Before we jump into any website project, we start with the basics. Your domain name. We will help find you the perfect domain for your business and will discuss if you may need more than one domain for your website. If you already have a domain registered with another company, that’s perfectly fine! We can work with any domain registered at any domain registrar. If you chat with us first, we can get your domain, hosting, and website all set up with one provider, making your website life simple! It’s also possible to have multiple domains “parked” at one website. Sometimes this is for marketing and SEO reasons, or sometimes it’s because of your region and target market. Often, we’ll try to get a shorter version of a website domain to make email addresses and website URLs simpler to read and write. For example, we own both getoso.ca as well as getosocreative.com.
Webhosting is often more important to your web developer than you! A good webhost will have daily automated backs which protect you against hacks and loss of emails or website files while a poor webhost usually results in hours of frustration. Put simply, your webhost is the computer/server which manages your website, along with all the software, tools, control panels, and web support that goes with it. Here at OSO Creative, we re-sell webhosting from the best webhost in the world (in our opinion!). You get their 24/7 support plus our daily support on top of that. We set everything up for you and then give you full access. This means you don’t have to do anything, but at the same time, you’ll never have to fight to get access to your website, hosting, or domain. You’re free to switch providers at anytime without any silly extra charges or fees. We have a number of fantastic webhosting packages available which include webmail services.
Once your domain and hosting are set up, we begin custom designing your new professional business website. Typically, the look and feel of your website should match your existing branding, logo, color schemes, and print collateral. If you have a new business and don’t have a logo or branding yet, don’t sweat! We can help with that. If you have a logo but maybe you’re not super happy with it, a website build is a great time to revisit that logo design. The goal is to have everything consistent across your marketing materials. We aim to capture the feel and culture of your company in your website’s design. Nearly half of people consider the design of a website to be the most important factor when determining the credibility of a company, so it’s important to look sharp! The website design and site map (navigation and layout) is discussed thoroughly before we begin building.
The majority of our websites since 2015 are built within the WordPress platform, as discussed on our WordPress Training page. As we build your website, if you have your website content ready, we will add it in for review. If not, we use filler text and images and then swap these out after you’ve reviewed your website and have content ready. Once you’ve reviewed your new website, we work on any revisions or remaining components and once you’re happy, we launch the website live. This often means swapping from an old website to a new one. This process is done carefully as to not have any downtime during development, as well as communication with Google through the proper tools so that no SEO ranking is lost. Your old pages are permanently redirected to the new URLs and new sitemaps are submitted to Google as well. Once this process is done and your website is live to the world, we do a 60-90 minute WordPress training session, either in person with the computer you will normally be using, or over the phone for those clients not the in Calgary region.
These days, SEO, or Search Engine Optimization is a fairly broad term, referring to nearly anything that helps your website rank higher or drive traffic and leads. This includes paid ad campaigns to social media to online directories and blog posts. While we are happy to help with any of those strategies, when we add our SEO Foundation package to your website, it involves researching your industry, services, competitors, and region and implementing relevant key phrases throughout your website in proper, non-spammy techniques. We have a number of best practices we follow when building and launching new websites to help get to started on Google and set the proper foundation for your website to be successful when you apply other SEO strategies to your website marketing. This process is done as we launch your website, but can also be added in to an already complete website that another designer may have built for you. Just ask us if you have any questions about SEO!
By this point, we’ve helped pick out and register your domain name, set up a webhosting package and email addresses. We’ve created a site map and designed your website. We’ve fully built out this website and implemented an SEO package. We’ve launched your new website live and trained your how to update and manage your website content within the WordPress platform. This process may take anywhere from two to six weeks depending on availability and client feedback times. We typically aim for a month from initial deposit to website going live. Rush projects are possible, depending on the specifics. As for payment, we ask for 50% up front and 50% on completion, although we have a variety of payment options available if needed, as well as actual website financing through a 3rd party company, allowing you to pay over 12-36 months. We understand the financial struggles that small businesses have to deal with, so we try to be as open, honest, and flexible as possible.
A website is always a work in process – once it’s done and live, you should still be updating it as often as possible. Your website should always be up to date with new and relevant content. While we provide training on how to manage your own website, often clients may not be interested in doing it, or simply don’t have the time. We are available to do on-going website updates and maintenance on any websites we have developed. There is also technology, themes and plugins which occasionally need to be updated or upgraded. We are here as your web support. We try to keep an ongoing relationship with our clients and encourage them to come to us if they have any questions or need any help. We also have a number of website and support packages available to help with the upkeep of your online business.