WordPress is a powerful open source content management system (CMS) used to build stunning Websites.
The most recent figures indicated that there are over 70 million WordPress sites around the world. It is free to use, deploy, and upgrade and has thousands of plugins and templates providing both power a flexibility while reducing the cost and deployment time of a new site.
The developers at Net Solutions have years of experience developing client sites with WordPress and accumulated knowledge and resources to deploy high quality websites.
Why should I use WordPress?
- Corporate Informative Website
- ECommerce Website
- Membership Website etc
- Community Website etc
- Photographic Website
- Portfolio Website
WordPress is perfect for Business Websites. It’s Open Source with room for expansion and is highly customisable, once only available in expensive enterprise. There is a reason why it has become so popular and taken over the market share, because it meets the demand of many users with its flexible framework to allow designers and developers to create and modify layouts and applications without the need of a huge budget.
The robust features have attracted many of the top brands including but not limited to: Time Magazine, Google, Facebook, Sony, Disney, LinkedIn, The New York Times, CNN, eBay, and more.
WordPress is open source which means it is free to use and the code is open for everyone to use. It is supported by a large group of volunteers majority of whom are WordPress consultants with active interest in growing and maintaining WordPress. You won't be locked in to using a proprietary system with no room to grow.
If you want someone experienced to set up your WordPress site, then our talented staff members are happy to help you get started. Our team have extensive WordPress experience, and we have custom developed many plugins and themes in order to meet unique demand of our clients.
How much will my WordPress site cost?
We've built many WordPress websites and costs ranged from under $2,000 to over $20,000. Providing an estimate is complex because you are always dealing with unknowns, features forgotten about, left out or not considered until some time into the development. Nobody wants to get ripped-off, so an estimate establishes a baseline based on a number of assumptions. If the assumptions are as expected then the final cost won't deviate too far from the estimate. We will always let you know early on in the project if there are any red flags.
We do our best to evaluate your needs and make an initial estimate of the time and materials required. It's important to note that we only use local resources, so all of our development is performed by experienced software engineers in Australia. But not everybody works this way, so if "cheap" is your primary goal, then we are probably not right for you. If you are looking for quality and experience, then read on
We provide you with a cost estimate based on your initial requirements for budget purposes and will issue an invoice for 30% a commencement deposit prior to starting the project
How does your development process work?
We qualify the requirements by further refining the estimate by gathering data and analysis of your business requirements. This requires some time and will provide a clear statement of works and more accurate final cost estimate.
We determine the type of theme required and the necessary software required to commence building your site. A theme is a collection of files that work together to produce a graphical interface with an underlying unifying design for a Website. The theme governs the way the site is displayed on various devices, such as Desktop PC's, Notebooks, Tablets, Phablets and Phones. The design of the theme therefore is one of the biggest decisions you will need to make when building a new website.
Custom Designed Theme
If you opted for a custom designed theme, that adds an extra layer in the development process and requires a mix of resources including graphic designers, project managers and software developers and the lead time needs to be significantly increased based on your scope. Net Solutions will drive the process and co-ordinate the resources required during the project design phase.
A specification needs to developed using Prototypes or Wireframes for all pages. This includes pages such as homepage, contact page, services page, testimonials page, blog pages or portfolios etc. Each page also needs to separate Prototype or Wireframe specification for each terminal device such as desktop PC’s, notebooks, tablets, phablets and phones. For 5 pages, you will typically require a specification containing 25 Prototypes or Wireframes. The scope will determine the number of pages and templates to produce the specification and a functional requirement. Once these have been produced, the design will shift into the development stage.
If you opted for a Pre-Designed theme there will be no need the design component. A choice of a pre-designed theme will be selected and used to develop the site. A link to a functional demo of three (3) pre-designed responsive themes will be sent to the client. Client is to select one of the three (3) themes to be used for their site. If none of the three themes are deemed suitable then a list of themes will be provided for the client to choose from.
The choice of theme will govern the visual look, features and configurable options available. Not all themes have the same level of options and features so decide wisely. Things to consider are:
- Features and Functions
- Changes to fonts and installation of custom fonts
- Changes to colours of fonts, sections and/or areas
- Placement of Widgets
- Header layout and placement
- Footer layout and placement
- Logo Placement and size
- Responsiveness and layout on different devices
All our development work is performed on a staging server, and we provide you with a private URL so you can track and see the progress of your site live.
