Pricing is probably the trickiest topic when it comes to running an online business.
Also, it's one of the most common questions we get in our community. Unfortunately, knowing what to charge for a website is not as straightforward as we'd like it to be. And the truth is, there's no right or wrong answer. Over time, you will find the right pricing method that works for you.
So in this post, we will cover not only the main points that you want to consider when coming up with your pricing and packaging. But we'll also come up with a number for your very first project.
But first, I want to start with a very valuable tip. It is very likely that the first question you'll get asked when discussing a potential website project is how much is it going to cost?
And the problem is you have no idea how much the potential client expects it to cost.
Website prices vary a lot - from a few hundred to thousands and thousands of dollars. So before you jump right into the price and risk scaring the potential client away, you really want to make sure that they understand the value that this website will bring to their business.
If your pricing is a lot lower than what they were expecting, they might question your expertise. If your pricing is a whole lot higher than what they were expecting, then you probably need to help them understand the value of what a website will bring before discussing price.
And yes, it is your job to explain that value to them. So before you give them a quote, take some time, ask them about the project and really get to know their business.
This is the best way to help them see how their website will really grow their business. So here are a few questions you can ask.
This will help them see the value in the service that you are providing.
Pricing is personal. It would be amazing if I could give you a cheat sheet with how much to charge, but the truth is - every project is unique. And every service provider is unique. So it’s really up to you how much you will charge.
But here are a few things to consider to make that job a bit easier.
Do you want to make this your full time job and support your family? Maybe you're just looking for some extra cash every month? Or maybe you need to supplement your partner's income.
Getting clarity on how much you actually need to make or want to make each month is the very first step in the process.
So again, will this be a full time job or a side hustle? Will you be working around your kids schedule or do you have eight solid hours a day to commit?
This is essential to make sure that you're charging enough and you have a realistic income goal.
What Value Will This Website Bring To Your Client?
If your client is a big e-commerce store and by them selling their products online, it would bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue, then you can absolutely quote on the higher end.
Now, on the flip side, if your potential client is a small coffee shop down the road, it'll be a lot harder to justify a really big investment.
Now, it is really important to note that a big e-commerce website is a whole heck of a lot more work than something simpler, like a brochure site for a local coffee shop.
The truth is, you’re not. And you won’t know this from the start. Unfortunately, it just comes with practice and experience.
Once you've done a few projects, you'll have a better idea of how long things take you.
Here’s my advice to all of my students when they're looking for their first website project and wondering what to charge:
“Think of an amount of money you are comfortable with, whether that's $500 or $1,000 or a few thousand dollars.”
The most important thing is that it is a price that you can confidently sell. Because if you're not confident about it, then it'll be really hard to find someone to accept that amount.
And be very transparent and honest. There is nothing wrong with letting them know that it's your first project and that's why you're not charging a lot.
Honesty is so important when building up relationships.
I always like to tell my students to double their price after their first project. And then double it again and again, until you find that real sweet spot.
It's really, really hard for new web designers and web developers to predict how long a project might take. There are so many variables when it comes to website development and that's why it's really hard to tell you exactly how much to charge.
Depending on the level of functionality and all the extras that they want included, it's really hard to know for sure.
Some projects might take a really long time and others might be super quick, but the good news is it will balance itself out. The most important thing is that when you get to the end, you get paid for your hard work and your client has a website that they love.
And remember, you are your own boss! If you feel like you're not getting paid enough, then raise your rates.
And if you still feel a bit uneasy about pitching to clients, then check out this FREE PDF with 148 Discovery Calls Questions to help you land your first (or next) client!