-client, GruffyGoat is invisible, but we’re there supporting your business and keeping your clients happy. This frees up your resources and lets you concentrate on building even more business. Even if you already have a development staff in place, we can supplement their efforts and handle overflow as your firm grows so that you don’t have to add expensive personnel right away.

Best of all, because we can build sites at a lower price than most in-house teams, you make more money on each project, and can continue to generate long-term recurring revenue by offering hosting and maintenance services (which we also provide).

Contact us to learn more about our white label services, and keep an eye out for part 2 of our series, in which we’ll talk about what offering white label development services entails.

White Label Development Services: Part 2

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White label design and development services are a great way for marketing and advertising agencies to offer affordable web services to your customers.

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As we discussed in our last post, white label design and development services are a great way for marketing and advertising agencies to offer affordable web services to your customers. You gain the full benefits of a team of development professionals without adding infrastructure, personnel, or other overhead to your firm’s budget. You simply contract the service, pay a nominal monthly fee depending on your needs, and then deliver a creative value-add for your clients through your firm’s branding.

GruffyGoat provides robust white label web development services to many of our customers. This has enabled them, in turn, to add those services to their firm’s portfolio as well as generate recurring revenue through monthly maintenance and hosting fees. To their clients, GruffyGoat is invisible; to the agency, we’re behind the scenes supporting their business and keeping things running smoothly so they can focus on more important tasks.

So, What Does GruffyGoat’s White Label Service Entail?

Our sites are built on WordPress, one of the world’s best and most widely-used content management systems, with a user-friendly interface and lots of features and plugins to accommodate a vast number of configurations. We also offer a deep menu of affordable design themes bursting with style to supplement your creative team.

For a standard monthly fee*, you get…

  • Daily site backups with auto-restore points
  • Firewall and malware scanning
  • Evercache technology and CDN-ready architecture
  • SSL Certificate
  • Ongoing WordPress framework and plugin updates
  • Regular monthly uptime and update reporting
  • High-capacity bandwidth (up to 2GB) and storage (up to 1GB) per site

*Our monthly fee is based on your hosting/migration needs, ecommerce compatibility, and required plugins for your site offerings.

We also provide scalable hourly support services, as needed.

How Much Do White Label Sites Cost?

GruffyGoat’s ongoing hosting and support allows us to offer initial website builds at much lower prices. But lots of factors can contribute to the final price, including:

  • The number and complexity of any site functions
  • Total number of site pages
  • SEO requirements/plugins
  • Advanced customizations
  • Bandwidth and storage needs

Standard pricing also assumes that the client provides all logos, content, branding, etc. We can provide those elements if needed, but additional creative services add to the final cost as well.

Am I Locked Into a Long-Term Commitment?

We only require hosting with us for the duration of the build. Once the site is complete, you can move the site anywhere you want. All our hosting plans are month-to-month and you’re never locked into a long-term contract. You can check out our terms for yourself.

What About Email Services?

You can either set up email at your own company’s domain, or GruffyGoat can provide email services for an additional setup and monthly fee.

How Does the Process Work?

We typically ask for 4–6 weeks to develop a website, but we’ve found that once we establish good workflow procedures with our white label customers, our team can often build out sites within a 3–4-week timeframe (particularly when the designs stick to the Divi builder functionality). We can build sites in less time, but rush fees may apply.

  1. Once a project starts, we build the home page first and then send it to you for review. We include two rounds of revisions during this first phase. 
  2. Upon final approval of the home page, we build out the rest of the site. 
  3. When complete, we send the full site back to you for review and an additional two rounds of revisions on the new pages.
  4. Upon final approval, we launch the site and you are free to move the hosting to your preferred provider.

NOTE: Any out-of-scope design changes or revisions after we’ve received final approval on a process step may result in additional fees. 

The GruffyGoat team believes in good organization and total communication. We have a solid process in place to collect all the site assets together and keep you fully updated throughout the development process.

