Web Design & Development
...and welcome to my website! I am a full-stack web developer based in Staffordshire, England, providing website design and development services to businesses, groups and individuals.
- business owner,
- group or organisation, or
- an individual;
- a new website,
- help with an existing website, or
- a consultation to discuss your online presence
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If you're unsure how, or even if, you or your organisation would benefit from a website, I provide a free initial consultation in which we can discuss your vision. For example, you may:
- own or manage a local business and would like to widen your reach to a national, or global customer base
- have a great fledgling product or service which needs an online presence to get things moving
- work with a community group or charity and would like to widen the accessibility of your content or broaden your demographic, or;
- maybe you're just an individual who'd like a place to share personal interests, professional achievements, or a portfolio of your work
On the other hand, perhaps you already have a website and it's not performing as well as you'd hoped, or doesn't match the vision you had in mind? I can provide advice and recommendations to help find a solution that works for you.
Common issues you may have encountered could include:
- slow page loading
- awkward navigation
- unintuitive layout
- poor responsiveness
- poor accessibility
- broken functionality
- low search engine ranking
- poor sales conversions
If you decide to commission my services, we can begin to build up a set of requirements and set the wheels in motion to turn your vision into a reality.
Designs can vary in complexity, functionality, planning and development time, and ultimately, cost - it all depends on your needs and expectations. Shown below are two very distinct options for the type of website you may be after - you may settle on a particular option, or you may wish to combine elements from both, the choice is yours:
Option #1: WordPress - quick initial set up, easy to update and maintain
WordPress is an incredibly powerful and reliable Content Management System (CMS). Written in PHP, with a MySQL database acting as storage for all your posts, images and products, it has an instantly recognisable and highly intuitive user interface, which is why it is currently used by around 35% of websites across the entire web.
A WordPress website can be online in a matter of hours. If you're after a more unique experience for your visitors, an existing theme can be customised to meet your needs with alternative styling or by introducing new features, known as 'plugins', such as shopping carts or image galleries.
Once a website has been set up, adding and publishing new content is no more complicated than writing an email or editing a document.
Option #2: Custom - built to an exact specification, highly optimised, responsive and accessible
These websites are written in C# using the ASP.NET Core framework and are custom built to your requirements. Your website can be anything from a simple static website, to a highly functional and dynamic website consisting of user account areas, message boards and shopping carts, or a service with a user-friendly API and database integration.
- Custom layout, navigation, colour scheme and branding
- Optimised for fast page loading and efficient use of server resources
- Guaranteed responsiveness so your website looks good on all device types and sizes
- Guaranteed accessibility to help cater for visitors who may have limited motor function, poor vision, or rely entirely upon the use of screen readers to navigate online
- Ideal for individuals or organisations with a unique, recognisable brand and style who need to cater to the largest demographic.
To give you an idea, the website you're looking at is a custom example - I decided on the colours, layout etc. and built it from scratch. Whereas my Blog is an example of a WordPress website using a standard theme which I was able to create and launch in a matter of hours.
Whichever option you decide upon, and after a discussion of your needs, you will be provided with mockups and diagrams to illustrate the look and feel of your website once it has been completed.
My development process involves task and issue tracking using the Jira software, with code and assets stored remotely on a secure BitBucket repository - both part of the Atlassian suite of project management and development applications. These tools allow me to organise my work, easily track each project's progress, and work from anywhere in the world.
Depending on your project's complexity, you may opt for the additional benefit of being able to monitor progress in real-time by using a viewer account for Jira.
Websites and applications I host use the state-of-the-art and highly-configurable cloud hosting platform provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS). Some benefits include:
- auto-scaling: instant scaling up or down of server resources depending on load. For example, if your website receives an unexpected influx of visitors, additional instances can be created to cope with the demand to ensure the user experience doesn't suffer
- cost management: the majority of services work on a 'pay for what you use' basis, meaning you'll never have to worry about over, or under provisioning resources
- instant resource upgrades: allows you to assign more CPU, RAM or storage to your servers with the click of a button.
During development and testing, your website can be hosted on my own test server free of charge - your website will only be visible to people on a pre-defined whitelist of network addresses.
Please Note: At the moment I can only provide hosting on a test server during development. However, if required I will provide advice to help you find a suitable provider for your production website.
No website is complete without a domain name, and for any kind of business website a domain name is a necessity. If you're serious about professionalism you need a short, memorable, and if possible, descriptive domain name for your website. Furthermore, if you intend to allow your visitors to contact you, or vice versa, you would also benefit from one or more email addresses tied to your domain.
I can handle the purchase, registration and configuration for your domains, subdomains and email accounts, and transfer ownership over to you once complete.
We're now in an age of fibre broadband and 5G global networks, sophisticated browsing and hosting technology, phones more powerful than most people's home computers, and pieces of art in all of the weird and wonderful forms you can imagine. As such, internet users want your website's content instantly, it should be easy to navigate on a variety of devices, and it needs to look amazing. A lot of websites out there cater to these needs, but unfortunately a significant number still don't.
There are various ways in which your new or existing website can be optimised for better performance and overall user experience, these methods include:
- improved page load or data retrieval speed
- improved search engine ranking so your website is easier to find - commonly referred to as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
- responsiveness, to ensure your website looks good and functions properly on all device types and sizes
- accessibility, to ensure you don't exclude or degrade the experience of visitors with physical impairments
- locale detection so that resources are displayed in your visitor's preferred language
- improved security and trustworthiness of your website.