Management of an extremely low cost site

  • Let the client see exactly what they will be purchasing. Have an online demo, where they can upload a logo or image (must have enough colors for good results) and see an example.
  • Offer logo design services for clients without a logo. Set a time limit for the designer and make it clear to all parties. Low cost means exactly that.
  • Provide clear pricing for services beyond the initial installation.
  • Grant the client access to cPanel like functionality and allow them to manage their email acocunts by themselves. Again, provide a demo (perhaps a link to the hosting company demo).
  • Be upfront about the service being provided - which is a low cost design integration. Credit the sources of the software and explain why you use it. Suggest the client attempt to do the work on their own if they would prefer. You may lose an independent client, but you may also avoid a dissatisfied customer who challenges the cost of a system based on free software.
  • Make support limits clear. Support can be extremely expensive. Ensure the client understands that once the site launches, support will cost them.
  • Provide a ticket system (existing companies should have one already) and request that all support requests go through it. Phone calls can be extremely expensive.

Caveat - without careful management, these projects will be very prone to cost overruns.

Know what it costs before you offer it! Allow the technical team to define the process and determine EXACTLY how much time it takes after the NRE (non-recurring engineering) has been done to put up a site and grant access. If it won’t be profitable, don’t do it.