Frequently Asked Questions
I see that you advertise monthly care packages. Is this optional or compulsory? Why should I invest in one of these?
Back in the 1990’s, and for the first half of the 2000’s, websites were very much a “set-it-and-forget-it” proposition. But back then, websites were much simpler. They served mainly as online brochures, and included very little other functionality.
Today, websites are far more complex and interactive, online coding standards change on a regular basis for improved user experience and across device/browser compatibility, and security is of paramount importance due to the fact that cyber-attacks have become an ever-present reality.
If you own a car, you know that it requires timely services, oil changes etc. The same is true for a WordPress (WP) site. WordPress is the most popular CMS (Content Management System) in the world, and it is easy to use, but it does require timely maintenance in order to remain secure and perform at its best.
Updates need to be done whenever they become available, which can be every few days. This includes the updating of WordPress itself, as well as any installed themes and plugins. Which is why this type of website maintenance is best left to a website professional, who knows how to follow the correct procedures, and who can immediately address any issues should they arise.
As such, these services are compulsory and not optional. This should be seen as a necessary, but affordable overhead.
Will my site have a way for potential customers to sign up for my mailing list?
Building a list (database) of contact details should be an important feature of any website.
We provide bulk mailing system management as an optional service you can include with the development, or at a later stage. This will make sure that you have a way to capture names and email addresses.
Do you require full payment up-front, or how does the payment schedule work?
On your acceptance of the quote, you will be invoiced for a 50% deposit, which is payable to initiate the project.
The balance is payable on completion of the project, or 30 days after the first payment is made, whichever comes first.
Will I be able to add content to my page myself and how complicated will it be to do so?
We recommend that you outsource content changes to our team, in order to ensure the best possible results, but we can also give you access to manage your own content changes.
WordPress is relatively user friendly and should not be complicated for you to learn how to use. Regrettably, because no two websites are alike, we cannot provide you with a generic user manual. Online Training can however be arranged on request.
I can’t be bothered to update my own website or may need help from time to time. Do you provide this as a service?
Hacking is a serious concern, do you protect the websites you build?
Yes, we do everything in our power to ensure that your website and your WordPress installation is protected.
The implementation of website security systems can be expensive, but we provide this as part of your development fee, and as part of our monthly website care services.
When we build your website, we install and implement an additional system security/firewall plugin that prevents hacking attempts and malicious script uploads. Furthermore, daily backups are made of website files and databases that are hosted with us, and your site is monitored and scanned on a monthly basis.
If a hacker does somehow manage to bypass the security system, we can restore a backup of your website and make sure that any vulnerability is taken care of promptly.
Do you test the website on various browsers and devices? Which ones?
The landscape of web browsers and devices changes regularly and our approach is to look forward, not back. We will develop your site according to the latest coding and design standards.
With that in mind we will test all our markup and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) in current versions of all major desktop browsers to ensure that we make the most from them. Users of older or less capable browsers or devices will experience a design that is appropriate to the capabilities of their software. We do not cater for people using Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 and cannot predict the behaviour of that browser.
We will also test that the template performs well on Apple’s iPad.
We will not test old or abandoned browsers, for example Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or 5.5 for Windows or Mac, previous versions of Apple’s Safari or Mozilla Firefox.
Do you offer any type of guarantee?
We will only activate your website when you are 100% happy with the end result.
Furthermore, if any coding errors crop up after your website is launched, we will fix them, free of charge, for up to 12 months.
What is domain registration? What is the difference between a URL and a domain name?
In short, a domain name is your website's address. For example, the domain name we use for this website is raydius.co.za
This address needs to be registered (in your name) in order to be associated with a hosting account. A hosting account is required in order to use the domain name for a website, for email, or for both.
All domain names include a domain suffix, such as .com, .co.za, or .org, and this is part of the domain name.
The domain suffix helps identify the type of website the domain represents. For example, ".com" domain names are typically used by commercial websites, while ".org" websites are used by non-profit organisations. Some domain names end with a country code, such as ".co.za" (South Africa), which helps identify the location and audience of the website.
