And How Much Does A Blog Design Cost?

“Rule three: If you aren’t willing to pay that much for a blog…”

On a roundabout route feeding at the RSS trough I happened to be looking in the recent bowels of the Blog Herald and found a gem. Chris Pearson asks How Much Should A Design Cost? Good question. Like Chris I’ve had many phone calls with potential clients running a mile at the prospect of paying what I consider a reasonable fee. I’ve tried to make things happen cheaply for clients in the hope of fostering good relations and on each occasion it led to a lack of respect and bad blood (in fact none of those clients even acknowledge me anymore).

Rule one: you get what you pay for and if you invest nix you get biscuits.

Rule two: don’t expect designers (or developers) to work for money you wouldn’t work for yourself.

Rule three: If you aren’t willing to pay that much for a blog you probably aren’t convinced your business needs one (yet)… this will change.

Rule three and a half: If your cousin, son, best friend’s dog can do it for $200 then I wish you all the best. When it isn’t up to par you are welcome to come back to us for a considered web solution.

Rule 4: Although I talk a lot its not all rubbish and I happen to know a bit about web technologies, interface design and what it takes to create effective web solutions. The same goes for other developers (as a general rule). Listen to us for our expertise - we aren’t all out to rip you off.

Rule 5: Sometimes your guy / girl will need to have a night off or sleep or do something non-productive like drink a few Wild Turkeys. Its human. Have some faith the outcomes will be met and don’t expect more than 8 hour days from them.

There are more but my fingers would fall off educating the world on every aspect of this stuff. In short don’t do or ask for spec work, gratis work, low paid work or in kind work. We’re about trying to make you richer. Remember you get what you pay for - and sometimes you even get what you ask for…

In Hobart I’m willing to come into your organisation and discuss blogging for free, if you’re elsewhere we can work something out. But when it comes to the crunch I need to feed my family and work towards retirement just like anyone else. The blog, web site or whatever is going to cost you exactly what its worth. Nothing more and nothing less.

Great article from Chris Pearson and a must read. My prices at Norty Pig start at AUD$1000 (plus 10% general service tax) for a designed blog and grows with complexity. If you want a kick arse design put enough money in to hire a high quality graphic designer as well. Sometimes clients make me feel unworthy asking that sort of price but to be honest anything less will mean I’m up late doing unpaid freelance - everyone’s nightmare.

Anyone else like to throw their fee structure on the table?

2 Responses to “And How Much Does A Blog Design Cost?”

  1. Matt Robin Says:

    I’ve yet to do a blog site for anyone else yet (no, don’t look at mine - it’s still down while I muck about with it as only a perfectionist distracted by coffee can do!)…and I’ve considered the pricing structure to allow for the ‘extra’ effort that goes in to tailoring a CMS to do what the site owner wants it to do. It really depends on the complexity of the site…how large is it going to be - and it’ll need to be ‘tested to destruction’ too…all that costs more than a static-content site. Pricing around the £1000 pounds-sterling mark are not out of the question…and I’ve mentioned that to some people, with a straight-face, and never heard from them again! As you’ve stated - if they’re not prepared to put the money in…then they’ll get something else made that’s rubbish for much less. But I won’t come down on pricing - it’s still work and it has a value.

    Good link through to Chris’ article mate…and good perspective from you too.

  2. nortypig Says:

    Hi Matt
    I think web development and design in general are highly under-rated by many people who are potential leads for incoming work. I had a suggestion on an e-commerce prospect last year that they only expected to pay about $200 for the lot! Its not that uncommon a perception.

    A major factor in that is designers etc on our side of the fence working for nix or next to nix to build portfolios - there’s a lot of major under-cutting. So in a way our industry isn’t working as it should. Its too easy for some kid to grab DW and hack up a passable three or four pages.

    I’m finding that rather than spending an hour on an email and phone call that doesn’t pan out for this reason its easier to be honest up front. If its the money that’s just how it is and I’ll get by without the work. What really bugs me is after spending an hour of advice etc the prospect balks at the money… so i make it clear early on.

    I’d probably start my prices around the $1000 for most static work as well, depending on who takes the photos or sources images, who writes content, how many iterations of editing need to be jumped through, a couple of meetings, on average about 4 hours of email and phone calls etc etc…

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