Contact us to learn more about our white label services. We’d love to partner with you and your team, and be a development resource as you continue to grow your business! 

4 Tips for Beginning a Website

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So we all know about the great stressors of life: getting married, having kids, moving… these cause us to get stressed, not because they are bad, but because they all take an unimaginable amount of work. You have to clean up, get organized, declutter, spend unplanned amounts of money, make hard on-the-spot decisions, plan for years down the road but also keep your daily duties under control. It’s absolute chaos for months.

So how do we combat the craziness of these stressors? It comes down to good ole fashioned preparedness. It takes months of boxing up your attic, trash bag after trash bag, dusting, repainting, overall hard work. There is no better solution than effort. Working consistently for an appropriate amount of time before the project helps everything to flow smoothly and easily.

This is no different with a website. There are tons of issues that can cause stress during a build. There are things you, as a business owner, have no reason to worry about, but you will still worry about them. There are decisions that you will have to think about that you have never considered before. This is uncharted territory. Territory with wallet-ravaging monsters who want to leave you deserted and helpless (more or less). Websites seem harmless. YouTube ads make them seem so easy, almost too easy to be true. But listen. If you get a month into a web build, you will be feeling some sort of stress.

This post is a resource to help business owners be prepared. Take as much as you want. Some of this might not apply to your scenario, but some of it will.

1. Content

This is a killer for some people. If you don’t like to write, you should find someone who does. Websites are made up of words and images (yeah, super simplified). If you don’t have any words that you think can represent your company, you need to get someone to write for you. As a general practice, each page of a website should have anywhere from 300-500 words on it. You should also include relevant original content. If your website’s copy doesn’t benefit visitors with good information, your visitors will leave.

There are tons of people who are great at writing website content. You can find freelancers that are expensive but will do an incredible job, or you can let someone within your company do it. You are going to get out what you put in.

If you enter a web build with content in hand, that means your designer and developer can start sketching out your site after the first meeting. If you don’t have content when you come in to get started, be prepared to spend time working on it before you get into the fun stuff – design.

2. Images

This is a form of content but needs to be talked about separately. Photography is a huge element online. This not only affects the style of your site, but also the usability. Thankfully, there are tons of options when it comes to imagery.

If you have no budgetary constraints, design is limitless (mostly) if you have a limitless budget. Custom illustrations and professional photography are a dream for a designer to work with and can make your site look awesome.

For the rest of us though, the options usually consist of stock vs. real photography. I know this is a trigger for some designers out there, but there isn’t much of a difference. Whichever option you as the client choose, keep it consistent. If you use stock, use all stock. It is hard to make sure the quality of your own photos are edited as well as the professional photos. If the quality is inconsistent even the untrained eye can tell. We like using stock photography because it saves time and money for our clients in the end. There are great free stock photo sites like pixabay.com and unsplash.com but istock.com and other paid sites will have many more options and often better quality.

Warning to all clients: if you use real photography, this means you are responsible for taking or paying someone to take real photos of real employees around your real facility. This is a lot of work between cleaning your workspace, scheduling a photoshoot day, and finding a reliable photographer. Just be warned. This option also requires an extra week or so for your photographer to edit and prepare the photos they took. All this time adds up.

If you have all of your imagery in hand at the beginning of the project, you will be cutting the length of the project tremendously. Just make sure your images are the appropriate size and file type for the web (i.e. full screen images are usually about 2000 pixels wide). Services like tinypng.com can help you optimize your images for web.

3. Products

E-Commerce is a big deal with websites now. Online stores are everywhere. There are many benefits that can come from an online store, but there is just as much work to think about while building it.

Here are some things that we suggest you do before starting your online store.

  • Get your products organized.
  • Categorize them into groups.
  • Name them appropriately.
  • Set your prices.
  • Assign product SKU#s.
  • Photograph your products.
  • Create a payment option account (we love Stripe).
  • Choose your shipping options.