A domain name is not the same as a URL (Uniform Resource Locator).
A domain name is part of a larger internet address called a URL, which is displayed in the browser address bar when you visit a site.
Here are some examples of a URL, with the domain name shown in bold:
When looking at a URL you will see that:
- Some domain names are preceded by “www” (which is not part of the domain name), while others omit the “www” prefix.
- The domain name is also preceded by either http:// or https:// (which is not part of the domain name). Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) is the secure version of HTTP. That is, the ‘S’ at the end of HTTPS stands for ‘Secure’. It means all communications between your browser and the website are encrypted.
What is hosting?
Hosting is required in order to post a website or web page onto the Internet, and to process email associated with your domain name. You can think of it as a "virtual post office".
Websites are stored on special computers called web servers. That is, this data is stored on your hosting account.
When people want to view your website, they type your website address into their browser, and their computer will then connect to your hosting account and your webpages will be delivered to them through the browser.
If someone sends an email to @yourdomain.co.za it is sent to the mail server, which is also part of your hosting account, where it is stored until you download it to your email client (program).
What is pointing or transfer of a domain, and how do I know if my current website needs to be pointed or transferred?
The web server where your website is stored has an IP address. In order for Internet users to see your site by typing in your domain name, the domain records (DNS) need to point to the IP address where the website is stored.
If your domain name as well as your hosting account is with us, the IP address will automatically be associated. However, if your domain is hosted with a different service provider, they will need to point the domain records to our server in order to display the website. It is possible for you to keep your domain and email hosting with your existing service provider, and for us to take over only the hosting of your website.
Transferring a domain means that we are taking over full control of the domain name, as well as your email and website hosting. You will in effect be cancelling your account with your current service provider and moving everything over to us.
The choice is yours, if you want to pay for two separate hosting accounts or just one.
It is however also important to note that hosting is not our core business, we only provide hosting to clients whose websites we also manage, and support is available during normal business hours, Monday to Friday.
Should I transfer my hosting to you, or can it stay where it is?
Although your hosting server is “behind the scenes” it has a very real impact on your web success, and even on the Search Engine Optimisation of your site. The websites we develop also include applications and other digital assets that require a robust, secure and reliable hosting environment.
It is near impossible for us to ensure that your website performs well if it is hosted on a 3rd party web server with limited resources and poor security. Unfortunately, there are numerous “cheap” hosting providers who provide an inferior service, run on servers with outdated software and are not serious about the security of their systems.
As such, we do have to insist that you either move the hosting of your website to us, or if you want to manage your own hosting account, you do so directly through Xneelo (previously known as Hetzner). We are of the opinion that no other local hosting provider compares to them, especially when it comes to customer service and infrastructure.
We have a managed dedicated web server on Xneelo’s infrastructure. Our server is located in Xneelo’s Data Centre Park in Samrand, Gauteng, South Africa.
As such, we know that we can provide you with hosting solutions that will ensure that your new website can perform optimally and is run off a stable platform.
How do I know that your hosting server will be able to handle the load speeds of my website?
We have a dedicated server, which is managed by Xneelo's technical team on a 24/7 basis.
The advantage of hosting your site on our dedicated server, rather than a bulk shared hosting account, is that we can manage the resources allocated to your website ourselves.
The load speed of your website is dependent on a number of factors. The website itself needs to be well coded and optimised, but it also needs to be hosted on a robust infrastructure.
On a normal shared account the maximum memory limit which can be allocated to your website is 128MB, but because we have a dedicated server, we can allocate up to 512MB per client. This makes a huge difference.
As such, there is absolutely no doubt that the performance of your website will be greatly improved if it is hosted on our server. The fact of the matter is that we can provide you with very robust resources, at a fraction of the cost you would have to pay another hosting service provider for the exact same set-up.
If my site is built on Squarespace or a similar DIY platform, is my domain name my property?
Hopefully it is, as a domain name should always be registered in your name, and not in the name of the service provider.
The registered domain name owner has complete control over the domain.
