A new look with a new host

There’s been some talk lately on which web site platform to use. What it will cost, how long it will take so I thought I would jump on board and re-visit WordPress and setup a new site from scratch.

It’s as easy as ever when you know what you are doing and I have been able to halve my hosting costs each year. My needs are quite basic so costs are low already but I’m really happy with the end result.

If you need any help with a WordPress site, let me know and I can give you a hand for a great hourly rate and no long term commitment. I can also provide a fully managed service if that is what you prefer.

Coming soon … Should I use it?

What should you do when you have a new domain but you don’t have a website yet? Your website project is large and you have lots of ideas.

By the same token, you have a new business or product and you want to tell someone about it, or you have had your business cards printed and you don’t want your potential customers to receive an error message when they try to visit your website.

A coming soon or under construction page can provide your visitors with some basic information that they have found the right site, if done correctly it can help build excitement about a new product, service or business, but only if it’s for a short term.

If you’re final site is going to take weeks (or months) to build, you should consider either forwarding your new page to an existing location in your current website or using a free or low cost content management system to create a basic website very quickly which tells your customers something about your business.

There’s plenty of options out there and a web site need not take months to build unless it’s an e-commerce site. Even then, you can get the public site up and running quickly.

Am I over-engineering my website?

Just as with the adaptation “if you built it, they will come” the same should be considered for your online presence.

There is a fine line with delivering what you (or your client) needs today with trying to safeguard and future proof your technology choices. Time to market sometimes is sacrificed when trying to deliver a solution which meets every perceived eventuality.

With dozens, if not hundreds of applications available to you, how do you make the right choice for your business and then support you into the future. You need to ask yourself a number of key questions to help make the right first steps in your decision making;

What’s my scale? How many orders do I want a week or what’s the value of these orders?

If I must customise an application, will my customisation make it difficult to take on free (or licenced) upgrades when they are available from the vendor or community?

Has someone else already delivered my customisation and can I buy a plug-in to help me meet my business goals.

Do I need all these features today or can some of the functionality come later (someone may build it for you and you can leverage their development)

With these thoughts in place, try to select a platform which has a large array of plug-ins or 3rd party tools to extend the standard functionality as well as open architecture to allow for future integration opportunities.

My area for reflection

We all have a lot of thoughts every day. Some of these you’ll look back on and think ‘I wish I had written that down’ or ‘That didn’t come out as I planned’.

This will be my space for sharing some of these thoughts and observations online. I’ve always been keen to share my opinions and I hope that this area will become a source of information on my experience for others.

Generally, these posts will have a technology spin on them and how I have been using both paid and free tools to my advantage to navigate the digital world we live in.