Behind the Scenes: Our New Website
Old website, Part I
When I made the decision to open a boutique travel business, I knew I would be a one-woman show. So, I had to wear a lot of different “hats.” My first goal was to set up a website. I had a bit of experience, but I needed more, so I asked my expert friend to help.
For the first website, we used a free template. It failed, so I bought another template, and we created the first Mateja Travel website.
Old website, Part II
This one was pretty good, but even before I was able to market Mateja Travel, someone hacked us, and we looked like a scam. I got an inquiry email about Mateja Travel posing as a bank. I thanked the inquirer for the notification, then I opened my website and found a blank red screen. I panicked. After so many hours of learning and working, my business vanished. My business collaborator could not fix it, so we resorted to updating the old back-up copy.
New website: Part I
For my third attempt I found another collaborator. It was August 2019 and we were discussing how to find a reliable platform. I asked my friend if he could edit everything by May 2020. He smiled and said that he could finish next month, September 2019. I was grateful.
By December 2019, I got his first draft. The site was not really what I had in mind, but it was better than nothing. I had to be persistent because he was on a private server, and I had to have permission to access it. I was worried that another crash or hack would happen. Finally, in February 2020 my collaborator confessed that he could not finish the project! I was devastated.
I was desperate. I didn’t know what to do or where to go. My budget was spent, and I couldn’t afford the same web site from a professional. That same month, I got sick. I had no idea what to do or where to go.
I finally remembered another friend who offered to help. It was now March 2020, and I had recovered from illness, but COVID-19 insecurity was everywhere. The world was transitioning to online. My friend was super busy, so he passed my project along to his cohort. I was relieved, as long as someone could assist.
New website: Part II
I met Alessandra, and she was like a dream come true. She seemed to have both the interest to help as well as the skills, but I was cautious, after the previous difficulties. I explained what I needed and wanted, and that this was the fourth time building my business website. Alessandra listened.
Right away, she found a workable template and cover picture, and she compared it to the previous site. I was surprised and grateful for her initiative.
Our collaboration looked like this: I asked how WordPress worked, and Alessandra asked where I wanted images and text. I felt like I could give her whatever freedom she needed. Back and forth, me thinking and her thinking, me asking and her answering: I loved the way Alessandra was creating the whole thing.
Only once did we have a glitch with the template password. But no hacks! No matter what I asked, Alessandra had an answer. Whatever I needed, Alessandra patiently walked me through finding a solution.
I’ve learned so much from collaborating with Alessandra: how to have more patience with others; how to find synergy; how to listen; how to solve problems instead of creating them…if not today, then tomorrow. I’ve gotten better at waiting for something good to happen.
I think I knew these things before, but I must have forgotten, because I needed to learn them again. I consider myself lucky to be able to live, to learn, and tell the story.