In February 2020, a month ahead of the lockdowns, I left the world of paychecks, W-2s, and office commutes. At first I had nothing planned: just take a few weeks to enjoy life and catch up on things around the house.
It didn’t take long for friends to reach out, seeing if I could do some freelance website work, which ended up being a lot of fun and taking up a decent chunk of April and May 2020 when I wasn’t catching up on Star Trek.
That freelancing experience made me believe I could go into business for myself, so on June 2, 2020, I filed the business name Solve it once LLC with the State of Michigan and got started trying to drum up clients.
Highlights from 3 years of so1ve
Here are a few cool things that have happened while being my own boss the last few years:
- First client: zenput.com (now a crunchtime brand)
- First full site build: iqstrategix.com
- Did Drupal support for the former version of Bowers & Wilkins, a prominent pro-sumer audio brand, as a subcontract with Human Element
- Embedded full-time with the digital experience team at New York Public Library for 7 months in 2021
- Worked on numerous projects with Provisio Technology Solutions
- Did full-time subcontract work on government sites like Prince George’s County, Maryland and the US Department of Justice for Tactis
- Subcontracted with Casual Astronaut to make a cool STEM teachers site for Arizona State University
- Launched my own website, plus way too many open source projects, like frost
As the highlights show, I’ve spent a decent amount of time embedded on other teams, helping deliver big projects for big brands. While I love this kind of work, and especially the variety that comes with it, I’m also aiming to build more sites as Solve it once rather than on somebody else’s team.
My next big thing, outside of client work, is trying to build interest around frost, an easy-to-use free-and-open-source head start for making excellent Drupal 10 websites:
What Solve it once does
If you or someone you know is in the market for a website or other website-related services, so1ve may be for you:
- Full Drupal (a content management system) websites
- Two-week fixed-fee web development sprints
- Affordable static ‘JAMstack’ websites that are hosted for free
- Annual support plans
- “Drop everything” emergency work
- Consultation, contracting, work by the hour, and sub-contracting
Friends, family, friends of friends, family of friends, and all other permutations can get a 10% discount buying online using the discount code familyandfriends10 at checkout.
How to help
There are a lot of ways to help out, so I’ve categorized them below, depending on if you’re technical, if I’ve ever done work for you before, or if you only have a minute or two. Anything you can do helps, and I want to thank you in advance!
If I’ve done work for you before
If I’ve made you a website or done web work for you in the past, you have the power to make the biggest impact to my future business. Your honest reviews on any of the following sites (please don’t lie or leave a fake review) would be a huge boost:
- Leave a review on Google
- Review on Yelp
- Review on UpCity
- Review on Clutch
- Endorse my skills or leave a recommendation on my personal LinkedIn
If you’re into tech
It’s wild how much software is a popularity contest. Sometimes it feels really tough selling folks on free software! Every like and share of one of the following project pages could mean the next visitor will see the project as growing in popularity, rather than just some abandoned repository. Please like, or star, or fork, or otherwise show approval, for any of these open source projects:
- frost on drupal.org
- frost on github
- follow Solve it once on GitHub
- Or follow my personal GitHub profile
- .github template for organization profiles and defaults
- static website starter, finished-starter
- static resume template with lots of metadata
The last two repos on the list are technically from Lower barriers, a nonprofit started by me and a couple good friends. We’ve put LB on hiatus for the last few months, but if you’re interested in joining and participating, please reach out to let me know your interest.
If you only have a minute or two
Likes and follows on various social media sites go a long way for showing legitimacy and juicing the algorithm (or whatever the kids say these days). If I’ve never done work for you and you don’t know what a GitHub is, leaving a like or a follow on any or all of these pages would be a massive, quick help.
- Solve it once LinkedIn (I mostly post about lunch and music. HEY, it’s a strategy lol)
- Brad LinkedIn
- Solve it once Facebook
- “Friends of Solve it once” Facebook group (?)
- Solve it once Twitter (abandoned-ish)
- Solve it once YouTube
If you saw this post linked on social media, you can also share it or make your own post linking to this blog, which would be hero-level awesome.
And of course, any time someone mentions they need a website or web developer, please send them my way: for business use [email protected] and (313) 509-7214.
Thank you very much!