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Thread: Query

  1. #1
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    Hi all

    I'm not sure if im in the right area to post this but

    how easy would it be for an experienced web designer (not me - and I don't have one yet) to build a website with a a section for non members but then a memberhsip section for people with a membership and I want the memberhsip area to have forums (members only) and be able to post content - I also want a link to current news, twitter account postings etc and the ability to ban members for short periods of time if they break forum rules etc... the real thing I want to know though is with regards to the membership system... is there any way of having a membership system that when people sign up the whole process is automated so - person signs up and pays for a one off / monthly membership... system sends out email with information (how much they have paid/ the period of time they will be a member for etc) member then gains access... also with a recurring membership is their a way of having said system if a member cancels their dd or stops paying so say for example its early may and their paying on a monthly DD it's coming to payment date... member cancels their DD so no money is being paid to me - is their a way of getting the membership system to recognize this automaticly and end their access to the members only area?

    sorry im not a web designer so im not really sure of the capabilities of what's possible with websites atm ... I guess what im looking for is something similar to skinsider with www.sk-gaming.com (it wont be a gaming website)

    any help would be appreciated - Cheers

    Sean

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  3. #2
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    Just to clear this up for you, and I'm not blaming you for the confusion...you want a developer for this, not a designer. The oversimplified explanation is that designers draw pictures and developers actually do the coding and the heavy lifting for the project. You might even need both, depending.

    In a word..."difficult", both for you and the developer. There are three reasons I say this.

    Technical Reason

    You're asking for a lot of elements. You're asking for forums, you're asking for memberships, you're asking for automatic rebilling, you're asking for news...all of which is doable, but it's going to be hard to find anyone that's had enough experience and has enough developer skill to take a project like that on.

    Non-Technical Reason #1

    As a developer who has worked on complex sites with a lot of elements that integrate together, the developer has to also adopt something of a "hand holding" role for whoever owns the site. In other words, you've got an idea (or you presumably do in some form) but because you don't know what can/can't or what should/shouldn't be done, the developer has to go through those things with you, develop a plan, and give you an idea of costs and timing. With a project like this, there are probably going to be a lot of costs and a long time, including costs associated with said "hand holding".

    Non-Technical Reason #2

    Whatever it is you're looking for is pretty vague. You probably don't want to give away your idea, and I get that, but that's also a major red flag from the standpoint of a developer. There are all sorts of "great ideas" that people have that either can't work because the idea isn't feasible or that can't work because the person who came up with it has some insurmountable issues (not enough money to properly fund the idea, poor decision making skills, throws severe temper tantrums when things don't go his/her way, constantly changes his/her mind and specs, insists on turning the person developing it into all things technical, etc.)

    In other words, with what you've indicated as your level of website knowledge and the overall lack of clarity in your idea (which, again, I do understand), you're unknowingly setting off some red flags in the eyes of seasoned developers. What you're going to need, if you're actually serious and don't have some "gamer site" idea or something like that, is a real plan.
    AlphaMare likes this.
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  4. #3
    WDF Staff AlphaMare's Avatar
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    What Game said.
    But more than that - here's a way to go about making your plan.

    Make a list of the features you want. I mean a bulleted list, so your potential developer see exactly what is there, without having to read a run-on sentence.

    So far you seem to want:
    • basic design and layout
    • main site with general info
    • login/register form for members
      • integrated/automated payment during registration process
      • automatic e-mail confirmation on registration
      • automatic recurring payment for continuing memberships
      • automatic stop payment requests for departing members
      • ability to suspend or ban members
    • membership area with
      • members-only content
      • forums
    • link to current news (do you want this for members only? clarify)
    • link to twitter posts (as above, clarify)

    There's probably a lot more but that's a start - good luck to you, it's not going to be inexpensive.
    TheGAME1264 and Sion Evans like this.
    Good design should never say "Look at me!"
    It should say "Look at this." ~ David Craib


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  5. #4
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    Of course what Game said! We need a button for people to push so that they can just say that on every post. "What GAME said." And if anyone disagrees, "BLASPHEMY!" *** slap ***
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

    If someone helped you out, be sure to "Like" their post and/or help them in kind. The "Like" link is on the bottom right of each post, beside the "Share" link.

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  6. #5
    WDF Staff AlphaMare's Avatar
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    Here's your button - now get WDF to apply it...

    Attachment 2612
    Attached Images Attached Images
    TheGAME1264 and Ronald Roe like this.
    Good design should never say "Look at me!"
    It should say "Look at this." ~ David Craib


    http://digitalinsite.ca ~ my current site . . info@digitalinsite.ca ~ my email

    If you feel that someone's post helped you fix your problem, answered your question, or just made you feel better, feel free to "Like" their post. The "Like" link is at the bottom right of each post, along side the "reply" link. And if you are being helped here, try to help someone else - pass it on!

  7. #6
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    Hi again

    Thanks for the informative replies - I really do appreciate it.

    So far you seem to want:

    What you have put below is pretty much spot on.

