Beware of cheap web designers… says expensive one.
There is an awful lot of articles written by expensive web design companies to justify their high prices and to warn general public about dangers arising from using services of cheap web designers. I, as a cheap web designer feel that I have duty to write my own article to justify my low prices.
I am aware that I am one of the people who “destroy the web design market”. I am regularly getting some sort of hate mail from people who – I assume - are unhappy with my level of webdesign prices. Latest one that came through my contact form was short and concise indeed: “pay peanuts, get monkeys”.
I am happy to report that I am rather smart kind of monkey, way above average I would say. And I love to eat peanuts, especially when coding a website.
As long as the customers have no clue what is involved in the mysterious process of getting a website done, they will likely accept exorbitant prices without questioning. A bit of jargon, some scientific-sounding words and the poor customer understands, that he or she is getting cutting edge technology that obviously has to cost money.
Now I will reveal the truth to you. In majority of the cases this cutting edge technology is called WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and couple of other names. It is true that these pieces of software are the best you can get in today’s Internet. It is also true that this software is absolutely and 100% FREE.
Above: Is what you are paying for really worth it? Or are you getting fools’ gold of webdesign?
Now to your famous design. The aforementioned software (called CMS – content management system – heart of your website) uses so called templates to create visual or design layer of your site. Many customers are paying big money for ready-made or slightly modified existing designs (templates). Creating templates/designs from scratch is time consuming.
Those templates come in two flavors – free and commercial. The commercial ones cost around 100 dollars and are worth the money, as they offer good extra functionality and generally are more future proof.
As you can see there is nothing too fancy yet. No huge effort, no custom programming, some light design, installation and configuration rather that real creative effort or web development. There is no hugesd amount of work involved – and this is ok.
But it is only ok for the right price.
Big companies also will have their own agenda in making you believe that you have to pay big bucks to get your website. Bigger business means higher standing costs. Office, electricity, cars, etc. Reality is, that apart from the actual designer/developer you pay hourly rate of whole lot of people who do not add to the product, but are needed to run the company.
This is a little graph I show to potential customers. They are usually business owners, so they understand it straight away.
They add to the price, but they do not add value to your website. You do not need them, the company’s owner needs them to run the business.
Another thing is that cheap web designers offer service to certain category of customers. Startups, small-medium businesses, all those who are price conscious and watch their spending. Think about it next time you book your flight with Ryanair. Web design in Ireland, just like flying does not have to cost an arm and a leg. If done right can be both inexpensive and perfectly fit for purpose.
There is plenty of space on the market for both cheap and expensive web designers and at the end of the day it is the customer who decides. Keep your eyes open, ask questions, do not get dazzled by jargon. Look for right price, because in long term only win-win situation will be beneficial and profitable to both sides – the web designer and customer.