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  1. #1
    New Coder
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    Landing design projects

    Hello everybody,

    I wanted to see everybody's steps on landing a design project. My system seems to not work very well and I could definitely use some pointers. Here are my main problems at least I think but want to get confirmed.I have no contracts for the customer to sign before the project. And I have no website to refer somebody to. I only have references to designed websites. Another problem I seem to be having is figuring out how much the projects should cost. Is there a general rule of thumb? How much would you charge for a 5-10 page website with a custom template integrated into a CMS platform?

    I know these are a lot of questions but I'm just starting out in the business world and would love to get a lot of these questions resolved fast. I have landed a couple of projects but the phone conversations always seem awkward when I do not say anything about any contracts or what not.

    Thanks,

    Joe

  • #2
    Master Coder
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    Cottage Grove, Minnesota
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    This is a tough one, because everyone who needs a website has a "nephew" or "cousin"
    that will do it for free ... "why can't you make me one for free?" So, you give them a
    quote and they don't call back. Everyone wants something for nothing.

    Determining who your client is will help get started. If it's a small business, large business,
    non-profit org, single person business ... I sort of charge them by what they can typically
    afford. It of course depends on the project.

    You do need your own website. Somewhere that the clients can see your portfolio,
    and most importantly, contact you and deal with the invoices for your services.
    Work on your own website first.

    You might want to do some non-profit organization sites (a couple for free even?) to
    get a feel for the time and knowledge required. That will help in determining costs
    for future sites.

    Too many CMS systems to determine a typical fee. WordPress is fairly easy compared
    to Drupal, but it all depends on your experience with each one. Keep in mind that you are
    not really charging just for time, but for your knowledge and abilities to write code.

    Don't be afraid to charge a small-sized business $500 - $1000+ to install and customize a CMS
    website for them. Remember that they can write-off expenses like this on their business taxes.

    A contract in writing is good, but more for what happens after the site is done. How you
    determine you're done, and how they will be charged for future changes, fixes, and maintenance.
    Make sure there is agreement on how the project ends. They may expect you to make changes
    for free after 1 year. They may feel that their site is never completed.


    .
    Last edited by mlseim; 07-23-2009 at 05:08 PM.

  • #3
    New Coder
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    Hey, mlseim. Thanks for the helpful info. That's what I had thought as well about the website. I'm going to bring my portfolio online.

    Thanks,

    Joe


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