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Clueless - Cost to maintain/upgrade a website?

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#1 BarrySimon615

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Posted 04 August 2013 - 08:57 PM

Barry Simon here with the Pontchartrain Astronomy Society.

Can anyone give us some idea (ball park is ok) on how much it might cost to set up and maintain a good club website? The reason I ask is our website administrator (a non-member) is saying that our site needs upgrading and it will cost approximately $2000 to do this. We have an annual maintenance fee of approximately $400 in addition to that. We are not sure if that is reasonable or not. Any input would be very helpful.

You can see our current website at:

www.pasnola.org

Best regards,

Barry Simon, Secretary
Pontchartrain Astronomy Society

#2 Jawaid I. Abbasi

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Posted 04 August 2013 - 10:22 PM

It depands on you but it can cost from $100 to $5000
If you can maintain and setup your own DNS then the cost will be your line rent and yearly domain subscription.

#3 SDTopensied

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Posted 05 August 2013 - 07:31 AM

First, let me start out by saying that there is nothing wrong with your website. It's a clean design and responds quickly. Society has changed dramatically in the past few years with regard to online habits, and you'll find that your club's Facebook Page will get more traffic than the web site.

Two grand seems really steep for a website that doesn't require PCI compliance and a custom payment gateway to host credit card transactions.

You can use HostGator for your web hosting, and get unlimited bandwidth for around $15 a month. Use WordPress as your content platform...it's free. There are a ton of free themes (to change the way the site looks) out there, but you can also buy them.

Check out the following sites that use WordPress as the content platform:

www.graveyardshiftastronomy.org
www.ceastronomy.org

You can also use DotNetNuke. The community edition is free, but because of the technologies it uses, hosting is usually more expensive. PowerDNN.com is, in my opinion, the best DNN host out there. I have used DNN for corporate intranets as well as a number of web pages and have been very happy with it.

Check out the following site that uses DotNetNuke as the content platform:
www.camerabug.com

Feel free to PM me with any questions. I'll be happy to help you out any way I can.

-Steve
Charlie Elliott Astronomy, a chapter of the Atlanta Astronomy Club
www.ceastronomy.org

#4 Neutrino?

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 07:32 PM

First, let me start out by saying that there is nothing wrong with your website. It's a clean design and responds quickly. Society has changed dramatically in the past few years with regard to online habits, and you'll find that your club's Facebook Page will get more traffic than the web site.


Yes, the site looks fine, but that is not the upgrade he should be looking at. The site Barry linked to is running Joomla 1.5.x, which recently has been dropped from support. Not the end of the world, but I would upgrade eventually.

I don't work with Joomla, so I can't judge the price. It really depends on how much data and functions you have currently, how the new version will interact with them. There could be some major issues. I work with Drupal, wordpress and some other lean php frameworks, I can tell you some migrations are a huge pain.

You could always contract somebody to do it; if I knew Joomla, I would do it for much cheaper.

#5 derangedhermit

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Posted 07 August 2013 - 08:56 PM

I see your club is an NSN member. You can use the NSN platform as your primary web site. Cost, as far as I can tell, is $0. You don't have a huge amount of stuff to worry about migrating over. I bet a few of your members could learn to update your NSN site and share the workload; it's intended to be managed by non-IT people.

See this YouTube video.

#6 Sean Cunneen

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Posted 22 August 2013 - 12:03 PM

In my other life I work for a social enterprise and we have had our website redone twice so far. The $2000 cost I would say is mid-high for what your site presents but that is a commercial price. As a non-profit, I would urge you to call web site developers in your area, many do pro-bono work for non profits. Usually the pro-bono part is the intitial design/coding and will give you a very professional website. you still pay maintenance though and that can be costly depending on how full-featured your site is. If your site is simple(as I believe your's is) then you might need maintenance once or twice a year, $150-$300 a pop. We had our website redone 3-4 years ago and had to call for maintenance once, so I am thinking worst-case scenario when I am quoting these things. Our website has a number of tiles we update ourselves through a simple editing screen. The rest of the site doesn't need to be changed unless something big happens. In the world of websites, they tend to last three years or so before they need retooling, often because either software changes or the original designer has quit and no one can read his/her code so they have to start fresh.






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