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May 13

Using proven templates in our design

Posted by Ray Sanford

Since the mid-80s, we had specialized in fast and efficient print production projects. We’d followed the evolutionary page layout path of PageMaker, Quark and then InDesign. And Photoshop and Illustrator since the beginning. But we weren’t designers. Instead, we did the work designers hated doing…the production and pre-press part. Technical, precise and very expensive if you made a mistake.

For precision and consistency, we used (and still use) templates (aka master pages) and styles; character, paragraph, objects, etc.

For the past 10 years our business has, like most, been evolving from print to web. It’s now to the point where our web business exceeds the print production side. And the web side is growing much faster.

We work with ad agencies, graphic designers, photographers and others in the creative field, so we started with a simple website. We built it using RapidWeaver, which uses templates. It was successful and we got calls from our clients asking if we could build their sites. The business grew, but we were always looking for a better way. A way to add features, benefits and functionality that were missing in the RapidWeaver platform.

We’d build a site and invariably our client would ask for us to add a client database, web forms, widgets, email marketing, and reporting.

When Adobe came out with Business Catalyst, we became a Premium Partner. We trusted Adobe and, while it was a steep learning curve, we started producing websites with the kind of functionality and flexibility we’d been needing.

But one of the things we liked about RapidWeaver was the ability to purchase a template with a great design and adapt it for our client. There were lots of sources for templates, but they all needed to be re-worked or “wired in” to the BC system.

When TribeVita was announced a year ago, we were one of the first to utilize their templates. The designs were what first attracted us. They were sophisticated and current. And they had built-in features and functions that appealed to our clients as well as mobile versions.

What we’ve really come to appreciate is TribeVita’s dedication to quality; both in design and the underlying code. Having templates that comply with industry standards means we have very few problems with the site working in all current browsers. And if by chance something is amiss, they usually have a fix within hours.

TribeVita templates are very cost effective. We build the template cost into our bid. And once we purchase the template, we can replicate as needed with no additional cost. We’ve done that numerous times: replicate, tweak the CSS and voilá… a new look and another satisfied client. This is especially handy if we have a client with a very low budget or if we’re doing the work pro-bono.

TribeVita has become our trusted source for high-quality templates that are all designed to make our life easier. Where once we tried to hide the fact we were using a commercial template, we now point out to our prospective clients the advantages and cost savings. We focus and position our company around building online businesses, not designing custom sites.

Work Example

Here is a link to a successful project using TribeVita Templates:

http://www.dentalcareforchildren.org/

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