It’s only natural that before engaging the services of any website designer, you may have questions. Below I have tried to answer as many of the common questions I am asked. Naturally, if you have another question not covered by the list, please feel free to get in touch with me and I can answer it for you.
How long does it take to design my website?
This very much depends on your needs, and the complexity of the website. You should allow at a very minimum 3 weeks if your website is fairly straightforward with just a handful of pages. More complex websites can take up to 8 weeks, which includes time for you to request revisions to the layout and loading all the text and graphics.
What platform will my website run on?
I use two different platforms to build websites, WordPress and SiteJet. Both are excellent platforms, but depending on your needs, I will use one or the other.
WordPress is perfect for more complex sites that require lots of functionality, which can be acheived with plugins, for example, if you want to run WooCommerce as your e-commerce platform. My WordPress sites are built using Elementor Pro which has a rich set of features.
SiteJet is part of the cPanel set of tools. All my websites are hosted on a tuned infrastructure with cPanel as the software that controls the hosting. Therefore, if your website is not overly complicated, I may use that.
SiteJet websites are also much faster to load than WordPress sites as they use static files to display content, whereas WordPress relies heavily on a database to store the data – although WordPress websites do make use of caching to ensure fast loading times.
Before I start to design and build your website, we will have a conversation to determine which platform I will use for your website.
How often will you update me on progress?
The frequency of contact between us will largely be driven by you based on your availability. I know some clients are busy and would rather contact me directly when they need an update. However, as a rule of thumb, we will be in touch at least once a week as I complete milestones on your website design.
Contact will be either by email, telephone, Microsoft Teams, Skype or Zoom – whichever is your preference.
What geographical locations do you cover?
Whilst I am based in Surrey in the UK geographically I can cover anywhere.
Whilst this means I might not be able to meet with you personally, I am always happy to speak with you on the phone or have a Microsoft Teams, Skype or Zoom call. Even using Teams, Skype or Zoom, we can still review your site by using screen sharing.
Will my website have an SSL certificate for Privacy?
Yes. Every website I design is secured using SSL, meaning that when someone views your website, it will start with ‘https://’. This ensures any data sent over the internet will be secure and encrypted. This is particularly important if you use online booking or take payments online. This gives your customers confidence and peace of mind when doing business with you. Google also favours SSL encrypted websites when indexing your site putting your site above those without ‘https’ in search results.
Does my website need to be hosted by you?
When I design and build your website it will either be using WordPress or SiteJet. Regardless of whether I use WordPress or SiteJet, they are hosted on a highly optimised web server infrastructure. This infrastructure has been fine tuned to ensure websites load fast.
Websites built with SiteJet can only be hosted elsewhere if the hosting company uses cPanel. If you wish to move your WordPress website to another host, I can supply a backup.
However, I cannot guarantee that your website will continue to properly function when not hosted on my chosen hosting platform.
As part of the design and build process for WordPress based sites, I use Elementor Pro to control the design of the website. Whilst your website is hosted on my infrastructure, the cost of the Elementor license is included. If you decide to move away from my hosting, you will need to purchase your own license of Elementor Pro. Additionally, I also bundle other products for WordPress as part of your monthly maintenance and hosting cost, including UpDraft Plus for backups and RankMath Business for SEO management. If you move away from my hosting solution, these products will be removed or downgraded.
As part of your monthly hosting fee, I ensure that your website is maintained with the latest software updates, and for WordPress based websites, that includes plugins. This is essential to ensure your website is as secure as possible, limiting the chance of your website being hacked.
If you do decide to host your website on another platform other than mine, it is with regret that I will not be able to offer support for the website once moved to your new host unless we agree a monthly maintenance fee.
How can I pay for my new website?
Typically, you will pay for your website in two payments:
- Your first payment will be for 50% of the total cost to design and build your website. This is a non-refundable (if you cancel the project once it has started) deposit which needs to be paid before work can start.
- You second payment will be the remaining outstanding balance of your invoice plus your first month’s hosting fee. This needs to be paid before the website is made live.
