How Much Does a Website Cost?

Anyone involved with web design would have heard that question thousands millions of times. My answer, how long is a piece of string?

When you go to buy a car you usually have an idea of what you are after and a budget. When it comes to websites these simple pre-requisites seem to go out the window.

I can understand it in some ways. Anyone with a computer, a few programs and an internet connection can say they are a web designer. It’s not quite so easy to get into the car building market. This low entry barrier means there are a wide range of people and prices offering web design services.

I find this makes people reluctant to discuss budgets fearing that whatever they say will be what they are quoted. “Our budget is $5,000”. “Perfect”, says the web designer, “the website is $4995”. Most professionals would not do this, but that’s for another post.

Things You Can Do to Help

If you are reluctant to give a budget or are still in the early planning stages with no clear budget in mind, you can help us web designers by giving us a clear idea of what you are after. This will help us give you an idea of how much you will be looking at. Things you should consider:

  • Is it a design or a re-design?
  • Have you a domain name and/or web hosting?
  • Have you taken into account any online marketing, search engine optimisation etc etc.
  • What do you want your website to say? What information/content do you want to include?
  • Are you providing copy and images are or are these required?

As a starting point the structure of a basic website would most likely include the following:

Homepage

  • Products/Services
  • About
  • Contact
  • Site Map
  • Privacy Policy

Additional considerations would be separate product/services pages and how many, case studies, staff profiles, news etc.

Even a rough, initial outline of your requirements, based on the above, would go a long way in giving both you and your prospective web designer a clear idea of your online goals and requirements. This in turn makes it much easier for us to give you an idea of costs.

One final comment on budgets: I strongly suggest you discuss this with your prospective web designer. Even a ballpark figure helps us make sure you get the most bang for your buck. If we don’t know what you’re willing to spend we don’t know whether to recommend a second hand VW or a brand new Porsche.

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Here We Go

With a little push, ok a damn huge shove (thanks Barry) I’m going live.

To be honest I’m still finding it hard to find my voice and come up with post ideas. My thinking is to focus on web design, usability and marketing as opposed to pure search – there’s enough wonderful search focused bloggers already.

So I’ve decided to ask you what you’d like to read about. Please post any comments or suggestions – heck you’ll be saving my skin.

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How Not to Treat Prospective Customers

I recently decided to take the ClickTracks Hosted free 14 day trial. Imagine my surprise when at one of the sign up screens I’m told it’s a 61 day trial. Wow that’s even better, enough time for me to really figure it out and enough time for them to really hook me in.

After sign up I received my first “invoice” which again stated I had a 61 day free trial. So off I went trialing it.

To cut a long story short, as I’m known to ramble, after 14 days I receive the thanks for trying our software, to continue using it you’ll need to pay email. So much for 61 days!

I decided to email them querying the dates and whether I was entitled to the 61 days as my invoice stated. I also suggested that hooking me in for that long makes my continuing all that more guaranteed.

3 or 4 days later I got a email saying the 61 days was an error and it’s actually 14 days. At least they thanked me for bringing it to their attention LOL.

Now ok it was a mistake, but where I come from if you make an offer which for some reason is incorrect you must honor that offer. With the internet being global I guess the same laws don’t apply. The laws of customer service do and for me as much as I like the program it’s left me feeling a bit pissed off. How hard would it have been to say we were wrong and we’ll honor what we told you. What would it have cost them? And I guarantee I would have been hooked after using it for 61 days.

Right now I think I’m gonna keep looking around.

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