29 replies
Hi guys.


I have read many times on this subforum about people charging only $250 - $500 per website. Something in the range of 5 pages. I still think that is too low(my opinion) . I paid a company $3k for my site and it is probably 8 pages about 3 years ago. Before I got into this consulting gig.


Do you think we are 'low valueing' our services by only charging $500? I have been telling my clients 'locally' intown that a 5 page site will cost them about $950. For that price they do not get an 'admin' page. They can not upload or change anything on the site. These prices are for just informational websites, nothing with a shopping cart, etc.

If you are going to charge $299 to just optimize their Google Places listing, building a website for $500 seems cheap??
#$1500 #website
  • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
    I think you get what you pay for in terms of price... most of the time. There will always be people that do a good job at a cheap price and people that do a horrible job at a high price. In general though, when we try to save money by paying out a low price, we'll get low quality work.

    If I was in the market for someone to do web work for me, I would go for the high end price because it would usually mean better quality work.



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  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    Originally Posted by www_retireonme_com View Post

    Hi guys.


    I have read many times on this subforum about people charging only $250 - $500 per website. Something in the range of 5 pages. I still think that is too low(my opinion) . I paid a company $3k for my site and it is probably 8 pages about 3 years ago. Before I got into this consulting gig.


    Do you think we are 'low valueing' our services by only charging $500? I have been telling my clients 'locally' intown that a 5 page site will cost them about $950. For that price they do not get an 'admin' page. They can not upload or change anything on the site. These prices are for just informational websites, nothing with a shopping cart, etc.

    If you are going to charge $299 to just optimize their Google Places listing, building a website for $500 seems cheap??
    Pricing would also be dependent on the type of business you're marketing your website setup services to. For businesses that have a high transaction value, such as lawyers, doctors, architects, realtors, etc. charging in the vicinity of $1,000 or more would be just fine.

    But if you're marketing to smaller mom and pop stores and restaurants, it might be a little hard to justify the value of a $1,000 website to them. This all really depends on what type of business you're marketing to.

    Remember also that the higher your prices, the more time you'll have to spend marketing and explaining the benefits/value before you get a sale.

    So ultimately, I feel that pricing all depends on the type of business you're marketing to, as well as the amount of pre-sale marketing for each individual client that you'd like to do.

    Paul
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  • thanks guys. that is what I was thinking as well!
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  • Profile picture of the author Quentin
    I think people only charge low because they are not confident in what they can provide.

    If your going to give them traffic and new customers they would pay thousands for that in the tangible world.

    Quentin
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  • Profile picture of the author tonydbaker
    In most cases, you still get what you pay for when it comes to creative services.

    Yes, I can pop you up a blog that looks like a website with your logo and your colors in a couple hours, but it's not going to make you any money.

    Part of the problem is that you have Quick Books and American Express out there running ads all day long about how people can get "a website" for only $5 a month, and ready in 15 minutes.

    They have devalued a "website" down to practically nothing.

    So.. you have to think of it like art. Yes, you can get a "print" of a painting for next to nothing. However, if you want a piece of art that is designed to get your customers to respond to you emotionally, visibly, and your reputation is something that you care about, then you will commission an original "website." Even if it's built upon wordpress with a theme to help it get going... an original website design can be well worth the price.

    Now at the same time... I've seen people charge $4500 for a worthless website based on fads and junk that has no positive impact on its ability to help the client capture leads and make sales.

    - so there you have it. - Tony Darrick Baker
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    • Profile picture of the author Amir Luis
      Originally Posted by tonydbaker View Post

      Part of the problem is that you have Quick Books and American Express out there running ads all day long about how people can get "a website" for only $5 a month, and ready in 15 minutes.

      They have devalued a "website" down to practically nothing.

      So.. you have to think of it like art. Yes, you can get a "print" of a painting for next to nothing. However, if you want a piece of art that is designed to get your customers to respond to you emotionally, visibly, and your reputation is something that you care about, then you will commission an original "website." Even if it's built upon wordpress with a theme to help it get going... an original website design can be well worth the price.
      I really agree.... You have the cheap domain places selling "websites tonight" and devaluing the service.... not to mention the YellowPage Reps that give away websites and print yellowpage listings for SEO and PPC contracts.

