A little consolidation, some new services, and a redesign

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I just launched yesterday a completely new site for Ideal Project Group. I'm really happy with the way it turned out. The old site looked good visually to me - and a lot of people told me that they liked it - but it wasn't working any more.

First off, inquiries were nowhere near what they should have been considering the amount of traffic I get on the site. So from that standpoint, the website was literally not working correctly. The other problem is that the site no longer did a good job of representing what I do and what my company does, so a major update was needed. Lastly, some of the things I've been working on have caused my company's presence on the internet to be completely fragmented. This is okay - because I've been doing a lot of stuff - but it was time to do some clean up and consolidation.

For the new site, I had a few key objectives in mind.

1) I wanted one website to present all the services my company offers. This now includes project management services, website building, product development, and general tech type services. (More on the last two in a bit)

2) I wanted the site to include - not just link to - the products that I've created. This includes the Android application GoFind, and the free web application I released earlier called ThirtyDayProject.org.

3) I wanted to tie this blog into my company site much more tightly and also link to my podcast, twitter feed, and a few other things in a way that made sense.

The Consolidation

Previously I had the main Ideal Project Group site (old), which was all about the project management piece, a Version one for Everyone site that talked about building websites and providing tech services, and then there is still this blog. So, I combined the V1 site and the main IPG site, and also pull in this blog's 10 most recent posts via Feedburner. I may end up integrating this blog even more tightly at some point, but I still need to make a few other decisions with Duarlander and personal blogging before doing so. For now though, I was able to style the feed and it looks really nice inside the new site.

Showing off my products

The GoFind page still exists for now - though this is likely the next thing to be changed - and ThirtyDayProject.org is a stand alone web app. So, I created a product page where I give a quick blurb about what each of them are, and link to their respective sites where people can get more detail if they want. This is much better than simply providing a link.

Some new services

In the past, small businesses would call from time to time asking me if I could create a certain piece of software. I would explain that I focused exclusively on Project Management and could lead a team of theirs but that I didn't have developers of my own.

I'm no longer going to turn down this kind of business, and am in fact going to be eagerly seeking it out.

I pulled together a team to create an Android app that was built and launched in six weeks. I built and launched my first Rails app with help from a bunch of people in under two months. I have great relationships with a number of developers and there is simply no reason that I should shy away from providing custom development for small businesses.

I've always lead software projects, and that's what I'll still be doing. The only difference is that sometimes I'll be working with a client's developers, and sometimes I'll be working with developers that I pull together. More flexibility, more freedom, more speed, and more business. All good things.

Very lastly, I'll also be working to help get small businesses set up with all their little tech needs. Maybe a shopping cart solution, maybe just getting a website and email up, or maybe helping a brick and mortar business get online with a podcast. This won't be how I make most of my money (I don't think) but I've worked with a couple brand new businesses lately to get them set up online and it's really fun working with these people.

You know who wants to get stuff done and move quickly? Someone that just started a new business.

So that's the story behind the new site. All my services in one place, a page to highlight things I've made, and tighter integration with things like this blog and the podcast.

Check it out at www.idealprojectgroup.com and let me know what you think. I'd love some feedback.