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Decoding Digital Week Two - Design ImplementationCOMPUTERIZED VOICE: The broadcast is now starting. All attendees are in listen-only mode
ANDREA HALLIDAY: Good afternoon, and welcome to Business Victoria's Decoding Digital program, where you can learn how to become a digital leader in your industry. I'm Andrea Halliday from Business Victoria, and thank you again for joining us for the second webinar in our series.
We got off to a great start last week with our topic, "Developing a Digital Strategy." I hope you either had a chance to tune into the webinar or Google Hangout sessions, or if you've taken a look at the videos on our YouTube channel. All links to the recordings are on the Business Victoria website, as well as all the resources from last week.
This week, we are taking a look at design and implementation. And today, Symphony3 will be looking in more detail at our fictional business Oz Crafters. And in particular we're going to be taking a look at documenting a web brief for a developer, designing and implementing the website, and key things to consider when doing that, and the most important elements on the website, and making the right decisions for your business.
Again, we are joined by Fergal Coleman, director of Symphony3, Welcome, Fergal.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Andrea, how are you? I hope you didn't spend too much money last week on Shoes Of Prey. Good to be back this week.
ANDREA HALLIDAY: That's right. Yes. Thank you. No, I've been a good girl. And we also welcome Ryan Smith, also from Symphony3
RYAN SMITH: Thanks, Andrea. Good to be back again for week two.
ANDREEA HALLIDAY: Thanks, Ryan. I'll hand it over to Symphony3 to begin. Please feel free to ask questions throughout the webinar in the questions box on your screen, or at the end. The recording and slides will be made available to everyone after the webinar. Don't forget to check back in on Thursday for our next Google Hangout at 12:30, where we'll be taking a hands-on look at Facebook.
It's over to you Fergal.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Thanks, Andrea. And thanks again to everybody for attending. Good to see so many of you back for week two, which is good. I know we have a few new people as well that joined up kind of after our first webinar last week. So, really just very quickly want to reiterate that we want you guys to engage with us as much as possible during this session, and indeed over the course of the next three weeks. So, don't be shy about popping questions into the questions box.
Ryan's going to do most of the talking this week, I think, so I'll endeavor to get to your questions as they're asked. Don't be shy. If you've got a question, or there's something you don't know, the chances are there'll be somebody else in the session who probably is just too shy to ask. So, I encourage you to ask you questions. We'll run a couple of polls as well just to keep the engagement going. And, as with last week, we'd encourage you to get onto Twitter. If you haven't used Twitter at all, now's your chance, an opportunity to use it. I'll be watching Twitter. See that we have already had one tweet come through, somebody looking forward to the session today. So, use the hashtag there, or tweet us directly, and we'll get to it. Other thing to note is the LinkedIn group. So I think we have about 60 people signed up on the LinkedIn group, which is great. Ryan and I have been answering some questions in there and putting in some additional resources in there that we haven't been able to get to the session. So if you've got any questions, rather than emailing us, we'd encourage you to throw your questions into the LinkedIn group. That way, we can answer the question, and many people get the benefit of it. Dina has a question, very quickly, around access if you can't make Thursdays. Everything is accessible. So we're recording all these sessions, Dina, and they'll be made available on the Business Victoria website, and we're making those links available via email followup and also through the LinkedIn group. So, Ryan, I might hand it over to you without further adieu.
RYAN SMITH: Great. Thanks Fergal. So, as Andrea's already pointed out, today we're talking about design and implementation on your website. For those of you who haven't got your website off the ground yet, this should be a really valuable session to help you plan that process.
And for those of you who might be a little bit further down the track and already have your website, hopefully you can still pull out a few items that you can use to continuously improve your website. And also we will talk, Fergal, about how websites do need to be refreshed every few years. So, this is a process that should be on the horizon for most businesses in the next couple of years.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Absolutely.
RYAN SMITH: So, last week we had a jam-packed session, and today's is pretty full-on as well. So, we'll try and get through as much as we can. The last week was very much strategic. We'll be more hands-on today.
But last week we did look at the business model, and we gave you the business model canvas. So, hopefully, you've gone away and done some work on that. We asked you to do a SWOT analysis. Really importantly, we got you to do some customer personas, and your customer journey, and that'll definitely tie-in to what we do today quite a lot. Hopefully, a lot of you have gone and done the digital diagnostic, and we've seen more of those have been coming through in the last week. So, that's great to see. And if anyone still hasn't done that, be sure to get in and give that a go as well.
And then, finally we made a one page plan, and we have four key strategies that come out of that. And they're what we'll be covering over the next few weeks.
And today's really that first point there. We're going to actually develop a fully-functional e-commerce website, which we've gone away and done. And we'll give you some hands-on examples using that website to show you how the things we talk about today will actually play out once you have a real live website to go.
FERGAL COLEMAN: And hopefully, as well, Ryan, that people can see that what we did last week will feed into some of the work that we do today.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely, Fergal. So while we're at it, maybe we'll get you to kick off a poll, and see how much of the homework everyone has done. Whether we've been good students or a little bit lazy.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Great. Yeah. So I've just launched a poll there. Don't be shy. Be honest. And tell us what tools you've actually completed from last week. Again, our job is to try and drive you guys to go and actually implement some of this stuff. So, you're a little bit of schooling here.
So I've got 38% of people have voted at this stage. I'll leave it go for another few minutes. So, please keep going. See if we can get up to 60, 70, or 80%.
RYAN SMITH: And certainly, Fergal, all these tools, they'll feed into everything we cover over the four weeks. The more of this you've done, the more you'll be able to really get a good outcome from more of the tools-based sessions we do.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think that's absolutely right. So, I might just close that poll, Ryan. And I'll share the results out there with people. So, 26% of you have gone down the business model canvas, which is great. I think that's a pretty tricky and difficult tool, so, good to see that. SWOT analysis, a lot of you, yeah, we've noticed a lot of the digital diagnostics coming through. So 46% have done that. A few have done the customer persona journey, and fewer again have done the one-page plan. So, look, great that people are actually getting stuck in with it. If you're having difficulty with it, please post into the LinkedIn group, and we will try and help you through these tools as best we can from a remote basis. But these- really important that you do revisit these and you get them done.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely, Fergal. So, we'll keep moving. So, this week, as you said, we're going to be focusing on implementation design of a fully functional e-commerce website. And to break that down a bit, we're going to take you through the journey of how you would go through that process with your own business.