      YellowBook is for sale. The two companies looking to buy? Microsoft and Google.

      Why? Because of the nationwide sales force, thats why.

      Even though yellowpages are one of the less than 10 companies in the world that "partnered" with Google, they still may be owned by Google in the very near future.

      There has been a lot of de-valuing in the web design industry. In all different shapes and sizes.

      My USP... the way that I combat these issues is by selling the Marketing Principles.

      Not the design themselves. Focusing on the results not the bells and whistles.

      Yes.... I sell 5 page websites for $599 and $30 per month for hosting. Yes... that is hella cheap.

      But I also sell $4500 websites.... it really depends on the demographic.

      Listen first. Sell second.

      You may view me as a "ankle biter" in the web design industry. But other peoples opinion of me is none of my business.

      I care about delivering the most value for my client.

      I also care about gaining that client and being in the position to sell them Social Media, SEO, GPO, and everything else I can to maximize thier return on investment, and more importantly... get them results.

      Heck... I have sold 5 page websites for $299 and I don't care if you do to...

      Furniture stores use $20 curios as a loss leader... so they can sell the $3,000 sofa. Whatever gets them in the store and building a relationship.

      I sell websites as a loss leader.... then I sell the SEO....
      whatever gets them to let me build a relationship.

      You have to do whatever works for you... I know what works for me....
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      • Profile picture of the author Scott Kennedy
        Originally Posted by Amir Luis View Post

        I sell websites as a loss leader.... then I sell the SEO....
        whatever gets them to let me build a relationship.

        You have to do whatever works for you... I know what works for me....
        Exactly this. My business plan this year is to offer cheap sites ($499-$999) and upsell the GP, autoresponder and SEO services which will be of greater value and price than the site.
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  • Profile picture of the author Genesis1
    It's a big money for that type of site, I can do it for 500$ max
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    • Profile picture of the author TyBrown
      I was on the verge of bankruptcy when I scrounged up $6,000 of credit card space for my first website years ago, before I knew about how to outsource and everything else I know now.

      This was when I was working a $12 an hour job, had a new baby and another baby on the way. I didn't have a business set up, didn't have any revenue coming in, and I still paid that kind of money.

      I did it because I believed in the money that would come my way as a result of the site.

      Looking back, I overpaid. Having said that, the education I received from the people who built it for me has since allowed me to sell hundreds of thousands of dollars of products and services using the internet as my medium, so I consider it a great investment.

      My point being, if a kid in his 20s with no business is willing to find 6k to build a site I'm sure there are plenty of profitable businesses that are willing to pony up serious cash if they believe they will get it back in spades.
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  • Profile picture of the author lewiswharf
    Informational websites are one thing but when it comes to interacting with your customers via forms and shopping carts, businesses have to be willing to pay.
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    • What Paulie888 said and this:
      Originally Posted by lewiswharf View Post

      Informational websites are one thing but when it comes to interacting with your customers via forms and shopping carts, businesses have to be willing to pay.
      I also think $500 is a bit low but it really depends on what kind of business you're selling to. If you offer several different options, like with shopping carts, admin page, tracking, stats, social functions etc. and are great at pitching them to your client so he thinks he needs them, you could charge several thousands for such sites.
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  • Profile picture of the author Krstwo
    Originally Posted by www_retireonme_com View Post

    Hi guys.


    I have read many times on this subforum about people charging only $250 - $500 per website. Something in the range of 5 pages. I still think that is too low(my opinion) . I paid a company $3k for my site and it is probably 8 pages about 3 years ago. Before I got into this consulting gig.


    Do you think we are 'low valueing' our services by only charging $500? I have been telling my clients 'locally' intown that a 5 page site will cost them about $950. For that price they do not get an 'admin' page. They can not upload or change anything on the site. These prices are for just informational websites, nothing with a shopping cart, etc.

    If you are going to charge $299 to just optimize their Google Places listing, building a website for $500 seems cheap??
    If you charge $950 for your website with just a informational website it better be the best damn website ive ever seen.

    Honestly how long would it take you to make it think about it on a hourly perspective.

