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Once the site is live... maintenance


jamd
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So the cubecart shop you built for your client has been signed off and is live. My two main questions are:

1) what do you think are then the important ongoing maintenance tasks, and

2) what's the usual arrangement you come to with the client for handling them?

Do you set up a maintenance contract? (monthly? yearly?) And if so, what do you include in it?

- That you'll keep the shop updated with every new CC update?

- or every security update?

- regular graphical preparation for new products?

- ?

Or do you just keep tabs on CC releases yourself, and inform your client when there's something to update - charging them on a per-job basis?

I know there's no right or wrong answer to these questions, but I'm just curious to hear how some of you handle the ongoing maintenance arrangement.

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If they want to hire me as Web Master after the 30 days, I charge on a semi-annual basis for technical support. Any changes to the site are charged at an hourly rate.

Thanks Roban. Yeah this is kind of the way I was planning to go. Apologies if this is a daft question, but what kinds of changes would you say qualified for ongoing "technical support" for a Cubecart site?

Would you include Cubecart upgrades as part of this maintenance agreement, or would you be inclined to charge per-hour for these?

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I think it will vary from client to client. Some will like a fixed-fee some might prefer time-charge.

While I don't do web design now except for myself (due to time) I would probably offer an annual/monthly fee for providing upgrades. For example - £20/month or £150/year or alternatively £40 per upgrade.

If you designed the site this shouldn't be a problem as you will know what modifications are installed. If you didn't do the design then perhaps charge and extra 15/20% to cover additional time.

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I think it will vary from client to client. Some will like a fixed-fee some might prefer time-charge.

While I don't do web design now except for myself (due to time) I would probably offer an annual/monthly fee for providing upgrades. For example - £20/month or £150/year or alternatively £40 per upgrade.

If you designed the site this shouldn't be a problem as you will know what modifications are installed. If you didn't do the design then perhaps charge and extra 15/20% to cover additional time.

I guess my main concern is wanting to ensure that their version of cubecart is kept up to date with security patches or bug fixes - but not really knowing how often I'll be needing to do this, and whether it'll be simple replacement file uploads, or spending ages going through the manual change log (because of 3rd party mods) or getting someone with more solid coding knowledge than me to do it.

With so many unknowns, it's hard to identify a likely maintenance cost for keeping their site up to date. Does that make sense?

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