Many clients request a website that they or an employee can update or change. Of course that is possible; but is it practical?
Contrary to what many believe, for a novice, changing even one sentence in a website is not a simple task. Changing a photo or illustration can be a nightmare. A traditional website is built with a language called HTML; in order to edit a sentence, the HTML must be changed. HTML can look very foreign and intimidating to learn. Colors and placement of text and images are controlled by another language called CSS, again something else to learn.
A site can be built using a CMS program, the CMS stands for Content Management System. The idea behind CMS is that a user can change the content of the site at any time. The system works great. However, there is a substantial learning curve before a new user can jump in and start using the system. Even though a user does not need to learn a computer language in order to change the site, a good deal of time is required to become competent with the system.
How much time? That depends on the individual. While the system is straightforward, it does take some time to understand. At the very minimum, it will take three to four hours of personal instruction. In addition, the new user will spend a good deal of time working through help files or seeking information on the Internet or consulting with an expert.
Since most users do not change a site on a regular basis, a lot of things are forgotten between changes and the user will need to refresh his or her memory. All time exhausting and expensive tasks.
So, is it really practical for you or an employee to learn how to change your site? Are you willing to devote the time to educate yourself or pay an employee to be educated?
Here is a real world scenario. A web designer creates a site with a Content Management System, installs it and starts to train the site owner or an owner’s employee. The first training session usually takes two hours. After a few days of experimentation, the new user has many questions and needs additional consultation time, typically another two hours. That is followed by calls for help over the next few weeks.
Since you or your employee do not change the site on a daily basis, often many things are forgotten when you go to make the changes. A call for help is next.
All of the above are services, as web designers, we are willing to provide – for a fee. My business philosophy has always been: “we are happy to do whatever a client is willing to pay us to do.” You have to ask yourself how much time and money are you willing to invest, in order to be able to change your site. Is it a good return on your investment?
If you need to spend an hour or more trying to remember or figure out how to change a photo or a paragraph of text in your site or spend several hours researching how to add a contact form and make it work, is that time well spent? Since web designers work with sites every day and keep up with the ever changing web technology, edits or additions to a site can be made in a timely manner at very reasonable costs.
I have several clients who have become very skilled in using a CMS, they put in the time needed to learn the system. However, even those clients need a helping hand now and then. Other clients spend countless, frustrating hours trying to edit their site, when I could do it for them in minutes and at a nominal fee.
The bottom line – it is often more economical to pay a web professional to make the changes for you.
I am happy to create a site for you that you can edit or I can do the edits for you as needed.
If you have any questions about your current or future website, give us a call for a FREE consultation.
800-598-4008 or 941-408-8859.