Don’t Fear Web Design Quotes: Embrace Them
Imagine you’re sitting in your office and the phone rings. You answer, and the person on the other line needs a web design quote. They want to know how much you charge for a website. Do you know how much you would quote them? Would you just shout out a number? I hope not. That’s a big red flag to most people. How could you possibly know what they need and if you can even fulfill it? You could end up quoting too low and signing yourself up for work that isn’t worth the pay. It happens everyday. Let’s take a look at how you would avoid that.
Schedule a meeting with the client
You should sit down with them and find out several things before even getting a price in your own head. You’ll want to take into account anything can drive costs skyward. This can be:
Number of Pages
If you are looking at an average site between 5-15 pages, this may not be an issue. However, if you get into 25-50 or more, the costs are going to go way up for your client. You’ll be taking the time to hand craft those pages, so make sure you get paid for them.
A special note about redesign: When you are asked to redesign and improve an existing website, make sure that you take your time with these types of web design quotes. You’ll want to explore their existing site, looking for pages buried in links from other pages. Far too often, I see sites that have extra pages that aren’t a part of the main menu. You also can’t rely on their site map, because it may have been generated at any time. New pages may have been generated since then. This can be catastrophic when you find an extra 15-25 pages you hadn’t accounted for in your initial quote. You’ll have to adjust the quote, or eat the costs yourself. If you average each of those pages out at $100 per page, you’re missing out on $1500 you should be getting paid for.
Another thing to note is that in your quote and your agreement, there should be a clause that allows you to adjust the price if any additional pages or work comes up that weren’t accounted for in the initial quote. This can end up saving your butt in the long run.
This always gets hairy. There is so much work involved, such as designing the store, product management, transactional emails, and more. Make sure you know how many products you’ll be entering. Also, make sure that they have all of the product information set up on a spreadsheet. Why? The reason is so that you can import all of it into the database using a CSV file. It will save you hours of manual work. If they don’t have a spreadsheet of their products, write it into your agreement that they have to create one.
If your client wants any sort of special functionality, that is going to take development time. Make sure that you know what your client wants ahead of time, so that you can plan for that in the product budget.
Other Added Features
If the company is a startup, or they haven’t been around long, they may need branding services. You may need to design their logo, business cards, letterheads, invoices, and more. You may also need to set up and start building their social media following, if you provide those types of services.
Don’t Stress over Web Design Quotes
It’s important to get it right, but as long as you make sure not to paint yourself into a corner, you should be fine. Collect half of the estimated cost up front. That way, if they abandon the project half way through, you haven’t taken a total loss. Also, cover your end by making sure that you don’t agree to do the total project for an exact number, without some degree of wiggle room. Unexpected things always come up.
Make sure you understand your clients’ business objectives. What do they want to achieve with their site? Is it doable with their budget? You’ll need to know these things in order to plan the right strategy for their website. Sometimes, what a client wants to do, and what they actually have the funds to do are 2 different things. Hopefully, you’ll be able to meet them in the middle. Working with them and planning a larger project in stages can help you to develop strong business ties with growing companies. They are likely to be more loyal to you if you’ve worked with them, treated them right, and helped them to grow in a way that works for their business, without overextending their budget.
Web design quotes can seem scary. Some quotes can be fore tens of thousands of dollars. One quote I recently provided to a large, fortune 500 company, just for my portion of the work was conservatively for around $22,000. As long as you are fair, you aren’t greedy, and you truly assess their site and the work involved, you have nothing to worry about. If a company doesn’t hire you after providing a fair web design quote, they aren’t worth your time to begin with. The last thing you want to do is to get trapped into building a companies website, eating up all of your time, and not getting paid what you deserve for all of your hard work.