Web Developer and questions

Hello guys, so before i start i opened a few topics in here and there were really good answers. A bit introduction is what i’m trying to do is learn web development and i took few udemy course, which you might guess were from Andrei Neagoie and i’m mostly complete with it, and a few others only to know “what else” exists in different ‘stacks’.

So to get to my main question is the thing that he suggests to build projects = is to contact your local services and offer them to fix/upgrade their website for free. In a passive way that will get you a free network of people that may talk about you to their friends and their friends ask you to build a website.

My question which may seem dumb is: I’ve already seen some websites about phones/cars in my country, that are “buggy” or it just doesn’t function well, doesn’t feel smooth. And since i have passion about cars and technology i’d wanted to offer them free fix.
The Problem: How do I do that? Or how do any of you at the beginng did that? Like what am I supposed to do at the start? How do I know whether they use javascript or php, is there node.js or react or mongodb included… without ever getting their ‘admin panel’ password?
Like i’m thinking should I use ctrl+shift+I which I doubt is the right way to do… Then like copy-paste it. Try it in my sublime text, and once I fix it I send a file to their e-mail?

Idk how they put such a great course on udemy…and give a nice tip to build a portfolio, and leave what seem like, such a big mystery for a beginners. Lol


Hey Aleksandar,

nice to meet you! :wave:

I think it’s a reasonable way to find out how they do it.
But I wouldn’t try to re-implement it, just showing some major improvements by reworking some stuff in the dev tools, e.g. changing spacing of sections, making it more readable. I wouldn’t try to invest too much time into it.

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Each customer is going to be somewhat unique in how they store their code. In a perfect world, they have a git repository they can just grant you access to, but more likely they just have their code FTP’d up to the server via a control panel. Either way the code is being stored externally somewhere, and you just ask for a copy. Oftentimes, the customer doesn’t even know, the original contractor having left and given them only a site with no real source available. Asking for their admin panel credentials is not out of the ordinary at that point. Worst case is they just had a site dropped in their lap by the last dev and they don’t even have admin credentials, in which case you and the customer need to get in touch with the hosting provider’s support to get that sorted out.

That is of course the procedure once you actually get the job. If you want to show them a cleaned-up demo of what you could do for them, then just copying their assets is fine – I suggest just using the “save page, full html” option in the browser for that.

I do suggest you don’t offer free work to anyone except small nonprofit groups. Otherwise you’re devaluing your own work, not just in your own estimation but in the eyes of the customer too. Plus it drags down everyone else who is trying to make a living from it. If your work is better than what’s there now, it’s worth something, even if it’s just a one-time flat fee.