— my new e-commerce site

After almost 3 months of non-stop work, tons of post-it stickers and countless liters of coffee, I have finally finished one of the largest solo projects. Site in question is

Always competing with myself

This was one of the most important projects for me because I have a habit of competing with myself, always pushing the limits further. In essence I am Web designer (popularly called UI/UX today), but on this project I have worked on this:

- information architecture
- project management

- mockups
- design

Front-end development — my front-end framework helped a lot with
- responsive design
- task automation with gulp
- resource optimization
- Icon-font generation
- and much more related to SCSS/CSS, HTML, PHP and JS

Joomla module and template development
Joomla is still good CMS, but every CMS today seem to be falling behind modern front-end development standards.

Back-end development
- some PHP modifications for used e-commerce solution
- a lot of PHP template modifications

- I cannot emphasize enough how blazing fast HTTP/2 hosting is
- site security modifications
- corporate e-mails

Web marketing and social media
- Facebook ads
- Google ads
- Video ads
- Setting up corporate social media accounts

What have I learned?

First of all, I have proved to myself that I can do it! This is a great and happy feeling :D. We all know what are our limits, but when you actually test them, you prove yourself a lot and then you decide what to do with that experience.

Second important insight is that web design and development is no longer a one-man job when it comes to large web sites. It is possible to do it, but it is quite exhausting. Web has evolved and so are technologies that drive it. Every single task is more complex than it was just a few years ago. Because of that, for my next project, I will assemble a team of professionals and will share responsibilities.

Third insight is that HTTP/2 is *the* technology front-end developers have been waiting for! We can finally leave behind us most of the terrible practices that were slowing us down and every web site will be at least 30% faster than before. This kind of hosting is still quite rare and I have spent few weeks during planning in the search for the most optimal one when it comes to “best bang for a buck”. Wholeheartedly, I can recommend SiteGround as your next hosting company. They also offer free SSL certificates by “Let’s encrypt”. This alone will get you same level of security as commercial certificates and you won’t have to pay for SSL ever again. SSL will improve SEO as well, so, this is a no-brainer.

Fourth skill — when you are locked in self imposed hackaton, you learn to bake something like this. :)

Could it have been better?

Of course it could, in many ways, but time is always the limit. I would like nothing more than to create something that is perfect in every way, but I can just hope that I have used this time to the best of my abilities and that ne next project will be better.