Terms Of Engagement

We like to keep everything as clear and simple as possible, and this approach is also reflected in our Terms of Engagement, where we prefer common-sense over lawyer-speak. So just to be clear, we're not getting engaged — this contract is simply to ensure that our mutual expectations are met. Please read it carefully before making any payments to us, as payment means acceptance of these terms. (You can read our fully incomprehensible Terms & Conditions here.)

1. Costs & Payments

We do our best to work to fixed prices, but these prices are based on our discussions and agreements before the project commences, and in our experience requirements change as the project progresses, which means that costs can increase. When this is going to happen, we will always talk to you beforehand to gain your approval.

Unless otherwise agreed, we work on a strict 50% up front deposit with the balance due when the project is approx 75% complete.

Development costs will be invoiced and can be settled either by a card with our online processing companies or through BACS. Please note that PayPal and Stripe will incur between 2% and 4.5% fees, depending on whether you're a national or international client.

Before the website is published and goes live, accounts must be cleared and any monthly Aftercare subscription set up. Aftercare subscriptions must be paid by automatic card payment (Standing Order) on a mutually agreed date.

2. Website development

Before starting a project, we will give you an estimate of costs and a time frame. This estimate will be based on the design brief discussed and agreed.

If requirements change as the project progresses, then the cost and time frame may change too. We will discuss this with you before changes are accepted.

We retain the right to decline any requested changes once a project has begun if we feel it's unachievable with the agreed design and timeframe.

3. Content

By content, we mean the text, pictures, logos and anything else we will be adding to your website.

Getting your content on time and in a usable format is usually the most significant challenge any website developer will meet. What appears an easy task for the client during the planning stages often becomes the job that gets bumped to the bottom of daily to-do lists. As such, when it comes to content creation we have three approaches:

1. We do it all.
We will chat with you and take notes, then head off and create the content on your behalf. This is a great way to do things, but it's also the most expensive. Creating content is a very time-consuming process and so can easily double or even treble the total cost.

2. You do it all.
This is the cheapest approach, as you do everything: You write and proof your content, select and process your images and send it all to us in a usable format. To aid this approach we can create dummy content areas on each page, so you can see how much content is needed and where it'll go.

3. Halfway House.
This is the most popular approach. You do basic write-ups and send it to us. We then edit, improve and proof it, then add it to the page. You also select the images you want to use and send them to us letting us do all the processing. Or you can show the types of images you like and we will source and process them.

The most important thing about the content is to get it to us on time. If we're late getting the content the entire project can be delayed and lead to additional charges.

So at the time of discussing your requirements be realistic about how much time you have to commit to content creation.

4. SEO

We are very good at search engine optimisation: we've been doing it for more than a decade, and it shows in our results. It's the beating heart of our Aftercare strategy and a crucial component in a website's growth and success.

But it's not a precise science, and while we'll always do our best to get the search rankings you want, we can't guarantee them. No one can. Anyone who says they can is lying through their crooked yellow teeth.

Also, the major search engines are continually moving the goal posts which means the ranking of your website can change over time. If any of the search engines change their algorithms, resulting in your site needing some SEO work, we can do it, but it is a chargeable service. Subscribers to our premium Aftercare plans, however, will always benefit from our ongoing SEO.

5. Browsers: changes, broken websites & incompatibility

How your website looks and performs is reliant on many factors, not least the internet browser your site visitor is using. We test all our websites across all the main modern browsers to ensure they work as expected, but we can't take into account older versions of browsers that people haven't updated, or the weird and whacky ones that almost no one uses.

Browsers are also being updated daily, continuously, so what worked one day might not work the next. We can't monitor every site we make, so it's up to the client to regularly check their website and report any issues. If all that's needed from our end is a small tweak to fix any problems, it's typically done for free. For bigger tweaks, we have to charge. Subscribers to our premium Aftercare plans benefit from ongoing monitoring and website maintenance.

6. API changes (Instagram. facebook, twitter, etc.)

Nowadays some clients want their social platforms integrated into their websites. The plugins supplied by these social platforms for the integration rely on a thing called an API, which they are prone to change or even remove entirely — which results in the plugins no longer working.

If or when this happens we try to fix it for free, but it can take time. In some instances, though, a fix isn't possible, so we have to remove the feature from your site.

This situation is, unfortunately, the nature of the beast when dealing with social networks.

7. Hosting Costs

Inflation exists. This means that when our hosting provider's costs increase — which they do on a fairly regular 12 or 18 month basis — then so will the cost of your hosting with us. We will of course notify you of these changes well in advance.

8. Self-hosted Sites

In certain circumstances, we're prepared to build self-contained websites that you can host on your own servers. In this case, we'll create a zip file containing all the files you'll need to upload to your server and deliver it to you via email or an online sharing service.

If you do choose to self-host, we'll first show you a demo of it working on our server, before we zip the website up and send it to you, This is so you can see that it looks, performs and works as agreed. Once we send you the zip file, we can offer no further support. We can’t help you publish it to your server, or help with any functionality that might not work on your server.

The reason for this is simple. There are many cheap hosting companies out there who give you exactly what you pay for, often running outdated software on old hardware, promising the earth and delivering dirt.

We don't work with them because performance is the foundation of our service, and our own servers are modern, stable, state-of-the-art, with industry-leading hardware and software constantly maintained and updated — all of which underpin the quality of Aftercare service we guarantee our clients.

If you do self-host, here are a few basic things you will need to be able to do yourself:

  • Use FTP to transfers the files and folders to the server
  • Set the correct permissions and ensure it’s all secure.
  • Set up and install an SSL certificate.
  • Update and/or change PHP versions as or when required.
  • Set up and configure your email accounts.
  • Perform daily/weekly backups.

Self-hosted typically incur a 25% upcharge on our normal prices because, put simply, they take longer to build.

On the other hand, if you want to be professional and concentrate on running your business, use our hosting and Aftercare services to have it all seamlessly taken care of.

8. Domain names

If we've purchased a domain on your behalf, we will at your request transfer this domain to you if your account is up to date. In some instances, we will charge you any recent renewal fee.

9. Missed Meetings

We charge for missed meetings. For the first one we charge £40, thereafter we charge £70 for every missed meeting.