Technically speaking, you never actually "own" a domain name, you only own the right to use it by paying an annual fee to a Registrar. That is, if you do not pay the annual renewal fee, the ownership will lapse, and the domain can be purchased by someone else.
If your domain has been registered by Squarespace or a similar DIY web builder platform, you will need to follow their instructions in order to transfer it. Regrettably, there are numerous online DIY platforms, and it is simply not possible for us to advise you how they all work, or what their policies are, so you will need to contact them directly, or access their online Help/Support Guides for guidance.
How do I cancel my Squarespace / Wix / Tank monthly subscription fee?
It depends on which platform you are using, and the terms of the contract you have signed with them.
Please contact them directly for information and guidance.
How long will it take to build my new website?
Once you send us all your content, including your logo, text copy, and photos, the turnaround time is typically between 10 and 30 working days for a 1 to 15 page website, and between 20 and 45 working days for a larger website. Working days are from Monday to Friday, 08:00 to 17:00.
Rush jobs can be accommodated, in the case of emergency, but there will be an additional cost, as our designers and developers will need to put in overtime to get your project completed sooner.
The turnaround time is dependent on the following:
- The scope and size of your project – the features required, the type of content to be loaded and the number of pages required.
- Do we need to proofread or edit your text copy, or will it be ready for publication?
- How quickly you provide the required content – images (logo and other supporting photographs) as well as the text copy.
- How long you take to review our work, and provide feedback, when you are requested to do so.
It is important to understand that deadlines work two ways and you’ll also be bound by any dates that we set together.
Do you have an understanding of the technical aspects of the web, as well as design?
We understand that your website needs to look great, but it also needs to work correctly. Most importantly, it also needs to be fully accessible on mobile.
Functionality, performance (speed) and usability is imperative, so our team is skilled in front end development, as well as digital design. We have invested a lot of money and time into our infrastructure, software and continued training, to ensure that we can provide you with a high-end web design service.
What experience do you have?
We bring more than 30+ years of combined experience to the table. We are passionate about the wine industry, and confident that we understand the needs of your target market/s and how to establish an online presence that will realise a return on your investment.
We are group of multi-talented wine and online marketing specialists, web strategy consultants, web designers/developers, digital designers and copywriters, with a portfolio that speaks for itself.
On top of this, we know that technology does not stand still. So, we make a point of enrolling for new courses all the time, and learning what the latest coding and design trends are.
Are there any other additional monthly costs after the website has been developed?
Yes, your hosting, ongoing website care, and website change/edit requests are subject to additional costs.
The Hosting & Website care packages are payable monthly or annually, depending on which you prefer. One month is included for free on all annual payments.
If you need us to make changes to the content on your website, we can do so on a 'pay-as-you-go' basis. For example, if you want us to edit existing pages, add new Blog posts, add photos, add new products to your Online Shop, or change your product information or pricing.
Will a one-page scroll site suffice, or do I need additional pages for my new site?
It depends on how much content you want to include on your website. Ideally, a one-page scroll site should not include more than 5 sections, with a limited amount of photos.
One-page scroll sites are best suited for websites with a limited amount of content (text and images), otherwise it will take a long time to load the page, and this may result in people not wanting to visit your site at all. You also need to be considerate of people who will access the site via mobile, and how user friendly it will be for them to do so in terms of data usage.
When it comes to optimising your website for Search Engines, it is also important to keep in mind that content is indexed by search engines like Google based on the page URL. Multi-page websites can therefore allow for more indexing opportunities.
We realise that our website is very outdated, but it was constructed so long ago that we don’t know who is hosting it, or who the owner of the domain is – can you help?
As a security precaution, a lot of the information which was previously publically available via a "Whois lookup" is now redacted/hidden. This is as a result of new online legislation and regulations.
So, we can do a DNS lookup on your domain name in order to determine where the website is currently hosted, and who manages the domain, and by looking at the code on the site itself we can determine what system is built on, but beyond that we will be dependent on your help.
That is, regardless of how long ago your site was built, someone must be billing you for hosting of the site and the annual renewal of your domain name. You should therefore be able to advise us who is invoicing you.
