Ninebranches | FAQ
Have questions about buying a website or how it all works?
FAQ, frequently asked questions, getting started
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Frequently Asked Questions

GENERAL QUESTIONS

How do I get started?

Great, you’re considering building a website for your Baha’i community! Go ahead and give us a call (or message us) and we’ll set up a phone or Skype consultation with your LSA or a designated representative.

If this is a service for the Faith, why are you charging money for it?

Honestly, because anything that’s worth anything isn’t free. Baha’i centers aren’t free, food for Holy Day celebrations isn’t free, Ruhi books aren’t free, and furthermore, you wouldn’t expect them to be. A website that is clean and attractive enough to really do its job for your community will require a little bit of sacrifice, and that’s okay. (Also, I have to eat).

Do websites really attract seekers to the Faith?

Yes. These days, when someone hears about the Baha’i Faith and wants to connect with you, literally the first thing they’re going to do is pull up Google and type in “bahai yourtown“. When they do that, you want your community’s website to be right there at the top, no questions asked. Don’t get me wrong – nothing is better than word-of-mouth to family and friends in growing the Faith, but unless they already know someone in your community, they’re going to your website first. Make sure it’s a pleasant experience.

Do you build websites for Baha'i communities outside of the United States?

Yes. With the worldwide nature of the web, I can just as easily build a website for a Baha’i community in the UK or Indonesia as I can the US. Be advised that I can only write copy (website text) in English, as it’s the only language I speak natively. If your site needs to be in a language other than English, someone in your community will have to provide the copy (though I can help you with general tips on what works well on the web).

PRICING QUESTIONS

This sounds expensive. Why is it so expensive?

I’d like you to take a step back for a minute. If you could spend less than $1000 to hire someone to work for your community full time to answer questions, invite tens to hundreds of seekers to Core Activities, give them a good impression of the Faith, and she worked for you 24/7 for years on end, I bet you’d do it.
If you think that’s a crazy use of the Fund, that’s fine. I’d just challenge you to make sure you have a better way to help your community achieve the goals of this Five Year Plan, because it’s pretty ambitious.

Are there any hidden fees?

In addition to the cost of building the website, expect to pay about $60 – $70 a year on domain registration and hosting. I’ll set it all up for you and I can have it automatically renew itself if you prefer.

What types of payment do you accept?

We accept most major credit cards and PayPal, and if you’re in the US, we accept checks.

DESIGN QUESTIONS

Are your websites easy to edit?

For the most part, yes. All of our websites are built on the WordPress platform, which makes them rather user-friendly to edit and update. Even though it’s a relatively easy platform to use, it might require a little training for some people. We’re happy to provide training and a walk-through guide free-of-charge for any community that requests it.

Are there limits on storage space or number of pages?

Technically yes, but under normal use you’ll never come close to hitting the limit of 10 GB. Regarding page limits, if you think you need more than 20 pages on your site, let’s chat about it to make sure it’s what you really need before we move forward.

Can seekers and traveling Baha'is find our site on Google?

Yes. As soon as the site is finished, we’ll list it with all the major search engines and your National Spiritual Assembly’s directory (if they have one). Be advised that it may take a few weeks to a few months to really rocket to the top of Google — and that’s completely normal.

I really like the Baha'i Community of ______'s website. Can you build us one just like it?

Can I? Most likely. Will I? Probably not. Your community is special, and the site should remind visitors of you, not someone else. That being said, if you find another site that inspires you, we can definitely discuss what you like about it and perhaps incorporate some ideas into your site.

TECHIE QUESTIONS

Will our website be secure?

While no security system on the internet is ever 100% fullproof, we install top-class security software on your site and use password standards that you might even find excessive.

Do we need to buy a domain name or is that something you take care of?

Purchasing a domain name and website hosting is something that we’ll normally take care of for you. Be advised that domain names can vary a bit depending on which extension you want and what country you live in.

COMPANY QUESTIONS

Is Ninebranches a Baha'i company?

Yes. I’ve been a Baha’i since 2000 and I’m the sole owner of the enterprise.

Are you affiliated with the institutions of the Faith?

No. Like many of you, I have served on institutional bodies, both elected and appointed, but this is a private initiative meant to serve the Faith. Though I have received an abundance of personal encouragement from institutions, nothing should imply that the ideas, opinions, or work here are necessarily those of the worldwide Baha’i community.

The official Baha’i website is: bahai.org.

Will you be around in x number of years?

Serving the Faith in this capacity has been a lifelong dream, and I plan to be in this business for a long time. I commit to supporting any website I build for at least two years.

You have an interesting tone in your blog posts.

The internet can be a difficult place to get your point across sometimes, but I try to do so in a humorous, yet ultimately respectful way. If you ever think I’ve crossed the line, shoot me a message and we’ll chat about it. In the end, I just want the best for the community, just the same as you do.

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