In a new direction for us, we are happy to launch a selection of our own template websites. Why? To give clients who don't require custom solutions, the best possible entry level website at excellent value.
Our own selection of website templates is a new thing for The Cut and one that has been in planning, design and development for several months. Now they are ready for Perth businesses.
With our focus on the design and development of custom websites and business applications, templates have been something we have offered using hosted solutions. For standard sites we used Squarespace and for e-Commerce, Shopify. Both great platforms that offer good quality solutions at entry level prices.
The limitations with both, and with any hosted platform, is that we don't own the code-base, so any sort of customisation can be challenging, at best, and at worst, frustrating for our team, and the client.
So, the best solution is to develop our own range of template site designs so we can give our clients and our team the best of both worlds - best practice websites on our own CMS, with an affordable price point and the ability to customise in the future. We invested the time and resources into these new products, and now they're ready to roll out. Perfect.
"We want to work with businesses of all shapes and sizes because we can add tons of value to the way small to medium enterprises operate online. Having our own suite of template sites is a great offer for us. They give clients high value websites with a great set of features and we can implement them quickly." - Scott Sanders, Technical Director, The Cut
The seed for this project was planted at the end of 2014 when we started to get regular requests from clients and business partners regarding template websites for smaller clients and budgets. We were able to deliver these solutions using Squarespace, but for us it didn't represent the best possible solution we could deliver.
Using hosted solutions means we don't have complete control over the code, and that can be limiting. Even small tweaks to the design can be challenging and introduce bugs in other areas of the site.
With our own templates, if a client does want a minor design change, or even the addition of a custom feature, we can make that happen and ensure that it works seamlessly and without compromise.
"Because our template sites are built on our own Content Management System, we own the code base and have total control. Anything is possible. If a client is happy to invest more, then we can customise a template to suit their needs. Even with custom changes, the overall cost stays significantly less than a full custom solution, so everybody wins." - Scott Sanders, Technical Director, The Cut
For most clients, the standard template will offer the design, user experience and features they need to vastly improve their business's online presence. Standard template sites, without custom changes, can be delivered for $5,000 (ex gst) - this represents fantastic value.
Features included in each template site include:
- Simple, intuitive CMS
- News / Articles
- Media - Video, Images, Docs
- Sitewide Enquiry Form
- 3 x Calls To Action
- 2 Level Navigation
- Social Links
As clients grow and get more serious about their digital activity, we can return to the site to implement custom designs and features and increase their online offering in all sorts of ways. The core platform and CMS will remain the same - a single, automous unit, without dependencies on third party apps or plug-ins. This is best practice and delivers the most robust and secure site performance.
The advantages of template sites are simple - value and speed. With an existing design and feature set, the resources required to implement the sites are far less. That's where the cost saving and value comes from. For the clients, the use of their logo, branding, colours, images and text, transforms our templates into their own unique, branded websites.
Overall, the time it takes to implement a template site is much quicker, so clients who are in a hurry are always happy to see things moving quickly.
"Our template sites have been designed to be universally appealing and functional for all sorts of businesses. The set of features is strong and more than enough for businesses who don't need a custom solution. We can deliver quickly, and efficiently to give clients best practice sites for the best price. Plus, they can customise in future." - Scott Sanders, Technical Director, The Cut
Best practice digtial solutions are our focus and make us attractive to clients who are serious about digital and understand the power and potential of what they can achieve online.
Now, with our template sites, we can offer these same progressive principles to smaller businesses and give these clients the added value ot our design, user experience and functionality experience.