FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
The below are just a few of the questions we have been asked regarding our services, that you may also find useful. The FAQ section is pretty extensive list (we think), but if the information you are looking for isn’t here please don’t hesitate to contact us to with any relevant questions you may have .
How much does it cost for The Website Factory to build me a website?
This is an important question. Even though cost should not be the only factor in choosing a designer, most small businesses do have some form of budget constraints that are relevant here.
Because every site and business is different, we need to provide a quote for each job rather than having set pricing. A general guide to our prices are located on this page, based on based on design and coding work only of a standard complexity site, where you provide semi-final text and as well as all images (including your logo), and we put everything together .
Professional level websites including sourcing of images and a more customised design increase the price, as does the inclusion of ecommerce functionality. Basically, while we do provide a general guide, we need to understand your specific requirements before providing a formal quote.
How much does/should SEO cost?
This is actually a much more difficult question to answer, due just how much this can vary. Generally the more competitive the industry and the keywords you are targeting, the more work and cost will be involved. If you are a plumber in a small town and none of your competitors have dedicated websites, getting to number 1 is relatively easy. While our SEO services generally start from around $450, in a simple case like this the cost may be even less.
On the other hand, if you hope to rank for the phrase “real estate” with no mention of location, you don’t have enough money to achieve this – trust us! If you did you would be putting out an advertisement for another full time SEO specialist to add to your existing team of 10 full time specialists, not reading this humble little site!
That said, most keywords are no-where near this difficult and for most people results are achievable within a realistic budget. Or, should your industry be a difficult one, we can always target less competitive keywords first, and then go for the big fish after you are already getting some return on investment.
How long should the SEO process take to get my website ranked?
This will again depend on the difficulty of your industry and keywords, and the number of competitors trying to beat you. In some cases we have achieved #1 Google rankings in as little as a week, however this is the exception. On the other end of the scale, some sites require SEO work almost continually to preserve their rankings as there are so many businesses actively competing for the top spots. We invite you to contact us for a realistic estimate of what can be achieved, and how long it will take.
I need a CMS (Content Management System). Can you provide this?
Yes, we build your website in WordPress (ideal as a basic CMS for small businesses). This is a major trend in website design, and is ideal if you want the ability for either one or more people to easily update content regularly without learning coding.
I don’t have any good photos for my site – is there anything you can do?
Most websites are more effective and engaging for customers if they include images as well as text. However many small businesses do not have high quality images required for this. Depending on your business and industry, there is a number of solutions. Often the most effective is to include the use of “stock photos”, which are standard photos available for purchase and use on your site – from sites such as iStockphoto which has millions of files available.
The impotent thing is how these are included in the site, which can be challenging especially when photos include people in them. We can provide assistance in selecting stock photos, or we encourage you to have a look for yourself. If you do so, just make sure you note the relevant numbers down or create a “lightbox”, rather than purchasing them before discussing with us.
Alternatively, we can provide guidance to a photographer of your choosing as to what photos are required. Often, we use a combination of “real” and “stock” photos to achieve the required look on the site.
I’m not a good writer / I don’t have anything written about my business. Can you help?
Yes, absolutely. We will of course need to learn more about your business in order to write about it, but that’s something we do anyway as part of the website development process. We are happy to write your content from scratch based on an interview with yourself, or can edit and improve your own notes and pre written content. Good quality text can make the difference between success and failure online.
The only slight exception to this is in specialist fields such as the medical industry, where we are happy to assist but but will need detailed guidance from you regarding content. In any case, all clients need to check and take fully responsibility for all final content on the website.
Isn’t writing content as standard part of a website designers job that shouldn’t cost extra?
We can definitely put together a package for you that includes both design (the physical look), development (the coding), and content (the text). In fact, many clients choose our services based on our skills in writing compelling content. However because writing good quality text takes time, effort and skill, it’s not included in our base prices.
It’s also unfortunate that there are a a lot of graphic designers and web designers out there who are great visually, but don’t realise that their skills in copy writing are lacking. While many will include writing the text for your site in the price at no extra charge, in many cases the standard of this work is below par. At The Website Factory we believe that if you are going to do something, do it properly, hence we we take the time and make the effort to write quality content, rather than including it in the cost and taking shortcuts with our work.
Can I provide my own text, rather than paying you to write it?
Of course you can! In fact, if you are confident in your writing that that’s ideal. Most business successful owners know and understand their business very well, and are thus in many ways the most qualified to write about it. In most cases we will however make minor edits to your copy for SEO purposes as part of your website development project, and also simply to provide a “second set of eyes”. This editing is generally at no charge, unless major rewrites are required (which we would discuss with you before proceeding).
Do I fully own my site? What if I decide to change developers or hosting down the track?
Here at The Website Factory we don’t believe in funny business! Any site we develop for you is 100% yours, including full copyright on any text we have written for you and coding or graphics we have created. The only exception to this relates to code – if we develop something really clever code wise, we reserve the right to reuse it in other development projects – the look and feel of your site however are always unique to you.
We would hope that you would not have any reason to leave once we start working together, but should you need to move on we will assist in any way required to make the change as smooth as possible (normally hourly charges for any work completed as part of the changeover process would of course apply).
Do you provide website hosting, or do I need to arrange this myself?
We definitely do provide website hosting, and there is no need for you to set this up yourself. Our servers are all located in the USA for fast response times, and our hosting packages are reasonable priced. However should you already have hosting arranged elsewhere there is no need to change hosts unless you want to, and we can work with your existing hosting account.
What is a domain name? Why do I need one? Can you organise this for me?
A domain name is a base address used to access your website. For example the domain name of this site is thewebsite-factory.com (the www is not part of the domain). Each domain name can only be used by one site, and choosing the right one is an important part of your company branding.
We strongly recommend discussing your choice of domain name with us before you register it – as there is often more than one possible name, and we can provide advice on your best option. We can also register and set up your domain name for you at reasonable rates ($39.95 per two years for .com domains).
Can you provide ongoing site maintenance? How much does this cost?
Yes, we can provide ongoing maintenance for all sites we develop. Basic “maintenance” in some cases just involves making sure the site is still up and running, and is always at absolutely no cost – there are no “monthly charges” unless we are actually performing specific regular work for your each month. Any changes and updates to your site are completed at our standard rate of $60 per hour, or a set quoted price is available on larger projects.
Is Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) illegal or unethical?
SEO, when performed correctly is not unethical and is definitely not illegal. This misconception comes from the fact that there are quite a number of dubious operators out there, or “snake oil salesmen” as we like to call them, who give the industry a bad name. Done correctly SEO is both an ethical and highly effective form of marketing, simply because most people use search engines to find things, and most only look at the first few results – so thats where you need to be! We can’t promise though that your competitors won’t be upset when you start outranking them!
I’ve heard you should never pay for SEO, and it’s always better to do it yourself. Is this true?
Interesting question! We look at it this way… with most things in life, if you are really passionate about them and invest significant amounts of time into learning and developing the skills involved, you will most likely have some level of success. SEO is not rocket science, but there is quite a bit to learn, the industry is constantly changing, and it can be quite time consuming to implement. If you believe you could become passionate about SEO and have it become a hobby you invest a lot of time into, great. If however like most small business owners you have enough on your plate already, it’s much wiser to engage the services of a specialist. To give an analogy; just because you could lean to fix your broken toilet yourself, doesn’t mean you should!
I need help with something business or web related that you don’t list on your site – can you help?
Maybe – it doesn’t hurt to ask! Please don’t hesitate to contact us. We might just surprise you, and if we can’t help, it’s likely we will know someone who can.