Originally Posted by emote
PS walked into my local creative graphics come media come print place the other day (they did my business cards) and had a look at their new site which they were gloating about - in a nice way. It had a rotating "flash" type graphic wall controled by the mouse that really blew me away. I thought the design was fantastic and unique. The guys intimated that it was all there own doing and that they could build me a site. Quote was minimum $1000 for just a few pages magazine style, but for something that was media rich with videos and similar effects to there own, it would cost upwards of five thousand! I appreciate that we are here on earth to make money but imagine my suprise when I stumbled on the same template (A papervision 3D engine design) for under 200 dollars! I realise that there is a lot of work to stylise the 3D wall etc but hey guys....keep it real!
Hi Mike, your post made me smile ... for a few reasons. First of all, I cannot help with the whole 'charity case' thing, but maybe you'll get some other takers (grin).
Anyway, I found it funny that you discovered a template that was exactly like the site they intimated was original. That's a bit of 'egg on face'. Bear in mind that although what you described does seem like a bit of a con, most of us are pretty transparent about these sorts of things.
I would hazard to say that with the downward pressure on the market and with Joomla and other Open Source systems becoming part and parcel of the way many webbies do business (myself included although I love creating custom sites), don't be surprised to find an increasing number of templated sites around.
Having said that, it's also reasonable to expect that there will be a fair few hours involved in customising a template. You often have to edit Photoshop files, tweak tweening (the motion bits in Flash), etc. Also, even if clients say they love a template, they often decide they want changes and every change takes time.
Before you go down the Flash path (and I do love a bit of Flash), you might want to consult a few of the SEO
experts around as Flash sites are notoriously deemed as being hard work where keyword searching and SEO
Oh and I wanted to say a word about CMS (content management systems). Although I quite like the extra dough involved for website updates, it's extremely important for small business owners to have control of their information and thus destiny. Having a CMS doesn't mean you have to do everything yourself, of course, as I'm happy to do the updates, but it gives you the *option* to do so without learning HTML, CSS, Flash, PHP, etc.
OK, I hope this helps clarify things and I really wish you luck with your project. Oh and one more thing, please loose the creepy computerised voice on your site!