Creating a website, whether personal or professional, can take a lot of work. There is so much room to show your creative flair. However, you also need to consider the practical aspects, such as how to select hosting for your website.
There are a number of different options to consider, primarily determined by your budget, but also consider the specific requirements of the platform or content management system (CMS) you are using.

Where to start

Each CMS has a specific list of minimum hosting requirements. This will include the type of web server, the programming language or runtime that needs to be supported and the database it needs to use. Different versions of a CMS may also require a specific version of the language and that additional features are installed on the webserver.
Hosting a website requires a web server. You can choose between cloud hosting (public or private), dedicated hosting, virtual hosting or shared hosting.

Cloud Hosting

In principle, cloud hosting is the idea of hosting your website where it doesn’t exist on one specific physical server. Instead, you pay for a level of processing power, memory use and disk space.
Cloud hosting is best for websites that require a high level of availability and are available in multiple world regions. It does require a high level of expertise to setup correctly and optimise. However, you pay for the resources you use rather than a fixed amount. Cloud hosting can also be less performant but offers flexibility to increase the server resources available when required.

Dedicated Hosting

A dedicated hosting plan is where your website is hosted on physical servers with exclusive use. Dedicated servers generally offer the best performance and you have complete control. Some hosting companies do offer managed VPS plans where they will look after the maintenance, backups and monitor usage and network availability.

Virtual Hosting

The virtual will have a dedicated amount of processing, memory and disk space allocated to it and often come in a range of sizes to suit small to large busy websites. In it’s simplest form a virtual server appears as if it is a single dedicated server but is one of many virtual servers sitting on one physical server.
A virtual server is a good option for small to medium-sized businesses. Maintenance and backups can be handled in-house or outsourced to a managed web hosting provider. As with a dedicated server, the virtual server will often give you full control over the environment.

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is the budget solution that is a great option suitable for small businesses. It is a shared environment so your website can be affected by the other sites the hosting is shared with. This means selecting a reputable company is important.
Shared hosting is cheaper, you may pay $15 dollars per month, rather than hundreds for a virtual or dedicated server. However, shared hosting also limits your ability to run specific environments. Shared hosting is commonly used for CMS systems.

How to select hosting for your website

Small businesses

A dedicated server may be overkill and cloud hosting too unpredictable in cost for a small business. Shared hosting is most likely a good option for you however, check if your CMS has extensive functional customisations.

Medium – to large businesses

For a medium to large organisation, a virtual or dedicated server would be a better choice, especially if you’re running an online store or if you handle sensitive client data.
If you have a large customer base in other parts of the world, then a cloud solution may be better. This is especially true if your web site is duplicated across a number of regions but still appears as a single website for administration.

Considerations when migrating your website to new hosting

  • Your email may also need to be re-hosted. You could continue to host it yourself either in the same hosting environment as the website or on an in-house mail server. Many organisations are increasingly switching to third-party providers such as Office365 or GSuite. Whichever way you go, don’t, forget to run a back-up first and ensure this is copied outside of your mail program. For example, run a backup onto a USB just in case something takes an unexpected turn.
  • When updating your DNS records to switch the address from your old hosting to the new, there can be a period where visitors can be sent to either server. This is not a problem for information-only sites as visitors won’t experience any downtime. For an online store or custom application, this can be problematic should a customer place their order on an old website.
  • switching on the quietest day of the week, and possibly outside of business hours is beneficial.

About the author

Katrina O’Connell is the Managing Director at kmo. Having started her career in the early days of web, Katrina was a part of a team that was one of the first to build a multi-currency payment gateway for both real-time and batch payment processing. In 2007 Katrina started kmo, a web development agency located in Brisbane and works with both clients and agencies throughout Australia. Read more about their work at

Much like the eye-catching front cover of a magazine, your website is an introduction to what’s inside your business – a window to your world.

If done correctly, it can convey your expertise and professionalism, foster customer confidence and trust, and brand you as a credible employer attracting people who want to work for you. Given this, what kind of content should you have on your website to optimise your communication?

1. Use well thought out content that communicates your culture

Who? What? Where? When? How? Why?

These questions can be answered throughout your home page, about us section, services page, etc. One point to remember is copy for the web should be different for that meant for print. Most people skim read websites rather than loiter; your main aim is to give people what they want to see in the blink of an eye and the search engines great content so you will be found online.

