Noble Pixels Web Development Studio

Noble Pixels started in 2011 as a web design and development studio helping small businesses and charities in Canada improving their online presence.

After 4 years and a great response from both clients and public, Noble Pixels became a Web Development Studio focusing on International Charities, various size businesses delivering custom web development.

 
$10,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
2 - 9
 Founded
2011
Noble Pixels
712 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON M6G 1L4
Canada
Noble Pixels
119 West Pender
Vancouver, BC
Canada

Portfolio

Key clients: 
  • MusicFest Canada
  • We Charity
  • Teach for Canada
  • We Are Loop
  • Inhome Trainer
  • Me to We 
  • We.org
  • TCP Integrated Marketing

Reviews

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Web Development & SEO for Fitness Website

"Everything is always on time, and Noble Pixels sticks to the budget, even when we assign more work."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Nov. 2015 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Noble Pixels developed and designed a WordPress site for a fitness company aimed at generating leads and creating content. They were also tasked with increasing traffic through SEO.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Toronto, Canada
Mike Tangreda
Founder, Inhometrainer
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

After the development and marketing of the new site, the client saw an increase in both traffic and leads. They also reported conversion increases between 30-40%. With a product that didn’t go over budget despite an extra workload, the client was thrilled with the collaboration. 

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We provide a home training service across Canada. I am the owner of the business.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Noble Pixels?

I needed to develop a good SEO strategy and to have a website refresh. Its ability to convert was a big topic, beyond just the traffic.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

I had an existing WordPress website for which Noble Pixels provided additional development and SEO. The website is aimed at generating leads and doesn't have e-commerce capabilities. I had some influence on the design, but Noble Pixels handled 90% of the work. They developed contact forms and landing pages and also uploaded videos and other content. We initially worked with two people from Noble Pixels' team, but there may be more now.

How did you come to work with Noble Pixels?

I found Noble Pixels through a referral. I had been working with a previous company, but Noble Pixels' services blew me away. The company is fully committed to me as an entrepreneur.

How much have you invested with Noble Pixels?

The cost of Noble Pixels' services is between $500 and $1,000 per month, depending on our budget and what we're looking for. We have an hourly engagement.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with Noble Pixels in November 2015. The relationship is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

We've seen an increase in both visitors and leads. Conversions are up by at least 30 to 40%. What Noble Pixels has been able to do has been amazing. The tracking provided by them is very important, allowing us to see conversions increase week-by-week.

How did Noble Pixels perform from a project management standpoint?

Everything is always on time, and Noble Pixels sticks to the budget, even when we assign more work. There is no communication gap. Noble Pixels is accessible by email, and the work is organized through Basecamp. As an entrepreneur, I need a partner who is as professional and as organized as I am.

What did you find most impressive about Noble Pixels?

I've worked with many companies in the past, but Noble Pixels' service is definitely a 10 out of 10.

Are there any areas Noble Pixels could improve?

Anything that could have been improved upon was addressed by Noble Pixels.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I've already referred Noble Pixels.

Web Development for Music Festival Website

"I’ve never really had to worry about things falling through the cracks...They are extremely good at following up."

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
n/a
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Noble Pixels developed and marketed a website for a North American Music Festival that aimed to register and inform attendants of the event’s agenda. They also helped promote the event using social media.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
Toronto, Canada
Mark Wicken
President, MusicFest Canada
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Noble Pixel’s responsiveness and communication allowed the client to easily flag any outstanding issues that came up with the website. Their attention to detail made the problem-solving process straightforward and worry-free.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

My core business is in the executive search business, which I have been in for 15 years. I also volunteer with an organization called MusicFest Canada, which is a nonprofit music and educational festival in Canada. I’ve been a volunteer for MusicFest Canada for 25 years and president for the last 8 years.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Noble Pixels?

As we have grown over the years, technology has given us opportunities and challenges in many areas. Our board of directors felt quite adamant that we needed a new website. To give you a background, our executive director has been with MusicFest for 35 years. He developed the website along with another volunteer. The second volunteer has been the head of technology with the provincial government in Ontario for over 10 years. Only those two guys knew how to make this monster of a site work, so it became a big dinosaur. Everybody said, “This thing is big. It’s cumbersome. It’s all technology.” It was in pretty rough shape. So, we went out and started looking for a web company to help us fix the site. Hopefully, that vendor could also build us a new one.

