FAQs About Website Design and SEO
Coastal Web Services FAQ’s page is a great place to visit for our customer’s most common website design inquiries. If you don’t see your question below, please contact us and we’d be happy to answer it!
How often should I change my site’s web design?
That’s really a judgement call. Some of our customers have kept their design for as little as 18 months and others haven’t changed it for over 7 years. If you have a marketing budget, the average renewal time frame is around the 3-5 years period. After that time frame, a website may appear dated due to rapidly changing web technologies. Most clients move forward with a new design because the company is promoting a new product line or because they transitioned from residential to commercial services. However, most businesses switch because they desire a new look with the latest technology.
Why do some companies charge $1,000 for a website while others charge as much as $20,000?
That’s a good question. Would you buy your food at Bob’s Bargain Basement or would you feel more comfortable shopping at an establishment like Giant Foods or Wegmans? Some of the cheaper computer tech and web design companies come and go so fast that it’s hard to believe that someone would actually trust them with their time and money. On the other hand, you dont want to overspend for your website. I know of a company that charged over $100,000 for a website; the customer was clearly willing to pay for a top-of-the-line job. However, we could have completed that same project with equal or better results for under $10,000! The pricing really depends on the company and their technologies, the talent they use, the cost of their overhead, their pricing mentality, and their profit margins. When you are dealing with a professional website, always compare apples to apples! Also, ALWAYS make sure the company has sample sites to view as well as good references.
If I buy a website from your company, how long will it take to design the site?
We can have a custom-built website design completed in about 6 weeks. More often than not, it takes a little longer as we are usually waiting for text and pictures from our clients. If you find you are having a tough time writing text, we now offer text writing services!
Should I sign up for web marketing or SEO?
Web marketing is like a modern-day version of the Yellow Pages. It gets you in front of your potential customers, for the online community. The reason to sign up for this program is to increase business from your website. Basically, we will associate a few key phrases with your business in order to get your company listed as one of the top results on search engines. Then, each quarter we will add additional phrases and work on increasing your positioning. The longer you are in the program, the better your search engine ranking will become. We work with top-name search engines including Google.com, Yahoo.com, Ask.com and many more. However, if you built your site as a somewhat “glorified business card” and you don’t want or expect new business from it, this program is not recommended.
Can you guarantee me the #1 position on Google?
No. If a company makes you that promise, close your checkbook immediately! There are many fast and cheap web design companies out there that are just looking for a quick buck. If this is the case, you probably receive at least one e-mail a day offering you the chance to increase your search engine positioning. This is spam mail as well as a rip-off… beware!
What is the difference between organic marketing and PPC’s?
PPC’s are short for “Pay Per Click.” For example, let’s say you pay a search engine company (such as Google or Yahoo) to feature your business on the top right side of their search results page. If someone surfing the Internet clicks on your text advertisement, you will pay that search engine company a small fee. Organic marketing is where you adjust information on your website to create keywords which will in turn, better improve your search engine rankings. The advantage of organic marketing is that the changes you make to your website will be everlasting whereas PPC’s desist once you stop paying for the advertising.
Do I need website programming for my site?
Some sites do and some sites don’t. For example, if you wanted to feature a calendar on your website, you can very easily create it without website programming. However, if you desire a programmed calendar on your site, you will have many features and display options that may benefit you. For instance, if you want a user from your company to update your calendar quickly, easily, and on a regular basis, a programmed calendar is most likely your best option. A website with a “shopping cart” feature such as Amazon.com would also require programming. For more programming options, visit our programming page.
Why do you need our FTP information?
FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. It’s a method of transferring data files from one computer to another without damaging the data. We use your FTP information to update your website. In order to successfully do so, we require your web address/location, username and password.
Do I own my own domain?
Well, no one technically owns their domain. You pay a company to rent/lease that name. If you stop paying, you will no longer own that domain name (www.yourcompanyname.com). In addition, you want to make sure that your company is set up as the domain registrant with your company’s address and phone number. It’s wise not to register your company’s e-mail address in order to prevent spamming. Most importantly, be sure to keep track of your domain’s expiration date so that you may renew it on time if you wish to do so. You don’t want that address to become available to your competitors nor do you want to have to buy it back from companies who solely buy expired domains for profit. Although you may not fully own your domain, keep in mind it is YOU who is solely responsible for it!
Should I have Flash on my site?
That’s your call! Flash is a program that can place pictures, text phrases, advanced graphics, video, and sound into a presentation-esque format which effieciently gets your message across. Flash can apply to anything; from a simple video you recorded announcing a new product line to a complex, in-depth history of your company- your options are limitless! The down side is that Apple has removed flash compatibilty so you will just see a blank box on a mac based device.
Which server/web hosting company should I use?
It all depends on your wants and needs. You can either use one of the larger web hosting companies or a small, local company. Of cousre, both options have their advantages and disadvantages. One advantage of local companies is that they can easily be reached by phone to answer your questions or make corrections, whereas a larger web hosting company may take a bit longer to get back to you!
Should I host my site on a Windows or a Linux server?
One site Coastal Web Designs hosted in the past was that of the Harford County Farm Fair. We originally placed the site on a Windows server until we received a phone call saying the site was slow. After looking into the issue, our team couldn’t find anything wrong except that too many people were accessing the site at once. After switching it to one of our Linux servers, the site was loading quickly for all to see. After that experience, our company prefers to host sites on a Linux server.
Will you train me to update my own site?
Absolutely! If you prefer to update your own site we can provide on-site training at an hourly rate. If you later decide to no longer update your site, no problem! We’d be more than happy to take care of it for you!
If you have any questions that weren’t listed here or answered to your satisfaction, feel free to email us your website or computer training question and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!