Web design- first client. 11 replies

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ds girl

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30th December 2008

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#1 10 years ago

Hey guys!

I don't know whether you know already, but I am in my last year at sixthform and will hopefully be studying web design at uni next from september time this year if I meet my offer.

I have been asked by a relative if I would be interested in designing a new site for their choir group, with potential to get a little bit of money for it. This is my first major 'real' project if you will. In the past it has been for free.

My questions go as follows:

1. It is very informal, as the client is obviously related to me. I want to arrange a time for the main reps of the group to get together and talk about it, and draw up a actual spec of what they actually want, rather than just going through one person- is this a good idea?

2. Although it is informal, would it be a good idea to draw up a basic contract, just to get in the habit of it- if so, what would be good for it to contain?

3. Tick box or signiture?

4. Meetings- what is the standard, 'done' thing? I have had a basic, informal one just chatting about it, but would like to draw up a spec to work to, and natuarally progress/hiccup/complete project etc.

5. I have talked to a variety of people in the field, and have wondered, more for the future, are designers/developers paid after completing a project? 50% after the spec? When it begins? Hourly?

6. ^ What do you do?

7. What are the best web hosts- naturally I want something that is reliable for the client, and doesn't have too much space limitations for me! Tried free ones in the past, but getting fed up of moving around due to downtime issues. Same goes for domains.

8. Any other good habits to get into?

9. Tips of the trade?

10. Updating- do you do it, or do clients via a easy cms?

I know its a relative, and lots of people have told me I'm thinking too deeply about it, but I just want to make sure everything runs smoothly, and everyone knows where they stand!

Thanks

smile.gif




Bs|Archaon

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#2 10 years ago

1: Yes, but be careful. Doing that is good as you get a wider range of opinions and ideas (one person's idea of a good website doesn't neccessarily mean anything), but at the same time because you'll have more input you'll have to decide if something is more important than something else etc, because you can't implement everything (and some ideas are just shit, to be fair). It might be an idea to limit the number of people you talk to, say a few with your relative as the 'contact point'.

4: Prototype it. Anything from paper through to a Photoshop design. If you do it with something like Photoshop then it's fairly easy to take your image and modify it into a basic webpage. If they don't like it then listen to what they want, modify it, take it back to them.

8:

a. For the love of god don't use Frontpage. For that matter, chances are on your course you won't use something like Frontpage or Dreamweaver anyway as they should be teaching you to code, not how to use a program that codes for you.

b. Get used to develop to W3C standards and validating your code. Test with multiple browsers (IE6/7, Firefox, Safari and Opera are all good bets).

c. Don't be afraid to to throw your own ideas in but at the end of the day remember that they're the client.

d. Don't take on more than you can chew...a functioning basic website is better than a website that tries to do something more advanced but doesn't work.

e. Going off on a tangent, offers don't really matter for getting to Uni. They only matter if you've got somewhere specific in mind that you want to go; it won't be a top Uni but you can get on a degree course with two Es, and to be honest if you can't meet that then you probably shouldn't be thinking of going to Uni for 3 years to start with. But then even if you don't, that's what college is for - either for a web design course or to get a qualification that allows you to go to Uni.




GateCrusher420 VIP Member

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#3 10 years ago
ds girl;47495791. It is very informal, as the client is obviously related to me. I want to arrange a time for the main reps of the group to get together and talk about it, and draw up a actual spec of what they actually want, rather than just going through one person- is this a good idea?

Indeed it is. Get the opinion of as many people as possible. It will not only give you ideas for the site, but will also narrow down your "selection" of stuff to put in it.

2. Although it is informal, would it be a good idea to draw up a basic contract, just to get in the habit of it- if so, what would be good for it to contain?

What do you mean by a contract? As in something that someone would agree upon? If it's a one time deal, where u make it, and they update it, you don't need one. If it's one where YOU would be doing the updating, I would recommend it. Cause if you're getting paid for it, and they wanna screw you over, well...theres a contract there.

3. Tick box or signiture?

On what grounds is this related?

5. I have talked to a variety of people in the field, and have wondered, more for the future, are designers/developers paid after completing a project? 50% after the spec? When it begins? Hourly?

