One of the first things a startup or business does when they establish their company and brand is create a website, but determining how much that website should cost can often be a struggle.
You can reach out to ten different web development companies and get ten very different quotes for the same project. So how do you determine which is the appropriate price for your website?
The answer isn’t so cut and dry.
Determining what your website should cost is less about the dollar amount and more about the value of that dollar. While we all like to save money, the cheapest option isn’t always the best. You need to find the web development company that offers the “biggest bang for your buck.”
How Should I Budget Based on the Website I Want?
As we mentioned before, pricing can be tricky. You don’t want to overpay for a service or accept a cheaper price at the sacrifice of your website’s quality. While estimates can vary anywhere from $2,000 to well over $25,000 for the same website, there is a ballpark figure you can reference.
Recently, iPartnerMedia put together a phenomenal cheat sheet for how much a website should cost. In it, they reveal general price ranges and descriptions of what kind of website you can have designed within each budget. The international web, print, and marketing firm also provides an inside look at how web design companies determine the price for your website—and even how you can save money along the way.
It’s a great resource to help you determine your budget. Use it in tandem with the guidelines provided below and you’ll find the right service at the right price.
3 Things Every Good Website Design Quote Should Include
There are 3 things that you should consider mandatory when you hire a website designer, and that’s timeliness, skill, and customer service. These may seem like generic details, but they are essential for a positive end result.
When you’re looking at the price of an estimate, ask yourself these questions about the firm or freelancer that is offering the service:
Does their portfolio match the style and functionality I’m looking for?
If you didn’t do so before you received a quote, thoroughly review the web designer or firm’s portfolio of past works. Make certain that these are live websites and not just mockups.
Having the graphic design skills to design a layout is different from creating a functional and aesthetic website through careful web development. By exploring the live websites, you can:
● Determine their mobile responsiveness by exploring the site’s ease of navigation and readability on a desktop, tablet, and mobile phone
● Test the website’s loading time (it should load almost instantaneously on a strong wireless connection)
● See how advanced the website’s features are and whether they align with the needs of your future design
Finding the right web designer is more than just identifying talent. It’s also determining whether their design style aligns with your brand or vision. You wouldn’t hire a cartoonist to draw a realistic portrait of your mother any more than you would hire a firm that specializes in the medical industry to design a website for a circus troupe. Aim to match the firm or freelancer’s skillsets with the project.
Are they known for their customer service?
You never want to enter into a contract through blind trust. Make sure you do your research on the company. Check their Google reviews, Facebook reviews, Better Business Bureau rating, and even scam websites to make sure that they have a consistent reputation for good communication and delivering high quality results.
Creating and launching a website isn’t a one-time transaction. It is a process that often takes months to complete. You build a long-term business relationship with the company in charge of your project, so you want to make sure that you can trust them.
On top of your research, ask yourself:
● Do they return my calls in a timely manner?
● Was it a short turnaround between my request for an offer and their delivery?
● Were they amiable and easy to talk to when discussing my project?
● Did they pay attention to the details of what I wanted and what I did not?
Can they deliver on time?
Always ask how long it will take to complete your project. You have a business to run, and you need a website to promote it and further establish your company’s credibility. The web design firm or freelancer you hire should be able to deliver in a timely manner.
On average, a website takes 14 weeks to build and launch. Compare the offers you were given with the above criteria and make sure that they can deliver in a timely manner. Keep in mind that more complex projects may take longer, but you shouldn’t have to wait months to get started.
If the deadline they offer is unreasonable or they don’t seem to have time to start your project in a timely manner, chances are they do not have the room on their plate to properly facilitate your website’s build and launch. Steer away from these individuals.
Take these tips into consideration as you browse your options. While no two website design firms are the same and many base their pricing on different factors, a fair cost will deliver a website that’s worth every penny.