My WordPress Journey

my yoga journey rottervision vegan cafe 313 psychedelic healing shack mural detail

Pictured: Detail of a mural inside the VeganCafe313 Psychedelic Healing Shack in Detroit

HI , my name’s Dave Rotter – My story isn’t remarkable, but it is unique, and it’s all mine. I’ve been putting words and pictures on pages for decades, FOR FOUR decades.

’77 – Apple II

’88 – Illustrator in a silk screen shop

’90s – HTML CSS sites and seo

2000s – Ecommerce, learned about blogging

2010s – WordPress class taught by LeAnne and Laura of ElleEll co, and Girl Develop It – built and sold my first WordPress site – it is still up!

2016 – Grand Circus Front End BootCamp

2017 – Attendee my 1st WordCamp Ann Arbor

2018 – Volunteer WordCamp Detroit


Long version –

1977 – My brother got a Radio Shack TRS80 computer. After a month he returned it for an Apple II.. Mostly we just played video games on it, but I did learn to do a little basic programming: if , then , goto, and I even built my own “space invaders” style game. I‘ve been lucky enough to witness first hand, the evolution of Apple (and PC) products since then. I used the first mouse on the Lisa in 1984, I used Illustrator in 88, and Photoshop 1, Macromedia Freehand, QuarkXPress, Aldus Pagemager, Adobe InDesign and more programs than i care to remember. We called them Application Programs back then, now we call them Apps. Desktop Publishing led me to web design. I used Front Page, Dreamweaver.

1988 – I worked in a silk screen shop, and built the screens, and created the films for the screens with a vertical stat camera. I worked in print shops doing Pre-Press production, and outputting films, for strippers.

1995 – Then I moved upstream working at Ad Agencies, and eventually as an in house agency for B2B and B2C companies.

2000 – I was doing basic SEO and Ecommerce, but still kicking around print shops, I just couldn’t escape… There were still “files to fix” before they could go to a press. Adobe Acrobat, and pdfs pretty much put the whole “Pre-Press Production” thing obsolete.

2008 – I was aware of WordPress as a blogging tool. We had to hire someone to build our blog. At this point I realized that I should probably learn WordPress.

2014 – I realized that it was time to learn WordPress to build dynamic websites. Static html looks bad on a phone, and google began rewarding the dynamic sites with better SEO.

I googled “how to learn WordPress” , I found ‘Girl Develop It’, and I took a beginner wordpress class. Bam! I made and sold my first WordPress site. It is still live.

I joined the Metro Detroit WordPresss MeetUp group.

2016 I did the JavaScript Front End BootCamp at Grand Circus

2017 – WordCamp Ann Arbor – and At that wordcamp , it really clicked , I decided right then and there that I did want to be a part of the wordpress community , and that I did want to volunteer – and take it up a notch – listening to Speakers like John Jay Jacoby (the guy who made BuddyPress) speak about our responsibility – and listening Organizers like Kyle Maurer – really had a positive effect on me. The9ir stories are inspirational.

This is Open Source. We have an opportunity to learn from each other.

Need a website?

zingerman's cheeses The storied Zingermans's Deli in Ann Arbor Michigan offers over 200 different cheeses. They have a website.

Pictured: The storied Zingermans’s Delicatessen in Ann Arbor, Michigan, offers over 200 different cheeses. They have a website.

Do I need a website? Can I build a website myself? How can I hire someone to build me a website?

Do I need a website?
If you are asking this question, the answer is YES you need a website!
Everyone else that does what you do ALREADY has a website. If you don’t, you’re at a disadvantage. One main reason you need a website is to legitimize that you are indeed a professional. A website can reassure your potential clients that you are worthy of their business. Think of your website as an essential piece of your marketing efforts, an online brochure. You can advertise the products and services you offer. Make sure to include your contact information. The Main components of a basic website should include: your company name, an explanation of what you do, or what products you have for sale, your contact information, your turn-around time, the area that you serve, and most importantly what makes you unique!

You need to have an answer for the question: Why would someone want to do business with you?

Your website is the place for you to tell your story. You will need ORIGINAL text and images. Some Web Designers may help you write your story. Some Web Designers may even be able to take original pictures for you, or help you find stock images for your site. A website is only as good as its content (the words and pictures.)

Can I build a website myself?
There are plenty of ways for a non-tech person to build their own website. You are going to need to find a Web Hosting Company. Here is a short list of just a few: GoDaddy, Bluehost, A2 Hosting (MANY others are available.) Call a web host and ask them their rates. Web hosting rates vary widely. Generally speaking, you will need to spend at a minimum $12 a month for hosting and about $12 a year for the name.

The name is the . This is also called a Uniform Resource Locator, a URL. A host can help you secure your name, host you, and maybe even steer you towards a non-technical way to build your own website yourself.

How can I hire someone to build me a website?

If learning how to build your own website is not in the cards, you will want to hire a Website Designer. Fortunately there are plenty of Web Designers that will be happy to build your website.

If you are on social media, shout out. Chances are you already know someone who is a web designer. If you do not know a web designer, you might want to google “web design” + “your hometown.” You may not need to meet your Web Designer face to face, but it sure can be helpful.
Before you hire someone, make sure to ask to see some of their “sample websites” that they have built. Your website is going to look like their samples. If they don’t have samples, ask why. Maybe this is their first site that they are going to build.

Make sure to negotiate the price, and get the details and agree on the terms of the contract before any work is done. Most Web Designers will require half payment up front, and the rest due when you approve the website, and it goes live. Make sure you know what will happen after the site goes live. Will the Web Designer do changes/updates for  a reasonable rate? Will they give you the files and or the password if you decide to continue with a different Web Designer?

Good Luck!

If you have any questions about what to look for in a Web Designer, or a Web Hosting solution email me at .

RotterVision does Web Design & more.

The Dabls Mbad African Bead Museum, stands proudly on Grand River in Detroit.

Pictured: The Dabls Mbad African Bead Museum, stands proudly on Grand River in Detroit.

Hi, thanks for being here. What is RotterVision? RotterVision is me, Dave Rotter. I am a one person Web Design company, and more… WordPress, E-Commerce, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Blogging, Social Media, Search Engine Optimization, traditional print design, music, video, photography and much more. Do you have a story to tell, a product to sell? Let’s talk!

After all, what is most important in business? I believe it is relationships. Anyone can buy anything from anywhere. How and where can you build and maintain meaningful business relationships? What makes you and your business unique? What is your story to tell? How can I help you tell your story?