The website is really an operational website to take care of the needs of the students as they come through the festival. We wanted to provide more interaction with the various people that we had to deal with through the year. The ease with which they can navigate our website and decide to participate in the festival is of great value to us. In the past, some people have said, “I haven’t come to the festival because I find it too confusing.” Our job is to simplify the process to make people more comfortable and do it. As a tool to say, “We are going to go out and sell MusicFest,” we really don’t have to do that. People know that it exists. Part of the challenge is to make it look attractive because the cycle starts again every year. So, if I were a music educator, every year I’m going to say, “Where am I going to take my students this year? I’ll go to MusicFest.” They have a big choice. We are the largest in Canada, so we tend to be at the top of the list for music educators. But still, our website has to be attractive enough so that they look at it and see the excitement.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

My association with Noble Pixels is on two levels. My first engagement with them was for my executive search business, while the second was for MusicFest Canada. We have two other volunteers that are very knowledgeable that we can go to if there’s a question, especially because one of the volunteers created the original website. For the most part, we really relied on Noble Pixels. Initially, they helped with the front-end and pictures on a volunteer basis. The front-end was relatively easier to deal with. If you take a look at the website, we worked very heavily at showing the fun, educational value, and cultural diversification. These are important for any large organization.

When they got involved in the backend, they spent a good four to five months trying to understand the operation side of the website. That was the biggest task. They had to figure out how the mechanics worked in the backend once somebody decided to register and put themselves through the process. It is an incredibly interactive site that coordinates the travel, accommodations, and scheduling of about 10,000 students from across Canada throughout the year. Throughout the school season, schools across Canada compete in regional festivals to get to a certain level. They are getting invitations to come to MusicFest. When they come to MusicFest, they register in our cash flows from registrations and corporate sponsors. I wouldn’t say that the site is a marketing tool to go out and solicit new schools. We know who our target audience is—the music departments in high schools and universities. Specifically, we’re targeting all the music directors across Canada, which are about 4,500.

The other area that we will be relying on Noble Pixels is their understanding of social media. I also rely on them in this area for my executive search business. They’re not just a web company. They have a couple of people there that are very versed in social media—how to make it work and how to make it interact with your website.

There are about four individuals from Noble Pixels that have different responsibilities. Originally, the principal, Majid, was still considered a volunteer with MusicFest. That way, we won’t be paying for him specifically with this other plan. Obviously, he’s the principal so he’s charging for it. He agreed when he came on with us that he wanted to keep helping us as a volunteer. We get a lot of goodwill in what we do. I’m sure every client would like to do that but as a nonprofit.

How did you come to work with Noble Pixels?

About five years ago, I was looking for a web development company to help me with a new website and to launch a book that I wrote on the job search for the graduating student. I connected through my network with Noble Pixels. They helped me design a website for my book as well as a website and a job search blog for graduating students. That was my first contact with them.

Due to my experience with Noble Pixels, I put them up as a possible candidate for MusicFest’s new site. Then I stepped aside with regards to my endorsement. I didn’t want it to look like I had a conflict of interest because they were the primary supplier of my real business. As it turned out, the board and executive director of MusicFest chose to hire Noble Pixels. One of the principals of Noble Pixels had been doing volunteer work for MusicFest two years prior, so that was why they were a good choice. He had volunteered to help us with our site and he knew a little about what we were doing. When we needed to go to do a full revamp of the website, he was the logical choice because he was familiar with it. That decision to choose them was not necessarily a hard one to make. Several other people working in Noble Pixels have a musical background, so they like the idea of being associated with our project.

How much have you invested with Noble Pixels?

When the website’s finished, we would have spent well over $100,000 on their services.  

What is the status of this engagement?

I get the dates blurred because they have been working with me as well as working with MusicFest. It started in late 2014. They have been very involved with the executive director over the last 10 months to get this thing together. We work with them now on an hourly basis. They provide us with the monthly report of each person who works on our site.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Could you share any evidence that would demonstrate the productivity, quality of work, or the impact of the engagement?

The site right now is probably 85% functional. It won’t become fully functional until the festival, which is this May. A lot of the little glitches that we find on the website don’t happen until people start registering and showing up. When I take a look at Basecamp and I see the things that are going on, if somebody is registering and they’re trying to get some information and they get an error message, they let us know. Noble Pixels jumps on it and corrects it. There’s going to be lots of little bugs like that. We fully knew that and I don’t think that’s any different from any other interactive type of website. There’s always going to be bugs because everybody’s going to be using different computers and platforms.