So, writing a website brief, we think, is really important, whether you're going to tackle the task of your website internally and try and do it yourself- which is definitely possible, as we'll show you- or whether you're going to be hire a developer, we think it's still a really important process to go through, writing that brief and actually documenting what it is your website needs to do, and what you want from it. We'll touch on developing an online brand. Some of you might not have gone down the process of creating a logo in your style guide. And there's some resources you can use online to help you do that. Fergal's going to take us through choosing an appropriate content management system. So, finding the most appropriate solution for your business, and some tools you can use to do that process objectively. And, once again, we'll also look at choosing the right agency or developer if you are going to use someone externally to help build your website.
We'll go through with the website brief the key features your website should include, and some the things you should be considering, and how you can develop that design and development process. And finally, we've created a live website which we're going to use. And today, towards the end of the session, we're going go into the website, show you some of the features we talk about in the brief, and then we'll also jump in the back end of the CMS and give you a bit of a look into the functionality of the back end of the website. And that will also continue into the next week when we talk about SEO and content. We'll use this site as well to demonstrate some of those themes. So, hopefully that will give you a bit more of a practical feel for what we're talking about- especially if some of this stuff is a bit foreign to you.
So, the website brief. This is a document we're going to prepare, either for our internal use or for an external developer. And we're really just trying to get the key things that website needs to do down on paper. So, as a bit of an overview, we think it's worth putting an introduction or an overview at the start. So, it's important, especially if you're using an external developer, for them to know a bit about your business, where you've come from, and where you're going, what is your vision, what's your business philosophy. And your website should reflect that. And then points are here with your business requirements, Fergal, is really tying in with a lot of the strategic stuff we covered last week. So, what are the business outcomes you're hoping to achieve from your website? If you saw it's not tied back to your business objectives and what you're really trying to achieve as a business a whole, then it's probably not going to deliver all that much value for you. So, this is where your SWOT analysis, your business model canvas, all this stuff comes in very great relevance.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah, absolutely Ryan. I think it's important to note that we- I suppose we've used the term "website." But really, when we're talking to clients these days, we're talking about a digital business or a digital platform. So, the internet is a platform for you to do business. So, it's not just a brochure site anymore, and really important that we don't think of it in those terms.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah. Absolutely. Point three, there, the target market. This is your customer personas through and through. So, before you ever start the process of thinking about your website, you definitely need to have done your customer personas. And we'll even go as far as to include those in our brief or attach them to our brief.
So, good to see that some of you have already gone and done that. If you haven't, it's still really vital that you do. And we'll come back to that when we show you our example brief in a moment. Your design requirements. We're definitely aware that you're not all going to be designers, or have much experience with design. You can at least start by doing some research on the web looking at competitors, looking at overseas markets, looking at people both in and out of your industry.
What are they doing? What are the things you really like? Finding some examples. And then, also working out, collecting what you already have in terms of your existing logos, style guides, color palette, and having to think about your site layout and structure. And we'll talk about site map and your wireframes as well.
Functional requirements is really about the practical tasks that need to be performed on your site. So, what are customer's going to need to do when they come to your site? What are the functions they'll want to complete? And also, what are the functions that you'll need to complete as a manager of the website?
So, will you be managing the site? How will you update content? How will you manage your products? And then, how will customers access those as well?
So, really important you put yourself in the shoes of your customers. Think about your customer journey, and pull out those things on your customer journey that your customers will want to do when they're using your website, and make sure your website has a functionality to do that.
And then, finally, you'll want to have some kind of timeline. So, you want to have an idea of when you want to launch your site. And if you're using a developer, you should also map out some milestones along the way to help you measure your progress as you go.
So, Fergal, I'm just thinking that we might actually jump into our sample website brief for Oz Crafters which we put together.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think, Ryan, that's a good idea. And I think it important to say, look, website briefs, we've done one that's seven pages. And some people will if you've got a large business, and you're developing a really complex website, obviously, your functional specification will be more detailed, obviously.
Bear in mind as well that this gives your developer a good starting point. They may come down, and they'll flesh out this brief. They'll almost read it back to you with more detail in time. But what the brief does is it really clarifies exactly what you're looking for from your developer. And that can be really important in terms of just maintaining a good, ongoing relationship. So, it's really clear what your expectations are, and there's no gray areas.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah, I think that's right, Fergal. So, you might actually just skip through our introduction today, because we had a nice intro to Oz Crafters last week. And we've all read the case study. And we'll go through extra business requirements.
So, this ties back into our case study last week. James is really looking to boost brand awareness and generate more customers. They've had a fairly well-established customer base, but they're trying to get out to new geographic regions, build their customer awareness with both retailers and with young customers. Well, and ultimately what they're looking for is more sales to grow the business.
And by doing this, we looked at the business model canvas. We talked about the channels through which they'll sell. And e-commerce is one of those, just selling directly through the website, which they haven't done previously. We really want to be able to start building that part of the business up.
A strong brand image. The site needs to help define and clarify the business image and the philosophy, bit of an online personality, which hasn't existed up until this point in time. And really importantly, high visibility. So, it's important for Oz Crafters to be found on search engines and social media to grow their market.
Target market. We've targeted Australian with the personas we went through last week. And if we were going to give this to someone, we would attach those personas to this document. So we've got our high-value family-minded professional, who is Claire Smith. And we've got our niche furniture and homeware store and art, which was Steve. And we've mapped out their personas and their needs, and how they use online. And we've gone through the customer journey process for both those customers, which tells us a lot about the functionality they'll need on the website. And then we've documented some of the common values that they define, that define our customers
In design requirements, we need a look and feel that's consistent with the Oz Crafters brand. That's really important. And we want a modern design that's pretty competitive with some of the best practice e-commerce websites. Now, Fergal, obviously we're not going to have the same budget or resources as a really large retailer, but what we'll find is that you can actually get a really professional, modern-looking website, even if off a template, without having to spend a fortune.
FERGAL COLEMAN: And look, that's a good interlude. We've had a good question here from Peter King. He asks, for many businesses, the cost of development may mean that not everything can be afforded straightaway. Should the brief consider how the site can be scaled over time?
So, look Peter, I guess I'll answer that first, and then I'll throw it over to Ryan. And yes, you may decide- certainly we've got small clients who have said, look, we'd love to do everything, but based on the price you've given us, we can't. So, can you help us scale this over time?
