How Long It Takes to Do Some Common Tasks

This list contains a number of individual tasks that I commonly perform in my work on client sites. These feel like the average time I spend fully committed to a given task (so it doesn’t include the phone call asking me to do it, the email to confirm I’ve done it, etc.). Most tasks grow wildly and unpredictably in complexity if something unusual crops up, so these numbers are when that doesn’t happen.

  • Log in and update WordPress: 5 minutes
  • Install a plugin/solve a problem that revolves around a simple plugin install (e.g. Akismet for comment spam): 5 to 10 minutes
  • Set up a domain-specific email account or email forward: 5 minutes
  • Help restore a client’s admin credentials, add a user, etc.: 5 to 10 minutes
  • Login to a site and change a post’s contents, rearrange the site nav menu, etc.: 10 to 20 minutes
  • Most individual CSS changes (change the color of an object, change a font, reposition an object and give it a shadow): 10 to 25 minutes
  • Create a Twitter account for a client: 10 minutes
  • Help a client set up a MailChimp account, with CSV import if necessary, and an integrated MailChimp for WordPress sidebar signup form: 15 minutes to 1 hour
  • Install WordPress on a given hosting account (including database creation): some passive FTP transfer time depending on what I am installing, plus 15 minutes active work
  • Update WordPress and all plugins, test to make sure nothing’s broken: 15 to 45 minutes. Time to fix anything broken from an update not included.
  • Use a plugin’s interface to create what it’s designed to create (a contact form, a social button bar, etc.): 15 to 60 minutes
  • Purchase hosting and prepare it for a WordPress install (set up username and password, FTP credentials, etc.): 15 minutes
  • Migrate a WP site between hosting accounts using a migration plugin, start-to-finish and including testing: some passive download/upload time, plus 1 hour active work.
  • Troubleshoot a hosting/registrar/backend problem (improperly set memory limits, bad .htaccess rules, wrong DNS, etc.): 20 minutes to 2 hours per issue.
  • Create a Facebook page for a client: 20 minutes does not include any creation of posts/marketing.
  • Read an emailed bug report, locate an obvious problem in PHP or JS code, fix the problem, upload the fix, test the fix, email about the fix: 30 minutes to 1 hour per issue.
  • Purchase a domain name and hosting and create a fresh WP install at the targeted domain name: 30 to 45 minutes
  • Track down and fix a non-obvious problem in a WP site’s code: 30 minutes to 5 hours for most problems
  • Migrate a WP site between hosting accounts manually, start-to-finish and including testing: 1-2 hours.
  • Create a new basic page framework 15 minutes
  • Put content
  • Add Live Chat Support Set up 1 hour
  • Create a slideshow with 5 images 10 minutes
    • Time to edit those 5 images 20 minutes

 

Here is a common example of my process for the 1 hour monthly maintenance plan I offer:

Login 5 minutes
Backup and optimize 10-20 minutes
Update and Testing 20 minutes
Basic requests/changes 20 minutes

Here is another example of time break down for setting up your domain and hosting which takes about 90 minutes:

Login to server 5 minutes
Prepare domain 5 minutes
Set up hosting account 10 minutes
Install the platform being used 30 minutes
Set up databases and CMS 20 minutes
Set up admin 5 minutes
Set up email account on server 5 minutes
Set up mailclient 5 minutes
Set up forwarding to clients personal email 5 minutes