Thats a good question. Go with what you feel. Of course, as you progress and climb through the ranks of web tech (i.e. web design...be it HTML => Flash) you can change your prices accordingly. Generally, there is an upfront fee for something to keep the designer from getting screwed over by the client...and then when you are finished. Hourly wages seem to turn off some people. Web Templates, Flash Templates, Website Templates Design - Template Monster Look at that site, thats a good place to figure out what to charge.

7. What are the best web hosts- naturally I want something that is reliable for the client, and doesn't have too much space limitations for me! Tried free ones in the past, but getting fed up of moving around due to downtime issues. Same goes for domains.

I've been with 1&1 Hosting for about 6-7 months. I've had no problems with them. They do have a contract system which can be a turn off for some, but other than that, it's a great host. And don't forget Google is your friend.

9. Tips of the trade?

DEFINETLY take your time. Well, not to long but you don't wanna rush yourself in making a template. If the client is lenient (spelling?), as you progress along going through the stages of the design, give the client a call or something and let him/her view it to see how it looks, and ask them if they would like any changes. Rushing yourself, is a guaranteed way to mess it up. If you're a little behind schedule, call ur friends and tell 'em you can't make it to tonights round of poker and put in a few extra hours.

10. Updating- do you do it, or do clients via a easy cms?

If they want some thing that is easy, go with a CMS. If they want a complete custom site based off of, well, no previous coding, go with the usual. A CMS template would involve images and knowledge of CSS. if you can do that, you're in business. If not, stick with HTML and what not




general_kerr

(Couldn't find a title)

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#4 10 years ago
1. It is very informal, as the client is obviously related to me. I want to arrange a time for the main reps of the group to get together and talk about it, and draw up a actual spec of what they actually want, rather than just going through one person- is this a good idea?

Planning Phase :thumbsup:

2. Although it is informal, would it be a good idea to draw up a basic contract, just to get in the habit of it- if so, what would be good for it to contain?

I'm only a teenager, Don't ask me on this one. :)

3. Tick box or signiture?

IDK what you mean

4. Meetings- what is the standard, 'done' thing? I have had a basic, informal one just chatting about it, but would like to draw up a spec to work to, and natuarally progress/hiccup/complete project etc.

IDK

5. I have talked to a variety of people in the field, and have wondered, more for the future, are designers/developers paid after completing a project? 50% after the spec? When it begins? Hourly?

IDK lol

6. ^ What do you do?

All of my web-sites are for me to own

7. What are the best web hosts- naturally I want something that is reliable for the client, and doesn't have too much space limitations for me! Tried free ones in the past, but getting fed up of moving around due to downtime issues. Same goes for domains.

Most Endorsed FREE Website Hosting Provider | Free Website Hosting I use them, low-downtime, very few limitations, you can use your own domain...

5GB of space 300GB of bandwidth PHP, sqlite, mysql(must activate) ETC ETC, they work for me.

Comes with a free subdomain

8. Any other good habits to get into?

Always being professional and never opening a site before its done.

9. Tips of the trade?

I don't sell my web-site making abilities so IDK

10. Updating- do you do it, or do clients via a easy cms?

Have the people your making the web-site for update their site! Its better for everyone involved!

lol my input ~Kerr




GateCrusher420 VIP Member

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#5 10 years ago
general_kerr;4752405I'm only a teenager, Don't ask me on this one. :) IDK what you mean IDK IDK lol

That's alot of IDK's.

All of my web-sites are for me to own

That isn't exactly what the OP asked.

Most Endorsed FREE Website Hosting Provider | Free Website Hosting I use them, low-downtime, very few limitations, you can use your own domain... 5GB of space 300GB of bandwidth PHP, sqlite, mysql(must activate) ETC ETC, they work for me. Comes with a free subdomain

Free hosting isn't good for some people. I've never been satisfied with free hosting. I mean if it's a pointless test site, yeah. But if it's something you actually wanna have up and running for the public to use and to show off some stuff.

I don't sell my web-site making abilities so IDK

Where did they ask about buying your abilities?

Have the people your making the web-site for update their site! Its better for everyone involved!