The essence of website content is originality. Search engines and your audiences want original and genuine content. Communicate the company ethos and personality, forget the industry jargon, and keep the updates regular.

2. Create a news page

One page that’s often overlooked but is incredibly important in promoting your business is the news page. Some companies use a blog for this. The news page is where you can communicate what it is you do, in real time.

Developing a news page can have a positive impact on your business for a number of reasons

  • Keeps your staff, customers, stakeholders and the wider community engaged with your business.
  • Builds your image and reputation.
  • Illustrates how proactive you are within your business.
  • Original content will be proactively promoted throughout search engines thus increasing traffic to your website.

Get your blog or news page going today with these easy to follow tips:

  1. Consider a brief headline. In any search result only the first 50-60 characters of the title will appear. Never repeat your headline in consecutive posts! Search engines will assume it’s a duplicate of the last piece and place it way down the search results list.
  2. Write for your audience. Use a conversational tone to engage the people you want to engage.
  1. Keep your sentences short with no jargon. Lists can be good to allow you get to the point, but again, only use them where relevant.
  1. Don’t fill the content with the same key word. Constantly repeating the name of your business within every article will place you at a disadvantage. Search engines will move you further down the search list.
  1. Use photos, and if you have them, videos. News that can illustrate the story is far more engaging for the reader.
  1. Add a quote from a spokesperson. This could be your MD, line manager, or customer. Not only do quotes add weight and perspective to a story, but they make it real.

Remember the magazine cover. If you want people to have a good feeling about you, make sure you look the part and also talk the part. You are an expert in your field, so regular content updates make it much easier for people to understand you, find you, and ultimately enquire about your services!

Rebecca_Wilson_portraitFrom a background in marketing consulting, Rebecca Wilson applies her entrepreneurial passion and love for community through Starts at 60. Rebecca founded Starts at 60 in 2012 to offer the information, insights and ideas those in the over-60 age group are looking for. Starts at 60 is a news, blog and information website, and online community for over-60s in Australia and New Zealand.

Rebecca gives us an overview of how she has grown throughout her career, and the transition from consultant to tier one firms to successful entrepreneur.

Can you tell us about the Rebecca Wilson story?

My story starts back at university. I studied nothing in particular in a really entertaining way but I got involved in university clubs and innovation groups and got sucked down this addictive hole of entrepreneurship. I can put that as a really exciting thing to have done outside the framework of university that started my hunger.

After university I did the classic ‘get a good job, in an industry that looked good to your family and your friends’ to tick that box. Everybody gets one of those. I was a trainee stockbroker in an era where the Internet didn’t exist and that made my dad smile. My school education was validated and everyone thought, She is going to be safely employed for the rest of her life. Ten months in I moved to London, fell in love and away we went.

I think we left with only six weeks worth of money, not knowing we would arrive in London with six weeks worth of money because the dollar was so weak. We got to week five, we had no jobs and we were looking at that money going ‘we don’t want to ring home and ask for money.’

Week five on the Friday, I got a job at Morgan Stanley and that was a magnificent experience. I worked 60 hours a week for two years in the investment banking industry to fund my ‘backpacking thirty-three countries around the world in two years moments.’ Then I transitioned to the next step, which was coming back from London.

I landed in a friends business who was a 21 year old entrepreneur. I took as much risk as I could in the .com boom- travelled the world, raised capital, did some really cool things that I possibly didn’t realise that I was ever going to do again for fifteen years. Then I went into corporate. The world of .com fell apart and my safety sense was to use all the skills I’d learnt in entrepreneurship but go into that corporate environment and build a career.

I ended up in consulting in tier one and two consulting firms. Learning my way through the engineering industry, basically plodding along what is a very nice, safe career path. I left to have kids at the age of 27 and the management team of the business I worked for said I could come back minimum four days per week or as an administrator, if I wanted a job. At that point I politely said no.

I started then working as a consultant and it was the first taste I had working as a consultant. I worked for $20 an hour in marketing consulting providing advice to people on how to grow their business. My business, Stretch Marketing, started to turnover a decent amount of work and I worked my way to tier one firms in the CBD and very good hourly consulting rates. I did consulting for ten years and stopped taking consulting work in January 2015.