This is not an exhaustive list. There are lots of decisions that need to be made on this front, but one serious warning and suggestion to come with this. Discuss your shop primarily with your developers. The reason for this caution is, you as a business owner have great aspirations and lofty dreams for your ideal site. In your mind, everything you think of will work. The reality is, you are getting the site you are paying for. If you have a lower budget, your shop will need to be minimal. Talk to your developer to make sure what you are planning is within your project’s scope or even possible.

Structuring your shop before a project helps, but the hardest battle is not setting your expectations higher than your developer’s abilities or budget.

4. Committees

This tip is not like the others. This is not an item for your site, yet it is equally if not more important than finishing your project efficiently and with little to no hassle.

There are sayings such as: “Too many cooks spoil the soup” and “A camel is a horse designed by a committee.” These are both so true for websites. Too many opinions on design and development kill a project. Everyone is a critic.

We like when clients have one person as the leader and point man for communication. This allows for profitable conversations and constructive criticism throughout the project. There are definitely times for larger scale feedback, but we find that the length of a project is related to the number of people who are needed to approve a decision.

If you are starting a website build, think about whether or not certain people or even departments within your company should have a say in a decision. You want to be efficient with your time and your money, so don’t let personal opinions hinder your goals.

Before you start panicking about all the work to be done, know that this is a great step for your business. A website is a sign of legitimacy today. You are about to be a higher functioning business because of the project you are working on. This is a great thing. Also, know that web designers and developers are on your side. They want you to succeed and do well. We are all on the same team. We are professionals that are working to help you reach your goals.

There are a ton of other things not in this post that you will need to consider before beginning your project, but these are really big ones. This post is just to get you to think about the work ahead, but also think about who your team is. We at GruffyGoat are a full-service web studio which means we do it all for you. If you are interested in learning more about us, follow the links below and follow us. We would love to help with your next project.

Websites are a Business Tool

by GruffyGoat Team written on
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One of my teammates sent us this article for tips on blogging. It was a great read for bloggers but as I was reading there were several items on the list that I felt applied to building websites.

A website is often the first impression for your business so it is important to understand who will see it, why they are looking at it, and also what you want them to do with it. You can have a beautiful design but if you don’t think through its use from a deeper level, your website will not function as a tool for your business. Ultimately, you need a strategy that encompasses all of these things and more… (see #13 on the link above). Why do you need a website and how does it work within your entire business toolkit?

Thanks to Dreamhost for this content that I am unashamedly borrowing – you get all the credit. Let’s pull out some of the more significant items on the list.

Who is your audience?

This is important for any business, website or not. It is a foundational piece of your marketing and sales which are necessary for growth. Know who you are selling to and talk specifically to them. This goes for your website, your pitches, and even how you answer your phone.

What value are you offering?

This goes back to knowing your audience and customer. If you understand who you are talking to you can directly appeal to them by clearly communicating the value you bring to their life. This information should be on your homepage. Make it clear and hard to miss!

What credibility do you have?

There are a few ways your website offers your business credibility. In some ways, just having one is the first step! Professional design and images are another way to make people understand you are legit. Offering testimonials and client logos are great to immediately illustrate credibility. We often recommend having these as a small section on your homepage.

What is your call to action?

This goes back to knowing what you want your client to do while on your site or what their next step is. Do you want them to contact you directly? Fill out a form? Buy something? Determine your call to action(s) and make it very easy for a visitor to follow through.

Think mobile

People will visit your website on their mobile device before and more often than your desktop, especially B to C sites. (See this study.) It is important to understand how interactions change on those handheld devices. Some things just don’t translate well. We design and build websites with a “mobile first” mindset, knowing that is how most people will interact with each site.

Invest in professional equipment.

I would be remiss in not stating that your website will benefit tremendously by hiring professionals, from the photography to the copy to the design and code. More than likely you are not an expert at all of the necessary elements to building a strong site so if you can, hire help. There are certainly ways to minimize the financial investment and we make sure that we work with our clients within their means and make recommendations to be budget-friendly. Not sure what this means, contact us.