    So far you seem to want:
    • basic design and layout
    • main site with general info
    • login/register form for members
      • integrated/automated payment during registration process
      • automatic e-mail confirmation on registration
      • automatic recurring payment for continuing memberships
      • automatic stop payment requests for departing members
      • ability to suspend or ban members
    • membership area with
      • members-only content
      • forums
    • link to current news (do you want this for members only? clarify) - to Clarify - Sports News so for example on certain sites I know that they have a news section that is linked to skysports for example... and everytime skysports is updated with a football related news story... the news page is updated on the site and when users click said link... it takes them to the skysports website to read the full story...
    • link to twitter posts (as above, clarify) to clarify this further - say if I made a twitter page for my website so say for example my website was called Ilikeapples and i made a twitter page called Ilikeapples... everytime I posted something as ILikeapples it would show on the website

    and I don't mind sharing the idea in more detail - originaly I was a bit sketchy.... essentialy I want a website with an ability to post content news etc for non members but then also a members only section with forums.. where I can post content ... News .... Polls.. the link to news / twitter posts is just another feature that I would like implemented but I wasn't sure if it was possible at first so... if not wouldn't really matter.

    If it helps at all the theme of my site would be football...

    and sorry for seeming naieve but I thought that with regards to the subscription website I thought there was software... scripting etc you could buy and have added to the site ...

    http://www.heroframework.com/ecommer...bsite-software

    is an example... although i'm not sure how legit this is... I was just using it as an example.... and I guess I am naieve in how much I thought it was gonna cost... I was expecting it to cost a decent amount... but by the sounds of it you guys make it seem like im gonna have to remortgage my house!

    Thanks for your help so far and any help you can give me!

  8. #7
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    p.s. just read that back and my grammar / spelling is terrible - I was in a hurry *cough*

  9. #8
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    Football as in soccer or football as in "American football"? Just curious, and I'll admit that the way you're describing your idea was better than it initially sounded to me. Usually when people post things like you've posted, they're looking for a "partner" or a "build it for me and I'll give you credit on my site" sort of deal. At least you're not looking that way...you're not afraid to pay for it. That's more than most people.

    You're right...that's an example of something you could use. I say could because it doesn't mean you should. I don't blame you for looking at things like that...looks like something you can just "plug in and go", and it sounds good.

    The problem with this particular product is that it's open source. That means the code can be opened up and viewed by anyone at any time, and it also becomes more susceptible to hacking and other attacks as a result. If you build an e-commerce website of any sort and it gets any attention at all, you will be targeted. That is a fact. Hackers routinely look for scripts and open source products that they can exploit, and the downside of increased computing power and bandwidth is that they have a greater opportunity to do just that. That, unfortunately, is the brutal reality of the situation, and you're going to find that there is a rather large gulf between those who understand this and those who do not.

    You're also right in that this is probably going to cost you. You're probably looking at a couple of hundred dollars US for the design and I would say somewhere in the mid-to-high-four-digits US to hire a developer, and you're going to need two different people. Now, to make the pill easier to swallow, I'd suggest you take Mare's idea a step further and break it down into three parts.

    1) "What I must have to launch." These are the core features of your site, the things you absolutely cannot live without, in order to launch and establish enough of a unique selling proposition to generate the initial cash flow from your members (never, ever forget your unique selling proposition). This cash flow will fund:

    2) "What I can leave for future revisions." These are things you don't absolutely have to have, but would be nice.

    3) "What was I thinking? I don't need that." If there is anything in your list of features you don't need, take it out.

    Hopefully that gives you a bit of guidance.
    Sion Evans likes this.
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  10. #9
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    YO! thanks again for the reply

    Football as in Soccer! I'm in the UK =] No - I definetly know that I am going to have to pay for it - and as the old saying goes - you get what you pay for!

    that plugin was just an example of something I found - I don't want it to be easily hacked so do you have any suggestions of something more secure that's available.

    Also with regards to what do I need

    I guess I need

    A design (obviously)
    the ability to post content
    forums
    the ability for people to subscribe etc as THEGAME put when I say subscribe I mean

    ogin/register form for members
    • integrated/automated payment during registration process
    • automatic e-mail confirmation on registration
    • automatic recurring payment for continuing memberships
    • automatic stop payment requests for departing members

      :X

      I guess when I am looking for web design / developer in the uk i'll be trying to find someone who's done something similar and has a good reputation - so i can add more on to whatever I was going to pay! haha =]

    cheers again - feedback always appreciated.

  11. #10
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    heh. No problem.

    I think you've got the gist of it now, though. I'm not sure if you'll find anyone from the UK here (there's a guy who just moved from the UK that's a mod here, but you're probably looking for someone on your side of the pond). You may want to expand your search and go global. That would be my one suggestion at this point.
    Sion Evans likes this.
    If I've helped you out in any way, please pay it forward. My wife and I are walking for Autism Speaks. Please donate, and thanks.

    If someone helped you out, be sure to "Like" their post and/or help them in kind. The "Like" link is on the bottom right of each post, beside the "Share" link.

    My stuff (well, some of it): My bowling alley site | Canadian Postal Code Info (beta)


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