But if you know and you've done your work beforehand, you can say, well, look, this is where we'd like the site to be. On our one-page plan you might envision it for three years, and you might say we need all this functionality in three years. But then you can scale it back and say, all right, well, in the first six months we're going to do this. After six months, we'll review, and we'll add this and we'll add that. So, I guess absolutely. And I think it's important that the brief does consider the scaling.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah. I think that's a really good question, Fergal. And maybe when you go through your CMS decision process letter as well, that's something you need to consider is, there's a CMS support I need now, and also inside a year's time, and we want to expand out and maybe increase functionality on the site.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right.
RYAN SMITH: So, if we continue with our design requirements. We also want plenty of white space, not too cluttered. We're definitely seeing a definite move towards more minimalism, more simplicity on website design now. And an incorporation of high-quality images and videos is also vital. We have included a couple websites that we've found- Australian-based websites- that are in similar industries, that have a nice look and feel- we like what they're doing. That'll give a developer a bit of a hint as to what we're looking for. Then we've gone through the process of actually documenting potential sitemaps and wireframes. And we'll go through in the slides shortly a bit more about sitemaps and wireframes. Sitemap is really the site structure, the page structure of our website. A good way to think of it is often the main navigation in your site you'll see in the top menu.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think, Ryan, just to interrupt there, just on the design thing, I think that what you've mentioned there, really important to put in sites that you like, because it's a pretty subjective thing in some respects what people like and don't like. So, you're doing your research up front, and kind of giving your designer an idea of four or five sites that might have some consistent look and feel about them will really help you to get the outcome that you want.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. And then we get to our wireframe, and we've put in a couple of options here. Once again we'll come back to this. But it's really the layout of the homepage. What are the different elements we're going to have there, and how are we going to organize them onto the main hub of our website? Some people will also want to go through the process of creating a wireframe via inner pages as well. And we'll come back to these in a moment.
And then, finally, our functional requirements. And this is pulling the elements off your customer journey, thinking about what they need to do, and what you need to do on your website, and making sure that we have those all documented, whether they're short-term functions or long-term functions, to make sure we have them all there.
So, responsive design really important. This means that our site will be optimized for mobile and tablet devices as well as desktop. We want to have a search function on the website so that people can easily find the pages and the products they are looking for. It's really important for us, and I think for anyone that's in this webinar, that they can easily update the site content on their own. So, whether it's writing a blog, changing content on a page, adding or editing products, it's really important that you're able to do that without having to contact your developer, or someone technical every time. Accessible design is something that some businesses will be important to consider as well. And this is meaning that you have certain elements in your site that make it easier for people with disability to access your website.
We want to have a download area where we can have products that people can access. Really important to be able to measure your site with analytics, add video, upload blogs, and also catered prices advise retailers and consumers, given that we're going to be selling to retail partners as well as directly to customers on our website.
Other things to consider- email marketing, SEO practices which we'll touch on next week. And also, website forms, Fergal, are really good for optimizing your business processes.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. I think that's one that's overlooked by a lot of small businesses. You can really reduce a lot of double-handling and data entry by having some good, online forms on your website that maybe self-calculate, allow people to maybe to do their own quotes. So, really think carefully about how you might be able to put some processes into online forms, because they're generally, they're quite easy to do, and they can deliver a lot of business benefits.
RYAN SMITH: And then we've assigned some fairly broad time allocations there, Fergal. We suggest you break that down into a more detailed project plan, either with your developer or internally.
So for us, we'll set out some projects deadlines based on different milestones through the planning process, design process, development process. And then, some testing as well is really important, Fergal, which often get overlooked in the final launching stages. So, really important we benchmark these and try and stick to them, because it is quite easy to let these projects blowout if we're not actively disciplined.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah, and look, I want to bring this up because this is probably, I don't know how many sites- hundreds of small businesses we've helped, I guess, over the years get online. And I can tell you that the blowouts in terms of time generally happen with content. So, have a content form. Or, if your developer doesn't give you one, develop one which is a single place where you will put content for your page.
We will talk a little bit more about structured content next week. But having a single file where all the content goes and that's given back to you as a client to fill out is really important. Otherwise, if content starts coming in in dribs and drabs, it can be put up badly on the website, it leads to confusion of the project, and it certainly leads to delays. So you've got to really sit on content. And if you need help, make sure that might be something where you engage a content writer to help you.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah. Really good point, Fergal. So, do you want to take us through some of the factors we might think about, Fergal, if we do choose that we want to get this expertise consulted from outside the organization, and you're going to hire a developer or an agency? What are the things we need to be thinking about to choose the right help for our business?
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. This is one of the questions I get asked when I do a lot of the face-to-face sessions, is how do you choose, or I've fallen out with my developer. How do I choose a good developer?
So, there's a tool I'll show you very quickly, shortly to what to do. But some of the factors that I would be looking for would be find a developer who's going to take the time to understand your business requirements. So, if they don't ask questions about your business and what you're trying to achieve, and they're just trying to give you a website, for me, that's cause for concern. Means they haven't taken the time, or they're not setting aside the thinking time to think about how they're going to deliver good outcomes for you. Use software that's not proprietary. Unless you're building a really custom-developed solution, you should be using one of the better known CMSs, which is a content management system, because there'll be a huge community of developers around that. Generally means that the software will be improving all the time. And it also means that you're not locked into a single developer. If you fall out with your developer, you're not locked in. You can go and find somebody else who will be able to work with the same system. Social proofs, or case studies, word of mouth, referrals, all really good in terms of finding a developer. If you find somebody online, I'd be looking at their portfolio. I'd be trying to find, hopefully that they'll have worked in the same industry, or worked with clients of a similar size to yourself. So, sometimes choosing the best and the biggest design agency is not the way to go, because they're used to dealing with larger clients if you're a small business. So, finding the right fit and the expertise for your business is important. Cost, obviously comes into the equation, as it does with most things. Location- well, having somebody that come out and visit you might be important for you. We're finding that less and less of an issue. And certainly we've got clients where we just deal exclusively on webinar. But some people still like to face-to-face. And ideally you want to be able to eyeball people, and figure out whether they're a fit or not.
But more important than location, I think, is accountability, and the fact that they'll provide you with support. Bear in mind that you should be setting aside some of your budget to receive support. A lot of the support for the CMSes, as I'll show you later on as provided online. If you're looking for individual support, make sure you leave some money aside so that you make sure you get good support. And we put in the have a beer test. So, any people we partner with, Ryan, we like to get on well with. With a website, it can be quite an intense project for a period of time. So you want to be actually working with people that you like. So we call it the have a beer test, or the weekend away test. So, choose those factors. If you just flip to the next slide, we're making this tool available, and I'll throw it up in the chat box in a second, the link out to it. Call it Decision Matrix. And this is an online tool that we use that is free for you guys to use as well, to allow you to make a good, objective decision.