Wordpress, Divi, & Child Themes

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It doesn’t take long in a conversation to realize that people don’t know a ton about WordPress or theme-based web design. The average person gets a particular look in their eyes when you start using words like “CMS,” “web-builder,” or “child-themes.” We get it, not everyone is a web developer. So through working with a variety of clients who vary in “tech-fluency,” we have found ways of explaining important terms that might be foreign or misunderstood.

There are 3 buzzwords that we are going to walk through in this article. We will move from broadest to most specific in order to explain their relationship. The comparison that we use most often is building a house, so hopefully, this analogy will help your understanding.

To start us off, WordPress. It makes up over 30% of all the internet according to a technology survey by W3Techs in 2018 (a 5% increase since the end of 2015). It is the most used CMS (content management system) globally. We at GruffyGoat only use WordPress. We do this for many reasons, such as reliability, familiarity, sustainability, and functionality. The other options are custom coding, Squarespace, Weebly, Shopify, Drupal, etc. WordPress is like a plot of land when building a house. You can find a plot of land that has certain amenities and features that aren’t found anywhere else, but ultimately you want to build a house on that land. WordPress has familiar amenities like an easy media library, a native blog, an ecosystem of free plugins that allow for very complex functions. There is a lot to love about the overall structure of WordPress, but it’s just the lot where you build your house.

To build your house you need a contractor and an architect. Someone to show you what your structural options are and how things could look and work in your new house. Websites are no different. Enter themes. Themes are just ways to build your house. Some themes are very open to customization and can do pretty much anything you want, but have higher price tags (very similar to actual contractors and architects ????). Themes that are less expensive usually have less design and functionality options. At GruffyGoat we use a theme called Divi. This is an Elegant Themes builder (S/O to Elegant Themes…send the check!) that allows for fully custom design. There is very little that Divi cannot accomplish. Divi is to web development, what Joanna Gaines is to a house. We love Divi because of the custom design abilities, the easy-to-use visual builder, and the functionality/versatility of the modules.

Here is where some confusion can come in with the analogy and the breakdown of our terms. Remember, a theme is a builder. The construction or development of the site happens with the theme you choose. Some themes, however, don’t have our final vocabulary word (child-themes). When building with these themes, you are given minimal options for customization so your final site looks exactly like the other sites built with that theme. Similar to how some contractors build houses in massive subdivisions. The contractor has one blueprint and his job is to build that exact house over and over again with little variation other than siding and door color. This results in a nice new affordable home that is aesthetically identical to all of its neighbors.

Finally, this is where the child-theme steps in. A child-theme, sometimes called a template, is where the builder of your house lets you choose the floorplan, pick paint swatches, customize your cabinets and countertops, and choose your light fixtures. This will separate your house from all the others on your street built with the same contractor. Child-themes only come with certain themes, as mentioned above. Templates are pre-built sites that have set typography, layouts, and smaller functional parts (i.e. contact forms, email opt-ins, menus, etc.) which are stylized together. They allow you to pick which sections you like from a builder and use them to form a completely designed website. The typical child-theme comes with premade layouts that can work for multiple types of content and pages. They also come with individual sections, like header, contact form, testimonials, etc. that are styled and easy to insert anywhere.

The benefit of using a child-theme is simple. The child-theme site is already styled cohesively with all the functional pieces completely developed, so building the site will be faster and more efficient.

We have friends that specialize in making child-themes for Divi. If you are still a little confused about the differences between themes and child-themes, you should check out BeSuperfly.com. They use Divi Theme builder, but the final products are all so different. There is a ton of variety in Divi which allows for a multitude of unique Divi child-themes.

If you have a question about where to start on your new website, check out some of our other articles or contact us. We would love to work with you on your next project.

Interview Questions at Creative Companies

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We just completed a round of interviews for a new position on our team. Some people hate this process but I found it fascinating to think through different questions to ask and how to judge the responses. It was also very interesting the types of questions some people ask and why. Interviews aren’t just about can a person do the job but it’s also about will that person fit in with the team and company culture. Super important with a smaller company like ours.