    Its like any other business supply and demand rules pricing and obviously their are people that work for cheap and unfortunately for most their getting good at what they do with all these tools available now days.
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  • Profile picture of the author pethanks
    It depends on the conviction of the people offering the service. Just let them decide.
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  • Profile picture of the author LiquidSeo
    Originally Posted by www_retireonme_com View Post

    Hi guys.


    I have read many times on this subforum about people charging only $250 - $500 per website. Something in the range of 5 pages. I still think that is too low(my opinion) . I paid a company $3k for my site and it is probably 8 pages about 3 years ago. Before I got into this consulting gig.


    Do you think we are 'low valueing' our services by only charging $500? I have been telling my clients 'locally' intown that a 5 page site will cost them about $950. For that price they do not get an 'admin' page. They can not upload or change anything on the site. These prices are for just informational websites, nothing with a shopping cart, etc.

    If you are going to charge $299 to just optimize their Google Places listing, building a website for $500 seems cheap??

    Great topic. First of all, I charge a lot more than $299 to deliver Google Places success. You should too! If the value of a single customer is high, than your price should be much higher. I have a personal injury attorney who I charged $2500 upfront, and now $750 a mos. I'm probably low with him, but that's ok. On the other hand, I have a few small town CPA's and mom/pop businesses -- I charged $500, and $175 a mos for Google Places work.

    A website is a commodity. There are lots of things that separate a good website from a below average template site or ugly BLOG site. But...most small businesses do not want to pay above 1k for a website in 2011. If you are working with a larger business - 5-10mm in revenues, you will be able to charge more by selling the value.

    We recently built a site for 10k, which took the last 60 days to complete. This was for a 20mm national consulting company. In the same period, we did a few sites for $750 -- basically simplistic WP sites for small businesses. It's all about the value of the site to that company. Does it drive revenue? Is it a core part of their business? Is image important to them (cosmetic surgeons/attorney's)? If no to these, expect to see your price point much lower than you want.


    Brian
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  • Profile picture of the author vndnbrgj
    I completely agree. I charge $1295. That's just so I can make a little off the top when I outsource it. Yes, I do make a little off the top, but it is a little amount. Most of that goes to the outsourcers. You might think that is a lot to go to outsourcers, but I agree that you get what you pay for. I will pay more to ensure my client is happy. If you wanted to create a good sales letter, who would you hire?
    The guy that would charge $20 from some third world country or the one that is native and charges $2000?
    At the higher price point, after checking into some previous work, you know you will end up with something great. At $20, just hope it's proper grammar.
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  • Profile picture of the author dave braithwaite
    the website is only as good as the person making it .some will be better than others so the rates they think they are worth will be different
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  • Profile picture of the author rafterman
    I look at ROI to the company when charging a price for anything.
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  • Profile picture of the author cma01
    Prices on here are insanely cheap for a web site, but then a lot of them are just doing a Fantastico install of Wordpress and tweaking a few things on a Thesis or Woo Theme. $500 is reasonable for that.

    When I do a web site for a client, there is a lot of consulting involved. I don't just look at the "number of pages" they want, but who their target market is, what they are planning on doing with it, who will be using it, and how it integrates with the rest of their marketing. I don't just design and slap up a few pages, but I set it up so that it will work for them.

    Most people have gotten quotes from the lowballers. I just tell them that my quote is based on the amount of time it will take and a custom site takes more time than one on a generic template.

    Now I'm getting a lot of people wanting to redesign their site that they had done by a chop shop because they are ready to invest in something that will actually work. Besides the people that call me to fix their sites that were set up by someone that didn't know what they were doing. Most of the time they are paying me more to fix it than they paid for the initial site.

    You get what you pay for.

    Web design is just a small part of what I do, besides having my own sites. If someone isn't ready to pay what I charge, I'm fine with that.
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    • Profile picture of the author LiquidSeo
      Originally Posted by cma01 View Post

      Prices on here are insanely cheap for a web site, but then a lot of them are just doing a Fantastico install of Wordpress and tweaking a few things on a Thesis or Woo Theme. $500 is reasonable for that.

      When I do a web site for a client, there is a lot of consulting involved. I don't just look at the "number of pages" they want, but who their target market is, what they are planning on doing with it, who will be using it, and how it integrates with the rest of their marketing. I don't just design and slap up a few pages, but I set it up so that it will work for them.