Again, that's not the best way for some people. Some people don't have the time to do it, others don't have the skill, others just want someone else to do it because they're to lazy. So not everyone can update their sites themselves.




general_kerr

(Couldn't find a title)

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#6 10 years ago

No Offense, But everything you just said was negative.

That's alot of IDK's.

Yes It Is, I Havn't ever done some things so I said that I don't know.

That isn't exactly what the OP asked.

I Was Saying That I hadn't made a web-site for someone else before. So I Can't put info there on that. EG Its another form of IDK

Free hosting isn't good for some people. I've never been satisfied with free hosting. I mean if it's a pointless test site, yeah. But if it's something you actually wanna have up and running for the public to use and to show off some stuff.

Have you tried them? here are a few SUCCESSFUL Web-sites that are on their FREE hosting: D3xt3r.net Bowen Lasers Cody Wilmoth RuneScapez.com :: Your EZ Guide to RuneScape iM1 MUSIC // ONLY THE HOTTEST JAMS! DesiDrop.com // Will Be Back Soon... http://yourgaminghubs.com/ general vegs site http://4morefun.com/ awallpaper - make wallpaper becomes beauty - Powered by CO.CC GreedyCrab.com// Funny Videos, Pictures, Articles, & More!

And MANY MORE sites are hosted there, they don't put ads on your pages, they don't require that you link to them, you can use yuor own domain with your account....

So just thinking free hosting == "BAD FOR REAL SITES" is VERY incorrect!

Where did they ask about buying your abilities?

Nobody did, It was another form of IDK Or "I Havn't Done that so I can't provide input there."

Again, that's not the best way for some people. Some people don't have the time to do it, others don't have the skill, others just want someone else to do it because they're to lazy. So not everyone can update their sites themselves.

It Depends on the nature of the site I guess, But sites that are updated often should be updated by the owner.

It was said that it was for a Choir group, so saying where they will be next or say adding an audio file of something they sung(I Don't know what your puting on the site) should be done by them.

I just want to sum up what the guy above me said:

.... That's alot of IDK's. .... That isn't exactly what the OP asked. .... Free hosting isn't good for some people. I've never been satisfied with free hosting. I mean if it's a pointless test site, yeah. But if it's something you actually wanna have up and running for the public to use and to show off some stuff. .... Where did they ask about buying your abilities? .... Again, that's not the best way for some people. Some people don't have the time to do it, others don't have the skill, others just want someone else to do it because they're to lazy. So not everyone can update their sites themselves.

Where "...." Is a quote from me.




Bs|Archaon

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#7 10 years ago

general_kerr;4756866And MANY MORE sites are hosted there, they don't put ads on your pages, they don't require that you link to them, you can use yuor own domain with your account....

So just thinking free hosting == "BAD FOR REAL SITES" is VERY incorrect!

Successful by what standard? Because you know them? Granted a website like the one she is making will never achieve much traffic because of what it is (only people that are interested and know the choir will go looking for it), but seriously when you list websites that cater to a (very very very) small niche and are based around graphical templates that are widely available on the internet it doesn't exactly fill me with confidence about their success. The only reason that their hosting is adequte is because as a generalisation there is nothing on them, just text and an odd image here or there.

What if the choir wants to post videos or audio of their performances? You're gonna run out of room bloody quick on "110mb free dot com". And that's before we get started on the need for them to be able to update the website easily by themselves...which probably means using a CMS...which means at the very least it'll need PHP and a database of some kind...which the majority of free hosts don't offer...and those that do are crap.




Sgt. D. Pilla

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#8 10 years ago

110mb.com have like 11GB of data I believe :P But still, I do agree that free hosts are shit, unless your free host is a mate or the like providing you hosting service on their paid host for free.

Such as I pay for Dreamhost, and I give my mates unlimited bandwidth, space, mysql, ftp accounts, sub domains, everythign I get, I give to them just for free. Downside for them is I control there account, i decide what happens, when the domain name renews etc, but im not an ass about it :D




GateCrusher420 VIP Member

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#9 10 years ago
general_kerr;4756866Have you tried them? here are a few SUCCESSFUL Web-sites that are on their FREE hosting: D3xt3r.net Bowen Lasers Cody Wilmoth RuneScapez.com :: Your EZ Guide to RuneScape iM1 MUSIC // ONLY THE HOTTEST JAMS! DesiDrop.com // Will Be Back Soon... Mega Gaming Headquarters - Home general vegs site http://4morefun.com/ awallpaper - make wallpaper becomes beauty - Powered by CO.CC GreedyCrab.com// Funny Videos, Pictures, Articles, & More! So just thinking free hosting == "BAD FOR REAL SITES" is VERY incorrect!