For instance, one of our owners is always very interested in historical questions like, What was the first thing you were ever paid for? At first, I didn’t understand why this mattered but then he explained how different answers can reflect things like work ethic or even desire to learn. For instance, if the answer is they had a regular lemonade stand from age 8 then we can glean they are an entrepreneurial type. But, if someone never did anything to earn money until after college, then it can cause us to question their drive to succeed. Now, I’m simplifying for the sake of an example because the person who didn’t earn any money might have spent all their free time training to be an accomplished musician or athlete. But isn’t it interesting to think about how our past can still make an impact on a potential employer?

For me, I’m always thinking situationally for the job at hand. Questions like, how would you respond if “this” happened? I usually try to think about a challenge I’ve experienced and see how the interviewee thinks they will respond. There isn’t always a right or wrong answer. Sometimes, I’m not sure, can even be a fine answer. Challenges are the best opportunity to learn and sometimes making mistakes in your responses are the best lessons.

As we were discussing questions to ask our applicants, we started telling stories about our worst and best interviews. One great question that came up was “What is your worst habit?” I thought this was a great twist on the expected, “What is your greatest weakness?”

We liked the idea of not asking those traditional questions so that we don’t get practiced responses. And this leads me to the two questions we shared from our own past interviews that I thought were the best:

1. If you woke up to an elephant in your backyard, what would you do?

2. If you were a bean, what bean would you be?

It was pretty interesting what we determined from our responses. For instance, the person who was actually asked the elephant question said she would put a sari on, take it to the beach and pretend I’m visiting India. Creative answer for a creative question. And fun. And she is fun.

My first thought was, check to see if there are any peanuts in the house and fill up the kiddie pool with water. And, of course, my imaginary backyard was fenced. Can you tell I’m a mom? I bet you my answer would have been different pre-kids.

I was actually asked the bean question several years ago and I think I said black bean – something about it being healthy? But one of our designers had the best (and immediate, no thinking reply) – jelly bean. Clearly, I’m not the fun one.

So, no right or wrong answers. But, when you ask unusual questions, it is pretty fascinating what you can tell about a person. How they will respond to new situations, challenges, and if they are the right person to round out your team.

I Now Pronounce You Client and Developer

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Like any great relationship, communication is the key component to make it work.

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A client asked me a great question today. He wanted to know where to draw the line with how much direction and instruction he should give us on his website. And unfortunately, I did not have a black and white answer. I then compared our client/project manager relationship to a marriage. I told him, if you have an expectation that you want or need met then you have to communicate it. Otherwise, there is no guarantee we will guess correctly and both sides will be frustrated. 

There really is a spectrum when it comes to how this works. On one end there is little to no direction or preference from the client and on the other, there is total client domination and incessant hand-holding. In reality, most projects fall somewhere in between, but there are always extremes. And where each project falls on the spectrum depends on the client and how much they want to be involved. Where projects can go wrong is when a client changes their position midstream. Maybe they began the project not wanting to have any input, but by the end of the project they not only want to micro-manage the project but they also bring in a team of new people to help. We can try to figure out where a client is on this spectrum at the beginning of a project when possible, even by asking how much control they want. Then we try to set those expectations throughout the project. But in the end, from our perspective, we have to play a guessing game.

Our process allows for several points of review. Depending on the type of project, our clients review style tiles, designs, homepage layouts, and more. We want projects to be collaborative with our clients, so we provide lots of chances for adjustment and input. We also encourage clients to bring all the NECESSARY players to the table at the start of the project. We typically find the “design by committee” approach to be ineffective. It’s hard when clients exhaust all rounds of edits and THEN bring the “the big boss” in at the end because that usually leads to incurring extra costs. Our client relationships are very important to us and we take particular measures to preserve those.

Like any great relationship, communication is the key component to make it work. The way you communicate with someone can determine how strong and lasting your relationship could be. We want to make our partnership as successful as possible, so our goal is to be as intentional and respectful as possible, and we hope you’ll do the same!