Any correspondence with your current service provider has to come from you, as the registered account holder, so regrettably we cannot engage in communication with a 3rd party service provider on your behalf. They will simply ignore any instruction or request we send, as is their right.
We will however provide you with all the guidance you require to get things resolved.
My current site is built on Squarespace / Wix / Tank – Why should I use your services and move to a WordPress site? Can you explain the advantages of WordPress in laymen’s terms?
You may not be aware of this, but if your website is built and is hosted on a DIY Website Builder Platform:
- You do not own the website or the content. You are essentially just renting a website which is dependent on a system, cannot be moved and which you have no control over.
- Thousands of people use the same templates, so it is likely that your website is going to be identical to many others on the internet. Any proper customisation of this type of site is going to cost you a lot of money.
- Overall these websites do not do very well on Search Engines, because if you are building your own website you need to have a very good understanding of SEO in order to apply best practices.
- It is usually quite cheap to get started, it’s cheap to host, it’s cheap to use their templates and some basic functionality. But a lot of the functionality that you will want to add later on, can be very expensive. So, over the long term these type of websites are usually more expensive.
There are many advantages to owning your own WordPress website with an intergrated E-Shop, including:
- Your website can be custom designed just for your winery, in line with your branding, and to appeal to your target audience.
- WordPress is Opensource, so you will own your website, and your content. If you ever want to move your site elsewhere, you will be given full control over your site. It can be moved to another ISP without you losing everything.
- We understand SEO best practices, and will ensure that your website's pages are structured and optimised correctly from the start.
- The initial payment may be higher, but in the long term you will be saving a lot of money. Furthermore, you will own a site that can realise a true return on your investment.
What happens if I want to add some features to the website while you’re building it?
You are welcome to run any new requests or ideas by us. If we all agree that your new request will help achieve your objectives, we will be more than happy to oblige.
This may of course require an additional quote, and a deadline adjustment.
Whilst we like to be flexible and responsive to your needs, we also like to deliver what we promise within the time frames and budgets we have allowed.
Will you design a unique look for my website that matches my company brand? Or will you use the same template for someone else’s website?
Our Custom Designed WordPress packages, include a custom design just for you – no one else can buy the exact same theme. This is a bespoke web design service.
However, the ‘Budget Friendly packages’, which we will be launching in the near future, will include a ‘pre-designed template’,. Each template will only be used on a maximum of 5 websites. The template will also be re-branded and re-coloured according to your needs.
What happens after the website is launched?
Once your website is launched, we will provide 14 days of free support to make any minor changes you may have overlooked.
After this, we will make sure your website is looked after and maintained on a monthly basis, as part of your monthly care package.
The website care plan includes updating your software (WordPress, Theme, and Plugins), monthly full site backups, security checks and making sure your website is online and open for business 24/7/365.
Do you understand search engine optimization (SEO) and how to use it when you set-up my site?
This includes: the setup of meta data; using alt tags for images; paying attention to page titles; and submitting the website URL for indexing when the site is launched. On-going SEO services are available under our Advanced Website Care & Hosting package.
How long will it take for my website to appear at the top of Google?
It will not happen the minute your website goes live, it can take weeks before the site is indexed.
The time it takes for your website to appear on the first page of a Google search, or at all, depends on a number of factors.
It depends on the search phrase people are using to find your website and the number of other websites that are also available for those search phrases.
Nobody can truly say how long it will take for your website to appear at the top of search engine results pages (including the people who work for Google), however there are a number of factors that can improve your chances.
Creating unique and interesting content on a regular basis for your website is critical to increase your visibility amongst search engines. Launching your website and then forgetting about it is a surefire way to get lost amongst the noise.
We are happy to talk more about your search engine strategy once your new website has been launched.
How will I know if anyone is visiting my website?
We can integrate Google analytics on your new website. You can then log into your Google analytics account where you can see a wide range of statistics about your website including number of visits, page views and the amount of time people are spending on your website.
If you choose to subscribe to our business or advanced website care plan, you will also receive a more detailed statistical report and analysis on a monthly basis.
Still need help? Send us a note!
For any other questions, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org