Blog Design and Development FAQ

We mention on our front page that we design it, code it, install it and support it – and we do! But what does that mean for you, really? We hope that this page of FAQ will answer some of your burning questions and give you some insight into our process of creating your custom blog and/or site.

How Much Does it Cost?

Through the years of providing quality blog designs and web site designs to hundreds of our clients across the great world wide web – we’ve found one thing to be a complete certainty: not one single project is the same as the next and each project is individual to the needs of the site owner.

We have tried the route of “package pricing’ and found that 9 times out of 10, our packages don’t fit what people are looking for, requiring us to adjust the packages we’ve had listed.

Based on what you communicate to us about your site, what you need, how much content you’re expecting to have, graphic/logo design, custom illustrations, etc – we will be very happy to provide you with a detailed estimate for your project. Again, as stated above – our request form is the best place for you to start the process with us!

How Do I Get Started?

Our Request Form is the best place to start the wheels in motion.

We want to hear your ideas, and we’ve designed our request form in a way that helps you communicate your ideas clearly, hitting the main points of what you’re looking for, by asking you pertinent questions. When we receive the results of your request form submission, we take the time to review it, and will ask you any questions to clarify anything we need to, with the goal of making sure we cover every base possible before getting started.

We ask you questions about the look and feel you’re going for, color schemes, layout, use of imagery and examples of sites that you like. These examples help give us an idea of your design tastes, however, we will not copy any designs of sample sites you provide, so please do not ask us to – this is only a tool for us to get a feel for your design likes and dislikes.

Also, please take a moment to read our Terms of Service – it contains some useful information. Reading and understanding our Terms of Service can go a long way to avoid common misunderstandings down the road.

How Long Does it Take?

As a general rule of thumb, our designers work hard to provide your site in a timely and efficient manner. Typically, we target for a turn around time of approximately 30 business days for completion (this excludes weekends and US holidays).

However, understand that this is an estimated time frame. Building your custom designed blog and/or website is a detailed process – once the graphic design portion is completed, it still needs to be coded and styled, implemented and tested. This process can take anywhere from 20 days to 2 months, depending on the complexity of your needs. Your designer will be able to give you a turnaround time at the time of your order, based on your needs. On average, we are completing projects on a 20-30 business day time line.

We process our orders on a first-come-first-serve basis. Our estimated turnaround time may fluctuate and change depending on the amount of client projects we have in our active queue. Our turnaround time is not always a reflection on how long it takes to create and design your project, rather a reflection on the amount of active projects we currently have in our queue. When you submit your order – your project gets accepted and placed into our queue for completion.

Due to the current demand for our services, we are unable to accept ‘Rush’ jobs without a 45% markup on over all design project fees. This increase in fees makes up for the amount of overtime our designers would need to work in order to accomplish your project sooner than our quoted time line.

Will You Customize Existing Themes?

Yes – we often get requests to tweak an existing theme. This could mean one of many, or several, things like creating a custom header graphic or logo, adding different features to an existing site, changing out colors or formatting, etc. We work with several different premium theme providers, such as:

In terms of upgrades – yep, we do that too. Sometimes CMS platforms will release an upgrade and we realize it can sometimes seem a daunting, and sometimes intimidating task, to upgrade a web site or blog, especially one with extensive customization or content. Let us know what you need – whether it’s a full platform upgrade, or plugin upgrades or installations!

Do You Provide Hosting Services?

ba125You bet we do! We own and operate our own blog hosting division called Blogs About Hosting where we proudly host over 500+ client websites and blogs.

Our hosting services have a strong focus on blogs and bloggers – being bloggers ourselves, we fully understand the specific and unique needs that face bloggers today.

We also offer affordable domain registration services – check us out! Clients hosted with us at Blogs About Hosting receive an automatic 10% off all design fees — now THAT’S a deal! (in order to get the discount, you will need to sign up for hosting before placing your order)

What Happens After I Submit my Order?

Once you’ve clicked the “Submit” button on the order form – a new ticket is automatically created in our Client Desk. You will receive a confirmation email that the order has been entered in our Client Desk, with a link that will allow you to access your project information.

Orders are processed during business hours only. (Hours: Mon. – Fri. 11am – 8pm – excluding US holidays – CST). Once your order is received and reviewed – you will receive a confirmation and detailed cost estimate of your order via email.

This confirmation and estimate will include a review of your design specifications, the items that are included in the project estimate and an approximate time frame for project completion.

All blog design and/or website design projects are billed up front – and the time frame for completion of your projects starts from the date of payment.

Projects are not placed in our completion queue until invoice payment has been made. For orders that exceed $2000.00, we will enter into a 50/50 payment agreement where you pay 50% up front and then the remaining 50% just prior to the final launch of your new site on your domain.

All payments are accepted via PayPal or Google Checkout. For orders that exceed $1000.00, a 3% payment processing fee is attached, to cover the fees we get charged by those companies. You always have the option of paying us by business check, or bank draft, via US Mail – however that does sometimes slow down the process of starting your project. Talk to us about your payment options – we’re pretty flexible!

What Happens After I Pay You?