Stretch Marketing started in 2009. I wanted the marketing I did to be a demonstration of how well I would market my clients. From that point I committed to writing blogs, learning more about marketing and found leaders all over the world I wanted to learn from. Since 2009, I’ve been committed to staying on the front of that wave of knowing everything in marketing that I need to know.

That process of hitting the end of Stretch Marketing was really scary as I had just founded Starts at 60. I ended Stretch Marketing because I had effectively ended up back in the corporate world, managing more corporate teams than I was people in my own business.

What inspired you to start Starts at 60?

The over 60s are my parents, they’re cool, they’re awesome. We can all look at our parents who are 50, 60 or 70 and know that they are in a phase of their life that we haven’t seen yet. The generation has never been seen this proactively before. People haven’t been this healthy, worked this long and they haven’t had as much affluence.

I could see this in the corporates I was working for with opportunities for them to work with baby boomers as a great emerging market and I would sit there and rattle their cans going ‘please take notice, these people need you to notice them.’ In the end I sat back and thought, ‘am I taking my own advice? In two years time would I still like to be consulting or could I be doing something more meaningful?’

I’ve got a big social development background which started when I built a website [Flood Discounts] during the 2011 [Brisbane] floods. I built the site with my now business partner overnight when the floods hit to build a community of discounts available for people. We built a website where companies could lodge their discounts and we had 9,000 discounts lodged in the website within 2 weeks. It was a voluntary project and there was no profit because this was my community in Brisbane. The learning of it was how awesome community is. It’s so awesome to do something to change the world a little bit. That’s why I started Starts at 60.

How did you navigate you transition from the corporate consulting world to being an entrepreneur again?

Not very elegantly! I kept trying to wait for the perfect moment to tell my clients that I changed paths but sometimes you don’t want to give up what’s working really well until your new wheel is built and I didn’t know if this new wheel was going to work.

A lot of my beautiful clients are very close friends so they knew I was evolving into something different. They knew I wasn’t going away but they also knew I wasn’t going to be there to provide their ongoing consulting support. I certainly one day didn’t go and announce that I was shutting Stretch Marketing.

I probably could have done it better but you rarely get perfect timing in entrepreneurship. Other than the window we got two weeks ago when we secured a tier one investor and we went, ‘the door now shuts on every earlier project and we are focusing on the things we should do not the things we could do.’

How did you face the challenges when moving from the corporate world to Starts at 60?

We had 3 people a year ago and now we’re up to 18. The first challenges were confidence based. They were around when to hire and what to hire into our team and how to grow and mentor. As a consultant I had never learned how to be a mentor. I had been a really good external mentor but I had never been accountable for somebody’s day-to-day behaviours. Learning how to be a very good manager of people became my next big skill set to work on and I’m still working on it everyday of the week.

When did you introduce a board to Starts at 60?

In January 2015. I had a group of three wonderful people around me as mentors who came around to get me really focused. I had ten things I wanted to do back then but I also wanted to close my investment round. I knew focus was an important part of that. I brought my ten things to the table and my mentors said ‘wow, you could change the world but you can’t do it with all those focuses.’

They told me to knuckle down on a number one focus, run a great business and then the other focuses, which is what we have done. A year later I am so proud of taking their advice because they were right on. We are only at the beginning and they were right to focus me. That’s what a board has been fantastic for.

How will the investment from Seven West Media help Starts at 60 continue to grow?

It doesn’t change who are today. We have built here in this office a very successful business. The people in it are so passionate about what they do; it’s exciting to come in everyday. We wanted to be at the very frontline of media technology as it evolves [and] it takes a fair bit of investment in analysts and data because that is where media is moving. The last thing you want to do is get caught running a publisher with an old-school business model in an evolving media industry.

You want to be running a fully integrated media business that has a great way of understanding how to evolve as the media market evolves. There are lots of reasons for working with [Seven West Media], number one is technology for us and number two is they have enormous reach into the baby boomer [audience]. They really love what we’re doing, we’re an innovation investment and it brings to them an asset they don’t have in digital to do some of that innovation.

Is there anything you wish you had done differently?

At this point, the biggest lessons are around people. I’m constantly learning about recruitment and staffing which I have never had a background in. There’s nothing I would do differently because everything you do that didn’t work, you learn something from that I will use in the future. Without those learnings I don’t think I’d be where I am right now.

What have been some of your biggest lessons from Starts at 60?

