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Thread: Looking for advice (suggestions) with potential website design

  1. #1
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    Looking for advice (suggestions) with potential website design

    Hello everyone,

    I have been brainstorming a website that I would like to continue with but lack the technical expertise, so I am hoping one of you more inclined folk can possibly point me in the right direction.

    Ultimately, I am looking to create a website that searches and returns preexisting "deals" on the web relative to a customers interests/search conditions, just like how google indexes and returns websites. My understanding is that I need to have my actual website, and then a database that my website can search and reference for returning search results.

    Simply, where should I start for setting this up? Or are there reputable website development companies that any of you would recommend? When I searched I saw plenty of offers to develop a basic website for a couple hundred dollars, so it seems like the database/search integration thing is where I am stuck.

    What should I do? Where should I start?

    Thank you so much for your help.

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  3. #2
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Let's start with the pre-existing deals. How do you plan on finding them? As a human you can browse sites and search for deals. A human can read things, scroll around and use experience and knowledge to know what to look at and what to click on. How exactly will a scripted program do that? I've written PHP scripts to search just craigslist, and even that sucked. Easy for a human, but insanely hard for a script. Scripts don't know how to navigate web sites.

    i would start by picking one web site that has deals. Write a PHP script to find one deal on that site. If or when you accomplish that, let me know. If developers can give you a site for a couple of hundred dollars, you should ask more questions. It should be costing way more than that.

    if you plan on doing the deal searching yourself, for your clients, that would be a different thing totally.
    Last edited by mlseim; May 22nd, 2015 at 07:10 PM.


  4. #3
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    Hi there! I really appreciate your response.

    I absolutely understand where you are coming from. I was thinking I could start with doing the deal searching/cataloging myself (or really, hire the task out). Ideally, you are absolutely right that it would be better for that process to be automated, but as you said, there is a lot more dirty work to that and I truthfully would not know where to begin.

    For now, I think it is best that as far as finding deals and entering them into a database, it would all be manual on my (or another human's) part.

    And yes again for the websites. The ones that I found that would build a site for me I believe are only just a website, where as I really need the database and the ability to communicate/search between the two. This is where I do not know where to start. What do you think?

    Thank you again for you time. I am very out of my element here and I really appreciate it.

  5. #4
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    There are deal finding APIs (Application Programming Interfaces...basically a fancy way to say "ways to retrieve remote content from other sources") and sites that will supply you with various other feeds so that you don't have to enter things in manually. That's the good news. The bad news is that you'll need to find a developer who has experience with at least APIs in general. I've worked with APIs myself, and I believe Max has as well. This board has 40,000 members though, and you'd be lucky to find 20 that have. The ones who have can tell you that the successful implementation of them varies greatly depending on the API itself, how well it's documented, and how well it actually works. You can learn enough programming to do these sorts of things yourself, but you'd need a minimum of two learning stages: the first is "learn how to read from and write to a database" and the second is "retrieve remote content". Both require quite a bit of skill, and you won't find anyone to do it for you for a couple of hundred dollars as a result.

    Here's 8Coupons' API, for example. Get an 8coupons API key by. Groupon I believe does feeds through Commission Junction, and there are others. Yipit took theirs down, unfortunately.

    You can also build scripts to search websites and extract data as well, as Max said. This is usually more difficult, however, since you need to account for errors and inconsistencies in HTML code...even when a site is built well.

    As far as where to start overall, that depends on your own skills and experience as far as programming are concerned. If you have built things before, even in another language, you can start with a framework such as PHP or ASP.net in conjunction with learning HTML and CSS. If you haven't...I'm not even sure to be honest with you. It probably falls under the "biting off more than you can chew" category.
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    Here are the following tips hopefully which helps:
    1.) A Portfolio should put the emphasis on your work
    2.) A Portfolio should be easy to navigate
    3.) Make sure it’s easy for potential clients to contact you
    4.) A portfolio should only showcase your best work
    5.) A portfolio should include testimonials

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    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    In my opinion, "deals" come and go by the day.

    I think you'll always be "A dollar short, and a day late".

    Good luck.


  8. #7
    WDF Staff AlphaMare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AjitRamdas View Post
    Here are the following tips hopefully which helps:
    1.) A Portfolio should put the emphasis on your work
    2.) A Portfolio should be easy to navigate
    3.) Make sure itís easy for potential clients to contact you
    4.) A portfolio should only showcase your best work
    5.) A portfolio should include testimonials
    What on earth does this have to do with the topic?
    TheGAME1264 likes this.
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    It should say "Look at this." ~ David Craib


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    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    Alpha Mare is back!

    Long time no see.



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