Spring? Maybe?

It actually went up to 7°C today! It’s beautiful out, didn’t manage to melt much snow however it was better then the -10 or so with the windchill yesterday and cold northerly wind. I am so happy and excited for spring to be here. Hopefully there will be very little snow from here on out. We still have so much that needs to melt. I’m praying for no major flooding.

I was approached by a friend of a friend of my Mom’s to possibly put together a website for a historical society. They want to use WordPress or something like that to put together a site or revamp an old site that they have. I am really interested in doing it however they are asking for a quote and I have never charged for anything before and have absolutely no idea how much to charge for a site.

I have been thinking about it all day and have not got back to them yet, they are looking for a quote by Friday or Monday at the very latest. I was going to work up something but can not access my cPanel or WHM on my account so I had to put in a ticket for that. I just wanted to get an idea of how easy it would be, or how not so easy.

It’s simple enough really, I can either buy a theme and customize it or use a free one that allows for commercial or non-profit use and customize it or I can even create from scratch, but I am not sure time-wise if I have time for that or if they would be okay with a customized pre-made theme or if they would want one built from scratch and I know what I charge should/would depend on how much time I have to put into it and all but I just don’t really have a clue when it comes to pricing and what I can even accomplish in the time frame they are looking for. I am going to have to contact her tomorrow and get a better idea after work.

16 Comment

  1. Jamie says: Reply

    Honestly, I would charge by the hour. You’re most likely having to do this from scratch. Most clients, would not even consider in having a pre-made theme. If they did, they wouldn’t have asked you to help. I would honestly just charge them $5.00 per hour. If they’re closer friends, less. Good luck with this, and I hope you get a chance to do this. I once had an opportunity in putting together an entire website for some music band. However, it fell through. The guy finally told me exactly what he wanted, and it was something that I’m not familiar with. Or wasn’t familiar at the time. I thought by the way he was talking that he wanted me to put together an entire site. Not some java/flash thing. Ah well, you win some and you lose some.
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    1. Hey Jamie, thanks for the advise! I actually got a hold of her today and talked a bit more about it. I am not a professional designer and am self taught for the most part so I wanted to make sure I was absolutely up front with her about that. I offered to actually do it for free, they are a local Historical Society and I love history and everything to do with history so I think putting together a site would be fun and a good experience for me. She said that their current site has been out of date so long that they are not worried so much about time-frame, especially if done for free. I’d only charge for the domain name. I explained to her that I have never fully put something together from scratch (well at least not lately and not to the extent that I would have to if they wanted me to) but that I am good with customizing and can set up WordPress and get the site easily transferred over and get new content or what have you in it with no issues, however I have not much experience with creating themes from scratch and she was okay with that and is going to talk it over with other members of the Historical Society tonight. So I am excited. I will just do it as a side project and not charge for anything other then the domain name and use it as experience gained

      1. Jamie says: Reply

        Hey Kirsten, you’re very welcome! And any time. I’m happy that you’re taking this website as an experience. I was just going to say that you can actually use this experience and put it on your resume for future reference. I think that’s pretty awesome you offered to do the site for free and only charge for the domain name because you love history. I would have done the same, for something I love. Good luck to you and for the site. If you need help, let me know. :).
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  2. Congrats on the possible job opportunity! Personally, if I wasn’t giving a discount for knowing the clients, I would definitely charge more than less. Revamping a site or building from the start always takes more time and effort than initially thought! I would start with a base fee for the initial build up (maybe $500) and then also an hourly wage. I think the going rate is around $20-$30 an hour. Of course it all depends on you and what you feel comfortable charging. Please don’t let your skills and time be taken advantage of. Good luck
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    1. Thanks, I am hoping it all works out! Decided that I am not going to charge.

  3. Penda says: Reply

    Congratulations! This is a big thing! Well, consider the amount of time and effort you’ll be investing and the amount of time you have to work on it and price. I do some layout stuff too mostly blogs and portfolios, where I’m from, I have to charge cheap.
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    1. Thank you It is big for me. I thought about it a lot and decided that I am going to offer to do it for free. I am only charging for the domain name. I can host it myself as it is not a big site. I offered and she is going to get back to me. I don’t feel I have the knowledge right now, too rusty, to charge anything, will be a good learning experience.

