Custom Design

Need an online presence as unique as your business? We provide complete custom design work. Got a specific idea in mind or an existing logo to work into your site? We'll develop a complete look and feel that compliments it. We can even create a unique logo that communicates visually what your business is all about.

We can also work with a designer you already know, or design you already have created, and just do construction. Our custom design work is normally charged at our hourly rate, although we can work on a bid basis if you prefer.

Check out some more examples of custom designed sites in our portfolio.

How do we get started?

You can usually save yourself some time and money by doing some research and making a few decisions up front.

First, make sure you know the purpose of your site. Do you just want to use it as advertising? Maybe you can think of some ways existing customers might interact with it as well.

Next, look at some similar or competing sites to get some ideas for organization, functionality, and visual appearance. These can even be negative ideas - "ooh, not like that!" Write down what you like and don't like, whether it's large issues or small.

Now you need to decide what you want to spend on the site. You should understand that most custom small business sites cost at least $1000, although you can get a perfectly good site for as low as $500 if you take some cost-saving measures (see below). Of course if you want lots of content, fancy popup menus, online registration, a shopping cart system, or other substantial features, be prepared to spend more.

Then we will spend some time talking with you about your business and what you'd like to do with your site (we don't charge you for this initial consultation). That's when all your research will help you focus on what you want to accomplish, and we'll tell you if your budget is realistic, and make a plan for getting your site done.

Next you need to provide us with material - you may have content or graphic design work you've done for other media (like a brochure), for example, that can serve as a starting point for the site. If you have a logo, photographs, or other graphics, you can get those to us as well. The best way to get all this to us is through email, although CDs or any other format is fine, of course. We can scan images for you if you need it, and we can also do photography, video editing, photo retouching, and other services if you need them.

Then we will get to work. You can expect frequent updates from us, showing you our latest work and getting approval from you and asking for decisions before we move forward. We work with our clients until they're satisfied; we won't disappear for six months and leave you wondering what we've been doing.

To get your site online, you'll need to get a web hosting service - basically someone who will store your website files on their computer for the world to see. We can provide web hosting for you, or you can shop around to try to save a few dollars a month if you'd like; we're happy to work with any web hosting company.

You will also need to choose and register a "domain name": that's the site name people type into a web browser (twistandtwirl.com, for example). You probably have some good ideas for a website name, but we can give you advice and help if you'd like. We can also handle the registration for you.

Cost-Saving

The cost of your site depends greatly on how ambitious you want to get, of course. But if you are looking to get a great site on the low side of $1000, here are some ideas.

  • The most costly part of site development is doing fancy graphics (cool tabs, fancy image rollovers, slick page-layout graphics, etc etc), not the textual content, so if you keep the site graphically simple you can keep the cost down.
  • We also have some pre-designed site templates which can keep costs down. Contact us for more info on these.
  • The more you can do on your own and just hand us (like text editing, creating your own graphics, etc) the less the site development will cost.