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  1. #1
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    website pricing question

    I'm going to be redesigning a website for a friend's business, and I'm looking for some advice on what to charge him. I'm still new-ish to web design, and I still need to strengthen my portfolio, so I plan to aim a bit lower than a "real pro" would. Still, the job is fairly large and I can't really afford to put that much time/effort into a project if I'm not going to be reasonably compensated.

    Here is the current site. I will be doing a complete redesign of the layout and style, as well as adding a few features including an integrated blog, some video, a contact form, and some access protected members-only content. In total it should involve 10-12 pages, most of which will be entirely text/images, a few will include the above mentioned features.

    Can anyone advise me on what a job like this ought to be worth? I realize that these things vary widely and that any two web designers would charge different amounts, but any general ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

  • #2
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    I wouldn't charge anything when it is my first time doing something because there are security issues to be dealt with and mistakes can always be found over time where you can fix them.

    I would probably do it all and make a note of the time it took me and work out a cost based on a figure per hour. Then I would have the code done for any other clients who I could then charge for the work, because I knew I could do it and how long it has taken me first time.

    I would consider the addition to my portfolio, sufficient 'payment'.

    And when I 'say' build it, I mean I would do it in such a way as to be 'droppable' into more than one application instead of building it to do just what this client needs.

    You could also charge for some of it -say- the styling and css but provide the rest as part of your portfolio.

    I suspect this isn't the answer you wanted but hey, it's my answer

    bazz
    "The day you stop learning is the day you become obsolete"! - my late Dad.

    Why do some people say "I don't know for sure"? If they don't know for sure then, they don't know!
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  • #3
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    I have nothing of value to add, except that if you upset him I think he'll be able to take care of business

  • #4
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    lol. I hadn't seen that significance. I would propbably pay him now

    bazz
    "The day you stop learning is the day you become obsolete"! - my late Dad.

    Why do some people say "I don't know for sure"? If they don't know for sure then, they don't know!
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  • #5
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    Thanks for the responses. I should have given a little more info about my background. I have done a few sites and currently work as a web production assistant at a communications company. This client didn't just ask me if I wanted the job, he was looking at other developers and chose me based on my portfolio (though the fact that he knows me certainly helped). I do think my portfolio still needs a little strengthening, which is why I wanted to aim low for this project, but I believe that I am ready for a paying gig.

    So, in light of that, how much do you think this job is worth? How much would a seasoned pro likely charge? Thanks again.

  • #6
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    There are two ways to look at this...

    First is the value of your time. How much is your time worth to you. Many developers look at things this way. They place a value on their time and bill the client accordingly. A good place for you to start is translate your hourly rate at your current job into a "freelancer" rate. Freelance rates are always higher (usually 50 - 100% higher) than a "salaried" job, because you have other things like taxes, health insurance, etc to consider. So, if you make $15 / hr at your day job, then $25 - $35 / hr isn't unreasonable to charge for your "freelance" work.

    The second way to look at this is the value you bring to the company. A typical custom design site for a small business should run $1500 - $2500 depending on the market, complexity of the design, etc. So, just redesigning the site brings a "value" of $2000 to the client. Adding in additional features bring in value as well. For example, if you set up a payment system that boosts the clients revenue by $50k / year, charging $10k for such as system isn't unreasonable. The trick here is guaging what is "real" value. While the design, and ecommerce may bring in a theoretical value of $25k, if the client isn't able to capitalize on that value, then the real value may only be $5k to the client. So asking for $10k would be "unreasonable" in that situation.

    My advise, find out as much financial information as you can about the client before proposing anything. Try to back into numbers by asking simple questions like "how many students do you have in a class" and "how many classes do you run each month", then back in to their rough monthly revenue. From there, you'll know if you ask for $15k and they only make $20k / month, you'll be out of luck.

    Hope this helps.

  • #7
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    bcarl,

    Thanks a lot for the insightful response. I've done some research on other web developers' standard rates for comparable projects, and have spent some time estimating how long the work will take me. Based on that, I have a pretty good idea of what I'd like to charge. I'm shying away from going too deep into the business' income, etc., because I think the client would rather keep things a little less formal.

    I'd still be happy to hear any other opinions out there. Thanks.


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