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About dilby

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    Dedicated Member

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    Web Designer

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  1. Hi all - This isn't really an 'introduction' as such, but I couldn't find a more appropriate board to post in. I've been a freelancer for nearly 12 years now, always operating under a company name. And while I have worked with some large brands, I've never employed someone full time, but just contracted people in when necessary. However lately I am considering ditching working under a company name and just using my own name as I feel most people are coming to my company for me anyway, and the company just gets in the way. I was wondering if anyone had any thoughts or previous experience on this; thought it could be an interesting discussion point. I feel that 10 years ago, it was more common to operate under a business name but now being a freelancer is more common, as we each aim to specialise and build up our personal track records and branding. I've considered going for short-term contracts and only recently had to look at my CV. I noticed that others who freelance under their own name added various clients they'd carried out contracts with in under work history whereas I really could only list my company, which means that although I may have more experience, they looked like they had the better track record as they were able to list all these impressive brands in their employment. I just get the feeling if I went under my own name I'd have more freedom to be able to list my clients in my employers list (even on places like linkedin) but perhaps thats stretching the truth either way? Depends if we class a contract as employment? Thoughts appreciated!
  2. Bootstrap studio

    Bootstrap sounds fine for what you want to do - anyone that rubbishes bootstrap is usually coming from a snobbery point of view. At worst it's overkill but at best it saves a bunch of time and gives a proven framework to work with. Those £2k sites sound like a winner though! I'd certainly want to get comfy with bootstrap for that!
  3. I use Atom on my mac if that's any help.
  4. Which CMS to use?

    If anyone needs any more advice or info on kirby let me know! It's helped me loads so keen to talk about it! (not paid)
  5. Which CMS to use?

    I'd like to throw my hat into the ring and suggest people look at Kirby. It's a low cost license (free for charity or personal projects), flat file (no database so better security), super flexible and has the best support community. I've even used it to build web apps as opposed to websites and it's been perfect. It's written in php so anyone with any templating experience in wordpress or joomla (which is what I've moved from) will be at home. I was tearing my hair out with Joomla in the end due to the bloat and constant security issues, so I tried a bunch of others including most of what's been mentioned above. Kirby won for me, so I'd at least recommend giving it a go!
  6. Advices to improve as a Web Designer

    It sounds like you might be trying to run before you can walk. Becoming a web designer takes time, so it's important to not perhaps start by trying to build a whole website but with small exercises. Online courses on platforms like skill share and treehouse could work with this. But otherwise you could set yourself an initial goal of say learning HTML and breaking that down into smaller goals of building various components of a page. There will be plenty of online courses and as Jennifer says, videos, on the topic. If you try to add css etc you'll be overcomplicating at this stage. Take it slow and steady would be my advice.
  7. seo keywords

    I'd advise against randomly submitting content to 'directories' - this is very a old SEO tactic and now isn't only likely to have no affect but to have a negative affect. If you are listed (even through no fault of your own) on any directories/link farms etc that google view as spammy (which is the vast majority) then you will bear the brunt and need to go through and dissociate yourself from these sites using the disavow tool. There's only one tried and proven method: - Make sure you're being crawled by the major search engines - Then earn link banks from reputable website due to a good content strategy Otherwise you will pay the price.
  8. Why Not?

    For most people the issue is obviously money, which is why when communicating the value of a website it's best to talk in terms of investment. A website is no less a capital expenditure than an important piece of industrial machinery.
  9. Hi! Everybody!

    Welcome Jennifer - I've been a member for a while, but really haven't used these forums as much as I should, so am trying to change that. It's easy to forget how helpful being part of a community is, so I look forward to it too!
  10. Head vs Heart - advice needed!

    Thanks so much Jennifer, that really is helpful! ☺️
  11. Best E-Commerce site for beginners

    I have 10 years experience in e-commerece and have used all the major platforms professionally. I'm now a consultant to brands, and find that wanting a store with lots of 'complex' options and capabilities is where most go wrong in choosing what is best for them. 99% of the time people need simplicity, not complexity, they just don't necessarily know it until it's too late.
  12. How Do I Create Buttons Which Change Lists?

    To help point you in the right direction, you might want to read about tabular content. It might be worth you learning the basics of how that works.
  13. Music while working

    I'm terrible at multitasking, so I listen to podcasts that are more light chat (one of my favourites is adam buxton's show) but I also have a spotify playlist that is more atmospheric music; anything with beats distracts me. I know people that listen to coffee shop ambient noise recordings and countryside stuff and swear by it!
  14. Head vs Heart - advice needed!

    Thanks both for the replies, it's really helpful. I probably didn't make myself clear before; the product really at a stage where I could sell, as behind the scenes it's a little ropey as I've been the only developer that's ever needed to see it (no documentation either etc). Although I could fix all that, it would still take time. And although we have some big names to it, they are all through the one company so I reckon buyers would want to see some diversity of income stream. And finally, the product isn't mine! I've offered to come on board and develop it more and sell it myself and the agreement is I get a bigger cut. But in terms of selling it, at best I'd get a small cut, but again it would require more work to get it to that stage. I understand there's other ways to scale a business up other than funding, but as far as I can see it all requires more responsibility, and more of doing the admin stuff I become a designer not to do, and less of the things I really want to be doing. I like the sentiment of only getting one life - and I just don't want to be doing that with it. I guess what I'm struggling with is am i throwing away a golden opportunity I'll kick myself for later.. I struggle with FOMO anyway. But in reality to make it that golden opportunity would require me giving up the things I love to do and money isn't everything.
  15. Hi all - I'm in the stage of making a big decision regarding my work, and considering I work alone I'd really value some input from other people. I know no one can give me definitive answers etc, but I'd really appreciate some feedback! I'll try to make it short... A few years ago I built a project for a friend which was a recruitment web app. Their plan was to re-sell it to companies which they ended up doing through an agency they connected with. I took a healthy cut each time someone signs up, and over the years we've got some big household names on board. As we've got these big brands on board I wanted to grow the product and really start selling it, however I'm starting to get cold feet. On one hand, people may think I'm crazy not taking advantage of something I have huge brands' names to when loads of people starting SAAS businesses would do anything for that. But the other day I was doing some filming for a group of SAAS directors and they were outlining the day-to-day stuff they deal with, from funding, selling, pitching etc and it really seemed a nightmare. At the moment we don't really need to 'sell the app' as the agency we work with does this for us; so it's really a good balance of not much effort for a good return. However when I work it out, once I go and start selling and sell direct to businesses (we've looked at selling through agencies but that's a closed door for reasons too complicated to outline here) then there's just so much more effort. And also, I'm sure the app would need a lot more care by this point, which would require more people and ultimately more funding. (There's also a few other companies starting to do what we do who have huge teams and investment). And finally, my bread and butter is as a digital strategist for brands, and that is something I love to do. I talked with these saas founders and really thought that wasn't something I wanted to do with my life, even if it made me a lot of money. Can anyone else relate to this. Every time i want to go with my heart I just feel a bit stupid as if I'm giving up on a great opportunity. Thanks so much - appreciate the community support!