What is an RFP or RFI and why are they necessary? +

An RFP is a request for a proposal & is what a business would send us along with a design brief. An RFI is our form requesting information. We use this to help you give us the correct information so that we can either prepare for a meeting or estimate your project.

How soon can you start working on my project? +

It all depends on our schedule. Being a boutique firm we only take a limited amount of clients at a time.

I’m not local, can we still work together? +

Yes, we have clients all over the United States.

We are a non profit, can you do our website for free? +

From time to time we do do some charitable work but due to our overhead we are limited to what we are able to do.

Can I get an estimate before we discuss my project? +

Sure, please fill out the RFI and we’ll try to give you a ballpark. Keep in mind the greater the detail the better.

Do you require a deposit? +

Yes, once you decide to hire Skuba we'll draw up a contract which will list the terms of payment.

I want to hire SKUBA, how do I get started? +

Great! Fill out the RFI here and we'll set up a meeting.

What is a CMS and why do you recommend it? +

CMS stands for Content Management System. We highly recommend adding a CMS to your website. The CMS will save you not only time but in the long run money. You will easily be able to update yourself in a matter of minutes.

What CMS do you use? +

We prefer to use Expression Engine. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gM3Ucd94FDs Although we can create a custom CMS or work in any number of CMS platforms.

Can you register a domain & host my site? +

Yes. We can register domains & if you would like we can also host your site. We have a dedicated server through Media Temple. Fees are dependent on the size of the site & are billed yearly.

How much does a website cost? +

We do not use templates or pre-made design themes we build your site from the ground up. Much like building a house it all depends on the size, structure & features. Before we can adequately give a rough estimate we would need to know what the architecture & features for the site will be as well as the size. To get you started fill out our Request for Information Here.

I hear so much about making sure your SEO is good. How do you do that or do you offer a separate service? +

We build websites using best web practices, this is the first & foremost most important aspect in raising your SEO. Some firms are either using such old development technology or they'll simply give you one giant jpeg as your whole site and it's horrendous for your SEO. Why would they do that? It's quick & they'll make more money taking short cuts. They also might not have the knowledge to develop outside of Dreamweaver or Wordpress.

That being said we do also offer an added SEO service in which we'll run reports, do submissions of your site to crawlers etc.

Do you do mobile applications? +

Yes, we create a mobile apps that are not only visually interesting but utilize best practices for User Interface.

I have a website already but I can't locate it when I search for it. I need help with my SEO (search engine optimization) is that something you do? +

Yes, we can help you with your SEO. Please note however there is no magic pill for SEO. Companies claiming they can have you at the top in a matter of days are misleading. What we can do is look at your website code, run reports to see what steps need to be taken to increase your SEO.

If your website was developed using poor web practices we may have to either fix the code or recreate the website. An example of this is they could have developed a web page as a single image with no live copy. Terrible web practice & I'll be honest there are several small firms here in New Orleans that do this often.

How can I tell if a web design company are good developers? +

We wrote an article that may help with this you can access it here.

I know a good web developer, is there a reason I need more than that? +

Most web developers are strictly coders and not creatives. We happen to have several developers that are both and have dual degrees but that is rare. When you are launching a website you need to have a team working together that consist of marketer/strategy, front end UI design & web development. It may also be necessary to have a writer & a photographer.

I see websites on the internet offering a website designed for $500, why should I pay more? +

We get calls every week from people that have tried to go the inexpensive route only to find they have a broken website or a website they paid for but never received. A website is your face to the world & is the single most important marketing piece. Read our article on how to select a web development firm here.

I also recommend watching American Express Open Forum mini series on branding & web design which can be found here

I was told I need a mobile site and a web app in addition to my website, do I really need all of that? +

No, a firm that tells you you need a website & a mobile site is either not up on current web technology or they are trying to sell you the same thing twice. Your website should be developed using responsive design so it automatically resizes & reconfigures to the browser size.

IE: Resize the Skuba site as an example.

