Welcome to my first blog. Apart from 'How much does does a website cost?', or 'What does your web hosting package come with?', about the next most common question I am asked is, 'Why did you name your company Long Road Website Development?'. Sure I could have called myself Dunsborough Website Designer or Cape Naturaliste or any combination of the regional or tech sounding names but I went with Long Road.
The answer is simple and complex at the same time. The simple answer is it's one of my favourite songs from the Pearl Jam catalogue - nothing to do with web design at all. But when you examine the lyrics, I does cover much of my philosophy of my web design and hosting endeavours and my genuine desire to ensure I return the best website I can to my clients and then provide an ongoing relationship through hosting and ongoing maintenance that ensures they have a modern and user friendly online face for the world to see.
Without putting on my former English Degree hat and doing a academic analysis of the song - which I'm sure would in no way lean itself to web design, a few lines and themes from the song sum up my company and attitude. I feel as your web designer, I am an integral part of your team.
Together we walk the long road...
It doesn't matter if you're in Dunsborough, Busselton or Perth, or Sydney or anywhere in the world for that matter - I can remain in my Dunsborough office and provide a value added webmaster service as if I were located right there in your office. I will be there for you every step of the way and will not abandon you. And this is the promise I give to my clients, I will do my best to be a part of your business as if you had a website designer on your staff. I have clients located all around Western Australia, some in the Eastern States and some even further afield. Being a Dunsborough Web Designer does not limit my ability to work for people anywhere in the country or around the globe.
Too often a client comes to me because their last web developer took months to get back to them, or their website got hacked and their host booted them, or they just could not afford astronomical fees every time they wanted something done. None of this is good for either the client's business or the developer. I want to be different, I aim to offer timely service at a price anyone can afford.
Will I walk the long road?
I'll do my best. No matter if you're a small business who needs a website and then for someone to teach you how to manage it, a large company or if you are a sporting club or a start up with a great idea, all my clients get the same level of service and I try to keep my overheads and therefore my costs and prices as low as possible. My personal needs are not great, and I do not believe on charging any more than is necessary to get the job done right.
I am not a large organisation, Long Road is based around me, Paul Andrews - I work from home; sometimes very early starts often late evenings and too many times on weekends. I do source a graphic designer for tasks that require a specialist flare and I also have a coder who works for me on projects, but apart from that, all work is kept in house - not outsourced to India or elsewhere. I fully believe in the strength and sheer good economic value in open source software which is why I like to use the Joomla Content Management System and the thousands of add-on components that allow it to perform almost any task desired of a website - from eCommerce carts, to news, to hosting video, social media and facebook integration - almost anything you can think of.
My commitment to my trade (and getting better at it) has seen me attend Joomla events in New York, Amsterdam and Los Angeles where I have made great contacts with developers of the core and the add-ons and can readily get assistance and customised solutions developed.
I have wished for so long. How I wish for you today.
I don't claim to be the best website designer in the world - there are some absolute gurus out there and I am constantly amazed at what they do, but they also charge accordingly. I am one of the most honest and I treat every single project like it is the most important one I'll ever do. And I don't just take your money and run - my service is website design and development and then hosting your site on my own dedicated servers in the Rochen Datacentre in Dallas USA, and then monitoring your site, updating the software and keeping the hackers out and even updating your content when needed - I aim to forge a long and lasting relationship with each client. I believe in open source software solutions which enable great sites to be build far more cheaply than ever before.
I promise, from here on in, my blog will be more about web trends, technology and things of interest - and much less patting myself on the back, but I've been doing this since the 90s and am still in business. I'm pretty sure I'm up to walking the long road for you. Thanks for reading, thanks for being a client of mine, or at least considering me for your project.
And now... some culture... ;)