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Step 3: Determine your resources

Community Manager
Community Manager
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Now that you have an idea of how your website has been structured in the past and what you would like to accomplish, we would like to help you think about resources.

Resources are key to maintaining an effective website. You may want to consider creating a website budget, identifying people who will author content, the frequency of your content, and those who will post material on your site. You goal should be to have a website process that your group can maintain over time.

Frequency: If you have already thought about what your website is going to do and the target audience, you might want to look at what you think you will be able to post and what sort of schedule to you expect to run. For example, if you are running regular meetings and outreach events, you can develop a calendar which can help determine the frequency you will post new content.

Source of Content: In addition, you might start thinking about where the content will come from. For example, will a single person be writing up all information or are write-ups submitted by various people who have in depth knowledge of an event? Where will images and graphics come from?

People: Once you understand the frequency and source of content, you can start thinking about people resources.

  • How big a team do you need? Perhaps a single webmaster will work. Or you may want to engage a group of people who will be able to help manage your digital communications. The frequency and source of content may help you determine this.
  • How will you ensure continuity in managing the site? If you have a web team of one, how do you maintain continuity if for some reason they 'disappear' or are unable to serve for an extended period of time? How will you get access to your site? Will you have a back up who's been trained? Is up-to-date documentation available?
  • What about accountability? How do you ensure items get posted? Will there be a review process?

Budget: As you think about your web budget, remember that a large number of website hosting services are available in the marketplace. Costs start around $10/month and go up from there. These services usually include basic hosting and functionality that enable you to create and edit content. Prices go up as you begin to add other special services like forms and e-commerce. You may also want to consider if you will need custom graphics and photography. You can engage individuals, companies, or agencies to provide these materials, And there are some high-end services which provide web hosting and include people to help you design and manage your digital communications. For very small/simple sites, you may want to consider platforms such as the ACS Network .