And as you can see down on the left-hand side there, we've chosen four or five factors. Across the top, we've got the developers that we're trying to choose. So, we've got developer one, developer two. We've given a weighting to the different factors. And then what we've simply done is we've gone through and scored each of our developers against each factor. So, it's allowing us to make a really objective decision. And in this case, we're trying to choose a web developer, one of three. We've definitely settled on developer number two, because they meet the criteria that we're looking for. I'll come back to this tool shortly, but hopefully that gives you a feel as to how you can make an objective decision on choosing a developer.
RYAN SMITH: Great. Thanks, Fergal. So, we're going to jump back to the sitemaps now and get back into the website. So, as we mentioned before, so sitemap really outlines the structure of our website, how the pages will be structured, and especially how the main menu navigation on that site will be structured.
As a general rule, Fergal, we really try not to overcomplicate the sitemap. We try to keep it simple where possible, and cut out any excess, because we don't want users to have too many decisions, to have too much confusion getting around. I know one of your pet hates, Fergal, too, is overly complicated or obscure wording on site navigations.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah, I think bad site navigation is very often what leads to bad usability. So, if the customer can't understand keywords or words that you're using on your top navigation, for example, well then, they're going to find it difficult to get around your site. So, you're going to show a couple Post-It notes, Ryan. I'd be giving that back to your clients. And if they don't understand keywords that you've got up there, or certain words that you've got up on your navigation, change them.
RYAN SMITH: Yep. So we find a good starting point, Fergal, to be just using Post-It notes. Put them up on a wall, or put them up on your white board. And then get your colleagues, get an independent opinion, a customer is great as well, and think about where we can cut it down. So, this was our first attempt at the site map, Fergal. And then we sort of start thinking do we really need to split our About page three ways? Is there that much to us? So, can we tell our story more concisely?
And so we had a second revision where we managed to cut that down, and had a much simpler sitemap there, the only dropdown being with our three different product categories. And we're hoping to get around 100 or more products on there eventually. We want to make that easier for our customers to sort out. But we're trying not to break it down just for the sake of breaking it down.
FERGAL COLEMAN: We're going to make some usability resources available, but I still think there's a book called Don't Make Me Think by a guy called Steve Krug, which is, there's a new version out, but the first version was developed probably 15 years ago. I think that's well worth a read for people. They'll read it in probably the space of a couple of hours, and it really talks about making your site easy to use for people. So, that's one that if you're interested in this area, to go and buy that book.
RYAN SMITH: Now, Fergal, for people with really large sites or a lot of content, or feel like they've got a lot of different things in it to communicate on the site, there are different techniques out there, one of which is card sorting. And I believe this is a good video that you recommend businesses can use if they feel like they need a more intense process to simplify the sitemap.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right. So this is Tim's- hopefully Tim's on the session today; I think I saw his name there- this is a really good video that Tim did on card sorting. So, we don't have time to go through it in detail, but certainly we'd recommend that you go and have a look at if you've got a more detailed website.
RYAN SMITH: Great. So, once you've got your sitemap ready to go, we suggest that you at least have a crack at your own homepage wireframe.
Now, some people will do an inner page as well, or your developer might help you through this process. You might have a crack, and then narrow it down with your developer. But it's really good to, after you've done your research and your brief, and about different sites you like the look of, you've got your functional spec and the different functions your site's going to have, start thinking about how those different functions are going to actually fit into your home page, how it might look, how it might feel. This will also help your developer get a feel for what you're looking for on your homepage.
So, we're still a little bit old-fashioned, Fergal, and we still like to get the whiteboard out and start drawing stuff up, rubbing some things out, switching it around, playing around with it a bit, and just doing it that way. Taking some photos. And in our brief, we put in a couple of examples to start with.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right, Ryan. I think your next slide, you've got some links out to wireframing tools. But we've tried some of these, but we've kind of gone back to the old-fashioned way where we like to be tactile, and we like to get in front of the whiteboard with our clients and get them up there drawing out what it is that they want. So, sometimes the old stuff still works quite well.
RYAN SMITH: So, we have put some resources there for digital wireframing tools if people are interested. There's a great Mashable article that's got 10 free tools you can use that will cost you nothing. You can play around and see which ones work for you. There is some other examples of things we've used. Even Google Docs, you can draw pictures in there that work quite well for wireframes. Really easy to share and collaborate with people. wireframe.cc we've used. That's a free tool. And also MockFlow, if you want to upgrade a little bit. And that's a page solution. So we'll let people play around with those at their own discretion. Design and usability. You could dedicate a whole webinar series to this, really. And this is always changing very quickly, Fergal, which is why we need to update our site every three to four years, really. Good article here on some of the key trends in 2015. We'll just touch on a couple today purely for time factors. But you can certainly go in and find plenty of information on this stuff online. One of the big trends we're seeing a lot of recently is, well, we could call it "make it big." Whatever you call it. It's much everything's stripped down, minimal design, really large, upfront homepage images and videos. Seeing a lot of this, Fergal. Looks really great. Really simple call to actions for the customer as well.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. I think the proviso on that, Ryan, is that you have some really good photography. If you've got a visual product or service that you're selling, this design works really well. Regardless- and we'll get into products later on- good photography makes a huge difference on today's websites.
So, we see a lot of people who maybe cut corners on that, and they think that they'll take photographs themselves. If you have a budget at all, very often just getting some good photographs can make a huge difference- particularly with the "make it big," where people are actually making websites almost fully photograph and visually effective.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. Flat designing and user interface is one that we've really seen in many ways stem from mobile, Fergal, where you've got their sort of like interface on the iPhone. Also reminds you a bit of the new Windows 8 interface. But we used to see much more embossing and shadowing where things popped out of the screen. Now it's much more flat and very simple design, all about minimalism and simplicity in many ways.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah, that's right. Mobile's driving this a lot of time as well. The simplicity is needed. People, while bells and whistles are great, they want to get their information quickly and easily, and they're used to using this kind of user interface.
RYAN SMITH: And similar again, largely driven by mobile, we're seeing a lot of tiling. Once, where we would have had longer dropdown menus and more traditional ways of giving people options to select, we're now going for more tiled pages. Also works really well with giving people a preview of what they'll be clicking through to before they have to actually go to that page to find the information.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right, Ryan we've used it on our resources page, and it's been quite effective. It gives people a visual look at some of the resources that we've got available. So that was our test of it. And we found it to be quite effective, I guess.
