Website Rescue
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website design & development, website maintenance, Sheffield (UK) based.

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Contact the Web site Rescue service

Terms

I require an up-front payment of £15 before undertaking any tasks. Think of it as equivalent to the call-out fee you'd need pay a plumber or electrician to look at your problem and propose a solution.

What you get in return is the job done if it's simple. If it's more complicated then, as with the tradesman, we will provide a diagnosis and either a estimate for fixing the problem or advice as to your best course of action.

I also have a library of "how to" guides, however I need to warn you that some of these go into considerable depth so they are not all "an easy read". These guides are priced items and are regularly updated as internet technology is very fast moving.

What support can/can't I offer

  • HTML, CSS, PHP & Javascript are the basic tools of website technology (more detail here), those are my core competencies.
  • I can also help with email configuration, domain name management and some aspects of web server configuration.
  • Wordpress is a widely used package for building web sites.
    • On the plus side Wordpress is a powerful and versatile product, in the right hands it can be a great web building tool, however it's not all good news
    • Because of its popularity, especially with relatively naive users (and that includes many web designers), it's heavily targetted by hackers.
    • We do not offer recovery from a hacked or otherwise corrupted or defective Wordpress site. For that you are better advised to find a specialist in Wordpress recovery.
    • This link may help you avoid reaching the unfortunate situation of needing help, or at least make the recovery process easier.
    • If it's too late for those preventative measures, here are some tips on how to regain control of a hacked wordpresss site
    • What I can do is to convert a Wordpress site to a static version, this is an option where there is limited ongoing need for the kind of update capabilities Wordpress offers. That may sound like a backwards step, however many web site owners do find that maintaining the Wordpress site themselves isn't as easy as they were led to believe. If you find you are struggling to update your Wordpress site that is a task we can help with.
  • With other packaged software I may be able to assist with installation usage, customisation and configuration issues.
  • I don't attempt to add new functionality not provided by packaged software as changes may conflict with subsequent version upgrades to that package. If anyone offers to make changes to a packaged software product beyond the standard configuration, I advise that you decline or risk future problems, a better approach is to submit a new feature request to the original author, most are keen to improve their product.
  • I can sometimes add website features not offered by a package solution by adding web pages external to that package and so not compromising the original.
  • I do not try to fix software bugs in third party packages. What I can do is examine the issue you are experiencing and suggest workarounds or add some technical depth to a bug report to the author.
  • SEO - search engine optimisation: We do offer SEO but unlike the majority of SEO providers we do so on the basis of explaining what changes we make and why. We address the fundamental issues following Google's guidelines. We do not make committments like "guaranteed first page listing" because we regard the mechanisms used to deliver that to be deceptive (so do Google). Our costs are a one off charge of £hundreds rather than the many thousands a year others will demand.
  • Microsoft have their own version of web server (called IIS - Internet Information Server) and that uses a language called ASP to provide interactive web sites. ASP can be regarded as an alternative to PHP. I don't normally work with ASP. IIS does support PHP and we can usually work with that but compatibility is not 100%. My strong recommendation is to switch to a Linux based server if possible(for reasons too numerous to itemise here)
  • Other packaged hosted solutions: There are numerous hosted website building packages available. Hosted means you have much more limited control, your web site is situated on their web servers and reliant on their software. Hosted packages have the advantage that they can make it relatively easy for an individual with no previous experience to create an attractive web site. However the proprietary nature of these systems have some drawbacks.
    • If you want a feature the package doesn't provide you may have to choose between rebuilding the site elsewhere with different technology or managing without that feature
    • The scope for optimising the web site to deliver good results in Google searches may be limited
    • The generated pages are often very large and complex and so slow to load
    • If their servers become overloaded response times will suffer (Google Search regards page loading speed as one of the more important factors in the prominence they give to your web site in their search results).
    • The pricing model may seem good initially but you are at the mercy of the provider
    • The worst case scenario I have heard of was when the provider ceased trading. Not only did all the commercial sites they hosted go off-line overnight but their clients had no backup of all the work they'd put into creating their online shops. Even if they'd had backups of their content they had no access to the proprietary software that presented their content as web pages. In that situation the only immediate help we could offer was to regain control of the domain name and create a holding page (basic price list and contact details) so at least it didn't look as if the client had ceased trading too. They then had the task of populating a new website with all their product images and descriptions.
    • It's common to find that, unlike conventional web sites, it's not possible to simply move this kind of site elsewhere. Sometimes we are able to extract a usable copy but interactive elements such as order processing need rebuilding.


 
   
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