Strengthening our bond to improve animals' lives

Web Site Redesign

This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by 12 months ago.

  • Author
  • #11547
    John Ciribassi
    John Ciribassi
    I spoke with Josh (the one who Carolyn has been closely working with in the web site redesign) about the web site. I am attaching his proposal here.
    He is proposing 4 items:
    1. Transfer the hosting of the site to another group that also should be able to handle our support issues in a more timely manner as opposed to WP Curve. Cost would be $250 for the transfer and $50-80 per month for support
    2. Website Redesign. There is a host of items he lists here. Basically the idea is to make the site more visually appealing, easier to navigate, be easier to find when people search on terms such as animal behavior. Improve functionality. Cost would be $11,450.
    3. Change to a better member platform. A Plug in that will improve our ability to communicate with members and them able to communicate with us. This would include the ability to get reminders out to members when things like membership is due, when credit cards will expire, etc. He is looking at either MemberPress or S2 Member as choices. Cost is $2500.
    4. Add a Plug In called BuddyPress which is meant to allow communication BETWEEN members on the site so that there can be better social interaction between members. Cost is $2500.
    Total cost for all aspects is $16,700

    His preference, obviously, is to do all if this and it would take about 3-4 months to get it done. He would do the work offline that the site would go live when ready so we would not have to shut down the current site.
    I asked about doing things in stages. We could change hosts, add support and add MemberPress (or S2 Member) without the website redesign. But he feels Buddy Press should be integrated along with the site redesign.
    So our options are:
    1. do it all now
    2. add a hosting/support change while adding one of the member platforms and do the redesign at a later point.
    3. stay with what we have.
    Sally, Carolyn, Juanita and I discussed this first so that we had an idea what issues might be present before submission to the rest of the board. The 4 of us feel that this is a worthwhile project and building on what we have will give us a more functional site for the members and also give us more options going forward. Carolyn did a great job getting us to here. The site as it currently is is better than what we had but it could be better.
    Juanita informs us that we have $82,000 in the cash account so the capital is there for the project. We can make more income with a properly working site since we can better capture members before their membership expires.
    What do the rest of you think?

    John Ciribassi DVM, DACVB
    Chicagoland Veterinary Behavior Consultants
    Carol Stream, IL 60188

  • #11558
    Meredith Stepita 
    Meredith Stepita 

    Thank you for the information and all of your hard work. If everyone thinks this is a good idea I am all for it. I don’t feel like I’m qualified to make a decision, but I know we want the website to work and hopefully this would create a functional site with the support we need.


    Meredith Stepita, DVM, DACVB
    Veterinary Behavior Specialists
    Dublin, CA

  • #11564

    I’m sorry, John! I was away from my desk and meant to post this!

    I am in full support of Josh doing the work. I trust him and having worked with him for many hours over a few months and after working with John in a similar fashion, he understands us and our needs.

    To be clear, Meredith, to your point, the website is functioning. It is not designed at it’s best with the user in mind – whether that is the member or the public. When you cannot find a member on the search list, for example, that is because that member has not submitted a profile. It may take me a few days to get them up but I mean overall. Otherwise, money is coming in. Members are joining and renewing. So, that work is done. What remains is a site that makes sense in terms of use and goals.

    The purpose in changing membership platforms, website theme, etc. is to make the integration easier and hopefully, with trouble at a minimum in the future. For example, Sally had brought up that we would like to have the order form for the position statement online. This is possible now. We have the software in place and it would not be that difficult, but neither John nor I can be the webmaster, so we need someone else to do that work. That would fall under what Josh would do for us, if I understand the plan correctly.

    Another point you mention, Meredith, is support. My understanding is that Josh will support his work but he will not be supporting our website. The new host would take on that role; hopefully well.

    Therefore, we do have to remember/keep in mind that all these companies change over time and we will need to keep up with those changes. This won’t be the end of our website needs. If Josh does take on a role of support, that would be great, but if not, I think we need to find someone who will. If we keep up with changes, it won’t be nearly as painful as if we wait until it is obvious and then need another overhaul.

    To manage this as an organization, I propose that as soon as it seems appropriate, our dues go up. Keeping up a website such as ours, is an ongoing project and I believe we need to have a webmaster or a virtual assistant or someone to support the need.



    Carolyn Lincoln, DVM
    AVSAB Corresponding Secretary

    Carolyn Lincoln, DVM
    AVSAB Corresponding Secretary

  • #11565

    I also want to add that I don’t know if I’ll be familiar with the new software he chooses. I’ve done some work with one that he mentions, S2 Member, but, at this point, it is far too complicated for me to learn in the time I have. Josh includes training and a manual but I am not going to be able to learn a whole new system, again. So while I understand and can make changes to the website we have, I can’t speak for the one we would get.

    I am assuming the support we will get, Josh and the host, can manage issues that arise but that would be important to confirm.

    Carolyn Lincoln, DVM
    AVSAB Corresponding Secretary

    Carolyn Lincoln, DVM
    AVSAB Corresponding Secretary

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