We send out a newsletter in September to 6,000 music educators. Between now and April, we get their responses and those are part of the registration process. When we announce next year’s festival in September, they have until April to register their groups, so it’s sort of dribbling in all the time. As far as the number of people who have been on the site, that information is not important to us as much as registration. Registration means we get money. I do know that we have a very active social media group that cross-references the MusicFest website for Facebook. A lot of our volunteers and students get involved in that often. Quite frankly, a lot of that would be directed to the actual website for information. It’s really an information website for people that are coming to the festival. The metrics that would probably be appropriate from your standpoint, I’m not sure I could comment on that.

How did Noble Pixels perform from a project management standpoint?

Our executive director understands what has to be done. He’s very hands-on, so he’s probably the project manager by definition. Since we had a previous project, I have a good understanding of the way Nobel Pixels work. I also get a copy of all the communications between Nobel Pixels and our executive director. As a slight outsider in this process, the overriding impression that I get is that their communication with their clients is incredibly detailed. I’ve spent 30 years in the advertising agency business, and one of the things that always apparent to me is that tech people—and I’m not trying to incriminate anybody—tend to be incredibly good at what they do, but terrible about communicating it. I was pleased to see that Noble Pixels uses a platform called Basecamp. They are incredibly detailed and diligent about keeping it current daily. I can go on Basecamp and take a look at the communication and conversations between MusicFest and Noble Pixels at any time. I don’t have to ask somebody for a status report. Obviously, I can ask questions if it’s appropriate, but that information is for me. That certainly gives me comfort, knowing that we are moving in the right direction. I can see that nobody has disappeared for a couple of weeks and we can’t find them. Sometimes, our needs are urgent and they quickly respond. We have situations with the website where there’s been a problem and we got an hour to fix it. They have been very good at that type of detail.

What did you most impressive about Noble Pixels?

Usually, I would be the most critical about responsiveness and communication of what is going on. Noble Pixels’ team hasn’t disappeared on me. They haven’t gone dark. They have always been there. There’s always somebody to immediately address the issue. They are extremely good at following up. There’s nothing in the background. I don’t have to look 2 or 3 weeks ago to see what needs to be done. They’re on top of that all the time. In my mind, that’s probably the most important thing. When you don’t hear from somebody and you know you’re paying, you wonder, “Are they there working for me or have they gone off?” I can satisfy my curiosity by going on Basecamp. I’ve never really had to worry about things falling through the cracks because it’s never happened.

There are a group of young guys. They’re really good at what they do and they’re certainly passionate about it. Having talked to most of them, I think there are two guys that are right out of school that are incredibly smart, and the other guy has worked with a core group for another client for a couple of years. The group said, “We’re alike people. Let’s go out and start a business together.” They’re certainly keen.

Are there any areas Noble Pixels could improve?

Every once in a while, there is a misunderstanding or something like that. It’s not life or death, but you kind of wish it would go a different way. Sometimes, we would ask them to do things that were above and beyond the original agreement. Sometimes, those requests get blurred. If there is anything that I would’ve felt more comfortable with, a monthly accounting would’ve been nice. Just to show that “This is how much we have spent so far, this is where it’s been spent, this is what the budget is, and we’re on budget.” In fairness to them, we’re almost trying to hit a moving target. As we go through all the requirements of our website, there have been things that they just had no idea how to be done.

That’s probably the most important thing. You can judge whether they’re doing good work, you can judge whether they understand the technology, but the last thing you want to do is “The website’s up but, I’m sorry, we’re 40% over budget.” Quite frankly, I would say to any supplier I would deal with, “How are you going to report the financial budgetary and planning things to us? How often are you going to do it?” I think that would be critical. Again, we know where we are. We know where we have been hard on them. We know where we have pushed them and asked for some things that may not have been part of the original quote, but that’s the nature of this business. If we thought we were going to get a website for $50,000 and they were going to hand it to us, life would be perfect, but that’s a little unrealistic.

4.5
Overall Score 4.5. Integrity and communication are really important things to me, and I’ve never had any problems with that.
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • N/A Cost
    Value / within estimates
    That’s a real tough one because I haven’t done this with anybody else before. If I had done these things before, I could talk about their cost.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer