Notes 1/21

by Clive Walker in Work

Here are some notes about recent work and web development things. I’ve not written a post like this for a while and I don’t know if I will continue. As a result, I’m not calling these posts “Weeknotes” or “Month Notes” but just “Notes”. It’s a cunning plan, I think you will agree :-)

A Few Thoughts About Perch CMS

This happened at the end of January but I’ve not commented on it. My favourite website CMS, Perch, has a new owner. It’s sad to see the original developers, Drew McLellan and Rachel Andrew, sell the product, which I think is a fantastic system. It’s a shame that they are not able to continue with it.

The new owners are rather an unknown quantity at the moment. They have posted on the Perch Forum about developing the product and said that they will honour all current licenses. Both of those are good things.

On the other hand, there has been little reach-out to the community and very limited communication in general. Sadly, that is something that Perch fans have become used to. If it were me and I’d bought Perch, I think I would be a lot noisier, and wanting to talk up the product. But, what do I know?!

It’s a wait-and-see moment for Perch. I hope the future is bright but I do expect the new owners to focus down on a few things and streamline Perch add-ons. This is only sensible unless they have a big development team.

A couple of Perch tips…

  • Using Akismet on a Perch CMS site has dramatically reduced spam from a comments form.
  • The Response Prune add-on is an easy way to delete old comments on a Perch site.

Fixed Price Web Design

For various reasons, which I will explain another time, I’ve decided to offer a fixed price web design and development service. This is a six page website for £599 for new and existing customers.

This fixed price approach will be suitable for people on a lower budget or people with small, older sites that need updating. It won’t be for everyone.

It’s not a custom-designed site. I’m using a fast site theme/framework that has all the usual website components that I will customise and that we can choose from. I will provide a demo site before the work starts so that the client can see the starting point.

Ecommerce is not included so if you need an online shop, this might not be for you.

The price doesn’t include unlimited customisation but it gives the customer up to 2 days of my time.

I’m not using WordPress in this approach because it gives me and the customer a maintenance overhead. My thinking here is that if a customer is on a low budget, they won’t want to pay me to maintain their site. The site gets more and more outdated, plugins and themes become older, and a security risk.

Additionally, many customers who are less technical can’t get their heads around the WordPress editing experience. Sorry WordPress fans, that’s what I find.

And others don’t want to update their sites but ask me to do it. Why use WordPress, a big CMS, for these cases?


That’s it for the moment. I’l be back with another “Notes” post in due course.

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