How Do We Price Our Stuff?

This is the biggest question people want answered when it comes to design work.  How much?  How much?  HOW MUCH???

Well, if we could give you a stock answer, we would. Believe me, it would be much easier for us to tell you than it is not to tell you.  Naturally we can provide estimates, but what we can’t do is provide them immediately upon hearing the question “how much does a website cost?”  We do not want to hide anything from you, but it is genuinely difficult to determine on the fly how much a project will ultimately cost without a great deal of information.

Price on design work is a moving target.  Every customer is different, and every customer wants something different.  We know you want us to know the instant you say you want a website or a brochure what the price will be, but the truth is, we don’t know that instant.  We have to ask you questions, learn your goals for the project, find out your budget, know your style, discover your target market, determine what functionality you require (and/or want), and many other answers before we can name a price.

What we can tell you, is that design and development fees are like doctors’ or attorneys’ fees – we charge by the hour.  We have a general idea based on past experience how much time a site of a certain size and functionality will take, but it is just a general idea.  For every phone call, email, meeting, design time, development time, discussions about changes, additions, or anything else that requires our time, there is a cost involved, and how much time these things add up to is highly dependent on you.  If you are a customer who is fairly hands off, chances are your fees will be lower.  If you are a customer who is very particular or cannot make up your mind, chances are your fees will be higher.  A lot of the cost of creating your design product is in your hands.

The best way for you to know how much a project is going to cost is to decide on what your budget is for the project.  That way, we know what we are working with, and can create a product based on the amount you want to invest.  We are very up front about how much time it takes us to do things, and we are very happy to give you an outline of what you will get for your budget.  Be aware that projects are not just about the time involved in creating a PDF document or coding a website – there are many other parts of a project that take time as well, and those hours must be included in your budget.  Areas that most people forget about that need to be remembered when considering a project are:

Project management time
Meeting time
Phone calls and emails
Time involved in making revisions to original design concepts
Copywriting (if required)
Researching and purchasing images
Trips to the printer and back
For websites, time involved in:

  • securing domain names and hosting providers
  • setting up emails and/or mail servers
  • researching design themes for content management systems
  • moving a site from test to live
  • educating a client on how to use their website and/or maintain it if they choose to do so

These are just some of the basics involved in estimating the cost of a project.  While we are aware you want dollars and cents, we can only know those once we know the scope of your project.  That comes from you.