Frequently Asked Questions - All FAQs

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Do we get our own email? If so, how do we access it?
  • You choose if you'd like to have your email automatically forwarded to another email address(s) or have web access via my servers.
Can we have email groups?

Yes. I can set up email groups such as committeename@yourwebaddress.com, which will automatically forward all incoming emails to each committee member's email address. Forwarding can include up to 15 email addresses.

Do you offer virus and spam protection?

Yes. Both virus and spam protection are already included on all email accounts. However, this is not a substitute for virus protection software you need to have installed on your own PC. Not all viruses come through email.

Who owns the website that you create for us?

Anything you provide to me to put on your website is your property and continues to be your property. This also includes the domain name(s) I register for you, as long as you remain an active client with no past due invoices. Items I supply and place on the website plus the website's design, code and functionality remains the property of the person or organization that supplied it.

How much work do I have to do on the website?

Initially, your involvement will include: picking the template, writing the text for the articles and documents/photos you wish to incorporate into the website. I take care of the design, adding pages/features, hosting for the website, registering the domain name and providing support. You will always be able to maintain your own content and documents by advising me of any and all desired changes.

Can you make our new website's design match our current (old) website?

I will not be able to take over your current website nor plug in my functionality without many compatibility issues. That's why I would have to create a new website for you using a template which I create for you with input from you. Content changes are available within the template so be sure to ask if you special requests.

Why doesn't our website go live the instant we sign up?

Some of my competitors provide instant websites that are available as soon as you sign up. This is because they use automated template software that sets up all of the pre-designed code for your website. The end result is a "cookie cutter" website which restricts your ability to modify and personalize it to your unique needs.

I take a different approach. I will learn about your church and your desires to build a creative and flexible website just for you. This personal touch is how I ensure you and your congregation are proud of the end result.

How long will it take you to build my website?

After I have designed your template and I have received all of your articles, your website will be available within 36 hours.

What designs are available to choose from?

Visit my templates page for instructions to inspect templates that will give you an idea of what we can do. You will be able to choose your own colors and placement of content. Many modifications to these designs are possible so if you have a special need please be sure to ask.

Can I decide what pages are on the website?

Absolutely! You can have whatever pages you would like on your website.

How does our website get updated after we go live?

Simply submit new articles and photos to me via email and I will update your site. It is also your responsibility to notify me of articles that need to be removed. If you know ahead of time when you want an article removed, you can let me know and I can set the remove date at the time of publishing.

Am I able to send you photos to include in the design?

Of course! I look forward to seeing pictures of your business and activities. This is a great way to add a personal touch to your website for your employees and visitors from your local community.

Is there available stock photography to include in our design?

Yes. I use a number of providers for my stock photography. I have millions of high quality images available.

How do I get people to visit the website?

There are many ways to spread the word to your members about your new website. Consider including a message in your periodic newsletters, send a letter to each client and show it off at your activities. One of our clients had a great idea to post a permanent sign at their entrance telling visitors and clients to visit their website.

What is a domain name?

This is the same thing as a web address which is what you type in to pull up a website in your internet browser. (www.cdswebservices.com)

Will our website be viewed on our domain name?

Yes. You may find with some providers that when you type in your domain name it is redirected back to their domain name for your website's hosting. So, instead of seeing your website on www.yourdomain.com you'll see www.theirwebsitename.com/yourname. Not only does this result in branding issues, but this can also be confusing to visitors and more difficult for you to direct people to a specific page when your website isn't hosted on your own domain name.

What if I don't have a domain name?

I'll register one for you. The price for this is already built into the annual hosting fee. So, you don't need to worry about maintaining your domain name at all. I will suggest available domain names that match the name of your organization. Then you'll get to choose the domain name you feel is best.

Should we purchase our domain name(s) before we sign up?

Not if you are going to have me maintain your domain name for you. It's much easier and quicker if you allow me to purchase your domain name(s). You can instead choose to purchase and maintain your domain name(s) on your own through a domain provider of your choice.

Can we have more than one domain name?

Yes. I can register additional domains for you. Additional domain names cost$15.00 each annually. One reason you may want to have more than one domain name is if you wish to own both the .com and .org. I can also point the other domain names to your primary domain name so that people don't get lost.

Do we get private registration for domain names you manage for us?

Yes. I will automatically register your domain name with our privacy protection service which hides your contact information from spammers and marketing companies. This service is included for free with all domain registrations.

Can I search for an available domain name now?

Yes. You may use the domain name checker on the right hand side of this page. See what is available but don’t purchase a domain name since that cost is included in my package.

How long does it take for our domain name to become live?

