A custom WordPress theme build might take a minimum time of two months from start to finish and depends on the client’s ability to provide all copy and photographs, extra fees, payments, and the sheer amount of work a designer must do to finalize the theme.
A quick bulleted overview of the detailed ordered list
Subject to change
- Meet client and talk about their interests
- Research those interests and my concepts for the site
- Meet client to show research and decide final direction for each page
- Research area of client’s website, draw out the final creative design, create the elements for each page, code each page, test for browser compatibility and responsiveness in Desktop/Mobile
- Show interactive design on laptop to client
- Add final copy and photographs to website provided by client
- Adjust small changes on site with client, get final payment
- Launch new website to host server, set up HTTPS, set up database, install WordPress, install security plugins, and other free/paid plugins needed for website
- Hand over WordPress client login and if needed, a privately hosted screencast tutorial link
- Meet client for first time, discover their personal character and business key points. This is the way that I get an idea for your own custom site.
- I spend two weeks researching for design inspiration. Then pulling together those ideas into wireframes that show the block layout of the site.
- Meeting with client to cover the research and see which parts/functions of each inspirational site they might like to pull in and explain to them what would work and what wouldn’t based on my experience with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and User Interface (UI) design industry concepts. Share wireframes and re-arrange the main elements per our discussion.
- Client agrees on wireframe layout. 1/3 downpayment provided.
- Back in my design studio, I take the agreed upon wireframes and the commented on sites used for inspiration and spend another week or two in finding the best visual design for the site that will fit the mix of the owner’s character and his business (which conveys his business in visual language), and will be my very best design work that goes beyond my previous project‘s very best.
- During the coding process, I’m unreachable. Why? It takes a lot of work, concentration to create a custom WordPress theme. It’s not just a “drag-and-drop” or “copy-and-paste” operation. Especially when building one solid site, then making it responsive for mobile and tablet devices. There’s a bunch of adjustment testing involved with five major browsers and versions, plus more testing on mobile/tablet devices.
- Meet with client to show the secondary stages of the site. Client agrees to the direction it’s taking. 2/3 downpayment made.
- Create and/or move in provided content and pictures. Test readable web fonts across all devices and other quirks with images. If stock photos are needed, the client would need to buy those extra or hire a local professional photographer to take those pictures.
- The client is allowed three minor changes to the site before it goes LIVE (viewable to the public). Additional changes are billed at my hourly rate in addition to the agreed on design total price.
- The client likes the final design. The final downpayment is paid to me and I release all login details to the client in the form of a spreadsheet and if needed, a single screencast for helping the client with future updates they can do on their own.
- Additional work after the last payment is at the current hourly rate. All down-payments are non-refundable. Maintenance of backend, upgrades, backups are extra and are charged at the time of recommended updates to prevent the site from hacks and maintaining the site’s platform, WordPress, is always updated.
How do you do business?
- I desire to build a friendship with my clients. I strive to interact with you before bringing up the business needs.
- I’m a self-proprietor.
- All work projects start with a written/signed contract, that I write up, must be signed and dated. 50% to start, 25% halfway through, and 25% to provide all accounts. Non-refundable payments. If needed, 1099.
- Personal Check preferred or PayPal transfer (transaction fee included).
How do you meet new clients?
- I like to meet at a place that serves coffee and has a quiet atmosphere.
- I want to learn about the personal side of the person I’m meeting with before proceeding to the business end.