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  1. #1
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    Guide for pricing

    I am looking for a method of how to charge potential clients for work.

    Recently, a friend of a friend of a friend learned that I run my own site and have completed some odd jobs for my church and through my internship. They are asking me to help launch their website and are willing to pay me, but I do not have the slightest idea of what to charge.

    From the few details I have received about the project, I know it will be a small-scale site and most likely would not require anything more complicated than some basic javascript and php, possibly some flash. However, I know I would probably have create the site from the ground up, including developing their logos and probably actively running their site for a month or two.

    I have looked around here a bit at some of the offers, but I still cannot get a grip on what would be fair for a job like this. $50? $100? $500? More??

    I know, as they probably do, that if they go through a professional coder, the costs could get rather high. Since they will be so small scale and because they are friends of friends, it does not seem right for me to charge too much, plus the idea that this one offer to could lead to others gets me hopeful.

    Can anyone spout out some figures to help me gauge what I should charge?

    Many thanks!

  • #2
    Regular Coder croatiankid's Avatar
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    freelancers charge anywhere from 30-100 for simple websites like the one ur describing. w/o flash, i'd charge 50-75, with flash- up to 100, more if it's high quality (templatemonster flash headers)

  • #3
    Senior Coder NancyJ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by croatiankid
    freelancers charge anywhere from 30-100 for simple websites like the one ur describing. w/o flash, i'd charge 50-75, with flash- up to 100, more if it's high quality (templatemonster flash headers)
    $30 for a full site, inc php, javascript and flash - I wouldnt even blink for $30.

    Lets think about this:
    They're asking for :

    Website design
    Logo Design
    Unspecified flash
    Javascript
    Dynamic PHP content
    2 months site maintenance
    +admin and communication time

    I'd say $150 minimum (and thats friends & family rate)

  • #4
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    Charge by the hour, say $30.

  • #5
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    Thanks everybody!

    If I decided to charge by the hour, should I set a timer or make a log or something? I usually code my pages a little at a time; could be an hour here or there or five hours at a time. Or should I just estimate?

  • #6
    The fat guy next door VIPStephan's Avatar
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    LOL Nancy, how much to get you blinking for me one time?
    But I'd agree with NancyJ and dan.s (for friends I might even charge $15 per hour if I'm not deperately in need of money). You should be honest to yourself and your friends about the amount of work and self confident about your skills and not sell yourself below value.

    Edit: Just saw you posted while I was replying. Keep records of when you started and when you stopped working, and maybe write down a rough note on what you did during the times you count in case they mistrust you or wanna be sure. Then you have something and you can write an exact invoice.
    Last edited by VIPStephan; 08-15-2006 at 05:28 PM.

  • #7
    Regular Coder Graft-Creative's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NancyJ

    I'd say $150 minimum (and thats friends & family rate)
    Hehe, I'm glad you added that last bit, I was beginning to wonder if you were losing it

    To be fair, I dare say $30-$100 is a fair amount of compensation in the Balkans?

    ....Anyway, over the past few years I've struggled a fair bit with the same problem and I've boiled it down like this:

    For any web work, I want at least a tradesperson's wage (think plumbers etc) otherwise I may as well be doing something stress free and uncomplicated, like stacking shelves at Asda (Wal-Mart).

    So I tend to think of it like this - if I'm doing web design, and the job is going to take me approx five working days (even though those days may be dotted around over the course of a few weeks) then I'll need a decent weeks wage from it, plus a bonus amount for the skills/experience/and care I'm bringing to the job.

    For bit's of jobs - changes/ammendments etc. yes I'd charge by the hour, but for full projects, I tend to think in terms of days rather than hours.

    If you're confident in your abilities, there really shouldn't be any fault in quoting, say, $500 for a job like this - then the friends and family discount off of that.

    That's my take anyhows

    Kind regards,

    Gary

  • #8
    Regular Coder Graft-Creative's Avatar
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    The Triangle

    Ah, found it: BradyJ of http://dotfive.com proffered this advice on these forums a few moons ago, it's always helped me

    Draw a triangle.
    Write the following words, one in each corner: TIME, COST, QUALITY.
    Now, you let your client pick TWO of the corners, and YOU get the other.

