Self maintenance of Web Sites
We deliver sites that make you self-sufficient to whatever level is
appropriate to your business, skills, knowledge and needs.
Many web site owners have realised that they need to be able to manage
aspects of their site content themselves rather than risk the delays and
costs of involving the original developer(s) or much worse still -
attempt to engage new developers to maintain an old site!
Sites which contain products for sale are the most obvious examples
that require owner-maintenance in that price, availability and many other
factors can change frequently and without notice.
Keeping in-house skills and knowledge of a Web site design tool
at a competent level to compete on the Web is a big challenge to begin with
but only the more sophisticated tools can handle the sort of database and
data manipulation tools that are required in any site that attempts to be
useful to it's users.
Our approach is to agree up-front about those aspects of the site that
need to be common and unchanging on all pages. This design then becomes a
dynamic template for all of the pages of the site.
For many site owners we also turn their business ideas into the actual
Web pages of their site. Some customers want to maintain their site
content as soon as the site has been "handed over" but many others allow
us to make updates at a nominal charge given the knowledge that they
could take advantage of the self-maintenance option at a later date.
Although we offer all customers the ability to change their Web content
it is very normal for their needs to be simple.
The types of update required fall into three major categories:
1. Small pieces of text and images which become part of the template of the site
- News items
- Special offers
These are usually limited in scope (colour, font, size etc.)
to ensure these do not corrupt the overall site.
2. Text and images that are part of a database
Although the obvious example is items for sale within a catalogue it is
actually almost anywhere that users are typically shown a list of items in
a common format:
- Press releases
- Customer support staff and their responsibilities
- Frequently asked questions
The above items can be exported from a spreadsheet (in CSV format) if the
author wants to use their PC skills and time rather than doing this online.
3. Page content - where the balance is really needed
Giving users the ability to change complete page content is not difficult!
Doing so without exposing the site to corruption of style, image,
professionalism etc. is the difficult part!
What we offer is the ability to change the text and images within an
If any reader of this page is familiar with HTML - the one and only
Markup language of the Web! then they would be familiar with tags
such as <b> to embolden a piece of text as earlier in this sentence.
To keep the unique skill and knowledge required to maintain page content
to a minimum we allow a pre-defined list of these standard HTML tags
to be part of the site content. In this manner the editor of a page can
read a simple guide to HTML of which there are hundreds and as long as they
restrict their usage to those agreed with the site owner then they will be
able to change many aspects of a page.
Typical lists of these tags are:
- <p> <br> <hr>
which allow line break formatting
- <b> <big> <small>
which allow text and individual characters to be (de-)emphasised
- <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5>
which are for headings
- <ol> <ul> <li>
which allow lists to be made such as this one
To use them is trivial - simply key them in as shown above and they will
be translated into an effect rather than displayed as above.
There are many more but the above are typical examples.
If there are needs which cannot be met by these simple and universally
accepted tags or there is a formatting style which requires a more complex
set of tags then these can be pre-defined in conjunction with the site owner.