So, What’s This Going To Cost?

Tl;dr Version

  • Read the disclaimer!
  • To fix something broken costs $20 to $100+.
  • To make a branded website on a CMS costs $500 to $2,000+.
  • To make a big website on a CMS costs $1,000 to $10,000+.
  • To make a custom web application is anybody’s guess so email me.

First, the disclaimer — all web projects are different and the best estimate anyone can do without learning and then carefully working through the detailed requirements is a guess, suitable for budgeting and decision-making purposes (and therefor very useful), but that’s all — a guess. Many small decisions along the way can affect the total project cost by a lot and web projects often fall victim to scope creep. Going over budget is awful for everyone, so communication and trust are vital. But to repeat, these are guesses. SWAGs, at best.

OK, that’s out of the way.

My Rates

My standard rate is $75/hour, billed in 15 minute blocks. If we don’t know each other I might ask for incremental payments via PayPal, but generally I’ll send you an invoice at the end of a project, or the end of the month if it’s a lengthy project, and will expect to be paid quickly. Here are some cost ranges you could expect for certain kinds of work (these are guesses!):

Some Typical Costs

Task Time Estimate
Tweaks, adjustments, and fix broken things 15 minutes to several hours.
Simple, branded WordPress Theme[1] 4 – 10 hours*
Responsive, branded WordPress Theme 6 – 12 hours*
Joomla Template 6 – 12 hours*
Small business website[2] 10 – 40 hours
ECommerce website 15 – 60 hours
Web application No telling

* These estimates assume you can provide graphics, like a logo, photos, and some color choices. Design work and graphics production will push the cost up, as will features like slide-shows, forms. More importantly, they assume you will provide and input all of the content.

I’m a developer, not a designer (and certainly not a graphic artist), so although I can provide an attractive site with my own resources, if you need high-design then we’ll need to include a designer in the project cost. I know a few.

[1] A simple theme consists of a single template for the home page and any secondary page, a contact form with the associated plug-in to manage it, placement of widget and navigation menu areas, and styling the theme to be consistent with the brand. You do the content.

[2] I do more work on a small-business website than a simple WordPress theme, though the small-business site might also be built with WordPress. Typically with a business website there are SEO concerns, more pages, more complicated navigation, more platform extensions and possibly custom extensions — you get the idea, though. More work.

Hold On! I Don’t Have That Kind of Money!

I’m not cheap, but my prices are fairly typical. If you’re balking at the cost estimates, you should consider doing it yourself. Large web hosting companies (I won’t link to them because they don’t need any free advertising from me) will install WordPress (my recommendation) on your domain for no cost other than the normal hosting fees. WordPress comes with good, flexible themes already installed and you can just pick one, modify it to the extent you can by selecting options, and don’t look back. Be prepared to invest some time, that’s what you invest when you don’t have money, and then hire a pro if you get into trouble.

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