You absolutely do need a site that functions for mobile but it’s unlikely that you need to have two sites and even more unlikely that you need an app . As of 2011 69% of mobile users accessed the internet on their phone daily & one out of four smart phone users access the Internet solely from their phones.

What is Responsive Design? +

Responsive Web Design (RWD) essentially indicates that a web site is crafted to use CSS3, with fluid proportion-based grids, to adapt the layout to the viewing environment, and probably also use flexible images. As a result, users across a broad range of devices and browsers will have access to a single source of content, laid out so as to be easy to read and navigate with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling.

We develop "Mobile First" and "Progressive Enhancement/Unobtrusive JavaScript" for browsers of basic mobile phones who do not understand media queries or Javascript. So we create a basic web site then enhance it for smart phones and PCs.

My mobile provider has a service that's develops websites, it seems inexpensive why shouldn’t I just have them do it? +

The service they are offering is very limited & ultimately over the corse of a few years will cost you as much as a real customized site.

Why do websites cost so much? +

Web technology changes rapidly. Our developers spend much of their waking hours outside of work keeping up with technology, they attend webinars, go to conferences it's a never ending process of education. As soon as you learn one language the next version is on it's way and in the case of our developers they are experts at multiple languages. All of that in addition to having spent as much as $200,000 on college.

I was thinking of hiring a college student to do my website (or create a logo) what is the downside to doing that? +

The quick answer is they don't know what they are doing. They are just learning and really I would not recommend anyone that doesn't have a degree & years of professional experience.

How long does it take to build a website? +

It depends on the size & features. There's much more that goes into building a website than what one might think. Read our article on how to choose a firm here.

That being said it’ll likely take 8-12 weeks once we get started.

Why is design & web development so expensive? +

Our rates are below the national & regional average & yet we like to think we are among the best of the best in the south. Our creative director is involved in every project and with over 22 years of professional experience you'll be in good hands. We also have some of the best designers, developers & illustrators in the south. That being said design education is highly specialized similar to that of Architects. It's common for a designer to spend $200,000 on their education. But unlike Architects designers do not get accreditation. What has happened is anyone can learn a little web development or call themselves a designer bringing down the perceived value and also pigeonholing designers as flakey or incompetent. It's VERY important you find out what the firms background is. It's not uncommon for someone to open up shop & call themselves an expert. MAKE sure they have a degree in Design, Marketing &/or Development from a good college. And make sure they had at least 7+ years of experience prior to opening up their own firm.

I'm opening a new business but am unsure of what I want to call it. Do you offer naming services as well as branding? +

Yes, in fact if you are not set on a name we recommend you do not purchase urls, create the LLC or take any steps without meeting with us. There are a number of things to consider when deciding on a name. Is it easy to spell? How will it do on web searches? Are there any negative connotations to the name you have selected?, and so on...

I see websites on the internet saying they can create a logo for $150 is that true & if so why would I spend more? +

Your logo is what will appear on everything you do. There is a lot that goes into developing a brand strategy & it is much more than the logo. Yes, you can have a logo created by those services for $150 but it will not be good. It'll likely be clip art (which can be illegal to use for a logo). It may that logo is used for a number of businesses.

We spend many hours developing a logo & overall brand strategy. American Express put out a nice series for small businesses showing what goes into branding. I think anyone that is looking to better understand the branding process would benefit from the American Express Open Forum mini series here.

I’m not really sure what I need, but can you offer any recommendations when it comes to my brand/ project? +

Yes, please fill out the RFI here so we can set up a strategy meeting.

Can you redo my existing logo design? +

Certainly. Please fill out the RFI here & include your current logo for evaluation.

I have an idea for my logo can I just hire you to create what I have sketched out? +

When hiring us to create a brand we spend a lot of time researching your industry, competition, analyzing your business & needs before we decide on the correct direction for your brand. In general we recommend allowing us to come up with ideas to make sure you have the best outcome for your brand.

Do you provide printing? +

While we are not printers we can recommend & handle printing for you.

What is the client’s involvement in the design & development process? +

We are your partner. We share comps and show you development process as we go. We ask questions & listen.