When we go to expos and comic cons (and we’re doing about 20 of those this year) we have a little sign on the table with our prices and a notice that says “ask us about our bundle deals”.
The reason for this is fairly simple: comics are sequential and if you want to pick up a whole story arc at once we want to encourage that… so to make it easier for you we offer discounts based on how many story arcs you pick up at once.
That hasn’t really been possible with our online store until now and we felt that was a little unfair so we’ve created a few pre-selected bundles specifically for the website.
With each of them, we’ve tried to focus on value for money. The badges are an easy one – they sell for £4 per set of 3 but the bundle is only £6 for six badges. With the 7 Shades miniseries you can have the whole 4 issue story in ebook and physical formats for £17 – it would cost you £24 if you wanted to buy those individually. Our Dexter’s Half Dozen bundle gets you 296 pages of printed comics and the same in digital copies for just £30 compared to the £68 that would cost when bought individually. And with our Dolphin Squad bundle deal you’re getting three graphic novels, a poster, six badges and a whole host of downloadable goodies for just £30! Buying the three graphic novels on their own would be more than that.
We’ve collected things this way because that’s what people usually ask for when they see us at conventions – but if you have other ideas on bundle deals that you’d like to see, contact us and let us know!
Working from a small team can be tough at times – critical tasks with impending deadlines get prioritised over everything else… and once in a while you get a break where you sit down and realise, “That thing I meant to do… I meant to do it three years ago.”
We had one of those moments recently in regards to this website. Our website has grown over time, with bits being added as we had time to work on them but it’s never really felt ‘complete’. Looking at the internal files, we’re on version 0.18 of the website since we swapped over from the Wix hosted flash site in 2011 and most of the updates since 2013 have been bugfixes. The site hasn’t really had a proper overhaul in a very long time. As a result, bits have been tinkered with but never fully implemented… and other bits have been broken along the way (like the theme for the blog and shop) – not to mention, some of the information is now long out of date.
While we could recode the site from scratch using skills from within the team that’s not really the best use of our time and resources right now… and it doesn’t play to our strengths either. Instead, we’ve asked a third party to take a look for us and preliminary design work has already started. Some of the improvements we expect to see include reduced page load times, easier ways to update information on different pages (and even the ability to easily add new pages!), as well as a complete overhaul of site content bringing everything up to date and ensuring consistency throughout.
We’re quite excited by all this as it means we’ll be able to give you more access to better information in a clearer fashion and will open the way for us to expand our web presence – this is where your feedback comes in; if there’s something you’d like to see on our site, now’s the time to email us and let us know.
It may not look like much – just the addition of a scrolling icon bar to the left of the screen, but last night we rolled out probably the biggest site update since September 2011! Behind the scenes a significant portion of the web gobbledegook that makes everything work has been rewritten. There’s still a lot that could be done to further improve the code this site runs on, but now for the first time ever we can make sweeping updates with just a few keystrokes. Gone are the days of having to update every page separately!
Of course, a few gremlins have crept in along the way. We’re aware of them and they shouldn’t affect your experience browsing the site. We’ll be squashing them over the coming weeks.
That’s all from us for now – we’d better get back to finishing touches before tomorrow’s expo!
Hi all, it’s been a while since we’ve posted a blog. If you subscribe to our newsletter then you may already know some of the reasons behind this. If not, I’m planning on writing a bit more about next week.
In the meantime though: site upgrades!
There are a number of things that we wanted to change or improve with the site since we last spoke about improvements. Not least of these were a number of bugs and gremlins in the store. We believe all the issues with the store have now been resolved (and you are very welcome to test that statement with a purchase!) so the next thing to do is finish off ironing out a few niggles on the main site.
Pretty much all the code is now in place but we ran out of time yesterday and couldn’t test for bugs. As a result we decided not to deploy the newest version of the site. That will now appear on Sunday 19th August.
We think you will like the upgrades – and they make it easier for us to update things too, so soon we’ll be expanding both our resources and our freebies sections. The shop is also now capable of supplying ebooks so we’ll be debuting those soon.
That’s it for now, enjoy the day (and the new and improved store)!