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Web Development Agency: Codementor Expanded Our Expertise and Saved Us Months of Work

–  May 02, 2014

Taylor BlackA founder of web-design firm Fizzy Media, Taylor Black specializes in inbound marketing and back-end development.

When a client’s website reskin revealed a vicious tangle of JavaScript issues, Codementor helped Taylor defuse a potentially serious problem in just a couple of hours.  

With a total cost of $200 and under 2 hours, Codementor helped Taylor save months of work.  Pitching to potential clients has also become easier, as Taylor’s team now has a much wider development capability through Codementor.   

The Challenge

For one project, we were dealing with a legacy client our graphic designer had brought in – a Shopify e-commerce site called Bluffworks, which sells travel pants. While working on a re-skin, we realized that we’d have to delve down further into the back end.

One of the devs had moved a lot of the Shopify functions into his own custom JavaScript, maybe because those functions didn’t exist when the site was built two years ago. Things that should have been taken care of by Shopify were being pulled out and handled by the script; the further I got into it, the more gnarly it got. I brought in some of the Shopify people, and they didn’t know what to do with it.

I knew JavaScript enough to understand the problem, but not quite enough to fix it. To make matters worse, it was difficult to replicate the Shopify script in a dev environment because the way it was handling the data, and the way Shopify was exposing the data for use, made it difficult. So we would have had to experiment with things in production.

Enter Codementor

 I spend a lot of time on Hacker News and I respect that community very much, so when I saw Codementor featured on its front page I was very excited.

I posted my problem to Codementor and within minutes I was talking to Dustin Haffner, a mentor who had more JavaScript experience than I did. He helped me diagnose further, which was excellent. But that led to some issues about how a script was handling the Shopify API, and there were a couple of queries that were slowing each other down to the point they would stop firing altogether.

I’ve been spending hours on this … I did the math, and decided, as a business owner, I’m going to spend $200 and just get this done now.

A short while later another expert mentor Leonid Bugaev replied back: “I haven’t had a long time to look at this, but this seems like it would work.” I followed his instructions, and it solved the problem – it really blew me away!  I set up a live 1:1 session with him – in total we worked together just for an hour and a half, and we solved everything on the site! I never gave him login access – Leonid did everything through browser tools. He’s what I aspire to as a developer.

The Impact

I had been hesitant to use Codementor at first, but I did the math and thought, “I’ve been spending hours on this.”  I decided, as a business owner, to spend $200 and just get this done now.

The bottom line is that without Codementor, I would have had to tell this client that I couldn’t do anything with the existing site. We’d have had to build it from the ground up

The bottom line is that without Codementor, I would have had to tell this client that I couldn’t do anything with the existing site. We’d have had to build it from the ground up, so instead of a reskin it would have been an entire theme rebuild – another month or two beyond what he was anticipating

I’m the business manager of our design collective, and pitching our capabilities to potential clients has become a lot easier because I know that through Codementor, I know we have that really heavy dev capability if we need it. Most of the time we don’t, because we know our skills and we don’t pitch beyond our capabilities, but if something does come up, I don’t have to block out 20 or 30 hours to learn it myself.

At the same time, Codementor gives me the ability to pick things up very quickly if I need to. I can vastly increase my own learning curve by working with someone who already knows the solution.

Pitching our capabilities to potential clients has become a lot easier because I know that through Codementor, we have that heavy development capability if we need it.



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