We then work through configuration of your site and add your content. When you approve the completion of the work, we migrate the site live to our hosting platform as part of the handover.
Net Solutions will be able to provide Maintenance and ongoing Support, Training and Development if you need it. We can also provide advice on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) so that you can rank well on Google
Our Development Process in more detail
Phase 1Business Requirements
The project starts with a detailed understanding the business requirements, gathering data and analysis, It sounds like common sense, but surprisingly, it's an area that is given far too little attention. Many projects start with the barest headline list of requirements, only to find later the customer's needs have not been adequately understood
One way to avoid this problem is by producing a statement of requirements. To make this process easier we group the requirements into these four categories:
Functional Requirements – These define how a product/service/solution should function from the end-user's perspective. They describe the features and functions with which the end-user will interact directly.
Operational Requirements – These define operations that must be carried out in the background to keep the product or process functioning over a period of time
Technical Requirements – These define the technical issues that must be considered to successfully implement the process or create the product.
Transitional Requirements – These are the steps needed to implement the new product or process smoothly.
Phase 2Theme and Style
The theme governs how your site will look. Themes can be purchased off-the-shelf or can be designed from scratch. The cost difference between the two options is significant.
A custom designed theme starts from a clean slate and requires creative design, graphic design and wire-frames development for each responsive mode (phone, tablet, notebook, desktop etc). This process takes weeks and sometimes months to complete and requires a team of people.with various skills
A pre-designed theme may be a good choice if you have generic requirements or have a strict budget to work within. Pre-designed themes are purchased off-the-shelf and can generally be customised to,meet most requirements. They are already fully responsive and eliminates the need for a team of designers, so the effort, time and costs are greatly reduced.
When making a decision between a pre-designed or custom-designed theme, a good place to start, is to ask yourself, does your business require a unique site? If the answer to that is yes, then a custom designed theme is likely required. If not, an pre-designed theme may be a better choice
At this stage your Logo and branding also needs to be established
With the business requirements now understood we have a clear scope of works. Our developers now have to look at the software required to fulfil the requirements.
This process involves selecting and sourcing the right plugins and widgets for the job. Plugins and widgets may need to be sourced, customised and developed from scratch. This typically includes, but is not limited to:
Membership Subscriptions, Appointments, Calendars, Contact Forms, Shopping Carts and ECommerce Advanced Security, Social Integration, Bulletin Boards, Forums, Chat Support, Order Forms, Media Gallery, SEO Management.
Plugins and widgets can come free of charge, commercial that involves a license fee, or be custom coded which will require ongoing support. For complex sites this process may take several weeks or months of evaluation
The Development process starts here and happens behind the scenes. But this does not mean you cannot track the progress of your investment.
We manage our own hosting environments, so we setup a staging site with a private URL. You can visit the URL and visually see and your site while its being developed.. When it is safe to do so, we can give you login access so you can test and examine some of the features in more detail.
Our staging servers replicate our production environment so when we go live with your site, the migration process is seamless and the risk of finding any issues are greatly reduced
Configuring your site starts with your theme and layout. Implementing the right layouts, colours and fonts.
We then install and configure plugins and widgets. This takes time as each plugin and widget must work with one another and this does not always happen..We go through some vigorous testing to make sure they work as expected
For more complex sites, this activity extends to third party sites such as payment gateways, shipping gateways, mail subscriptions sites, social networking sites, and third party API's.
Getting all this implemented behind the scene takes time
During this stage we start working on your content. If you are supplying the content then we format your content, optimise any images as required. All images should be in high quality format
We migrate the development site to our production server and your new website is now live!
We install the post production plugins so your site is visible on your domain and is SEO ready
Our relationship does not end when we ‘go live’. We are able to provide WordPress training for your staff as required
We also provide a WordPress maintenance service. This is a pro-active service that ensures your site is running error free, by performing regular software updates, database optimisation, daily offsite backups etc. We consider this service almost mandatory these days so that the website remains highly secure and has the best protection available against hackers.