Thinking of working with The Paige Studio? This is what you need to know
Getting your website deigned is both an exciting move forward for your business, and a big undertaking.
Every web designer you meet will have a different process, turnaround timeline, prices, payment terms, design style, etc. The list goes on and on. Understandably, it can be a long process to find a designer who is the perfect fit.
When I chat with potential clients, there’s a common list of questions that come up.
With every aspect of my design studio, I try to make the process as simple, and headache-free for clients as possible.
In an effort to make deciding if I’m the right fit for your project an easy choice, I thought I’d unload all of the answers to common questions in one post. I’m of course still happy to chat with you if you’d like more info, but I know a great deal of potential clients like to get the info quickly online without having to pick up the phone.
Ready to learn all about working with the studio?
Perfect! Let’s start!
“I hear you design a website in 2 weeks? … How do you do it? How good of quality is a 2-week website?”
Great question! This is a very frequent one as the 2 week process is pretty unique.
It’s true, I will take you from website-dreaming to website-launching in just 2 weeks! My clients websites are live on the 2nd Friday we work together, ready for their site visitors to admire & enjoy it.
Yep, I can already see the questions bubbling up. To settle your fears on the quality, I invite you to take a peek at some 5-star happy past client reviews, and my portfolio to see just how fab a 2-week website can be!
How exactly do I do it? It’s quite simple really!
Most web designers take on a handful of projects (4-6 is the norm I’d say) at a time, and juggle the different clients and projects all at once. Projects tend to take anywhere between 4 - 10 weeks to complete, with many running over the estimated timeline.
I made the decision to throw the norm out the window, and implement a 2 week process, where I give my undivided attention to one client at a time.
(Because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love undivided attention, am-I-right?! Or maybe that’s just the middle-child syndrome in me speaking...?)
As you can imagine, I’m able to fly through a website at a much faster rate when I just have one project to dedicate my time and attention to. My current clients emails always lift to the top of my inbox, and get my fastest response.
If we need to get on the phone to discuss something, they don’t need to schedule in between my super-packed calendar of other appointments and chat with me 2 or 3 days away, we get on the phone in a matter of minutes or hours.
I often have other designers asking me how I manage to never have a project drag on, and get everything done in that short timeframe.
Think of it like this; remember those papers in university? We had 2 months to write them, and they only got done in the last 2 days. That’s just the way we humans are. We get stuff done when it needs to get done.
A frequent challenge of web design is getting a list of desired site edits back. Of course due to human nature, when someone has a week to give a list of edits, they take the full week. Everyone does it. Things become our priority when time is ticking down to the wire.
I won’t just place the blame on clients however, if given 3 weeks to design a site, I’d likely do little bits throughout the first two weeks, but then really get down to the wire to complete it in the final days. That’s life.
When clients have their own designer for just 2 weeks, and I just have one client for which I need to build an amazing site for in just 2 weeks, the web design project is a priority for both of us. We arrange our time accordingly.
After I build out the full site in the first week, my clients always get their requested website edits back to me lightening-fast.
I don’t limit my clients to any number of website edit revision rounds, they get as many as they’d like, our only deadline is our 2 weeks design period. The faster they get the edits to me, the more edits they get!
It’s an extremely effective way of doing things, and past clients have always been perfectly satisfied their website is edited to perfection when they go to launch.
My clients LOVE having a set launch date, they can plan their new marketing campaign or business grand opening and know with absolute certainty that their site is going to be ready on time.
Not to mention, they don’t have this massive project on the back of their mind for weeks or months. It’s started and completed quickly, so they can focus on other areas of their business, not divide their attention between a zillion competing demands at once.
My clients love the 2 week process. I love the 2 week process. It’s safe to say that it’s here to stay! My clients and I wouldn’t have it any other way! You’ll love it too once you experience it, promise.
‘Whats my role as a client in the project? What do I need to do? How much time should I expect this to take up?’
Another goodie! As an overall value, I try to make the website process as headache-free and as simple as possible for clients. Here’s a look at what the tasks of a client involves.
Before our 2 week design date: Complete the client homework (complete the design questionnaire, make a Pinterest inspiration board and compile photos & copy into a Google Drive folder).
The design questionnaire and Pinterest inspiration board takes less than an hour to complete, (plus this part is really fun)!
For dragging all of your photos into a Google Drive folder, this depends on how organized you are with your files, anywhere from 5 mins to an hour.
The amount of time needed to write out the site copy varies a lot depending on if you already have an existing website. For clients who want their copy the exact same as a current site, they just skip this step and I take the copy straight off of their existing site. For those who have existing copy but want to edit it a little, it’s normally up to an hours worth of work. For clients that need to write copy from scratch, the amount of time depends on the number of pages on their site, but if I had to guess I’d say 4-5 hours is normal. Total: 1 hour - 7 hours.
Week 1 Monday: Initial consultation call for 1 hour
Week 1: Almost no time or effort is required from clients here. In this week I build the entire site out, so clients can kick up their (super cute) heels and relax. 0 hours.
Week 2: This is when edits may be requested. You’ll be sent a link to the site and can browse through the site normally on a computer, phone, or tablet. You then write a list of site edits and email it to me. This takes about 30 mins per list of edits. Some clients send just 1 email with edits, others send 5. It depends on the person as well as the size and complexity of the site.
Week 2 Friday: LAUNCH DAY! We hop on a 1.5 hour call for a lesson & to launch the site.