      Most people have gotten quotes from the lowballers. I just tell them that my quote is based on the amount of time it will take and a custom site takes more time than one on a generic template.

      Now I'm getting a lot of people wanting to redesign their site that they had done by a chop shop because they are ready to invest in something that will actually work. Besides the people that call me to fix their sites that were set up by someone that didn't know what they were doing. Most of the time they are paying me more to fix it than they paid for the initial site.

      You get what you pay for.

      Web design is just a small part of what I do, besides having my own sites. If someone isn't ready to pay what I charge, I'm fine with that.
      Hi CMA,

      I completely agree. Much of the fee that I charge clients is for the 10-15 hours of phone/meetings - if you are not careful with how you quote a job, you will find that a 2k website has no profit margin. After the 10th revision and 15th 1 hour phone call....you'll remember next time to very specifically define the scope of work on both technical and business items related to the site.

      Brian
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  • Profile picture of the author cchipster
    I agree...a client of mine whom recently bought a restauarant told me the last web designer charged them $6k for thier site! I was shocked because the site is pretty plain jane!
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  • I totally agree! you get what you pay for. I have outsourced for a couple of years now , from videos, to writing, seo, design and I can tell you that the cheapest guy is not always the best way to go. I seriously do not think you can get a great website for under $500. I really think that it is still a great price at $1,000 or maybe $1,500. Maybe it depends on your territory as well. I know places in my city charge upwards of 3 - 7k. Seriously , what do you get anymore for $1,000? You can usually tell just from the artwork or design of someone worth $20 per hour to someone worth $75 per hour. I have seen it!

    THanks for all the comments. I am charging this client $997. Just because I know him and it would help my porfolio to have him. I would usually charge $1,499 per site. I have had good reviews on my sites. I do not think that $1500 is out of line.

    You can easily spend over $100 just eating out one night!!

    Tommy
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  • Profile picture of the author cpamassive
    Thinking of different people......not same..is a market
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  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    When you sell websites, you really need to sell the benefits and results of what you can do, and not just treat it as a commodity.

    This is the only way to separate yourself from the bargain "chop shops" on Craigslist and elsewhere that are selling websites like commodities in the $100-$300 range, and not have the business owners feel like you're ripping them off.

    You're a knowledgeable web and marketing consultant, and that is the main reason why your website fees are significantly higher than the "chop shops", because you know how to recommend the optimal design and layout that will get your clients results based on your consultation with them.

    You're not just being paid to set up a website, you're being paid to consult with clients and design their websites from a marketing perspective. You're not just selling some generic commodity that many high school kids could probably whip up in a few hours - this is not what the client is paying for!
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  • Profile picture of the author Creativegirl
    Websites are a capital investment but somewhere along the line after the first generation websites (which easily ran $15,000 to $100,000 - remember the dreadful wallpaper that took eons to load?) they lost their value as such. We used to sell very cheap websites starting at $350 for 3 pages but the amount of education involved and then 9 out of 10 customers NOT being prepared and costing us $ I changed to higher end packing in some SEO features. Unless you're targeting clients with certain sales levels the average small business (that you run into at the chamber) cannot afford outlaying $1,000. And, like logo design, the marketplace is full of misconceptions about what is involved in creating these assets, their true costs and value. Most little guys want a $50 logo and $200 website that converts. Good luck!

    Having said that web design like IM is unregulated and goes from extreme to extreme which helps and hurts us and our customers. I see companies selling 1 page websites for $1,000 and 20 page sites for $500. Where are they finding idiots willing to pay $1,000 for 1 page, or are they that good of sales people?

    The trend of financing or providing the hosting again is more attractive to many small businesses since the recession. So many had rough time last year with cash flow. Problem with this is how do you maintain value in the marketplace, not fund it upfront yourself and give customers more ownership than the content you placed on the page using some hosts sitebuilder.

    I agree with the model of selling low end and gaining volume or automating it and reserving your time simply for higher end custom designs.

    Bottom line, stick with what your local market will pay. We've had prospects go elsewhere only to come back in a year or end up with something that doesn't perform.

