The Art of Change (2008)

The Art of Change Website
The Art of Change Website

E-commerce website redesign and development. Including the consolidation, conversion, and integration of an existing Access subscriber database for ease of overall management and control.

Standards-based Design

Website was designed and implemented according to web standards. This allows the site to be viewable on a broad range of browsers and devices in addition to making the site search engine friendly.

Care was also taken to ensure that the site URLs are well formed. They form descriptive paths to content, to further help search engine recognition and placement.

Content Management

A completely bespoke and workflow oriented CMS was created to allow the business to add and edit site content at any time.

This empowerment allows the client to focus on their business, leaving the system to take care of the technical details automatically.

Product Management

A product database was designed and implemented together with an easy to use editing interface. When product images are uploaded they are automatically resized and optimised for the web. This reduces the load time and bandwidth requirements of the site.

Contact and Subscription Management

A substantial contact management system with an extensive filtering mechanism was designed and implemented. The system allows tasks such as label printing, the sending of e-mail newsletters and reminders to subscribers, and targeted marketing based on past customer purchases.

Transition: Old to New

To ensure a smooth transition from the old website to the new one, key URLs from the old site were selected to redirect to the new content using a search engine friendly redirection technique.

Secure Certificate

For secure checkout and administrative systems, a secure certificate was ordered and installed allowing SSL connections to the site.

Client Experience

Barry Durdant-Hollamby talks of his previous Art of Change websites and describes the requirements and process of building the new site:

Several years ago I had my first website designed and built for me. The process was long and quite painful at times as I found myself struggling to understand what a website could do for me. My second site was designed and built by someone who was technically quite savvy, but creatively lacking and not great with delivery times! My third attempt with a designer/builder was great artistically, but technically not so successful and again delivery was an issue. I had no control over updating products without recourse to the designer (and neither had I with the previous sites), and by this time my mail-order business was growing and I needed to be able to control as much as possible from my office.

After these frustrating attempts (over several years) I decided to do my own website building - and I managed to master the very basics of setting up an e-commerce site that ran successfuly for three years. Ah, the freedom of being able to add new info without recourse to a busy technician!

However with the business growing, and the need for better customer management and layout I started looking again for someone who could create a website over which I could have pretty much total control without having to pay a designer a few quid every time I wanted to upload a new product. Which is when someone mentioned Nina Richards to me.

We met face-to-face on one occasion. Nina asked various questions and then began a frequent email exchange. She really listened to the needs of the business but more than that, she helped me to understand what was possible and what would most benefit my business. She got me asking questions I would never have known to ask! And she also seemed really keen to create an admin console for me which would be simple to navigate and use and which would give me the autonomy I was looking for.

As a publisher with a bi-monthly magazine as well as various books and recordings - and we host events occasionally - our needs for diversity were, I'm sure, challenging. I needed a customer management system that would control my subscriptions, enable me to send out reminders and newsletters, tell me who had bought a certain book or attended a certain event etc etc. And I wanted to update/add products, have a news and blog section, and control what products appeared where on the all-important home page. Oh, and of course, I wanted it to look the business.

As a small partnership, budgeting was also really important. I wanted my cake and to eat it. Nina fully understood the significance of cash-flow and provided two different quotes depending on the scale of work we required initially. This helped us enormously.

Nina filled me with confidence. At no point did I doubt that I would be getting something excellent. She went about building the site with a minimum of fuss, emailed me when necessary, listened to and acted upon every comment/question that we asked.

The result has been fantastic. The change-over was seamless, no valuable clients or orders lost in the cyber void.

Thanks to Nina Richards and Nice Dream, I now have a virtual 'shop-window' which will be the foundation of a long-term operation. Everything works as described and clients have been delighted with the ease of ordering and navigation on the new site. I've been running the new site for over a month now so I know it works!

I would recommend Nina's work without hesitation - and there are very few people I can say that of!

— Barry Durdant-Hollamby,