This takes from 4 to 24 hours depending upon how often your internet provider updates their records. In most cases this is done within 4 hours.

We already have a domain name registered. Can we use it with CDSWebServices.com?
  • Yes, just follow these instructions. Log in to your domain registrar. Locate the area to change your nameservers. Change your nameservers to NS1.CDS-WEBSERVICES.COM and NS2.CDS-WEBSERVICES.COM. Or you can create 2 A Records to point to my servers at 192.185.75.180. Create the first A Record to direct your domain root (usually identified by a @ or * symbol) and the second A Record to direct www.

  • I will do all this for you as an agent at your domain registrar. Or you can transfer your domain to my domain registrar which will save you the cost of annual domain name registration which I include in my package.
If I wish to leave CDS Web Services, can I still use the domain name?

Each domain name I register and maintain for you is the property of your organization as long as you are an active client. If you decide to leave CDS Web Services, I will release your domain name to your new domain provider.

What features are included?

I have so many available. You can view a list of all available features here. You get to pick which features to include or not to include and even suggest new areas for inclusion. As part of my dedication to fully maintain your site, you can also change your mind after your site goes live without any additional cost.

Can we have you install on our website some software/code that we have?

I’m certainly open to the idea. I would need to look at what you are wanting me to install to make sure it compatible with your website and that I’m comfortable hosting it for you. Additional charges may apply.

Can we have FTP access to our website?

You'll be able to upload large files such as audio and video via special FTP accounts that are password protected. You can share the username and password with as many of your staff as you deem necessary. However full FTP access is not allowed as I must protect my proprietary code and files.

Can we post surveys?

Yes. Online surveys give you the opportunity to ask for your visitor's opinions on topics you choose. I can post multiple surveys and visitors can view real-time results. Closed surveys can be left online for view only. Guests may also leave a comment with their vote to further share their thoughts. This also includes features to restrict one vote per survey.

Can we create forms that are filled out and submitted online?

Yes. Online forms can be configured to match your current paper forms. Guests fill them out online and the responses are automatically emailed to the person you indicate. Fields can also be required to ensure you receive the data you need.

Can I restrict access to certain pages or documents?

Yes. I've found some churches wish to hide their financials and other documents from public view. Therefore, each member has a unique username and password to access these types of items. There are also unlimited levels of security for each page. This is helpful if there is a page you only wish certain types of members to access.

Can we have a staff directory?

Yes. I have a staff directory available which includes a place for a photo. You can choose someone from your organization to upload each person’s information or for a small fee you can pass the information on to me and I will input it for you.

Can we have a message board?

Yes. Message boards allow staff and clients to share thoughts and post questions for other members to respond to. Categories are also created to help keep things organized. The person(s) assigned to be the editor is instantly notified via email of new posts so that they can monitor and edit/delete inappropriate posts.

Can we stream audio and video?

Yes, you can stream audio or video formats.

Can we sell products on our website?

Yes, I can install a shopping cart module onto your site that allows you to sell products on your website. I do not charge any additional set-up fee, however an additional monthly charge of 9.95 is required for the additional maintenance.

Can we have a photo slideshow for community events?

Of course! You send me the photos (no larger than 1200 x 900 pixels) and the title for the slideshow and I take care of the rest.

Can we have a blog for the manager or another staff person?

Yes, you can have a staff member blog as part of your site. This area would be up to the staff member to update on a regular basis.

What size photos do you accept?

Most digital cameras produce images far too large in size to use on the internet. I do ask that you resize your photos to no larger than 1200 x 900 pixels. They can be in a variety of formats including .gif, .jpg, .bmp, .png etc. You can accomplish the resizing using any photo editing software that you may have including the one that came with your computer.

Can we send out mass email announcements to our clients?

Yes. I can set up an Email Publisher that enables you to create email announcements with formatting (bold, fonts, color, bullets, graphics, links, etc). You can also target your emails to specific clients by creating lists for different client categories or activities.

Can we have you customize the way one of your features works?

Always let me know how you think the features could be better. If it's something all of my clients could benefit from I'll make it an enhancement request for future development. If it's something specific to your situation I'll need to determine if the customization would be compatible or restrict your website's ability to receive future enhancements. Additional charges may apply.

Can we have a custom feature that we don't see in your list of included functionality?

Let me know what you're needing and where you've seen this feature before. I'll research your request and let you know the feasibility.

Why should my business have a website?

1. YOUR SMALL BUSINESS WILL GAIN CREDIBILITY

Today, more and more consumers use the internet to search for the products or services they need. Your small business will gain credibility by having a website. Without one, potential customers will go to your competitors that do. If you already have a website but it is "home-made", having it professionally redesigned will provide your business with a professional image which will inspire even greater confidence. For home-based businesses, this is particularly beneficial since you do not have a store front to promote your products or services.

