Which platform is best for your Practice?
By understanding your goals for a site, we’re able to custom build to meet your needs.
Platforms & Toolsets
Some of our favorite solutions include WordPress, Magento, and Shopify. Toolsets include HMTL5, CSS3, PHP and MySQL.
We’re adept in others, managing Joomlah, Drupal, OpenCart, OS Commerce and have tinkered with Blackboard, Dolphin and other more expansive platforms.
Our big picture understanding of the values and strengths of each, helps us identify the best solution for your unique needs.
A straight HTML/CSS site is simple to build and maintain but requires intimate knowledge to edit and maintain. Enabling functionality often requires more work than with a CMS (Content Managed Platform). Even simple features, like a contact form, photo gallery or a slideshow require custom effort to install, especially as many hosts have become dedicated to serving up the latest platforms and foundations.
We’ve been building HTML, CSS, PHP and ASP driven sites since 1994, professionally. It’s interesting that there are sites we built years ago that are still up and running.
We find it takes about the same amount of time to build an HTML/CSS site as it does a WordPress.
We’ve been designing and developing in WordPress since 2004. After we build and launch a site, users with access can edit content, create new and delete pages, easily edit menus and much more. At it’s heart, WordPress is a blog. It’s built to publish curate and maintain articles.
What makes it so powerful and scalable, is the robust third-party marketplace of developers that provides incredible functionality. Plug-ins allow us to deliver complex and sophisticated services, like membership subscriptions, ecommerce, calendars and scheduling, directories, newsletters and an ever changing array of add-ons that improve how your site works, looks and performs.
We love WordPress, and are experts in its security, maintenance, design and development.
Developing shopping carts powered by Magento since 2008, we love this powerful platform. It’s important to understand it’s strengths and the maintenance requirement it places on your budget. Recently bought by Adobe the platform has new life breathed into it and we’re excited to see what this amazing software company will do for it and it’s community.
We see Magento as an Enterprise play and recommend most small businesses to opt for a simpler, easier to manage cart. It’s Community version, which is free to download will no longer be supported, sunsetting in 2020. It’s Cloud version, however is a very strong offering, despite it’s $2000/year price tag. It’s strength lie in it’s multi store ability, unmatched by other platforms. One back end can manage multiple storefronts, which makes it a game changer.
Robust sales and inventory reporting, built-in newsletter system and a very strong marketplace to buy Extensions, what Magneto calls it’s plugins, makes this cart the most serious offering of its kind.
Most customers come to us because they have a broken cart that has not been kept up to date, and running in it’s 1.9x version. The modern 2.x plaform is worth the price of admission, but again, budget for 2 servers to manage it’s upkeep.
We have fallen in love with Shopify. It’s a paid platform, costing you at least $9/mo and more likely $30/mo minimum, but instead of being in the eCommerce business, retailers get to return to running their business, not worrying about maintaining a shopping cart.
Shopify has limits, but the ease of use, intuitive mobile interface lets you manage your business from your iPhone. It’s Point of Sale system turns an Apple or Android phone or tablet into a cash register, with an assortment of cash drawers, scanners and receipt printers that let you take your business on the road. And it manages inventory as well.
The magic of Shopify however, is how easy it is to sell from beyond your website. Shopify lives wherever you embed it, any website, your Facebook, Amazon, eBay accounts or social media. And users never leave those sites, managing everything through your account.
While their Apps, what they call plug-ins, are not as used as WordPress or Magento’s marketplace, they are still growing the space. As I mentioned earlier, it has its limits, but this platform is our favorite and we’re excited to be Shopify Partners.
Recent Work: Shopify
We often work in other platforms, but for the most part, these platforms are the once we like to build in. With our experience managing these, and fixing others, we have a great big picture perspective with platforms, and can help you determine which one to run.