 

Ready to Launch

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It’s easy to get lost in the complexity of everything that goes into building a website, so before we jump in, we want to explain our process and exactly what we need and what we do to launch your site. But first, let’s start by defining some frequently used words that are involved in the process.

Glossary of Terms:

  • Domain Name: this is your website address or URL. (i.e. yourname.com). Think of it as your home address on the web.
  • Domain Registrar: this is where you purchased your domain name. There are hundreds of domain registrars out there, but the most common ones are GoDaddy.com, NameCheap.com or NetworkSolutions.com.
  • Hosting Provider: hosting is what allows your website to live on the web. Hosting is like your landlord — it’s who you pay monthly or yearly to keep your site online.
  • Email Provider: like hosting, but for your email. It’s where you go to login and access your email messages. The most common providers are Google/GSuite, Outlook.com or free email through your hosting provider.
  • DNS Records: DNS records control where all the traffic goes to and from your domain. Think of DNS like a traffic cop, directing everyone where they need to go. Similarly, DNS records tell all inbound & outbound traffic where to go.
    Now that we understand what each of these things are, let’s get into our process!

Step 1: Figuring out your Setup

The first thing we need to know is 1) Do you have a custom email account (i.e. yourname@yourdomain.com) and if yes, 2) where is your email currently hosted? If you don’t have a custom address or you use a 3rd party like Google/GSuite or Outlook — great! That simplifies the process. However, if you have free email from your current hosting provider, you’ll need to decide how you wish to proceed. You typically have 3 options:

  • Move your email accounts to a reliable 3rd party provider — we can help point you in the right direction.
  • Contact your host to see if they offer email-only services or what the cheapest way is to continue receiving email services through them.
  • Leave everything as-is and continue paying the hosting fee in order to continue using your current email services.

Once we’ve determined how your email is setup, we can then determine where we need to make changes to your DNS records. We always prefer to eliminate unnecessary systems and steps from the process when we can. This streamlines the process and also saves you money in the long run.

Step 2: Collecting your Logins

If you’re an expert or familiar with making changes to your DNS records, then we’re happy to provide instructions so you can make the changes on your own. Otherwise, we’re happy to handle it for you! We’ll need the following logins to get started:

  • Hosting Provider Login
  • Domain Registrar Login

See glossary list above if you’re not 100% sure what these are.

Step 3: Launch Day!

Once all revisions are approved and you’re ready to launch, we’ll select a day and time that works best for you to launch the site. There’s a lot that goes into launching a site, but here’s a quick overview of the work we do behind the scenes:

  • Change DNS records to point your website traffic to our servers.
  • Order & install SSL certificate — this is what makes your site secure with the padlock icon in the address bar and https vs. http.
  • Ensure that all site links are changed from the temporary development link to the live URL and fix all insecure content warnings due to SSL implementation.
  • Setup redirects (if requested) to point any old URL’s to the new site.
  • Optimize images to ensure all our sized appropriately to load quickly on all devices.
  • Implement Google Analytics & Google Search Console — used to record your site traffic and activity of your website visitors.
  • Install required plugins used to monitor your site’s security, traffic & updates (ManageWP, Yoast).
  • Setup and configure monthly reports — a monthly report you will receive on the 1st of each month that shows your uptime and work we did throughout the month.

Once our work is complete, we’ll send a quick recap email letting you know your site is launched and what next steps are, including how to contact our support team. We’ll also provide a walkthrough video that will show you how to make basic edits to your site. If you signed up for SEO services, we’ll provide you with a timeframe of when you can expect completion of that work alongside the SEO Analysis Report.

This all may sound like a lot of work — and it is — but not for you! The most important thing we need from you are the logins to your domain and/or hosting providers if we are performing the changes to your DNS records. Once we have that, we’ll handle the rest. But we’ve outlined all of our launch steps here so that you know what to expect and what we will be doing to ensure your new site is launched as quickly and seamlessly as possible.