    If they want good QUALITY work for low COST, then you get to determine
    how much TIME it will take ... etc.

    The important thing about this whole thing is to have everything in
    writing BEFORE you deliver any web page content to the client.
    Take care & good luck,

    Gary

  • #9
    Senior Coder NancyJ's Avatar
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    Fast and good isnt cheap
    Cheap and good isnt fast
    Fast and cheap isnt good

    ...Gary, do you know how much plumbers get paid?! Tradesman can bring in 6 figure salaries they're a lot less common than web designers. Plus theres no automated tools to fix your plumbing

    When I'm asked to quote for a job, usually look at how long I tihnk it will take then add 50% ontop of that. Because you can guarentee there will be a boat load of amendments and communicating with the client that you didnt put in your original quote otherwise

  • #10
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    Thanks a lot everyone! This will help a lot.

  • #11
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    Yeah clients are a pain for ...."oh by the way can we..."
    I try to write a tight speciification and quote to that. then any subsequent chnages are quoted as new jobs (even if they as part of the over all work undertaken)

    I never quote by the hour. I quote per job but obviously this is time based. I facter in the skill requirements as well. Obviously a simple website design isn't taxing and can be achieved fairly quickly but a fully blown SQL Servers Solution would cost more per hour.

    If you imagine you could employ a basic web designer for around 15K and then a developer from about 20K to something silly for a senior architect.
    Last edited by daninmanchester; 08-15-2006 at 06:32 PM.

  • #12
    Regular Coder croatiankid's Avatar
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    as i said, freelancers will do it for less than 1/10 of the price

  • #13
    Regular Coder Graft-Creative's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by croatiankid
    as i said, freelancers will do it for less than 1/10 of the price
    Did you really say that? Which freelancers? 1/10 of which price?

    back to the tradesperson analogy ...would a self-emloyed plumber install you a gas central heating system for 1/10 of the the price that a company of plumbers would charge you? I somehow doubt it

    They wouldn't be on 6 figure salaries then, eh Hazel

    I can make £100 (approx $190) selling junk at a car-boot sale, for about three-four hours work, without breaking a sweat or getting a headache.

    @ kaitco:
    Take no notice of any underselling yourself nonsense - it doesn't do you, or the client any good.

    A good, but fair price, agreed by both parties involved, shows commitment to the project on both sides - you know you have to pull the stops out 'cos you are being paid well - the client knows, and expects, that you will take the job seriously - because they are paying you well.

    A stupidly low price just gives the impression you don't take yourself, or your skills, seriously.

    Kind regards,

    Gary

  • #14
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    I never do it for 1/10th of the price. It simply wouldn't be worth it.

    But for example a commerical development company quote 10K for a project and I quoted £3K (actually did it on my weekends between other projects)

    I do find I sometimes have to charge more just to avoid looking suspisiously cheap!!

    I know for a fact a company I work for is paying through the nose.... REALLY serious money for a solution were we are probably talkin not much change from 100K if not more.

    Not only this but the solution they delivered/are delivering is FAR from a commercial product (i've seen better from "bedroom coders") and you can buy very similar solutions off the shelf INCLUDING source code for a fraction of the cost. I could get in a number of developers and project manage it myself to deliver a FAR superior commercial grade product and still have change from 50K so I don't know where these companies get off.

    The problem is there are multimillion pound contracts involved but this is public money and it REALLY REALLY annoys me! This is why taxes are so high, the health service sucks, there arn't enough police on the street, etc...well okay not the only reason but you get where I'm coming from.

    I'm all for small development companies, they have real skills, vision and arn't swamped by project managers and general B.S.

    Rant over.... for now.

  • #15
    The fat guy next door VIPStephan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by croatiankid
    as i said, freelancers will do it for less than 1/10 of the price
    You shouldn't confuse freelancer with hobby web developer.
    Freelancers have to make a living with the jobs they get. And they would be stupid to do a complete website for free (and $50 out of $500 is not much more than "for free")


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