Starting a web design business

by peteJ
5 replies
After a few months of doing some marketing on the web I found that I really enjoy making web pages. I figures why not make some money off what I like to do an decided to get started on making a web site design business. I plan to get this started in about a month after I learn a little more about CSS and php. Right now the websites I design use mainly HTML and use tables as the general layout, correct me If I'm wrong but I hear this is generally not very good which is why I'm learning CSS before I launch my business.

I plan to start marketing to small business's locally and market myself as building simLe yet efficient web pages to help draw in local business. After that I plan to offer my services on a larger scale but I figure I should get some clients and business first to build a reputation.

I come here just seeking advice on my plan now an into the future. How mug should I charge, what are some good ways to market offline locally, and how much coding knowledge should I have before I begin. All of these I wonder and much more. Also, what other services should I incorporate? Should I offer to set up marketing campaigns for them or provide maintaince and updating for their sites they have built through me? And once again, how
Much should these cost or should I offer them free for a period of time? Any help on these questions or any other advice is greatly appreciated!
#business #design #starting #web
  • Profile picture of the author ajilyumna
    Your case is very similar to me, might be better to create your own web with html or css code like that, but for me it's very tiring, so I use wordpress for a while first.

    good luck
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  • Profile picture of the author DustonMcGroarty
    If you're goal is to make money building websites for small businesses, I would just create Wordpress sites. There are so many templates available now for this exact purpose that you'd be wasting your time custom coding each one.

    Here's the thing... you're not selling websites to these small businesses, you're selling a lead-generation funnel.

    You need to connect the dots for a lot of these people. If you put it this way, they won't expect a fancy website but instead, an effective marketing tool where looks don't matter as much.

    Browse through the WSO section here... there's tons of offline packages for sale that include Wordpress themes.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ryan Donrew
    That actaully sounds interesting, i've been making websites for the past couple of years.
    I consider myself to be quite good with design and i do know some HTML and CSS3.
    If you'd like to partner up or see my works then i'll be glad to chat with you.
    Now about the wordpress themes, which are a great way to make a quick website. This could save you alot of time but will also require knowing the Wordpress PHP functions and calls (Wordpress API).
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  • Profile picture of the author roj
    Hi Pete,

    You are correct in saying css is preferable to using tables.
    I have been running a web design business for a number of years. I started out hand coding sites then quickly moved on to outsourcing the design of templates. I started using WordPress for most of my sites a couple of years ago which makes things a lot easier and gives the client a CMS.
    For basic sites I have been using Artisteer to create my own unique Word Press templates. You can also use this to create HTML templates.
    I would definitely offer hosting to your clients and also consider SEO, PPC and other marketing services. Small businesses will pay you once for web design but will pay you every month for SEO services.
    Pricing is difficult to advise on, don't try and be the cheapest, work out how long it takes you to build a site and multiple this by a reasonable hourly rate. Look at the competition, see what they are charging and how good their websites look. Try and make your websites better and charge a little bit more.
    Finding local businesses that need your service shouldn't be too difficult. A good place to start is look through the local small ads, you know these people have an advertising budget. Look for people that show and email in the ad but no website. You know these people are a bit computer literate. Look at local businesses' websites and any that look home made offer them your professional services.
    You obviously need your own website with a small portfolio of your work and some testimonials would be good.
    Hope this helps
    All the best
    Signature

    Roger Weavers
    SEO Specialist & Affiliate Marketer
    Another $1,000 Day

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  • Profile picture of the author neilward
    I have been building websites for clients locally for a couple of years now. Best way to start is to build yourself a website showcasing your work. Nobody will want you to build a website where they cant see any work by the person building it. After that start out very cheap. You need to build up a portfolio. Build the website cheap but make sure you have a hosting fee. You then have recurring income which is the key. Do not offer amendments to site for free as this is easy recurring income as well. When I started building websites I charged £100 for the design and £60 per annum for web hosting. This was great as I was able to have case studies on my website which showcased what I could do.

    You are going to need to provide a backend for customers to be able to update their own site and I guess with your knowledge (if you are a beginner with PHP and Mysql) you will not be able to do this to a good enough standard. So I think you would either want to outsource this work or use a CMS system like Wordpress.
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