How much to charge for a website? This is a tough question to answer for beginner and experienced developers alike. There’s no magic formula to figure how much to charge. It can be hard to estimate the exact price because it depends on the type of site you’re building.
There are many things to consider before you set a price to potential clients — without having to undervalue your skills.
In this article, we’ll talk about factors you need to consider before placing a price tag for your web development service.
Table of Contents
- Key Points You Should Always Pay Attention To
- Differences Between Junior and Senior Work
Key Points You Should Always Pay Attention To
If you are not sure how much to charge for a website, there are a couple of points you need to keep in mind before setting a price tag. Bellow, there’s a list of things to consider, that will help you set an optimal price on your services.
What are my Skills?
When deciding how much to charge for a website, you have to be honest with yourself about the level of your skills.
- HTML and Web Programming Language Level
You need to consider how advanced your technical expertise is in terms of web development. Do you create sites with Content Management System (CMS) such as Wix and WordPress? Or do you build custom ones that you code from scratch?
You need to be specific with your technical skills as you need to establish credibility as an expert.
- Website Design Skills
It’s not just knowing how to code that matters – web design is another crucial factor. Can you design a site by yourself or do you need a graphic designer? Knowledge of web design will also increase your value. Clients will love a website that not only works but is also visually appealing.
- SEO and Digital Marketing Knowledge
Knowledge in these fields can boost your value even more. Having a website is not the only purpose of a business right? Business owners want a site that converts — the possibility to add a revenue stream to their existing model.
So, deciding how much to charge for a website, make sure to mention how you can improve their online sales with the said knowledge.
What are Other People Charging?
When you’ve figured out your skill set, it’s time to see how much other people charge for the same service. Performing market research by using freelance websites for reference can be a good idea.
You can still set a higher price if you’re confident that your skills are better. But you can lower the fee to compete better with the others. Here are some websites to explore:
The next thing is to look for a specific niche of websites you’re about to develop. Say, you’re really into sports and can easily help clients that sell sports-related merchandise. In this case, you’ll have more bargaining power for knowing the needed ecommerce approach and marketing strategy that works in a niche market.
Knowing the client’s business niche is also essential when you offer your services. For example, you’ll probably charge less when dealing with a charity or non-profit clients than ones that run purely for profit.
Pricing Models: Charge by the Hour vs. for the Project
You have to figure out which pricing models suit you best. You’ll probably have a trial and error process in choosing one, but that’s perfectly fine.
Some people are more inclined to hourly rates. This way, they can deal with many unexpected turns when developing and designing a website. Some clients may never see things right — they always have the urge to improve more and more.
This model might suit you when working with these type of clients.
However, some people prefer to charge per project. You need to evaluate your whole skill-set, possible resources, and business expense required for finishing a project. Additionally, you can experiment with new methods and cutting-edge tools to complete your project efficiently.
This arrangement might also be suitable for clients that don’t want to have any unexpected expenses throughout the project completion. So, get the calculation right!
Include your Expenses
- You also need to calculate your resource expenses. For example, if you build a website with WordPress, do you use premium WordPress themes and plugins? Do your services include hosting plan and website maintenance, and for how long? Do you use tools to manage social media marketing? These costs change how much you charge for a website, so don’t forget to include these expenses.
- Lastly, being a freelancer won’t eliminate your monthly spendings. At the end of the day, you still have to pay those bills. So don’t just calculate how much the website itself costs – include extra money for your own needs.
At this point, the key points are still a bit abstract, aren’t they? In the following section, we’ll break down price range so you can have a more tangible reference of how much to charge for a website.
Differences Between Junior and Senior Work
The description of Junior and Senior work may seem arbitrary, as no single definitive explanation satisfies everyone. However, there is a so-called Programmer Competency Matrix for referencing the knowledge and skills that distinguish those two roles.
In the corporate world, the general belief of junior developer is that it is someone who needs near-constant guidance to understand a company work’s ethic or code of conduct. Conversely, the senior developer is someone who manages and provides guidance to junior developers.
There is no “hard qualification” that distinguish the two roles. If anything, your experience and knowledge probably the only things that matter.
If you just started a freelance career, you probably fall down to the category of a junior developer. It makes sense since you have no experience to develop and collaborate with clients just yet. But as your portfolio grows, your level will go up automatically.
When it comes to the question “how much to charge for a website” – a junior developer will charge less than a senior developer.
Payment Range for Web Development Work
Still not sure how much to charge for a website? You might look to salary reposts as a point of reference. As per May 2017, the United States Department of Labor estimates the annual median salary for a web developer is $67,990.
10% of those people receive $36,830 annually, which we can roughly guess applies for a junior role. For the senior, the pay can sit in a solid $122,320 a year — that’s quite a jump!
The estimate is only slightly different in PayScale. If we break that down to hourly rate, the median pay for a web developer is $20.34. The 10%, which we guess are the junior role, gets around $12.17/hour. And a more senior level can get about $42.28 hourly.
We’ve got two credible sources for junior web developer salary. Divide the estimation into the monthly rate, and we can guess a junior level employee gets paid around $3,000 – $3,550 a month. The number gets more and more clear now.
But, this reference point applies for ANY junior web developer work.
Your pay will differ on how much work and time you need to create a website. For example, you can charge less for a client that only uses the site for a business profile, with just about me and contact pages to include.
For this type of work, charging $1000 – $1500 a website is quite reasonable.
We’re not adding key points above on it just yet. So, if your client needs a fully functioning ecommerce sports merchandise store, you can adjust the price accordingly. Usually, the price will double from a business-page-only website.
For an ecommerce site, the price range from $3000 – $3500 is still reasonable. Additionally, the price can increase based on any value you add from the key points above.
Don’t Limit Yourself by Being the “Junior” Developer
We’ve mentioned the salary range for a junior web developer role. However, we’re not suggesting that you should brand yourself as “junior developer” when starting a career as a freelance web developer.
It’s true that you probably don’t have any experience dealing with real clients just yet, but you can always showcase websites that you’ve developed to them.
This is where 000webhost.com become handy. You can learn and improve your web development skills using our free platform. Start building, designing, and tweaking fully-functioning WordPress sites, or ecommerce stores, and make it live.
By exploring your skills, you can record and determine which area you’re good at, and which one needs improvement. You can estimate how long it takes to create a fully functioning website and simulate your price range for a real-time project.
When you’re ready to offer your services to clients, you can show them exactly what kind of websites you can develop and you’ll know exactly how much to charge for a website.
Now you know how much to charge for a website. There’s no single, definitive answer to get to that. However, there are things you need to consider before mentioning the exact price to potential clients:
- Your HTML and Web Programming Language Level
- Website Design Skills
- SEO and Digital Marketing Knowledge
- Overall experience in website development
You can use salary reports to help you make an informed decision. Just remember to not limit and brand yourself as “the junior” developer.
We’re here to help you learn and build a career as freelance web developers. So, kudos for every successful project you’ve got ahead!