2. A WEBSITE SAVES YOU MONEY

As a small business owner you probably think you can't afford a professional website, but you can't afford NOT to. Although the cost of designing a website varies, once it's up and running, a website for a small business generally costs under $100 a month and, in some cases, as little as $20. Compared with the cost of a newspaper ad, when you consider the potential market you can reach with a website, it is a very cost effective way to promote your business.

3. IT WILL ENABLE YOU TO KEEP YOUR CUSTOMERS INFORMED

Think of your website as being your online brochure or catalogue. It is much easier and quicker to update information about your products and services on your website than in print material, making it an effective way of letting your customers know about the arrival of new products, upcoming events, special promotions, or any new services you now offer. Unlike print ads which quickly become outdated, your website can provide current information and news.

4. IT IS ALWAYS ACCESSIBLE

A website is available to both your regular and potential customers 24/7/365 providing them with the convenience of reviewing your products and services when your store or office is closed. With today’s busy lifestyles, this is a great selling point when making a purchase decision.

5. A WEBSITE MAKES IT POSSIBLE TO TARGET A WIDER MARKET

Whether you provide products or services, your website will provide an alternative location to sell them. As a retailer, a website (eCommerce) is a great place to sell your products to a wider market; even services can be made available globally. Don't think you'll be able to sell your products or services online? Don't forget, even cars and houses sell online!

6. IT PROVIDES A MEDIUM ON WHICH TO SHOWCASE YOUR WORK

No matter what type of business you’re in, a website is a great place to showcase your work. By including a portfolio or image gallery, as well as testimonials about your work, you can demonstrate what makes your business unique.

7. A WEBSITE SAVES YOU TIME

Providing information to your customers takes time, whether it’s on the phone, face-to-face, in a brochure, or in emails. With an online catalogue you can provide lots of information about your products and services. Once your website is up and running, it is available to your customers indefinitely, saving you time. And what is time? Time is money!

8. IT IMPROVES CUSTOMER SERVICE

Maybe you sell environmentally friendly products and would like to share tips on how to recycle, or perhaps you’re an accountant and want to give your clients advice on how to simplify their bookkeeping practices. By including a FAQ page, adding articles or uploading newsletters to answer all your customers' questions you can keep them up-to-date. What better way to provide them with value added service than by sharing information on your website.

Why use a professional webmaster instead of doing it ourselves?

Many people have web design skills of various levels. Chances are somebody in your own business may volunteer to design and maintain your business's website. In these situations it is a good idea to consider the following:

  • What is their level of expertise?
  • Will the site appear professional?
  • Can they create the functionality you need and want?
  • How long will it take to plan and develop the website?
  • Will you spend too much time on an unproven process?
  • Can they manage a website hosting account?
  • What time do they have now and in the future to maintain the website?
  • Will they do what's in the best interest of the business?
  • What happens when they disagree with the business's direction?
  • What happens when they leave or become too busy?
What makes CDS Web Services better than the competition?

Don't take my word for it. Compare for yourself based on the look of the website and the features you can benefit from. Here are a few points to consider:

  • No mass produced website template scripts like the “click and build” providers use. I assemble the website's design and layout for you according to the template you choose.
  •  
  • No cluttered and useless pages on your website. I design clean and appealing websites with information members need and will use.
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  • In most cases updates are completed the same business day.
  •  
  • I don’t you alone to reinvent the wheel. I'll always offer suggestions as to what to include on your website, how best to organize it and what to say based on my experience with my other clients. This is not just during the development of your site. I share ideas as they come up even after you go live.

Plus, full support for your website by me is available by phone or email and I will get to know your specific needs over time.

Can you support a business as large/small as we are?

Yes. Both the features I offer and the services I provide are developed from the ground up to ensure they are always scalable to support businesses of any size. Because of this approach I don't base my fees on the number of clients or visitors.

Do I need to know anything about websites to do this?

No. I do all of the work for you. You send me your articles and other document and photos via email and I will upload them to your site.  If you're comfortable using Microsoft Word and email you'll find it very easy to keep your site updated. No HTML or technical knowledge is required.

Can I see a demo?

Yes. Visit our portfolio page to see our features in action.

Do you advertise on our website?

No. I do not place any advertisements onto your website for my financial gain. You can place advertisements on your site if you wish and the income is 100% yours. We will however place a link back to DFW Church Websites at the bottom of your website.

Will you share our contact information with other people?