First, I run you through a full lesson on the backend of your Squarespace site. We aren’t looking at an example site, we’re looking at the real back end of your site, so I teach you overall how to use your site, update and edit it, as well as focus on areas that are especially important for you.
For example, if you blog, I’m going to take a lot of time on the backend of the blogging section and talk a lot about arranging and organizing blog content, whereas if you run an e-commerce store I’ll spend more time on showing you how to add, edit and rearrange products on your site. It’s a fully tailored lesson.
Then, we link up any bits of functionality (eg. social media links, your email list system, appointment scheduling system, etc.) I give you advice on picking the perfect Squarespace plan thats right for your needs, and link up your domain for you while we’re on the call together. You then go live to the world and we’re all done! (Through-the-computer-screen champagne popping is highly encouraged!)
How easy is that, right?!
‘Do you offer monthly maintenance plans or monthly support plans?’
No, because you honestly would be paying me for doing a whole lot of nothing.
With WordPress websites, yes, having a developer on call is highly useful, with a Squarespace site that’s really not necessary. The Squarespace team in NYC takes care of system updates, confusing security things, and adding new site functionality. You pay once a month or annually to them for your Squarespace plan, and they take care of the rest.
Past clients (even the ones who labeled themselves ‘a technical nightmare’) are able to edit site content, swap out photos and create new pages themselves. After our lesson, you’ll be a confident Squarespace user!
'Can I hire you hourly in the future?'
You sure can!
If you need some fancy new site functionality, a new complex page design, or want some business cards designed, by all means shoot me an email and we can make that happen.
I do this type of work at an hourly rate. In your email you’ll let me know what you want done, I’ll let you know how many hours it will take, the price, and the date I can complete it on.
For small tasks I generally get to them in a couple days. While I only do 1 full site design at a time, I am able to work on small tasks like whipping up a business card design simultaneously alongside a full project, so you won’t need to wait until my next available design date for something small like this.
If you need something bigger done, we’ll find a date that works for you, and enables me to still dedicate myself properly to my current client.
‘What do I need to provide?’
You’ll need to provide your site copy (text), and photos. If you need some help crafting some fabulous copy, I can put you in touch with some wonderful copywriters. If you don’t have photos, the Welcome package you’ll receive upon booking will point you in the right direction to purchase or download copyright free photos online.
‘How will we communicate?’
Most of our communication takes place over email. We also have the 1 hour call at the start of our project, and 1.5 hour video call at the end of the project.
If we need to discuss something a little more complex, or you want to see a few options of a site edit, we can hop on a Google Hangout video call, I’ll share my screen and we can make those edits together, so you can give real-time feedback.
‘How difficult is site upkeep and maintenance?’
If you want to create your website, leave it and never touch it again, you’re all good, a Squarespace website is perfect for that. It requires no work on your part to keep it up.
If you want to edit prices on your site, expect to take 5 mins to do so. Want to change a photo? 2 mins. Want to change a gallery of photos? Maybe 30 mins.
All of these tasks you’ll be able to do yourself after our lesson, so you don’t need to email someone, and wait for them to read your email and then get around to doing the task.
If you forget how to do something I showed you in our lesson, you can look back at our screen-recorded video call to watch the steps over again.
‘Will my website be confusing and coded?’
The back end of a Squarespace website looks like this. See any code? Nope!
The back of your site will look a lot like the front of your site that visitors see. Except as you hover over areas of the page you’ll see little edit buttons come up.
Then it’s a drag and drop editor. Squarespace sites are built using ‘blocks.’ If you want another photo on the page you add an ‘image block,’ drop and drop it to where you’d like it to live, and click save.
On some clients websites I code quite a few things, on others I do no coding. In the case I do use code, I keep the coding to mostly the style and layout of the site, not so much the site content that clients might want to update later. I do it this way so that when a client takes the website over, it’s easy for them to understand and use, and they’re not seeing lines and lines of confusing gibberish.
‘Will I have to launch the site and link up the domain myself?’
Nope, I’ll be there every step of the way! We launch the site together on our 1.5 hour video call.
If your domain name was purchased somewhere else, I’ll link it up for you and do the confusing backend stuff with everything related to the domain.
If any phone calls need to be made to your domain name provider, I’ll make those for you so you don’t have to be the middle (wo)man relaying information between myself and your domain name provider.
Nobody in the history of forever liked to be the middle (wo)man in those types of situations, and believe me, I get that. I'll do it for you to make your life easy.
‘How many edits do I get?’
However many you’d like! There is no limit on the number of edits. We do however need to get your site launched on the 2nd Friday of the design period, that’s our only limit!
If you need we can make live edits while sharing a screen on our 1.5 hour call, though generally clients have all the edits they’d like completed well before this and it isn’t necessary. The option is there however if needed.
‘How do we start? When do I pay? Do we sign a contract?’
When you’re ready to get the ball rolling, complete the ‘Booking Inquiry’ form on the bottom of this page, and be sure to include your preferred design date. If you’re ready to get started right away, let me know in the form. If you want to chat first, let me know in the form and we’ll set up a call time.
Once you’re ready to book in, I’ll send you a link to a contract & a link to make your payment online. To save your preferred design date, you’ll pay 50% of your package price, and e-sign your contract. (No need to go buy printer ink and figure out how to work your scanner, you can sign it online).
Once you make your 50% payment and sign your contact, your preferred design date is saved with your name and becomes unavailable for anyone else to book. The 50% remainder is due on the last day of our design period (the 2nd Friday).