Terms and conditions

Payment Obligations, Renewals, and Cancellations

1. Website Development Payment Obligations:

A down payment is required in order to begin development of your website. This is usually 50% of the upfront design fee, unless an alternative contract or proposal specifies a different amount. The outstanding balance on your website is due after the design, navigation and pages have been approved and built. Final payment is due regardless of whether all content for the pages has been sent by the client. This provision is in place to encourage the client to get content submitted promptly so that their site can go live. It also ensures that Shortgrass gets paid for performing their duty under the proposal, despite tardy content from the client. After payment, Shortgrass will still post outstanding content AT NO CHARGE for 3 months. In the event an "under construction" page is posted due to missing content, Shortgrass will post ONE copy of any text/pictures on existing pages only, for up to 3 months after publish date. After the three months have expired, content posted to site will be billable at our current regular hourly rate. In the event that design and navigation changes are requested after they have been specifically approved by the client, these changes will be billable at our current regular hourly rate.

2. Website Development Cancellation:

If site design and development work has already begun (such as creating a design concept), then the down payment is non-refundable. Shortgrass my elect at its sole discretion to offer a partial refund depending upon the circumstances.

3. Stock Photography Payment Obligations:

Stock photography includes most photos and/or images not provided by the client. Stock photography purchased on behalf of client for use in website development is billable at a minimum of $10 per picture. This amount is separate from the amount quoted for website design and development. Some pictures are more expensive than $10, in which case we will solicit client approval and communicate the price before purchasing.

4. Description of Ongoing Costs:

There are 2 types of ongoing costs: domain registration and hosting.

a. Domain name registration:

This cost recurs annually. Domain name registration gives you exclusive rights to a certain name, such as www.mygroup.org, so that you can use it for your web-based purposes. You are NOT required to register a domain through us, but we strongly PREFER that you do. Many services are not honest in the way they sell names and we spend a lot of time helping people re-secure rights to the name they thought they had already purchased. If you have registered your own name, make sure you have yourself as the Registrant and Administrative Contact with a current, easily accessible email address. This will help to ensure that your domain can be renewed or transferred should the need arise. Domain name registration fees are not refundable.

b. Hosting:

This cost recurs annually. Hosting places the domain name on a particular server connected to the web, which allows you to post a website for viewing through a browser. You are NOT required to host through us, but we strongly PREFER that you do. Hosting comes with domain-based emails, bandwidth, storage space, database and security tools, and other features. Projects that involve custom programming must be hosted with Shortgrass to ensure the programs that we write will work. If you want to host your site on another server this must be disclosed before we begin programming.

c. Hosting Renewal Payment Obligations:

Your hosting account will be automatically renewed under the same time and fee structure unless you give written notice to Shortgrass fifteen (15) days before the renewal date that you do not wish to renew the account.

d. Hosting Cancellation Payment Obligations:

You may cancel at anytime. If you cancel before the first 30 days from the opening of your account, please refer to the details under "Limited 30-day Money Back Guarantee." If you cancel after the first 30 days, you will be obligated to pay all fees and charges accrued prior to the effective date of the cancellation. Shortgrass will refund the prepaid fees for basic hosting for the full months remaining after effective date of the cancellation, less any prior fees and charges, and an early cancellation fee of $25. Accounts that are terminated by Shortgrass for abuse or violations of internet standards or these terms and conditions will not receive any refund. All cancellations must be received in writing according to the deadlines indicated: regular mail and e-mail are acceptable. Phone requests will not constitute acceptance of any cancellation. Refunds will be issued back to you within 10 business days from your cancellation date.

Development Process

1. Homepage Design

Once the site design is approved by the client, usually via email consent, the design is considered ready for implementation. Should the client wish to make changes to a design they have approved, those changes are billable at our standard hourly rate.

2. Navigation

Once site outline/map is approved by the client, usually via email consent, the site navigation is considered ready for implementation. Combined with the approved graphic design, this becomes the site structure. Once we build this structure per client approval, any subsequent changes are billable at our standard hourly rate.

3. Content

Provision of content is customer's responsibility, unless specifically negotiated ahead of time as part of the project proposal.

Text content

Copy for all website pages and links needs to be delivered digitally and should be carefully proof-read by the client. Two rounds of revisions will be provided free of charge. Subsequent revisions will be billable at our regular hourly rate.

Copy development

Should client wish SoftUnique to develop content for the site, website copy is billable at our regular hourly rate. Development of copy is accomplished via SoftUnique Web Development interviewing the client about the topic areas to be addressed on their web pages. SoftUnique then composes appropriate copy, submits to the client for review, edit, and approval. Approved copy is then posted to the web pages.

Graphical content

Images outside of the website design must be provided in digital form or in a form that can be easily scanned, unless otherwise provided for in customer's contract. Subsequent revisions will be billable at our regular hourly rate

4. Database Implementation

Entry of data for database applications is considered client's responsibility. Entry of data by SoftUnique is billable, unless otherwise provided for in customerís contract.

5. Email

We offer free domain-based email accounts to our clients as part of any hosting contract. If site is not hosted by SoftUnique, we take no responsibility for setting up and troubleshooting email problems.

6. Training

For websites with administrative control panels or content management systems, two (2) one-hour training sessions will be provided.

7. Technical Support

We offer local and long-distance phone support to our clients. We do not normally bill for technical support depending on the source of the problem, its severity, and our time invested. If SoftUnique is not the source of the problem, technical support may be billable.

Training and Tutorials

Because customer service is in integral part of our business strategy, all of our projects include a one-time complimentary training session in order for our clients to better make use of their new web technology. Additional training hours can be purchased at our standard hourly rate or applied against your existing maintenance contract

Domain Transfers and DNS Management

For domains not originally registered with SoftUnique, there will be a $25 fee to either transfer to the domain into our registration platform, or to transfer-out to another registrar. If your domain is not registered with SoftUnique, DNS management and troubleshooting tasks are billable at our hourly rate.

Websites with Proprietary Source Code

Should client contract with SoftUnique to write custom code for a website application, this code is not transferable to a new developer or host. Custom written source code is considered the property of SoftUnique Web Development and cannot be shared with other developers. Clients are granted a license to use custom software code while on SoftUnique servers only. SoftUnique Web Development retains ownership of the code.

Access to or transfer of proprietary source code could result in a security risk to SoftUnique and its clients who are running similar pieces of code. In order to provide custom software development services, clients give us access to private and/or sensitive information, trade secrets, proprietary pricing and business methods. If clients believed that we may be sharing this information with outside developers, they could lose faith that we are protecting their proprietary information. Therefore, neither access nor transfer of any code built for any purpose that is unique and not commonly and publicly available can be granted. Should client want us to build software to run on another server, it must be disclosed upfront and specifically contracted for. Website components that ARE transferable to another host include html code, graphics, logos, pictures, navigation, text, and the data residing within a database (but not the code). Hourly fees will apply for any special work that needs to be done to transfer those parts of website that do not violate the other paragraphs in this section.