FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We at MerlinFX have been building web sites since 2001. It’s been a great journey and we’ve picked up a thing or two. We have carefully crafted this FAQ page to answer many of the frequently asked questions we were asked along the way.
The cost of a website can vary depending on various factors, just like the cost of a house may vary.
Until we understand your needs we can provide you a proposal. We have you complete a worksheet which crystallizes your goals and outcomes. Then we can provide you a cost.
A basic website typically takes around 4 weeks from beginning to end. Your content plays a big part of creating the magic. It is quality, written well and easy to understand. Content can be the words, video, images, infographics, audio, lists and more.
Yes, we and help you get this set up and we can work with your existing provider. We also host your website if you choose us to look after that for you.
Yes it will. All the websites we design work on all devices. Every website we develop is mobile responsive.
Sure can. Every website we build includes a powerful page builder. We have training videos on this as well.
No coding skills required. Drag n Drop.
Indeed we do!
Due to the nature, time and external factors in setting up eCommerce stores there are upfront fees associated with the development of our eCommerce solutions.
If you are just starting out we can make some cost-effective eCommerce decisions that maximise your cashflow. Perfect for start up businesses.
A content management system is a computer application that allows publishing, editing and modifying content, organising, deleting as well as maintenance from a central interface.
The CMS we use is WordPress. Which essentially is a blogging tool with plugins that create a customised CMS.
It’s best practice to host your videos on servers that specifically have the bandwidth and power to deliver video or audio content without slowing your website down or blowing out your monthly bandwidth limits.
Different services offer different delivery mechanisms in that some are secure for training or client only information or host on social media style sites and easily embed on your website.
We can advise you the best locations to host your files depending on your needs.
Getting the materials to us as electronic copies is ideal. You can do this via our onboarding process. We show you how.
The more photos (high resolution preferably) is best and text (copy) in a Word document, please.
Your logo also supplied as a transparent PNG file, high resolution. If you do not know what this is; ask your designer who created the logo. It is a good idea to have this on-hand for other projects like banners, letterheads and catalogues.
There are no additional fees. However you need to remember that domain hosting / management is not the same as website hosting. Two totally separate things.
You also need to know that some web domain registrars charge you extra fees for Domain Management. Whilst that domain looks cheap now you pay extra later if you want to point your mail traffic to Google Apps or another third party mail provider and send your web traffic to a web server.
Other fees you might not realise is when you set up an eCommerce site is how how will payments be handled.
Do you use PayPal and pay their fees or some other third party Payment Gateway?
If you are using your Banks’ Payment Gateway you need to consider having and SSL (Security Socket Layer) for secure transactions between customer and bank via your website plus your own IP address assigned to the SSL certificate.
The SSL fee is usually yearly and the IP Address monthly or yearly.
It sure will and no extra cost per month. Only eCommerce sites have a dedicated IP and separate SSL for the site.
Yes. This is all built in.
We give you a private login web address (URL) with your own username and password.
Once logged in; you can add blog posts, create and edit pages and much more.
All we want you to do is add content to your website. Everything else we take care of.
Unlimited. The more the better for Search Engines to index.
If it breaks we fix it.
If you want to learn new skills we have the resources to make you an Online Wizard!
Yes you can. Unlimited too.
There are special settings you can choose on each page if you want it to look like a landing page. Even choose a design that is easy to edit. No design skills required.
This is going to sound arrogant to some. We do not want to work with you if you have this attitude.
Your website is an important business asset. It needs nurturing like you would on any other part of your business, your products, services, research etc.
Once your website is done, the main pages will hardly get updated. But if you want to establish your authority, add more helpful pages of blog content for search engines to index, then you are going to need to have a blog.
Having a blog is not a set and forget option. It does take some work. We can provide you with tools and techniques to create unlimited content for your website fairly painlessly.
Search Engine Optimisation
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s unpaid results – often referred to as “natural,” “organic,” or “earned” results.
Having good copy (words) optimised for SEO is important. It is preferable to have a skilled copywriter that understands SEO however we have built in tools to assist you in writing good copy.
If you need to dive deeper and aim higher; we have an SEO partner.
Built into every website we have an SEO tool that helps you improve your page SEO.
Depending on your plan we have Pro and other premium tools we add to your website.
This is true and all our sites have 100 images a month optimisation built in. Our top level plans have 1000 images per month optimisation.
Not really. You are the expert in your field. You know your clients and business/industry better than we ever could.
We can point you in the direction of professional copywriters that also know how to write SEO enriched content.
Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of web data for purposes of understanding and optimising web usage.
We create a Google Analytics account for you if you do not have one. Ensure you get weekly PDF reports and ensure the Google script is added to your website allowing Google to collect and measure data.
We also include a bunch of Google Analytics videos for you as well. Pretty cool hey!
We’ve taken to the position to be premium WordPress developers.
Our SEO partners can assist you in managing your Google Adwords, Google My Business (formerly Google Places) and more.
We could but the outcome wouldn’t be great. We focus on web design.
Logos, illustrations etc need to created by a graphic designer. We can point you in the direction of our graphic design partner.
I have never seen an agency that can promise they really provide a full-service option without outsourcing some of the talent.
