ToolboxEvery worker needs their tools, and I am no exception.  The websites that I build are functional, effective and robust:  Contemporary rather than cutting-edge.

WordPress

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With over 70 million websites built using it, WordPress is almost the ‘go-to’ platform to build on.  Most hosting companies offer facilities such as ‘one click install’ and automated updates to keep your site problem-free and secure.

It uses site templates to define the basic layout and presentation of the website (on computers, tablets, and mobile devices) and there are thousands of templates to choose from.  With some new artwork and tweaks to the colours, and fonts, you can have a unique website with minimal effort.

However, the real benefit of WordPress is the huge range of ‘plugins’ available that enable me to bolt on new functionality to a website: Contact forms, calendars, product catalogues, reservations, multi-lingual features, SEO, spam filters, etc.. I have tried many. Some have been poor and I have discarded them, others have proven invaluable and I tend to use them time after time.

Photoshop

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Websites need to be eye-catching and ergonomic, but too often fall victim to ‘form over function’, where ease of use comes second to flashy graphics and an overly ornate user interface. I have the Photoshop skills necessary to produce streamlined and visually appealing sites, but generally err on the side of simplicity.

Google Webmaster Tools & Analytics

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WordPress has pretty good search engine optimisation built in as standard, but I make sure that all the sites I work on are fully registered with Google. This includes providing a sitemap, configuring geolocation options, etc.. My experience is that doing so can have immediate benefits.  All sites I build are also registered with Google Analytics, and I can explain how to use the information it captures to improve your website content to make the website more effective.