So here’s a a great example of why automating updates in WordPress is only smart for non-business websites. As I write this, one of the WP plugins published by Facebook just released an update with invalid code.
Not just a bug — code so wrong that it crashes sites. Code that wouldn’t have passed basic testing.
I’m sure “Facebook for WooCommerce” will be fixed promptly. However, over 900,000 online shops use it. If they were all running automatic updates, almost a million shops would be offline right now.
Other WordPress Update Problems
This comes on top of the GADWP fiasco earlier this year, too. In that, ExactMetrics changed the nature of their popular plugin without warning, through an “update”.
Version 6 of the “Google Analytics Dashboard for WP” plugin was “redesigned from the ground up”.… Read the rest
So here’s something I left out of my “Why Website Prices Vary” post because it can be a touchy subject. So first, let me say that most web designers I know are superb, talented people who only want to help. That said, the experienced ones are rarely cheap web designers.
Still, I have just spoken to yet another distressed small business owner. His cheap web designer had left him in the lurch with a broken website and no access to fix it.
Other business owners had told him this was “typical” of “flaky” designers. They all just assumed the worst of our entire industry. Even web designers rarely discuss it, just pointing out that you get what you pay for. Still, it is predictable and avoidable.… Read the rest
Small businesses often want simple, affordable web design packages. That’s fine, we can do that — but then some call professional web design “expensive” and “overcomplicated”. So why do website prices vary so much?
Because web design can mean several very different things.
Business websites serve a wide range of purposes. Some of those purposes are common, others less so. So there are at least three levels of web design to consider.
Affordable Web Design Packages
Common requirements can sometimes be standardised, and processes streamlined, to keep costs down. However, flexibility creates complexity, so in practice, “streamlining processes” always means “restricting choices”.
For some people, and some purposes, that makes little difference — and cash flow is often a bigger concern for small businesses.… Read the rest
Web design is like cooking — it may look easy, but it’s easy to get wrong. No microwave can make you a chef. Similarly, DIY website builders let you make costly mistakes. So Base22 kindly provided this infographic of ten common website design mistakes, and I’ve added a few more points below.
Ten Common Website Design Mistakes
Whilst DIY web design often makes these mistakes, so do inexperienced web designers. That’s why experienced professional web design is a better business investment, even in affordable web design packages.
Poor User Experience
Whilst user experience is also affected by most of the points below, visual design plays a big part too. It’s not just a matter of making things look pretty, either.… Read the rest
You may not expect a professional web designer to say this, but DIY web design does have its place. However, when building business websites, the hidden costs of DIY web design are far higher than most people think.
As a small business owner, it can be tempting to ignore these costs. They will still affect you, though — and can easily cost you more than engaging a professional web designer. So consider them carefully before falling for the hype about DIY web design systems.
When To Consider DIY Web Design
If you don’t aim to make money from your website, any money spent on it is pure cost. So then it’s wise to minimise that cost, and doing so has little impact.
However, the situation for any kind of commercial site is completely different.… Read the rest