RYAN SMITH: And then there's all kinds of data integration happening at the moment, Fergal, as well. Maps is one of the biggest ones. Tools like Google Maps have really opened up their ability to integrate with people's websites- especially businesses that might be tourism-oriented or have multiple branches, being in remote locations, involve people traveling, maps have a huge potential. But even for smaller business applications, really good to integrate this and engage your customers on your site without them having to go find the information elsewhere.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right. We've used it with anyone with directory-based sites, this can be a really effective way of doing it. So, we've used it with some of our government clients where they're trying to put community and business directories up online, and people are trying to find things close to where they live. Maps can be really effective- and not difficult to do. It's become a hell of a lot easier to integrate maps into what you do.
RYAN SMITH: So, coming through to logos and branding, we don't have too much time to spend on this, but some people may not have actually developed some logos yet, if you haven't had to go down the website process before.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Ryan, just to interrupt you there, we did have a question from Brett. So, his question relates directly to this. What are your thoughts on developer resources websites like Fiver? So, this is pretty timely.
RYAN SMITH: Beautiful timing. So we actually had our logo design for Oz Crafters on Fiver. And I think with, Fergal, like anything, the motto goes that you get what you pay for. So you can get a huge price range on this stuff. Our logo, we go down for 5 USD.
That said, you can go and spend hundreds if you want to. And the quality will vary, and the originality will vary. There's is a buyers beware with this stuff. You cannot guarantee that the logo hasn't been improvised from something that already exists out there. So, be careful. Really important to look at reviews and portfolios of the people you work with. But for design and logos, you got tools like Fiver, Freelancer, and 99 Designs, where people all around the world will perform a whole bunch of design jobs for you based on cost. And then, for website templates, if you are going to do the project yourself, and not develop from scratch, then there are a whole bunch of templates existing for lots of CMSs already available that you can work off. For Business Catalyst, which we'll come to, there's things like BC Gurtus, and TribeVita, for WordPress, or Shopify- whole ranges of templates out there. So, for our logo that we got done, as you can see, we paid $5.50 for it. We got it turned around in about 10 days. And we had a dialogue with the designer. He wanted some background on our business, a bit of a short brief essentially- what we do, what we're trying to communicate- and examples of what we like- once again, really important. Things to keep in mind- you can pay extra to get things turned around quicker. We often recommend to pay a little bit extra to get the original files of any designs you do, so if you want to edit them in the future, you can.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. I think if we talk to Brett's point, that you can start with your $5 websites. Things like 99 Design move you up into the kind of the hundreds of dollar range. I think there's options there for kind of $700 for website designs. So, you can use these outsourcing tools to get different quality. So, you don't have to just get kind of a $5 site using this $5 logo or $5 site using these tools.
Very quick point as well, from Tim who's just said, just make sure the website templates that you buy on these templates sites are responsive. Really, absolutely right. A lot of the older templates aren't responsive. So, it goes without saying that if you're going to develop a new website these days, the first question you ask your developer or somebody giving you your template is, is it responsive?
RYAN SMITH: Yeah, a really important point, Fergal. So, choosing a CMS, Fergal, can you give us a bit of indication of what kind of cost we're looking for different CMSs here, and how we go about making a decision about what's going to meet our needs?
FERGAL COLEMAN: Look, on the questions- I've had a couple of questions come through. Obviously, earlier on we have the question around scalability. Ian Hull has asked about WordPress. Of course the consultant answer is which one should you use- it all depends. And it depends on your needs. But let me show you again. What I'll do is, let me just copy and paste, Ryan, the link out to this Decision Matrix so people could see it. And then I'll bring you in and show you how I would use it, so people can have a look at this later on. On the slide you've got front of you will see that we've probably got a dozen CMSs that people probably know pretty well. So, these, probably for most businesses, one of these will suit really well. And again, it comes down and depends on your budget. What you need to do is, again, get objective as to what it is that you need. So, where's the business going? So, WordPress might be great for small business, but if you've got global domination in mind, you might need to start with something that's instantly scalable. What I might do, Ryan, is get you to give me control, so people can see my screen very briefly. So, hopefully people can see my screen there. And again, this is the Decision Matrix tool. Let me go. And what we can do with this tool- excuse me. I'm having sound issues here. Let me just go back and start at the beginning. So, the tool basically talks you through deciding what it is that you need to do. So, in this case, we want to choose a CMS. The first thing I would do is I would go and I would look at the list. We might have a list of 20 which we have on a slide, I think, coming up of CMSs. I would narrow them down- based on talking to people and based on tools you've heard about, and maybe that your competitors are using- to five key ones. So, we've put them into the tool here. And then I'd have a decision to decide what are the key factors we want to make our decision on. So, we're trying to take gut feeling out of this. And people have been blown away by features and maybe bells and whistles. So, in our case here, I've looked at cost- really important. Looked at ease of use. So, I want to be able to manage the site myself. I've got scalability in here, which addresses the question that we had earlier on. Community of developers is really important. So, I want to choose a system that's got a community of developers that actually work with this system. And then, because we're going to sell this online, I want to choose something that has good e-commerce capabilities. What we then do is we give a weighting to each. So, in our case, we don't think Oz Crafters is going to grow to be a huge e-commerce business. So, scalability is important, but not hugely important. We think cost at this stage and ease of use is more important, so I've given them more of a weighting. Community of developers is very important, as is e-commerce capability. And bear in mind, I've done this kind of based on a fictional business. We'll then pick a benchmark. So, let's assume that we're using WordPress, and we'll use WordPress, which is our existing site- let's say Oz Crafters is currently using WordPress- to benchmark the other systems against. And then, what we do with this system- particularly if there's two or three people in the business, and people are fighting for different CMSs- we would go through each of these factors, and we would say, all right, well, Shopify is an option. How does it compare relative to WordPress on cost? In this case, we think it's more expensive in this case, which probably isn't the case. And so we'll give it an 11. And you go, and you score each of these objectively one-by-one, cell-by-cell, all the way down through each of the factors. Make sure you work your way across and then down- not down and then across. It just works better. So, in this case, we've gone through the tool, and we can see that we've chosen Business Catalyst- Adobe Business Catalyst- for the following reasons. And that's the decision that we've made. So, we think it's an objective decision. It's taking gut feeling, personal preferences out of it, and hopefully keeps everybody in the business happy. And so I might just pass the screen back over to you, Ryan. We've had a couple of questions. So I'll get in and see if they're related to what I've just covered.