Paid for hosting = better...no ifs, ands, or buts. With paid hosting, there are no limits, most packages come with many things free hosting doesn't come with (multiple FTP accounts, more than one domain name, large amounts of sub-domains, a huge mailbox for e-mail accounts using the site's URL, no advertisements, main priority for support, etc. etc.). I've been using websites for years, and paid for hosting blows free hosting out of the water. I've used free hosting with Byethost and am now using paid hosting with 1 & 1. A complete difference. And what do you think is better, a paid for site that has it's own URL or one that is preferedname.hostingcompany.com? Or how about a co.cc domain? Lol, I'll pay for hosting any day. I'm never going back to free hosting unless it's for a muck around site that means nothing to me.

And MANY MORE sites are hosted there, they don't put ads on your pages, they don't require that you link to them, you can use yuor own domain with your account....

Yes, most if not all free hosts do that. But free accounts have very limited ammounts of bandwith (unless you purchase more), storage (again, unless you purchase more), server usage (unless you upgrade), and many other limitations. It's kind of like a Ferrari powered by a inline 4. Looks great on the ouside, but it's shit on the inside.

It Depends on the nature of the site I guess, But sites that are updated often should be updated by the owner.

But like I said before, not everyone is coding specialist. So sometimes, other people have to do it. I myself, have been helping a local club by keeping their website up to date. I check my email everyday looking for an update e-mail. Hopefully, soon (as I have been teaching them what they need to know) I'll be able to hand over the controls to them, so I can spend more time on my site.

It was said that it was for a Choir group, so saying where they will be next or say adding an audio file of something they sung(I Don't know what your puting on the site) should be done by them.

Well, lets say the director (or whatever he/she is called) doesn't know anything about website coding. What would you do? Make he/she do it, or help out and add it?

Where "...." Is a quote from me.

Because the post was directed at you. From what I saw, you provided little to nearly no help what so ever to the OP. Now before this thread gets more off topic and/or gets more out of hand, please send me a PM if you have anything to say about what I posted. That way this thread stays on topic and doesn't get into a flame fest.

What if the choir wants to post videos or audio of their performances? You're gonna run out of room bloody quick on "110mb free dot com". And that's before we get started on the need for them to be able to update the website easily by themselves...which probably means using a CMS...which means at the very least it'll need PHP and a database of some kind...which the majority of free hosts don't offer...and those that do are crap.

If they want ease of use, they're going to need to use a CMS. Popular ones are e107 (my personal favorite, which I know the most about), PHP-nuke, Joomla, and many others. One install of a CMS plus all of the stuff you put one there in the beginning (i.e. admin accounts & PW's, the pages, the text, the links, etc.) will take up probably 20MB when done (depending on the size of the site. 20MB is actually quite large for a starting site). That doesn't include the many plugins that will go on, along with themes, codecs, etc. etc. etc. which can take massive ammounts of resources. Yes, free hosts are good, to some extent, but you won't get the best from it. A low priced hosting account (between 2-5 dollars a month) can easily cover everything thats needed, and you will most likely get a free domain name with it. If not, it's about 10 bucks a year for one depending on where you get it.

110mb.com have like 11GB of data I believe :P But still, I do agree that free hosts are shit, unless your free host is a mate or the like providing you hosting service on their paid host for free.

Then why is it 110mb.com? Lol. Should be 11GB.com then.




Bs|Archaon

I would die without GF

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#10 10 years ago
GateCrusher420;4758214If they want ease of use, they're going to need to use a CMS. Popular ones are e107 (my personal favorite, which I know the most about), PHP-nuke, Joomla, and many others.

Joomla's my pick out of the ones I've used, although I've never tried e107. That said for some reason I prefer Mambo over Joomla despite Mambo being older and how similar they are. I've no idea why, I just do.




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