    We're on the thresh hold of a big shift in small business as they awaken to the fact that all the growth is online and will not reverse direction. The challenge when this happens is how the little guy who does 0 to $1,000 annually in advertising, how to they find the $ to pay for it - unless we get them results first.
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    • Profile picture of the author MRomeo09
      Sigh. Have you guys really looked at the competition. I mean how many competitors have you called? What competitive survey have you undertaken?

      Do yourself a favor. Create a Gmail account and start asking for quotes for web design from the Top 100 people you'll find on Google in your locale. I've done it. The average is around $2,500. I've seen only a few companies charge less than $1k, and many that charge over $10k for a simple offline website.

      You can comfortably charge $3-5k and get it. $500 is a joke. I value my time more than that. When you have to move that one image a 1/4" left, you'll know what I mean. I've done consulting work for design firms that charge a minimum of $150k for an e-commerce platform.

      Look at your competition, if you think your competition is charging $500 you'll be sadly mistaken. Unless you believe your competition is all those spammers from overseas that are getting people to the top of Google for $99.

      My rates are a minimum of $2,750 for a 9 page website at the current time, and I probably want to raise them even higher because I hate designing websites. And I've sold pre-built, already optimized sites for well into the 5 figures.

      Marcos
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  • Profile picture of the author kynhongchua
    I think everyone is right
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  • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
    Originally Posted by www_retireonme_com View Post

    Do you think we are 'low valueing' our services by only charging $500?

    Absolutely.

    The biggest mistake consultants make is not charging enough (it devalues your service).

    One other huge mistake is advertising a price to begin with.

    When you're talking to clients you should be asking questions and looking for customized solutions THAT WILL HELP THEM MAKE REAL SALES AND PROFITS.

    When you make a suggestion they get excited about you can go through the idea with them and estimate the potential dollar value to them in the coming months and years of that idea.

    That establishes value based on potential profits and completely removes you from the BS beginners idea that you should sell a website for $X.

    A $100 website is a $100 ripoff if it doesn't bring in real sales and profits and a $100,000 website is a bargain if it brings in $200,000+ profits to a business.

    It's not about price...its about value.

    What you need to start doing is becoming genuinely committed to making real profits for the businesses you're working with and pricing based on the potential profit to them of your solutions.

    Kindest regards,
    Andrew Cavanagh
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    • Profile picture of the author Vagabond 007
      Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

      A $100 website is a $100 ripoff if it doesn't bring in real sales and profits and a $100,000 website is a bargain if it brings in $200,000+ profits to a business.

      It's not about price...its about value.
      [/thread]

      Finally someone said it!!

      Some of you are focused on the wrong thing.
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      • Profile picture of the author Amir Luis
        Originally Posted by Vagabond 007 View Post

        [/thread]

        Finally someone said it!!

        Some of you are focused on the wrong thing.
        Agreed....


        I find a value in the win/win proposition of selling websites hella cheap to gain a lead. I am not in the web design business. I am in the marketing business. So if I sell a simple 5 page direct response website for $599 is that the end?

        No...

        Not only do I take in an extra $30 per month from each site sold... but I have a warm lead for future sales. I have a business relationship that opens the door for SEO, PPC management, Social Media, Autoresponders, Etc....

        adnauseum

        Selling cheap websites is a lead generation tool.

        I think people forget this... They think that is the end.... but it isn't.

        Only the beginning my friends.

        The way my price structure is set up. It combats my biggest competitor. The one I lovingly call... "bigbird".

        AKA....

        The YellowPages.

        Since they are giving away FREE 3,5,and 10 page websites and overcharging for hosting. I am actually doing them a favor by getting to them first. I actually save them money.

        Once I have sold the website. I am now... their web guy.

        The go to guy...

        The Difference Maker....

        The one they trust with anything internet.

        So...

        I have myself a brand new HOT lead to sell all kinds of IM products and services.... and I got paid to get the lead.

        Win win if you ask me.

        Now... I always keep in mind...

        Listen First, Sell Second.

        Why?

        Because there are those that need more. Not only do they get more... But they pay a LOT more too... And I get them as clients too...

        How?

        By offering a pretty sweet deal as a loss leader. Then listening to thier needs via a Needs Analysis. You never know what stone may turn up.

        Easy Peasy.....
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