So everybody’s got a great idea for the web, it’s new, simple and going to make tons of cash. Well here at TD we can build it for you, exactly how you want it, as long as we know exactly how you want it. Sometimes, it’s easy, we’ve been around a while and we can fill in a lot of blanks, but sometimes, you need it your way, and nobody knows your way but you. So, how do you get that idea from your cranium to the web? It’s not easy but hey this is the big one right?
Step 1. Break it down
Sounds easy enough, but even if your idea is simple, making it function the way you want sometimes isn’t. Break it down into big sections, then take a page and break down each big section into smaller sections, rinse and repeat until you’ve got it to a molecular scale or your pen runs out of ink.
I’m going to give an basic example, an e-commerce site, we’ll call it Jimmy’s Hats, and we’re going to sell the newest coolest hats on the market. Let’s start by listing the big sections. We’ve basically got 2 areas, the public side, where all the shoppers shop, and the private side, where you can check your sales and ship those hats.So in this example I’ll break down the public side then take it down to the Storefront page.
I. Private Site
II. Public Site
Â Â Â A.Home Page
Â Â Â B.About the Hats Page
Â Â Â C.Contact Page
Â Â Â D.Storefront Page
Â Â Â Â Â Â 1.Display all products with paging, 9 products per page
Â Â Â Â Â Â 2.User can filter products by category, search, price range, top selling
Â Â Â Â Â Â 3.Show product image, product name, short description and price per product
Â Â Â Â Â Â 4.Users can sort ascending and descending by price, top selling and name
Perfect, we broke down the storefront page, and the team at TD will know exactly how you want it. Now obviously, that example is a pretty standard storefront, and depending on that picture in your head you may want to write down even more. If you want a pink border around your product pictures, we’ll give it to you. Just let us know.
2. What’s your design type?
Web design is just like fashion, it’s always changing, sometimes it’s gorgeous and sometimes out pops a fanny pack. In order to give you the site that appeals to you, we need your “design type”. Some people like the “jeans and a t-shirt” site, a site design that’s timeless, clean, and not too fancy, while some people like the “disco suit” site, it’s trendy and hip, but soon to be on the clearance rack. We’ve got our type, but we’re not the client, you call the shots. You want a dancing baby on a neon yellow background? You got it! (Trust me we’ll beg you not to, but we’ll do it, please don’t make us do it…please). If you need some inspiration, just ask us, we’ll help you out.
Nobody likes talking about the budget, but it’s about that time. For many startup’s the most difficult part is obtaining funding, or obtaining enough funding. Let’s assume that you’re working with a VERY limited budget. If you’ve got money to burn jump right past this section or head over to paypal and send me some. Here at TD we’d love to do you a big favor and pop out your project free of charge, but we also like things like electricity and food, so we’ll need to find a middle ground. There’s a couple ways you can get your project completed on budget.
I. Sacrifice Quality. Take the project to your friends kid, or some of the other firms in the valley (you know who you are). It’s possible they can get it done right for cheap. The downside? More often then not, they don’t. We’ve seen a lot of clients come in, get a quote and go elsewhere. We’ve also seen LOTS of those clients come back 6 months later with half their budget gone and nothing to show. It’s a sad situation, and unfortunately it’s more common than you think. You get what you pay for rules apply.
II. Sacrifice Time. Pick up a book, start reading about classes, threads and relational databases. Just kidding, short of doing it yourself, there actually are a few ways that you can use your own time to save some money.
Create your own content.
We can provide your site content for you, but it’s timely and you know your company and product better than us, so get writing!
Enter your own products.
Unless otherwise stated our e-commerce sites allow you to add and edit your products. You can save money by opting to enter them yourself. (It’s easy) Extend your timeline.. If you need your project completed in 3 days we’ll try, but espresso and hot pockets cost money and expedited rates may apply. Sometimes we can actually skim a few bucks off, just by extending your timeline.
III. Break it down. This is probably the best way to get going on a budget. Take a look at the list you made in step 1. What are your mission critical items, what can wait? Maybe you don’t need that Mercedes class website to start, maybe just a daily driver Honda will start the money flow. Sometimes those items are easy to scratch off, the horoscope generator, the Onion RSS feed, etc. but maybe you’re picky like me you want it all. Look at the items again, maybe there’s something that can be simplified. Would a contact form work just as well as an automated quote generator for now? Working on a budget can be tough but Google didn’t let you map your house from space, or view any video on the web when they started, there was just a search box.
Wrap it up already
Well that’s all I’ve got for now, hopefully some of my tips hit home and I wish you the best of luck in your venture!