What was the scope of their involvement?
The Encyclopedia of Surfing is actually three different sites under a single title, so it's a sizeable project that's complex and a bit tricky to manage. Wildebeest stepped in to oversee our preexisting content. They started out doing maintenance — we built our site in WordPress, and there were a lot of unnecessary old plugins on the back end that they’ve cleaned up — and they've also built new pages as needed.
One recent project involved adding a donation page, which is critical for me as a nonprofit. I had just put up a paywall on the sites when Wildebeest came on board, and we’d been using Stripe for our subscription payments, so they were able to integrate that easily when they built the donation page.
What is the team composition?
When I traveled from Seattle to meet the team, I worked with the owner, Ran [Craycraft, managing partner, Wildebeest], and Matt Wilkes, one of his colleagues. I'd assumed I would only be working with Matt, but Ran often provides ideas and suggestions. I know they have additional staff who perform the actual coding, but I haven't worked with them.
How did you come to work with Wildebeest?
I was evaluating three or four other companies, and all of them would have been fine choices, but I received a personal recommendation for Wildebeest that indicated they'd be a good fit for my project. The only catch was that they don't usually work on projects as small as mine. The minimum commitment they initially wanted was more than I could afford, but we were able to negotiate an arrangement that worked with my budget.
How much have you invested with them?
I pay $1,090 per month in exchange for 9 hours of work.
What is the status of this engagement?
We agreed to a 6-month trial period, which is wrapping up, and we'll likely renew from there.