Putting deals together. Putting together the deal with Seven West Media, I feel like I got an MBA in 9 short months and it is a privilege to work with a team like that. They are really smart in different things than I am smart in so the mutual strengths are terrific.

I’ve also learnt about building websites at speed with traffic. The developers go ‘Rebecca, you think that’s going to take this long. Multiply it by four.’ The risk of dropping something that isn’t tested properly into 5 million page views can destroy everything and you can’t afford to take a risk with any of the moving pieces.

I think I also would have brought sales people on earlier to make decision making easier but that’s because you think you can do the job for too long. I’m getting better at learning what job I’m good at and now packaging roles and bringing people into those roles where they are going to provide better value than me doing everything. I’ve done almost every job in the business before somebody else did it. I just keep inching myself towards more leadership oriented roles.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

  1. When you’re sitting in the corner going ‘why am I doing this?’ just keep going.
  2. If you don’t feel a little bit sick in your stomach, you’re not pushing yourself hard enough.
  3. It’s okay for you to want to be challenged and it’s also okay to have phases of life where you don’t.
  4. Be confident to work out who you are. I know we all feel like imposters, it’s normal.

Thanks to Rebecca for sharing her insights with Leaders in Heels!

Search Engine Optimisation – or SEO – is always a hot topic because it is so important – it allows your business to be found online with ease. It’s also been a hot topic because in the past, it’s been shrouded in mystery. It’s an area of business people need to be made aware of – if you get it wrong and Google penalises you, the consequences are dire.

In the past, SEO was a challenging game to play; a big industry grew around it which continued to perpetuate the view that if you were going to make it to page one on the search engine results page, you needed an expert who knew how to manage the search engine in the way that no ordinary digital marketer could. This is not the case anymore. Google wants transparency and actively discourages any smoke and mirrors search engine optimisation tactics.

So what is Search Engine Optimisation today?

Here’s a definition – Search Engine Optimisation is a set of techniques applied to your website so that the search engine (usually Google in Australia) recognises your site as relevant to a search query entered by the user. The search results that come from a user entering a search query is called a search engine results page or SERP.

The aim of SEO is to have the links to your pages appear naturally or organically on page one of the SERP. Consumer behaviour has changed, and these days we don’t usually go beyond page one of the search engine’s results pages to find what we’re looking for. If we don’t find what we want on the first page, we simply refine our search query or keywords. The position of the links on the search engine results page is a result of SEO techniques.

Why is Search Engine Optimisation the business of everyone in the business?

SEO and content are today’s dancing partners – the ice cream and jelly of digital marketing. The SEO process starts with keywords, and it’s no longer just the job of the digital marketing team to think about these keywords. Defining keywords helps a business understand what it represents for its customers – what value or solution the business provides to its customers and what business it is really in.

What do I mean by this? Here’s an example. I recently ran through a keyword exercise with a doctor for her general practice. We started with the big headings; womens health; mens health, etc. Then I asked – what do you do in these areas? The answer I got was thorough and technical – a lot of terms that I could not understand. The next question – if your customers were looking for that service, what would they type into a search engine? That’s when we get to the real value, finding the words that your customers would use to find your product or service. Only then can we build out a strategy for SEO and establish a framework that informs website navigation and where the content will go. Would the doctor have thought she would be part of determining the SEO structure for the buinsess? No, she didn’t. Will the GP be doing the SEO? No, she wont be. But as you can see from the example, she is an essential part of its success.

Any content creator in the business also needs to know the keywords for the business and the SEO strategy. In the case of the doctor’s business, that is going to include the receptionists, the practice nurse and the other doctors in the practice, all of whom write some form of content that will most likely be published on the website (as well as used in other formats).

Link Building is a lot like Public Relations

SEO includes ‘on-page’ techniques, using your keywords in the URL, page title, headings, content and images; as well as ‘off-page’ techniques, which is essentially having other sites link to your site. Anchor text are the words or phrases on the site that links to yours containing the hyperlink to your site. These should be your keywords. You can understand that “click here” or “learn more” won’t do a lot for you. Links and anchor text should always make sense to the visitor. This is a way you can assess quality. If a link or anchor text looks weird or out of place, like it doesn’t belong, then it doesn’t.

If your customers were looking for that service, what would they type into a search engine? That’s when we get to the real value, finding the words that your customers would use to find your product or service

Good linking is helped by having active social media profiles and publishing a quality blog that others link to. But it’s also simply a matter of ensuring that businesses and organisations that you do business with have links to your site on theirs. Look to your partners, organisations that you sponsor, your community affiliations. Does that university business school that your CEO just made a speech to have a link along with the info and pic about the event? Does that sports team you support have a number of links to your site? What about the sponsorship you make to the local training awards program, is there a link from their site to yours? You check and if not, you make the phone call or send the email and ask that the link be made and then you check again. If every organisation you partner with in a variety of ways over time included links from their site to yours, your off-page SEO would be doing well.

What can you do about making SEO the business of everyone in the business?

It’s likely that most people in the business, outside of marketing, have little idea of what SEO is, and even if they do, they won’t think that they have anything to do with it.

Here are my top five tips for increasing the focus of everyone in the business on SEO.

  1. It starts with education. How this happens in businesses varies greatly but even the very simple “paper bag lunch” training session will go a long way.
  2. During your training, avoid technicalities and keep it simple. Playing a keyword game is a great place to start. Choose a topic and have everyone come up with three different words or phrases that they would type into a search engine if they were looking for that thing. Run some live tests and show the results.
  3. Demonstrate how other businesses in your sector are using keywords by visiting a few sites. Show page titles and URLs, as well as content, headings and subheadings and images for sites that have good SEO structure and ones that don’t.
  4. Inform everyone what the target keywords are and benchmark your performance for those. After some dedicated keyword -focused SEO work, celebrate your success as you move up the rankings in Google.
  5. Set a quality ‘link’ challenge. How many links can your team generate over a month or two?

What are your tips to encourage your organisation to focus on SEO?




Beth Powell

Beth Powell is the founder of Digital Marketing Club, a coaching and support program for marketers and non-marketers that provides direct answers to your questions about your own digital marketing and gets your roadblocks unstuck. She has become known as the go-to person for clear explanations about how digital marketing works and how businesses can use the various solutions to improve their marketing and grow their business. Beth is a sought after conference speaker and author of the soon to be published book “Drive More Business: A 5 step Guide to Digital Marketing for Auto Dealers”. For more information, email

Your business website may be a potential client’s first impression of your business. If promoted correctly, thousands of potential and existing clients would have already formed an impression of your business before they pick up the phone or walk through the door. Your company website is another member of your sales team, is the information on your website convincing these potential clients that your business is right for them. The solution to converting those looking at your website into clients could be a lot easier than you think.

One, often overlooked, aspect of your website could be letting the whole side down. Many websites are weighed down with too much text and are hard to navigate. Most people switch off if they bombarded by a page of text or it is hard to find the information they want easily. It is best to have your services filed under navigational tabs such as about us, products, contact etc.

Much of the text contained in websites focuses on the features of the product or service and not the benefits. This includes generic terms such as “quality”, “economical”, “professional” etc. While you want your clients to understand that your product or service is produced with love, care and quality, it’s a claim that most clients see as a “given” and not a point of difference from your competitors.

Here are 6 tips to maximise the benefits of your website

  • Treat your website as another member of your team. Each day, your team answer many client questions. What are the most common questions they receive? Ensure your team provide you with a list of common client questions and check that your website answers these
  • Your text should be punchy, interesting and speak directly to your clients. It must tell them what the benefits of your businesses product/service and clearly highlight the benefits of the services offered and the products available.
  • Make it even easier for clients to contact you by having a contact link on each page of your website.
  • Updated and benefit focused text will help gain clients interest. However, your website still needs to work hard to get them to contact you. Add a “hook” or incentive for clients to call – 10% off a product/service if they mention the website. A web-site promotion will also help you monitor the number of leads generated.
  • Update your website regularly so that existing clients are induced to click-on and see what’s new. Upload monthly specials or news items to entice clients to click on to their website regularly.
  • Include your website address on all of your business letterhead, e-mails and promotional material. Clients aren’t going to visit if they don’t know it exists.

By including all the advantages of the services you offer, offering incentive to contact and making it as easy as possible for prospects to contact you, your website will become a more effective member of your team.

Cindy Parker

Cindy Parker combines 18 years of marketing experience with a Bachelor of Business to help small/medium business owners maximise their profit. Cindy has worked in the Marketing departments of medical, IT, financial services and beauty industries for both Australian and multinational companies.

Four P’s Marketing Solutions assists small business with easy and cost effective marketing activities including website text that converts to sales, PR activities, powerful promotions, plus logical and easy to implement marketing advice.

For further information contact Cindy Parker BBus, email:

Top image: blupics

It has been a while since I wanted to build a cosmetics review website. Instead of launching my new business I was very unlucky to hire wrong web-developer who not only damaged my reputation but also hurt financially, not mentioning emotional stress of going through legal case….

I signed the contract with website development company in August 2010 for what had meant to be a 2 month project. It turned out to be a 13 months nightmare that ended up in September 2011 with the money orders on the web-developer from Consumer, Trader & Tenancy Tribunal. The reasoning of the tribunal was the failure of the web-developer to produce the website in accordance with the agreement within the reasonable time frame and that the work provided has not been performed in a workmanlike manner. Although I won the case seven months ago, the web-developer still hasn’t paid the money. He claims his business has no assets to pay off and is completely broken down. Instead I found he runs other businesses and maintains a blog of a committed businessman and human being. Here are my learning:

How to choose a web-developer

How to minimise the risk of becoming a victim of the web-developer scammer:


Make sure you do all the important checks on the person/business (including directors) you are going to deal with.

– Credit rating (check,

– Call OFT and ask if there were no complaints on the company (free)

– Directors check ($55)

This is how I found out that the web-developer owns two identical businesses and ASIC consultants suggested that the web-developer could have moved all assets to the other company to avoid paying his debts.


Check the contact details, address, and phone number. Do you see anything suspicious? If you can only find a PO box, 1300 phone number, the address is somewhere in your city but without details, and when you call the business you hear an assistant always saying that the person is on the meeting and will call back – you might deal with a scammer.


Check the references. Ask the developer for the references. Don’t just look at his portfolio on the website. Developers very often create magnificent portfolio while in fact they might have added only Facebook button in the footer. If testimonials are given, call them and ask how the project was implemented, was the budget and time fame met, communication process etc. You will be surprised how easier is to make a decision when you have more information.


Structure the contract that protects YOU. It is typical that the IT projects are delayed. There is always something that needs to be added, something you didn’t think about before, something took longer than expected. Design will need to be updated etc. Make sure your contract states expected due date, the scope of the work is as detailed as possible, that you do not pay full amount until project is completely signed off, that any issues are resolved in the local court for you. It is good to have a lawyer reviewing your contract but it can be expensive ($500).


Check how many fans have the business on Facebook. Maybe it sounds trivial but every respected business now has social media. If you can’t find any social media icons on the website, no testimonials, no way the visitors can say what they think it could be a scam…. Check the directors on Linkedin. Zero connections? Very suspicious.

Other risks you might need to take into account:

1 Have you heard of virtual offices? In short this is where the business is located while physically is located somewhere else (sometimes no-where).

Virtual office is there to have a meeting room on the ad hoc basis, prestigious address, proper mailing address instead of PO box, phone answering service etc. Unfortunately this is also sometime to cheat new client about the size and professionalism of the business. The business pays fee that is much lower than a rent. It makes sense for the small entrepreneurs but there is an inherited risk in dealing with such businesses. I don’t mind when the developer works from home. But this is wrong when the businessman pretends to be bigger than he really is. It is called misleading. And here my next point starts…

2 Misleading about the size of the business, number of employees, experience When I signed the contract with the web-developer he used to talk about the senior project manager who will overlook my website, teams of graphic designers who would compete for the best design, office in Melbourne (the reason why I couldn’t meet the project manager) etc. What I discovered later was that the web-developer was outsourcing everything to India. Obviously long-distance communication didn’t work very well as the web-developer never built the website for me.

3 Risk of hiring web-developers from websites like e.g. As far as I believe there are also good people who look for jobs, please be aware that this world is full of scam artists and therefore always look for reviews of real people.

If I knew all this before I would probably avoid going through :

  • writing tones of instructions for the project manager to understand simple requirements,
  • embarrassment caused by plagiarised design from other popular website,
  • constant delays due to different reasons including alleged car accident taking month to recover,
  • receiving an invoice for 200% of our contract without permission to exceed contracted hours,
  • lots of stress and ultimately not having my website ever done.

This is my unhappy-end story of hiring wrong web-developer. Have you had a similar story? Do you have any bad experiences with web designers? Share your experiences.