RYAN SMITH: Great. Thanks, Fergal. Good to be back in the driver's seat. Please interrupt me if you have questions there.
FERGAL COLEMAN: There's a good question from Dina. Are some- I'm assuming she means CMSs- are some ranked better as far as Google? Look, I think the likes of WordPress works really well, because it was set up originally as a blog. Getting a simple WordPress up and running with good SEOs is probably a relatively simple process. But by and large, most of the good CMSs these days can work. I think, certainly, ones where you pay a bit of money would be good for SEO. I still have some of the tools, like Wix and Squarespaces, I still have some reservations about how well they do on search engines. Again, you get what you pay for, to a certain degree.
RYAN SMITH: And Fergal, there's some commons of skills and principles that we can use that regards the CMS. If we practice those really well, we can expect better results on search engines.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right. And we'll cover those, Dina, in the next week. We will actually show you how to do some optimization for your website.
RYAN SMITH: Great. So, now we're looking, if everyone's seeing my screen, finally looking at the homepage of our fairly quickly constructed Oz Crafters website. So, it's worth saying, Fergal, that we did put this together pretty quickly on a pretty small budget. But in some ways that emphasizes what we're trying to get across, which is, without having to invest too much, we can get a pretty functional site that can do quite a bit even in terms of e-commerce and many of the things that we've talked about being functional.
FERGAL COLEMAN: So, just for the benefit of people listening, we've used a Business Catalyst platform. We've got a logo from Fiver, and we've bought a template for a couple of dollars. We have spent a bit of time, I guess, moving that template around a little bit, but we've done this certainly on a minimal budget.
RYAN SMITH: So, what we'll try to do, Fergal, is show some of the things you talked of today, and what they look like on the front end of the site, and also show you what they might look like on the back end of the site, and how some things can be managed. And we'll continue that into next week as well. So, we won't be able to show you everything. What we will see straight up is a design of the home page, which is quite similar to the original wireframe that we drew up. We've changed it a little bit as we've gone through the development and design processes, but most of the elements are all there. And just to say as well, this site will be available for you to look at after today's session. And then you'll see as well that the menu structure reflects the site map we came to as well after we refined it down a bit.
One of the things that we said both in our design specs and our functional spec was that it was really important that our site would be responsive, meaning that it would adapt to different mobile devices. And there's actually an extension in Google Chrome we can use that will show us what the site might look like if it were on a mobile device. So, if you did want to do this with your own site, and see what users are seeing when they're on different devices, you can go on the menu in Chrome, and More Tools, and we can go into Developer Tools. And it's this little mobile device up here. And then we give it a menu where we can select different devices.
So, we might say we want to see what the site looks like to someone on a Samsung Galaxy S4. And I'm just going to refresh the page here, because this tool can be a little bit glitchy at times. But it is free as well, so we shouldn't complain. And you'll see it's adjusted.
So the whole site framework will essentially shift. The logo's gone front and center. We've got a mobile phone number up front, so people who are just looking to call us can access that really quickly. And our top menu of our website is turned into a dropdown, so that people on a mobile device, they don't want to have to move around, click little buttons. They can get to those things really easily. Big call to actions, and we've compressed everything quite simply. Products as well. Really important that if people are viewing products on a mobile device they can get to them really easily. Fergal, we mentioned testing before. Before we launch a site, it is really important that you go through a testing process to make sure this stuff is working. We can go and check iPhones, different versions, tablets, a really useful tool to do. That said, it also is really good practice to test them on real mobile devices, too.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. And I think that's right. And I think you need to be careful if you start tinkering with templates, as we've done. We've found that it's forced us to go back and actually make improvements, because we've not beared the responsive design a little bit. So, just be mindful of that. Make sure when you choose your developer that there is plenty of time left in there for testing. They should do their own testing. They may have some testing tools. But they should also put it out to you to test, so that you can have a look at how it looks. I think in week four, we'll show people a tool called Hotjar as well, which is around testing how people are interacting with the site, which is more around, I guess, usability to a certain degree.
RYAN SMITH: Definitely. Another tool we put on the homepage there, Fergal, is live chat. Live chat is really growing in popularity, and I think there's a growing expectation that people can talk to us on the spot without having to wait for an email response.
I've actually got it open here. And it looks like you're already chatting to me, Fergal. I can open that. And I might see how you're going, and if I can help you find anything. Jumped the gun a little bit there.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think I jumped, there. One sec, Ryan.
RYAN SMITH: While Fergal gets back in, I can see that he's based in Melbourne. And I can see that I've actually chatted with him before. So, there's a chat history there. And I might want to go back and just see- especially if there's another person in the business- what conversation I'd had with Fergal in the past. And that will really help make sure I deliver some valuable customer service to him. So, this is a tool that we're using called Pure Chat. It's free for up 30 chats a month, really easy to put on your site. We've used other tools, like LiveChat and Zopim as well, which are paid solutions. But it's really something worth considering if you're trying to deliver really timely service to your customers. Now we've gone and set up some products as well for the sake of example. We've got three different product categories, and we've got three products in total. Some common traits we hope to see when you're setting up your products online. Really good images is vital. Once this loads up for us. So you have really good images. We'd select having multiple images if you can. Also important to have a really clear price, so you want to make that really up front. Try not to leave any hidden costs. So, make shipping information and delivery information really, really obvious as well. If there's multiple options, make those nice and clear. Big call to action buttons. And the ability for people to share it on social media, too, is really important if we're tyring to grow our customer base.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think that's right. And certainly things like specifications, if you're in a technical space, becomes really important for people, Ryan. So, make sure that a lot of work involved in getting the good specifications up there, but these are the things that will generate more sales for you. I think the other thing- and certainly you're more of an online shopper I think than me, Ryan, judging by the amount of new clothes that come into the office every week-
RYAN SMITH: It's an exaggeration.
FERGAL COLEMAN: But free shipping, returns policies are certainly something to help people, I guess, minimize the risk of buying online. So, it's important to consider whether your business model can allow you to do free shipping.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. So got to keep moving, Fergal. So, what we might actually do is jump into the back end of the website in the CMS and give people a bit of a look at what that might look like, and some of the different things we can control from back there.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I had a question- just while you're doing that, I had a question from Dina. So, she was asking what the free tool was. The free tool in terms of the chat tool is called Pure Chat. We also use a tool called Zopim on our own website.