No. I hate spam just as much as you do. I will never share your personal information with third parties.

What spam controls do you have in place?

I integrate features to help keep spammers from finding your email addresses to begin with. I use fill in web forms that are setup to hide your email address, require an image verification code and prohibit common spam words from being included in the message.

Are we required to sign a contract?

There are no contracts required when signing-up and you can cancel at anytime. However if you are on the monthly plan I do appreciate it if you commit to 12 months.

How long will it take to build my website?

After we (you and I) have built your template and I have received all of your articles, you website will be available within 36 hours.

Will our site appear in search engines?

Yes your site will appear in search engines. This process takes between a week and two months depending on the search engine and the pertinence of your articles.

What external content is available on the site?

I offer an RSS feed component. There are literally thousands of RSS feeds available at no cost and many excellent sources of Christian news.

What if we want to create an article but publish it later?

Just send me the article with a note that you don’t want it published until a certain date and time and I will make that happen. Simple as that.

Where is my website hosted?

I utilize the security and expertise of a datacenter here in Texas to house my web servers. A datacenter is a state-of-the-art facility designed to house and protect computer equipment. It's sort of like a Fort Knox for technical folks. Datacenters have their own power generators, security force, air/water supply and many levels of redundancy to help ensure websites are available to the internet. Support technicians monitor the web servers 24 hours a day to ensure they're operating at peak performance.

How do we get the hosting set up? How much does the hosting cost?

You don't have to worry about the web hosting. It is already included in my package. I install the system for you and take care of everything.

Can we have you design our website so that we can host it ourselves?

Maybe. The functionality I provide for your website will not work on all web servers. And it won’t save you any money since I do not give discounts to those who host their own websites.

What is your hosting uptime guarantee?

We design and staff our hosting systems with one objective: To keep your website live 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If I fail to maintain 99.9% availability of your website during any month, please contact me and request a credit of 5% off a month's prorated hosting fee.

Will my new website be submitted to the search engines?

Yes. I will make sure the top search engines know about your website and stop by for a visit periodically to get to know your website. The site that I build for you will have built-in SEO functions.

Can I view statistics on how visitors are using the website?

Yes. You'll be given access to view graphical charts that show stats such as: how many visitors view the website each day/month, how many pages are viewed and which areas are most popular.

How much server space is included?

For the vast majority of my clients, the amount of space allocated for your website is more than sufficient. If the situation arises where you need more space I can certainly increase your limit.

What are the bandwidth limitations?

There are no limits on your bandwidth as long as you're using your website for official business related to your organization. So, no music sharing with your friends etc.

How much do you charge to create and support the website?

My rates are a flat fee regardless of the number of pages you have or visitors to your website. My services are $399.95 annually.

Are there any fees for support or questions?

No. My support is included in the annual fee.

Will the annual website services fee ever increase?

The prices you see are not a gimmick to get you to sign up so that I can later increase your costs. Of course I cannot predict the future of the economy as it relates to labor and technology costs. If I do face a situation where I need to increase my fees, my goal will be to keep it reasonable and in line with the industry.

Why don't you charge different rates based on the number of pages/visitors?

I don't see a need to. From the website design and hosting perspective it doesn't cost me more money just because a business has more pages or clients. So, it isn't right to charge more for the same service.

What types of payments do you accept?

I accept checks and all major credit cards through PayPal.

What is our billing period and when does it start?

Billing is done annually and the date is the first of the next month after your site goes live.

Can we pay monthly or quarterly for our website?

Yes, there is a monthly option. You pay a set-up fee prior to any work being done. Then monthly payments begin on the first day of the month following your site going live. Under this option you must commit to 12 months of service. And remember you save 18% by paying annually.

Are there any long term contracts?

No, all contracts are for one year and you may cancel at any time. Refunds are not issued for any months you have paid in advance and payments will be collected for any remaining months on your annual contract.

How does the money-back guarantee work?

If within 30 days following your signup you are not satisfied for any reason you will be refunded the money you have paid minus a $75.00 maintenance fee to recover my expenses in setting up the account (cost of domain name and template).

How does the money-back guarantee work?

If within 30 days following your signup you are not satisfied for any reason you will be refunded the money you have paid minus a $75.00 maintenance fee to recover my expenses in setting up the account (cost of domain name and template).

Do you provide search engine optimization services?

Yes, I am a licensed Professional Internet Marketer. But I do not recommend these services to my church and non-profit clients. In my opinion the costs of these services far overshadow any benefits derived from the services. I recommend using a good outreach program in your community and directly those who you contact to visit your site for more information. If you still want to know more about SEO, I will be glad to talk with you.

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