Quoting a website is never a simple task. If you price the project too high, you could lose the client altogether, or if it’s priced too low you can quickly lose your profitability. Fortunately for you, we’ve been there and wanted to share our insights to prevent this from happening to your agency.
There are many variables that factor into pricing, including: website size, functionality, and design aspects. Website size refers to the number of pages on the site, and functionality includes any special features the site needs.
Quoting Hourly vs. Project-Based
This is the first variable to consider when quoting out a project. Your quote can be based on the estimated hours of work or a flat fee for the entire project. Many agencies utilize both options, depending on the scope of the project. For instance, Syzmic uses hourly quoting if the website is less than 3 pages. If the website is 3+ pages, we typically go with a project-based quote.
Let’s discuss the two options in more depth.
Many times, clients wonder why a website quote is higher than they expected. With hourly projects, creating a breakdown with an explanation is easy.
A potential issue with hourly quoting is knowing exactly many hours a project will take. If you estimate a website will take 40 hours to complete and it actually takes 50 hours you’ll be losing money or requesting additional finances from your client. This is never beneficial, so make sure you do plenty of research on the project prior to quoting.
We recommend giving your client (and your agency) a range of hours to offset any potential roadblocks. For example, if you feel a website will take 40 hours to complete, give your client an estimated range of 35-45 hours in order to provide yourself some flexibility.
A project-based quote is another great option because it’s simple and the expectations are clear from the beginning. But, like hourly quotes, you need to have a realistic estimation of how long the project will take.
At Syzmic, we have a baseline price for what we call “brochure sites.” Our standard pricing is set for websites that are 3-5 pages. If the website is over 5 pages (which is usually the case), we charge our standard pricing + $X per additional page. In reality, coming up with this standard pricing wasn’t easy. It took a lot of trial and error and examining past projects to come up with a pricing structure that made sense for our business.
Additionally, you have to factor in-depth functionality requirements into your price. For example, if a client wants a website quote form that’s connected to their CRM through an API, then you’ll need to line-item that out.
If your client is looking for functionality that you or your agency have never done, I recommend doing plenty of research on what it would take to deliver. It’s worth spending the extra time researching this than assuming it’s simple, underquoting, and losing money.
No matter which quoting method you use, you need to be very clear with the deliverables and client expectations.
Any time you give a client a quote, it’s important you and your client are on the same page about the deliverables.
If you’re developing a simple brochure website, write out the pages (or # of pages) that will be included in the project. If the website requires more in-depth functionality (filtering, payment portals, booking form integration, etc.), list those items out as well.
You want to avoid the very common confusion of building “X” and your client thought you were building “Y”.
It’s an art to quote a website properly. There are a lot of variables that you should consider before sending over the quote. My advice is to slow down, ask questions, and drill down on what the client is looking for/needs.
Have questions? Drop a comment below and we’d be happy to answer it!