My preferred method of payment is using BACS/Internet banking. My invoice will contain all the information you will need to make a direct payment to me from your online banking system, or in your local branch.
During the design and build stage, your website will be in my hosting environment. Whilst generally this hosting environment incurs no cost to you, should the project overrun due to you being unable to continue any further (for example, you are unable to supply information or content), then a hosting fee may be incurred.
How much will my website cost?
Each website is as individual as the business or service that it’s for. Depending on what you need on your website, the cost will vary. Some things that will impact the cost of the website include:
- The amount of work needed to design the website – whether it’s a simple or complex design
- How many pages are needed
- Whether you need an e-commerce platform
- Whether you need to incorporate third-party services, such as Acuity Scheduling, and whether you need me to set these up for you on your behalf
Because of this, each website build is priced individually. To get an estimate of likely costs, why not try a Website Build Estimate which gives you an idea of likely costs.
Will I need to pay a deposit?
Before any work can begin on designing your new website, I will need to take an initial deposit for 50% of the final cost. This is a non-refundable deposit and it covers my initial costs in designing and preparing to host your website.
Can I pay in a currency other than £GBP?
Absolutely. If you don’t live in the UK or have a UK bank account, let me know the currency you will be paying in before I issue you the estimate for work. My charges will then be converted from £GBP to whatever currency you’d like to pay in.
Please note: if the cost of your website is more the £500, I may need to add a small surcharge to the cost of the website to cover non-sterling transaction fees incurred by myself if paying via debit or credit card. This surcharge will be waived if you pay by direct bank transfer and you accept the transaction costs to be applied by your bank in your local currency.
I already have a website. Can you maintain it for me?
If you already have a website and you’re looking to move away from your current provider (either host or designer or both), then please get in touch with me to discuss your requirements. Initially, I will need to look at your website to understand how it has been built to determine whether I will be able to support you.
Will my website be SEO optimised and appear in Google and Bing?
In order for your website to be featured in the search engine listings, something called Search Engine Optimisation, or SEO for short, needs to be implemented on the website and its pages.
SEO is a complex subject. There are many variables that affect SEO for any website. When I design and build your website, I will include basic SEO. However, I am not an expert.
If your website is built using WordPress, then I use an SEO plugin on your website called Rank Math. This is widely used by many SEO experts dealing with WordPress SEO. Therefore, should you at a later date feel that you need more expert guidance on your website’s SEO, you will be able to employ the services of an SEO expert who will have no trouble in helping you and using the Rank Math tool to optimise your SEO.
For websites built using SiteJet, SEO is built into the platform allowing for SEO optimisation.
Can you integrate third-party services into my website?
I already have a design for my website. Can you build it for me?
If you already have a design for your website that has been created by an agency or independent graphic designer, I can use this to create your new website. I will keep to the design as faithfully as possible, although there may be some limitations. I will of course advise you of any deviations from the design as soon as I am aware of them.
Similarly, if you have had your design and branding work carried out by Mary McCarthy Design (who I work closely with), then there is more chance of me being able to accurately reproduce this due to Mary and myself having a close working relationship.
Can you provide an email account that is the same as my domain?
If you host your domain with me (or, without being too technical, you point your domain’s nameservers to my servers), then yes, I can provide you with email accounts which match your domain name. For example, if your domain was awebsitedomain.co.uk then I could provide email addresses such as or .
Each mailbox comes with a generous 10GB of storage space, and you can have up to 100 mailboxes on your account. Each mailbox costs £2.50 per month. Your email address can be used with most popular desktop clients such as Microsoft Outlook or Mac Mail. They will also work with most mail client apps for Android and iPhone. You will also have access to a WebMail interface should you wish to use that instead.
Can you do my branding and/or logo for me?
Whilst I can design and build websites, I’m shocking at anything else to do with design. So if I was to try to design your logo for you, it would probably represent something a five year old had drawn! For that reason, I always recommend my clients use the services of a good creative graphic designer. I have worked with Mary McCarthy on many projects, and if you need your brand and logo designed, speak to her. You can find her over at https://marymccarthydesign.co.uk
Got a different question? No problem. Get in touch with me and let’s discuss your needs.