  4. Deanna says: Reply

    I made a website once for a cheerleading team in NB . I can’t remember how much I charged them. I don’t think it was a lot because I wasn’t very confident in my skills and felt and little bad charging someone for a website I made. But it was fun. I would start with a base fee and an hourly fee. That way you’re covered when they tell you that want to change everything haha.
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    1. That’s exactly how I feel, that I am not confident in my skills and feel bad for charging so I am not. They are a registered charity so I am only charging for a domain name. I can easily host, install WordPress, create the site and customize a theme. Been doing that for years for my own site(s). So I don’t feel right charging for anything but the domain name. Hosting doesn’t even cost me $50 a year.

  5. Definitely do not under charge. One of the things that people do is under value they’re skills. The other thing I would recommend is a written agreement. Your base charge or project to charge and what that charge includes (initial setup, theme design, instruction on use, etc). This keeps them from making you redo everything or from claiming that you failed to deliver the final product.

    I’ve worked as a consultant. Trust me on this.

    I wouldn’t discount your cost either just because someone you know pointed you towards them (don’t charge a ridiculous amount either, but once you offer something cheaply, if they come back to you they won’t expect anything different). I’m not sure if it’s the same in Canada, but most non profits can write off expenses on taxes as an advertising cost of servicez so asking for a fair price shouldn’t cause you to hesitate.

    1. Thanks so much for the advise. It will definitely be useful in the future. For this one I decided not to charge. If they go with me I will only charge for the domain (haha I hate repeating myself but at the same time I love to reply directly to every comment on my blog, why I don’t know, I know not everyone does that).

      I do agree though that as I get better at it in the future for other people I will likely charge a base rate and an hourly rate for updates/maintenance. In Canada they can get grants from towns and cities and provincial governments I think. I am sure that most of it can be written off or granted to non-profits and charities. Not really 100% sure though.

  6. Kya says: Reply

    Hopefully there will be no more snow! It’s about time it becomes a snow free zone!

    That is great that you were contacted to work on the site. I hope it works out well.

    I have a few people I know that ask me to do websites for them. I haven’t designed one myself for ages and I purchase themes for them to use and then just basically set everything up. I am doing this as a favour, so I only asked for the cost of the theme. However when you are doing it for paid work, you can usually purchase themes for projects, but you should also charge for your time and to host it, if you are! Trying to find that figure is not always easy, but you want it to be worth your time as well.

    Contacting them and getting a better idea might be a good idea. They might even be able to share how much they are willing to pay or the kind of figure they had in mine. Some people don’t understand how a certain cost can be justified, even when there is a lot of work involved.

    I hope it does work out well!

    1. Thanks for the suggestions Kya! I do agree that normally even using a purchased theme there is still the setting up, adding in content and up keep that typically should be charged for on an hourly basis and it is so true that a lot of people don’t take that into consideration. A lot of people do not understand the work that goes into keeping up a website, even beyond the initial setup and the time it actually takes to create a site. I know with softaculous and other things like that a lot of the work is much easier but it’s never really non-existant.

  7. I cannot wait for Spring to finally be official! I’m tired of the cold weather and honestly tired of the snow as well.

    You should totally take the opportunity. You could do an internet search and see what people usually charge for wordpress installations and theme designs to get some type of idea of how much you want to charge.

    Good luck!
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    1. I am so sick of snow now that I think if next year there was no snow at all (fat chance) I would be extremely happy. We got another 20 cm the night before last. It just seems never ending!

  8. Yay for spring! We see some signs of it here too, finally.
    I made a website for a dog association recently. I didn’t want to charge too much because I didn’t consider myself skilled enough, plus if I’d charge much enough to actually get a decent income from it after the taxes, it would be unrealistic for a little private club to pay (they preferred paying to a company so I did it as a part of my husband’s business). I charged roughly 600 dollars (6000 SEK) but from the start I was asking much less, which even they thought was too little for all the work I had done. I saw it quite much as a learning project for myself though.
    It’s a good thing to charge per hour and then keep track of how many hours you spend (which I didn’t).
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