And then the website tool for mobile devices, that's actually in Google Chrome. So if you go back this recording, Ryan is showing you how to get it. If you download Google Chrome, and get on and follow the instructions Ryan went through, Dina, you'll be able to access that tool.
RYAN SMITH: Great. Thanks, Fergal. So, we've logged into the back end of our website for Oz Crafters, and we're given a dashboard. And we're just going to give you a sample of some of the things that we can find in here. A lot of common traits no matter what CMS we're in, Fergal. So we're using Business Catalyst for this website, but a lot of the things will be very similar, whether you're jumping into a WordPress site or a Shopify site as well.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think that's right. And one of things that we didn't touch on earlier on, and I guess it gets back to Ian's question as well, really important that before you actually use the CMS or purchase the CMS that you get a trial of it, because it's your website, it's your business. You need to be comfortable with the CMS that you choose. So, we use the Business Catalyst system. We've used it for quite a few years. So we're pretty comfortable with it. We think it actually suits this fictional business.
We also use Drupal, which is probably, there's a lot more functionality. But for this particular business, Business Catalyst is easy to use for them. So we're pretty comfortable that James can go away and manage his business on this platform.
RYAN SMITH: So, as we said, we've created this site through a template. So, our templates have come with the site. If you have a developer, they're also going to go through the process of creating some templates. And this is where all the design elements of our site are really stored. And we'll build our pages and our products and the elements of our site based on these templates, largely. So these are all in here, ready to go. And then we've created our pages based on these different templates.
FERGAL COLEMAN: So those templates, Ryan, will reflect a lot of the wireframes that you would have done in the web brief.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. So, our wireframes' going to be translated into some packaged templates. We have all the pages on our website here. And as I mentioned before, it's really important that you, as the end user, can actually come in here and edit this information.
So, on the front end here, we have our About page, which we've just put a bit of pretty much the text from the case study in here. But you'll have your description of what your business is all about.
If you need to edit that on the back end of the website without having to know any HTML- you can if you do have some HTML skills. But without having any real technical knowledge, you can come in here and edit this text and make changes as you need to to the pages on your website, which I think is really important, Fergal.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. And look, just to get my- I know I'm a content Nazi, but this is where, when you're creating these pages, and you need the content for these pages, having that content template and all the content in one place will ensure that these pages are constructed in a systematic way. And we'll talk about how to construct that content in more detail next week. But content template becomes really important in terms of getting these pages filled out correctly.
RYAN SMITH: Yep. So next week, Fergal will come back and talk about how we can structure this content to really optimize your SEO. There's also things like the SEO metadata here. And next week, as well, we'll talk about the best ways to do that in order to get the best search engine results. So, really important that you can update these.
Also of a lot of interest to people will probably be how to manage their products in a CMS. So, in e-commerce, we've got a range of things we can manage here with our products. And what we'll have a look at today, Fergal, would really just be the tip of the iceberg. We are running out of time, and we want to leave some time for questions at the end, too.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think that's right, Ryan. Let's show people the products, and then we might leave a few minutes at the end for people to ask specific questions that they might have.
RYAN SMITH: Great. So, for the sake of this site, we've set up three sample products that we've created. As you can see, you can add a product manually quite easily. Or, if you do have lots of products, you can put them into a template and import them all at once. Once we dive down into a product in more detail, there's a whole range of factors we can edit here. But quite easy to put in the basic details. The images is really important. Once again, your SEO data is important, which we'll touch on next week. But one thing I'd like to show is how easy it can be to edit your prices and customize these. In this case, we've got two different prices. We're trying to get people to buy direct to consumers, and we're also trying to sell to retailers. So, we've set a consumer price of 7,000, and a wholesale price of 5,000.
When people create a login to our account, we can actually assign them different values for whether they're a retailer or a customer, and they'll see different products depending upon which login they have to the site. So that's quite important as well, Fergal, is to be able to automate these processes. We can also automate a lot the shipping options based on size and weights, and a range of factors as well.
FERGAL COLEMAN: That's right. And look, most of these systems, now, in the old days, probably 10 years ago these features didn't exist, or they only existed in the enterprise-level systems. Nowadays, these low-cost systems will have a lot of these features no matter which one you choose. So, it's just a matter of educating yourself.
One of things we haven't touched on, and it actually was something we omitted from the brief in hindsight, and I'll take the blame for that, is the importance of training, Ryan. So, when you choose your CMS, one of the factors I would actually include would be online training, so that you can get both online training available to you whenever you want- so, recorded videos- and also, that your developer would provide some hands-on training so that you can understand how your CMS- your content management system- can be tailored to suit your needs.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah, really important, Fergal. And a great way to do that these days is actually via webinar, so you can record the training, go back, and reuse it over time. So, in three months time, you forgotten that part of the CMS, you can go back and find your original training.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah. The other thing to say is very often it's not the software that's to blame. It's really, sometimes, the way the software is either set up and configured, or it's the fact that the people trying to use it haven't been trained properly on it. So, they're not getting the most out of the system.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. So, some of the other things we can do with our products. We want to assign them to catalogs. So, we're eventually going to hope to have 100 products on our site here for Oz Crafters, and we'll want people to be able to sort through the categories. So, we can assign them to what we call catalogs. In this case, we've got the dining table under Furniture, and also under All Products. So, our customers can sort through the products more easily.
And we can assign attributes to individual products, too. So, in this case we've assigned attributes for different kinds of timber. And they'll come with different associated costs. So, we might be able to quickly show that, Fergal, and also open up for any questions before we wrap up today.
FERGAL COLEMAN: While you were showing that, Ryan, I'll just- had another question come in from Peter King. Does having specific customer client logins add significantly to the cost of development? Generally, Peter, no, it doesn't. Normally, that's a feature that's built into- again it depends on the CMS that you choose. But generally, they'll allow you to do customer client logins, specific ones, quite easily. So, at this particular system, there's no additional cost. Sean Murray asks what a CMS is, and I apologize if we were all in the same room, you could throw something out me, Sean, for using jargon. CMS is a content management system. So that's the platform upon which you run your website. So, WordPress, Business Catalyst is a content management system.
RYAN SMITH: Great, Fergal. So, another key function that we think your website should have, whether you do this internally within your CMS, or through an external platform, is having some kind of CRM built into your website that will allow customers to register for an email campaign, and to eventually be able to send them email and use letters as well, Fergal.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yep. Really important. Social media, obviously, crucial today in terms of generating awareness. But email marketing, a tactic we see a lot with the bigger operators, and indeed with smaller operators, is generating the awareness via social media, getting them into the site, but trying to get them to sign up to an email newsletter, because the stats are proving that email newsletters convert to sales more effectively than social media.