Many agencies actually come to us to complete the web development part of the project based on their design and they manage the client.
We are just transparent about it and prefer to concentrate on web development and business and marketing automation.
If you need a one-stop shop but want our help but need someone to manage the whole brand campaign, we can recommend our brand and management partners to assist.
Yes, we can. Your website includes several social media types of functionality already, but we can help you set up your social accounts.
If you need further management services, we have a Social Media partner that can help you with that.
We include tools to automate blog posts to push to social media and how to automate your social media campaigns.
Domain Name & IT
A domain name is your address on the internet. This would be something like yourcompany.com.au and is also used for your email addresses to give you a more professional presence. eg: email@example.com
We can help you locate your domain and if the domain vs registered in your name; getting access to it is relatively straight-forward. If your name and email address is not on the record of the domain as the domains’ registered owner then it can be a little more difficult but not impossible to get the details updated.
If you are at all unsure about any of this; NOW is a good time to get that resolved. Not sure what to do? Enter your .com.au domain here to find out where it is registered and who the domain owner is.
Web hosting is a service that allows your website to be viewed on the Internet. It’s a computer housed in a data centre that runs your website.
Absolutely. We create a domain account with our Domain Registrar and provide you your access.
We include domain hosting and management with all domains.
When it comes time to point your website – we take care of it for you. But you always have the keys and total control over your domain names.
It’s always best to have all your domains managed in one account. It costs nothing to transfer a domain to us; except if it is a .net or .com domain. Each time you transfer these types of domain you automatically need to renew them.
Now that clients want their mail, calendars and files easily accessible from any device connected to the internet a new breed of mail hosting needed to resolve this. Google and Microsoft are the two main mail hosting platforms and simply do a better job at mail hosting than we could ever hope to do.
We highly recommend you have your mail and web hosting separate. Don’t place all your “eggs in one basket” and get a better user experience with Google or Microsoft hosted mail, calendars and files.
When your mail becomes “cloud-based” you also open up many other opportunities to integrate and collaborate your services with other cloud services. Improving not only your own productivity but possible the user experience with your clients too.
Whether you want a Google or Microsoft option, we can refer you to our IT partners to assist you.
We’re not IT specialists and we do not fix photocopiers either!
Seriously though we only concentrate on the building and maintaining of web sites.
There are so many different devices, operating systems that it is nigh impossible to keep abreast of them all let alone know what you are viewing on a mobile device to then troubleshoot our way to getting you connected.
All is not lost! We have a getting connected page that can help you with your device and options to contact our IT partners.
Customer Relationship Management
Security & Server
We discourage it.
We have a set tool box of plugins we like to use. Plugins that get updated regularly, downloaded a lot and have great user ratings. The plugins must be part of the WordPress plugin database.
It is the plugins that usually make a website insecure and prone to hacking. Plugins that have an upgrade cycle and in most cases a license model or fee usually means there is an incentive for the developer to keep the plugin updated either with security updates or feature updates.
Allowing customers the option to upload their own plugins breaks our INSANELY GREAT security promise.
Not only is it backed up automatically via the server we also include an offsite backup to another data centre – just in case.
We are mad keen on security and redundancy. Your website is one of the most important business assets you have. Like a business without adequate insurance is asking for trouble. The same applies to websites.
Naturally, we do not give away all our security secrets here; but we always on the lookout with latest security trends. We backup, monitor, scan, block and more.
In the off chance a site is hacked, it is picked up within minutes and our security team is onto it to restore the site back to its previous glory.
cPanel is the top level Administrator access for your website. We discourage clients from having this access simply due to what can go wrong in the hands of an untrained professional.
Depending on the package we provide, if you need cPanel access we provide it if you need to move your website. But whilst everything is humming along nicely, it’s one less thing we have to worry about.
Unless you needed to move you would never have the need for this access.
Hackers and miscreants who like to create havoc on the web to either bring a server to its knees or show-off their latest exploit aka your site defaced is like the modern graffiti artist. No regard for your hard-earned efforts.
A DDoS is a Distributed Denial of Service attack. Usually a bunch of scripts running off infected computers pointing traffic to a server with the hope of crashing it or trying to login to your website so it can be hacked.
A server will crash if it has too much traffic the connection and server can handle. Imagine a thin pipe that can take a litre of water a second all of a sudden being forced to take 10,000 litres. Something somewhere is going to break.
Alternatively, a ‘bot-net’ of automated scripts across 10,000s of computers from different locations trying to access your login screen trying all kinds of combinations to get access.
We monitor system traffic and have several mechanisms in place to spot and prevent this type of access. Amongst other secret things 🙂
We only host in Australia as we only develop websites for Australian businesses and organisations.
According to Google it is an important factor where your website is hosted.
Not hosting with us you do not get access to our security, training and Continuous Improvement Plans.
Prior to the launch of your website we do a live screen to screen review.
Post-launch we do another screen to screen review.
We have an extensive training portal to access your custom training and all our other tutorials and courses. Consume as much or as little as you like. Binge watch like Netflix!
You’ll love our Onboarding process.
We have an onboarding process for your new staff members to get up to speed fast.