The following are steps we take in your blog design or website design process once your project payment has been received (Our payment terms are typically 50% up front, upon execution of our agreement – with the remaining 50% due just prior to launch of your new web site on your domain.):

  1. Development of the overall concept and layout of your design work, based on the specifications you have given to us in the order form you filled out. This phase may also require further communication with you to nail down all of the specifics or clarify anything we may have questions on.
  2. Creation of the custom graphics that make up the foundation of your blog design, including the header graphics, any navigational graphics, button, banners, etc.
  3. Your designer will provide you with a graphical mock up of the design work they have completed for your project. A maximum of two design revisions of the graphic composition will be included at no extra cost to create the visual look and feel that is desired. The original graphic mock up is created based on the specifications that you have provided to us in your original order form. The second mock up can either build and expand upon the concepts presented, or you can request a completely different look than the one we originally presented.
  4. It is important to know that our designers create your design based on the specifications you’ve provided to us (i.e. color scheme, number of columns in the layout, use of artwork/imagery,etc) – so it is important for you to be as specific as possible in your original request so that we are able to provide you with just the look you’re going for. Further revisions may incur additional fees.
  5. Creation of the custom style sheet (CSS) that makes up the foundation of the format and layout of your blog/site design
  6. At this point, the graphic design phase is complete and the really fun part begins! Putting the graphics and code together to make it a fully functional theme, compatible with the blogging platform of your choice. (At this point of the project, if you require further revisions to the graphic design work that you did not mention earlier, the project may be subject to additional fees).
  7. We perform the above phase on a development domain that we own. We use that domain to work on client projects. On the estimated completion date of your project, you will receive an email from your designer with that domain information and necessary login information so that you can login and review your design work. The project will be a fully functional blog set up for you to review in a ‘live’ environment, click around and see how the different elements work (and look) together.
  8. Once we have received final approval from you on the your new theme – we will then install the custom blog design or website design on your domain for you. After that is completed, we review the work with you and when you’ve given the final OK, you will then receive a “Project Sign Off” notice from us with all the notes and instructions you will need to utilize your templates.
  9. Minor updates and changes to your project is allowed for up to three (3) days from the completion of the blog design or website (this includes up to a half-hour per page total). Minor updates, changes, modifications and/or revisions to the blog design or website after the 3 day period will may incur additional fees .

I Broke My Site …. HELP!?!

We are available to provide design fixes, yes. However, if your project is more than 3 days past the final sign off – Any additions or fixes after the fact will incur additional fees . We always, always recommend keeping a back up copy of your new templates on your own computer. That way – if you add something fun and exciting to your blog – but then load it and it doesn’t load correctly, you can restore your template back to working form.

Do You Provide Training?

We are very happy to point you in the direction of useful resources that exist on your chosen platform in order for you to read and learn about the technology you’ve chosen to use for your web site. We do not provide ongoing training or endless support on your platform of choice, however.

In regards to your specific design project, we are happy to answer each and every one of your questions regarding your design work through our communication with you in our Client Desk until you are satisfied that we are able to meet the needs, and requirements, of your individual project

Additionally, e-mail consultation, for established client projects, is provided to you free of charge – Up to three hours total general blog orientation and design consultation is included in the initial quote. Additional education and consultation is billed at our normal hourly rate.

Under some circumstances, Lisa Sabin-Wilson is available for on-site training for business gatherings, conferences and workshops. For specific requests – please contact us directly.

Can We Get on The Phone?

Pre-sales Phone consultations regarding your site plans and design are available with Lisa Sabin-Wilson, our lead designer. Due to the sheer volume of requests for consults, the fee for the phone consultation is $75.00 and covers up to one hour of consultation time. The phone consultation fee will be deducted from your overall project fee, should you decide to give E.Webscapes the honor of designing your new project.

If you choose not to have E.Webscapes design your project, the phone consultation fee is non-refundable. Please indicate on your order form that you would like a pre-sales phone consultation.

Phone consults are provided to discuss the details and plans, during the course of your active project at no additional charge, if we agree that a phone call is warranted to communicate effectively.

Do You Do Spec Work?

Every once in a while, an individual or organization will give us their specifications and ask us to design up some composite work for them first – then they can view it and decide if they like it. If they like it – they’ll pay us for it, if not – we don’t get paid. This concept is referred to as ‘spec work’ and E.Webscapes does not provide spec work, under any circumstances.

Will You Work for Free for Our Non-Profit Charity?

Generally, we do not do free or charity work for individuals or organizations. Occasionally, depending on the cause or event, E.Webscapes does provide sponsorships to events or charities through several different methods, feel free to contact us directly with your ideas!

Will You Come Speak at Our Event?

Lisa Sabin-Wilson frequently speaks at tech events on the topic of WordPress, BuddyPress, Blogging and Design and is always very interested in great events where she can share some of her experiences and knowledge. Lisa is limited on the number of events she can schedule in a year, so your best bet is to contact us directly as early as possible to book her as a speaker at your next event!

Lisa is always flattered by requests for interviews and guest blogging and generally accepts all requests that come through. Please contact us directly with your ideas.

Do You Do Print Work?

We used to do print work by providing business card, brochure, letterhead, etc – layout and printing services. However, we no longer provide those services at this time. If you have a particular need, please do mention it and we will see what we can do for you.

What About Social Media?

Are you kidding? We love social media (you can find us on Twitter: @EWebscapes) and can help you on your way to social media success by helping you integrate your social media memberships on your web site and/or blog – - and vice versa — just let us know that this is something you’re interested in doing! We do contract with some highly skilled agents who focus on social media and search engine marketing, as well – just ask if this is something you’re interested in exploring for your web site project.

Are you ready? Then please visit our Design Order Form and submit your blog design or website design specifications to receive a detailed cost estimate and time line for your project!