How to Get an Accurate Web Design Quote

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Getting an accurate web design quote can be a task in itself. This blog post will highlight the key areas you can focus on to help you get the most accurate web design quote possible.

There are many variables that can affect your quote, but by sticking to the following steps, this process will be a breeze.

Some key points to get started include researching agencies, identifying functionality, determining the type of content you need.

Let’s get to it!

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Research agencies

The very first thing you want to do is research your agencies. You want to find the ones that you need or don’t need.

You can do this by finding out what they do and don’t do and find out their capabilities.
Firstly, ask yourself what type of project do I need?

  • Web design
  • Branding
  • Content

To see what an agency can and can’t do simply go to their services/about pages.

They should clearly state what type of work they do and how they do it, for example, if they are an agency that does web design services they could state that they work with WordPress.

If you are looking for a total rebrand and need branding, web design and content. Well, check us out.

If you have looked at our blog post (link above) you will have a super good idea on what type of agency you need. If you have not here are some quick pointers:

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Compare their websites

When looking at websites, you generally get a feel of whether or not you like a website. If you don’t like an agencies website at first glance, take a look at their portfolio of work.

This will let you determine their design direction and from there you should be able to deduce if they will be suitable for you or not.

Find out their pricing

Once you have compared the agencies websites and made a list to compare them, you can then start thinking about how much they charge. Are they within your budget or not?

Well, depending on how each agency operates they may or may not show their pricing.
If they do not show their pricing, you’ll need to get in touch with them. But, to get an accurate quote, you need to provide sufficient information.

If not, there will be more back and forth and the possibility of being provided with an inaccurate web design quote.

Once you’ve carried out this research you should put together a comparison list, this will let you easily compare agencies you’ve looked at going forward. Think of this like a comparison list that you can make on ecommerce websites when looking to purchase something new.

So, for this to go as smoothly as possible and to get the most accurate web design quote, you need to follow a series of easy steps going forwards.

This may sound daunting, but it’s really not. Simply follow each step, step by step and before you know it you’ll be ready to receive an accurate quote.

So here goes.

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Research

Do your research, you need to find out your target market (demographics), find out what social media platforms are suitable for you and find out the requirements of your project – quite possibly the hardest part, but we will show you how to make this super easy.

Demographics

You want to do extensive research into your demographics, this will influence your web design project. This is because everyone acts, behaves and operates differently. You need your website to look and behave as your target market expects.

You also want to find out what social media platforms your target market uses, from here stick to and focus on these platforms. If you want to use other platforms, you can but just keep in mind that they may not be as effective or perform as well as you’d expect.

For more information on this type of research, give our post on the complete list of web design deliverables a read.

Requirements (complexity of the project)

Now time for the hard part.

Websites are far from simple. They may have a slick design and be super easy to use, but in most cases, this doesn’t happen overnight.

Firstly, you want to find out what type of website you need.

There are a few different types of sites and choosing the correct one is super important and is easy to do.

So here goes.

You have brochure websites. Brochure website work to show your customers exactly what your business is about. Brochure websites are a simple website solution that pushes your business online, without any added complication.

You have ecommerce websites. Ecommerce websites allow your customers to buy from your business whenever it’s convenient. It’s important that your ecommerce website sells, without creating friction or complications for your visitors.

You have landing page websites. Landing page websites are good to show off a new product/service and can either be used by itself or alongside your primary website. These are designed to grab your customers attention. These are single page websites that have brochure-style messaging.

You have sign up websites. Sign up websites allow customers to sign up to a service that your business provides. This could be a fitness website that sells fitness plans. Take a look at Robbie Thompson’s website Happy Balance Life.

You have resource websites. Resource websites allow your customers to find information about something they need, not necessarily what your business is about. This could be a road safety organisation.

Finally, you have contact websites. Contact websites are designed to make it fast and efficient for customers to get in touch with you. An example would be an IT support company’s website where people go to to get IT help.

First things first, to start heading in the right direction you need to find out all the “scary” parts of your website.

code function

Website function

Now that you know what type of website you need, the next step is determining the functionality of the website.

This can be quite tricky because you may not know what specific functionality you need or how a specific bit of functionality is achieved (what goes on behind the scenes).

The best thing to do here is to imagine how your website will function and look at websites that function the same.

At this stage, you want to go over every aspect of your website and any possible integrations.

When we say integrations, we mean things like MailChimp, Active Campaign, Google Analytics, HotJar etc.

All of the above services need to be “integrated” into your website.

To nail down the functionality ask yourself a series of questions.

Let’s look at this from an ecommerce website’s perspective, you’d ask:

  • What type of product am I selling?
    • Physical
    • Digital
    • Booking
  • Do I need variations of a single product?
    • Blue scarf
    • Red scarf
    • Striped red or blue scarf etc.
  • Am I also selling on other platforms?
    • eBay or Amazon etc.
  • Do I need live chat
    • Drift/Intercom
  • Am I using any software for my business?
    • These could be the integrations we mentioned earlier
    • This could also be any bespoke custom systems (online portals etc.)
  • What pages do I need?
    • Services, about, contact, blog, FAQs etc.
  • What type of content am I going to blog about?
    • Text, images, video, downloads

This is just a general overview of some of the questions you’d ask yourself to get a better idea of the functionality.

If you are not sure simply do some research on websites that you like and function how you want your site to function and take notes.

Once you have done that you can then generate a list of requirements/functions from that website. It could have a store locator that you didn’t think of in the first place.

Looking at other websites is a great way to achieve inspiration.

