Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. Clients typically ask me to build a new website, and manage it going forward. Some clients have me do all the updates, while others want the website to be built as a content management system (CMS) so they can do updates. For CMS systems, I offer Business Catalyst, WordPress, and if it's a good match, Joomla.
Often times the client already has a website/blog but it's a mess for one reason or another. The trick is to keep that website up and running while developing the new website. I can develop a new website/blog/online store in a way that the client can view it online, but it is not visible to Google/Bing. Only when the client is happy with the website do we go live which leaves the old website inaccessible.
If the client needs to sell products online, I can help them select the best fit depending on their overall needs. I offer Business Catalyst, Big Commerce, and Miva Merchant.
I have experience with events, and can help promote and manage them with Eventbrite.
All websites need images, but most of the images I get are taken by amateurs, or shot under less than ideal circumstances. I can manipulate images using Photoshop, to get them to the right size, and can manipulate the image to remove unwanted items.
First and foremost, I am a Webmaster, which means that I handle anything web related. I receive orders daily to update websites, adding new pages as needed, modifying the menu systems, embedding videos, adding products to online stores, etc. I set up and manage email accounts, and deal with issues related to the server. There are too many things a Webmaster does to list here.
Q. Why does your work stand out from others who do what you do?
A. Most "web designers" want to create your website, but do not want to have anything to do with it once it's live. My bread and butter is overall management.
As webmaster, I can handle not just updates to the website, but can assist with email issues, manipulating photos for the web, updating/maintaining online stores, setting up and running newsletters, and tons of other things associated with your online presence.
Q. How did you decide to get in your line of work?
A. From my About Us page:
Tom Rogers has long been respected for his attention to detail and his commitment to doing every job well. As a former self-employed custom woodworker, he focused on the intricate details that made his projects stand out. Tom caught the web design bug in 2002 when he set up a site to organize his 30th high school reunion. A year later he founded a grassroots organization called Citizens for a Strong Community (CSC), which worked to unite and inform residents of Hamilton and Wenham, Massachusetts. The website he designed for CSC grew quickly as a community resource and was accompanied by a weekly e-newsletter Tom was instrumental in producing. In 2004, Tom was invited to be webmaster for the National Empowerment Center, which officially cemented his changeover from master cabinetmaker to webmaster.
Q. What are the latest developments in your field? Are there any exciting things coming in the next few years or decade that will change your line of business?
A. Smart phones and tablets have changed the way people access the internet. If you want to reach everyone, you need a "responsive" site design. That means that the website automatically adjusts itself according to the browser you are using - desktop, tablet or mobile phone, all of which have multiple screen sizes.
Q. Describe your most recent project, what it involved, how much it cost, and how long it took.
A. I launched a new responsive website for Benchmark Management Systems in December 2014. (http://benchmarkmsinc.com). Note the use of a slider on the home page, and parallax images at the About Us page. This is a self hosted WordPress website as opposed to a site hosted on WordPress.com. I had the site up and running in August, and tweaked it over a period of months as the owner came up with content.
The client can log into the backend to make changes as needed. Most clients prefer to let me make the changes as it's somewhat complicated and they want to spend their time doing what they do, instead of learning about web design:)
Q. If you have a complicated pricing system for your service, please give all the details here.
A. If a client comes to me with everything figured out, including a sitemap (table of contents), all text, photos, logo, graphics, etc., I can provide a fixed price. But since most websites are developed over a period of months, I will provide a range in cost and would charge by the hour.
I offer a discount for non-profits.
Q. What is your greatest strength?
A. Three things come to mind:
* Excellent communications skills
* An eye for detail