Support + Maintenance

Interactive projects don’t end with the initial launch of the product. They continue to evolve and require occasional support over time as the people involved and the underlying technologies inevitably change. This section outlines the various ways we provide maintenance and support, from training into the years to come.

Getting Help

If you need help at any time, please email us at [email protected] and we’ll respond as quickly as possible. Keep reading for details on getting assistance in common situations.

Training

All of our projects include a single 1–2 hour training session for your team. For websites, this typically includes a detailed training session centered around editing site content using the Content Management System (CMS).

We’ll work with you to schedule a training session towards the end of the Development phase of the project. Ideally, this session will include everyone from your organization that has an interest in editing content on the site. If desired, this training session may also be recorded to share with additional people in your organization.

CMS Updates

It’s important to keep up with content management system software updates in order to maintain the security of your site. We will ensure that your CMS and all plugins it uses are updated at the time of launch, but the cost of making all future updates is outside of the scope of the original project and will be billed at an hourly rate. If we’re already performing additional work on your site after the initial launch, we will typically also make CMS updates at that time.

If you would like to set up a retainer plan with us to automatically update your CMS on a regular basis (we recommend at least quarterly updates) we can discuss that during the Project Wrapup.

Some paid third-party plugins for the CMS make use of subscription billing. Typically, this means that when you purchase the plugin you receive free updates to that plugin for the following year. To receive updates after the first year, you’ll need to pay a set amount (typically a fraction of the original cost) to receive all updates for another year. Before we update your CMS and plugins, we’ll inform you of the total cost for the update: including our total labor cost plus the additional cost to renew any paid plugins.

3rd-party Software

Digital products are complicated pieces of software, often relying on many additional 3rd-party pieces of software to keep things working behind the scenes. Examples include:

  • The server software hosting the site
  • Web services and APIs used for custom integrations such as Twitter
  • Web infrastructure such as Amazon Web Services

These pieces of software and services are usually out of our direct control, and it’s not uncommon for changes to them over time to adversely affect the functionality of your product. Because these changes are outside of our control and do not indicate a flaw in our product, we can not make updates free-of-charge when 3rd-party software or service changes cause issues, but we will do our best to resolve these issues as quickly as possible at our hourly rate.

Hosting Support

For most projects, we recommend hosting your site with one of our preferred managed hosting partners. Managed Hosting means that the software on the server is kept up-to-date by the host, and that you (or we) can contact them directly any time an issue occurs. In most cases, you can reach out to a managed host directly and we will not need to be involved.

In cases where the site is being hosted on a shared server or non-managed VPS server we are happy to help resolve any hosting issues at our hourly rate.