If you don’t fully communicate or lay down the required functionality, it can cause issues down the line. You want to get this ironed out as best as you can at an early stage.

drawing question mark

Content

We previously mentioned content when coming up with a list of requirements. Content extremely important.

You should really give the above post a read if you haven’t already.

You also want to generate content ahead of time. Why? Content influences the design of your website.

It influences your website design because it needs to work around your content. For example, if you need a text-heavy website, you’d need a design that makes this look presentable and good. If you have little text but lots of media, you’d need a design that works with media-heavy websites.

So whilst thinking about the content you need to think about what type of media you need. Do you need images, graphics, illustrations and/or video?

If you know the type of content you need and what you’ll be blogging about then that’s great, but if not here are some quick tips.

  • Look at previous content your business has already output
  • Think about the pages you have on your website (you should have an idea from the functionality section)
  • Ask yourself what would you want to say on these pages?
  • Think about what categories of blog content would be suitable for your business

keyboard and drawing tablet

Design Brief

At this stage, you may be saying to yourself, “Is all this really necessary just to get an accurate website design quote”. Yes, it is. Why you may ask? Well, the agency you are going to work with needs a really good idea about you and your project. As soon as you submit a project brief (which we are going to look at now) they start thinking about your project.

Currently, you should know what agencies you would like to work with, carried out the research, and thought about content. Now it’s time to bring all of this together by creating a project brief .

  • An Overview of Your Business
  • The Objectives of Your Design Project
  • Your Target Audience and Market
  • The Problem You’re Facing
  • Project Specific Information
  • More About Your Business
  • Competitor Information
  • Project Timescales
  • Project Budget
  • Contact Information
  • How the Project will Be Awarded
  • Required Response

If you look at the blog post linked, it contains a neat design brief template that you can use to create a brief and (hopefully) send it to us. We really can help you out.

If you are overwhelmed with carrying out all of the preliminary research (up to the point of the design brief) simply use the design brief as a guide.

You can even add any additional notes to the end of the document (if desired).

Coloured Pencils Crowdsourcing

Top Tips

Don’t use marketplaces

The last thing you want to do when searching for an accurate web design quote is going to marketplaces. Yuk.

The reason you don’t want to use a marketplace (this could be Fiverr) is down to the fact you could end up working with a freelancer (not a dedicated team of people).

Because they are on a marketplace, they can pick and choose the work and because they are working by their self they could possibly pick a project that looks quick and easy.

Another issue is how you purchase a project. When you search for a new project on a marketplace you will see a list of freelancers with a starting price.

As you click through you are presented with packages to pick from, all with predefined pricing. Because everything is predefined, you are simply not going to get an accurate web design quote.

Don’t use packages

Packages may make life “easy”, but they really are not good. Here’s a full post that explains why packages .

But in short, web design packages make it easy to see what you are going to get, it also allows the agency to know what to expect in the future because every project is based around the package. This makes every project generalised.

Web design packages

  • Force you to purchase the more expensive packages
  • Are limited and not flexible (pay for a package just to get one feature, but the other features are not needed)
  • Can hurt your brand (generic features)
  • Makes the relationship with your agency moulded around the package

Use a professional agency

The best thing you can do to get a website that’s worthy for your business is to go to a professional web design agency.

If you have completed your research and project brief and send it to a professional agency, you will have a full team reviewing your brief that has a solid web design process in place. This will make sure your website structure is just right

Here are some main points from the above post just in case you haven’t read it.

  • Experience and Knowledge
    • Identifying issues
    • Variety of projects
    • Learning from one another
    • Constructive criticism
  • Efficiency
  • Support
    • Readily available
    • The heavy lifting
    • Backups
  • Process
    • Dedicated
    • More engaged (team meetings)
  • Relationship
    • Long term relationships
  • Resources
    • Ability to offer other services (print, ebooks, social media)
    • Outsourcing
    • Contacts
  • Fewer Issues
    • Custom website
    • No “jack of all trades”

One thing worth mentioning when working with a professional agency is they can very easily identify any issues or holes within your project from the very beginning, they can fill in the gaps for you and tell you what will and won’t work.

This means when they come to prepare your proposal, it will be as accurate as it can be.

note pad with writing

Final thoughts

The worst thing that can happen once a project is started is for your web designer or agency to turn around and say “this is out of project scope” or “this is going to cost you extra”.

By completing all the steps in this post, the risk of the dreaded words will be kept down to an absolute minimum.

The reason this happens is down to the fact that research into the functionality has not been conducted properly.

For example, if you are having an ecommerce website designed and developed and it has been fully developed and you are testing it for yourself.

You may all of a sudden ask yourself “oh, but I also sell these products on eBay or Amazon, I don’t want to have to post my products on both platforms separately”.

This leads you to ask your developer to implement such feature, which in turn can add additional costs to your project deviating from the original quote.

Whereas if you fully scope everything from the very beginning, there will be no surprising issues or costs.

person resting hands on laptop

Conclusion: How to Get an Accurate Web Design Quote

Getting an accurate web design quote requires planning, preparation and thought. If not you will end up with unwanted surprised.

Following the steps outlined in this blog post will ensure you get an accurate quote. Here are the steps for a nice overview:

  • Research your agencies
  • Research your target market
  • Imagine how your website would work and find similar websites
  • Find out the needed functionality of your website
  • Find out what content you need
  • Prepare a design brief
  • Don’t use market places
  • Don’t use web design packages
  • Use a professional agency

If you just need plain help from the get go, please get in touch with us.

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