This is a question we get asked by many people – friends, family and potential clients.
I want to take some time out to explain our process. It’s important to carefully plan projects to ensure you’re not hit with surprises.
Website cost varies depending on several factors, including:
- The web developer’s level of experience and attention to detail
- The required resources
- Actual time it takes to complete the design, build and testing
- The website’s purpose and functions
This list is not exhaustive, and there are various other factors to consider when looking at website cost.
There is a common misconception that websites are easy to build. In some cases this may be true. However, most websites require that additional skill and expertise of your talented team to actually help achieve goals.
What are website goals?
Website goals are important and they usually fall into one of the following categories:
- To provide information
- To sell a product or service
- To entertain
With the base goal in mind, we can start to work on more refined goals for your business.
Back to cost…what should cost include?
In all honestly, cost will vary from web designer to web designer. Some will promise the world and deliver nothing. Others will promise nothing but exceed expectations. It really comes down to your personal preference, the professionalism of the team you are working with and how much you value their input and direction. That being said, here are some things to look out for:
- Ongoing fees (website maintenance) – Make sure there is a clear plan as to what is classified as ongoing fees. If a designer has not included them, we would strongly suggest you discuss the future of your project including how additions, upgrades and faults will be handled.
- Training & Support – If you are not familiar with the system it is usually worth getting training in the platform. Most of our clients find that training with us one on one gives them a much better understanding of their own website and the potential features and power it has to offer
- Hosting – Find out where is the site hosted, how is it hosted and who is responsible for what. Sometimes clients wish to look after hosting separately and that is fine….just make sure it’s clear who is responsible for what. Often it is best to let the designer arrange the hosting and maintenance for you.
- Digital Strategy – This can make or break your website project. Having a clear direction, defining goals, working on optimisation campaigns. Digital Strategy is sometimes ignored by clients who are focused purely on getting the website “live”.
All in all, cost is something that will vary dramatically from company to company. It is highly recommended that you shop around. Most of the time the cheapest will not actually meet the goals of your website project. Look for a team that you have a connection with and build a relationship with them.
Tips for getting proposals
- Negotiate payment for the proposal: You ultimately want the best quality website, so take the time and invest the money to get the right types of proposals. Paid proposals are less likely to have nasty surprises down the track and hidden costs. A paid proposal means that you are paying a team to sit down, take time out of other projects and consider the viability of your project. This will give you a more accurate representation of costs.
- Meet the team: Try and arrange a meeting with the team and explain your website requirements. We find that meetings reveal truckloads of useful information that emails and phone calls cannot. It also helps build a relationship with the team who will be working on your project.
- Outline your expectations: Be clear about what you are asking for. “I am looking for a 5 page website, how much?” is not a very clear way of requesting a proposal. Be specific in the types of functionality you are after, what theme you want the website to portray and the audience you are after.
- Reveal your budget: This can be one of the best ways to help get a tailored quote. Knowing a rough budget of a client can help save time and money on both sides. Most designers will be able to adjust features, times and compromise on functionality to meet your budget. A rough ballpark usually works well.