RYAN SMITH: So, do interrupt me, Fergal if you have more questions coming in. But we might have to start wrapping up. We are hitting that 1:30 mark.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Yeah, I think that's right, Ryan. Maybe if we go through the conclusion very quickly, and if people have questions, they can ask the questions, and we'll come back and we'll address those after you've done your conclusion.
RYAN SMITH: Great. So, as always keep asking us questions after the webinar. I think the LinkedIn group, we haven't got it there, but we mentioned at the start, really important that we all have some conversation there. The DigitalVic hastag is still going as well. You can tweet us, Facebook us if you like. And if you're really desperate, send us an email. But it'd be really good if we can share everyone's questions with everyone.
FERGAL COLEMAN: I had a hand up from Suzanne Dunlop. So, I don't know, Suzanne, if you want to type a question into the box, and we'll endeavor to answer it if we can.
RYAN SMITH: Yeah. And while we wait for that, just to summarize today- really important to map out your website requirements with a website briefing. I can't reiterate how important it is just to document these things and go through the thought processes, as well as last week's resources as well if you haven't got to those yet, which we know some of you haven't.
FERGAL COLEMAN: So we've got a couple of questions coming to us. Sarah Bardsley wanted a more readable business model canvas. The business model canvas is not our IP, Sarah. So, if you want to get more detail on that, get onto the website businessmodelgeneration.com. There were some links in last week's webinar to some slides on the business model canvas that should enable you to get more information. So, hopefully that helps. There is a new book out around by the same people that is worth a read. I haven't read it yet, but it's getting good reviews. Tim Gentle asked a really good question. Who owns the website Wanted Husband designed and developed?
Well, Tim, I'm sure you're the same as us. The website is owned by the business, so they own the website. It'll be on a platform. So, depending on the platform that you use- so if it's something like a Business Catalyst, that's a hosted platform. So, you don't own the platform as such. You rent it on an ongoing basis. But the IP, the content, the design is owned by you, the client. Ah, this is one for you, Ryan. Will you be going into social media strategy in this webinar series?
RYAN SMITH: Yep. So next week is all about marketing the business. Once again, a lot to cover in four weeks. But we're going to be talking about things like search engine optimization, content marketing, and then we're going to be talking about social media next week as well. Another thing to mention is that our Thursday Google Hangouts are really social media-oriented, and much more hands-on. So, Fergal, you ran through LinkedIn really well with us last Thursday. And this Thursday as well we'll be talking specifically about Facebook. So, really good to tune into those. You can join us live or watch the recording. Other thing to mention is that happy to hear the questions or the troubles that you have with the tools in events. So, give us a little bit of warning so we canplan it for you. But if you do want to cover specific things, say, on Facebook this Thursday, get in touch, just let us know, and we'll try to answer those questions for you.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Some more questions coming in. Dina asks, is there anything we can do to help prevent hacking, et cetera, of websites? The answer is, yes. It depends what kind of website you have. Dina, with the open source solutions- so the likes of WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, which are open source- meaning they're free to use. They need to be constantly updated by your developer. On the hosted solution. So the likes of Business Catalyst at wordpress.com- as opposed to wordpress.org- they should be doing a lot of the software updates for you that will prevent hacking. So, it depends on your system. Again, it's a really important question to ask your developer as you're going through the questioning process with him. But a good developer will cover that all for you. And that's a problem they should be worrying about.
Spam is also an issue that you'll get on the likes of your web forums. So there are tools you can put in place there. Obviously, the capture forms is the most simple version of that, where people, if they fill out a form, they have to put in a couple of letters, or they have to read an image before they can actually submit the form.
Slide content, again, Shane Alexander is wondering will the slide content for this session be available. Ryan?
RYAN SMITH: Yeah, absolutely. So, all the resources go up onto the Business Victoria website not too long after the webinar. Just give us the afternoon to make sure they're all up there for you. Same details you've been given access to through your email saying login details. We'll give you the slides via SlideShare. The recordings will be made available through YouTube, and all the resources will be available to download from the same place. So, good way is to check in to those after each webinar.
And we'll also send you a reminder email through Go to Webinar. So, one thing I will say is if you can't make any of the future webinars, still worth signing up, because you will receive the follow-up emails with a link to the resources. So, always worth doing that.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Another question. Sean Murray asks, if my website hasn't got a CMS can you add one, and is it expensive? Do you want to answer that one, Ryan, or do you want me to answer that one?
RYAN SMITH: You're the CMS expert today, Fergal, so we'll let you go ahead.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Well, Sean, I guess I'm going to give you the old vague answer of "it depends." Yes, if you've got a website normally, if you haven't got a CMS, it will be built with HTML files. Usually they're pretty transferable across to a CMS. Expensive- it depends what you mean by expensive, of course, and it depends on how extensive the site is. So, if you've got a large site, obviously that's going to cost a little bit more money. But I guess to answer the question, you can easily transfer across, and it shouldn't be too expensive without knowing what your website does or what it looks like. Again, if you've got things like more extensive customization, well, then that will add to the cost.
RYAN SMITH: All right. So how are we going for questions, Fergal?
FERGAL COLEMAN: I think that's it. More or less that's it. If anyone got any last questions, happy to answer them. Again, I encourage you to try and get onto LinkedIn, because we do have a lot of people in the session here who have got their own expert knowledge and expertise. And if it's four weeks of myself and Ryan, well, I love listening to you, Ryan. It would be great to get some input from some of the others in the LinkedIn session as well.
RYAN SMITH: Absolutely. So, details to contact us about Thursday as well, we're there. And the URL to access the Hangout will go out with a reminder, with a follow-up email from this webinar. So, you should all receive that. And we look forward to seeing you then, if there's no more questions.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Great. Let me just finally check- yeah we didn't have anything come through on Twitter either. Ryan, we did have one tweet come through from Linda Sipgis? I don't know if I pronounced that right, Linda. So, thanks for that. Encourage more of you to get involved in Twitter as well, and post some tweets. If you do it wrong, that's fine. We can go in, we can help you post them better the next time around.
So, I think that's it for today.
RYAN SMITH: Great. Thanks, Fergal.
FERGAL COLEMAN: Thanks, Ryan. Good job. And I look forward to hearing all about Facebook on Hangout on Thursday.
RYAN SMITH: Me, too. Cheers.
FERGAL COLEMAN: All right. Thanks. Thank you everybody.