A major problem for businesses, according to Tim Barnett of web development agency 2BInteractive, is that prices can vary so drastically, making it difficult to even establish what is a fair and reasonable budget for the project.
“It is a challenging question and it’s a question that every business has because they all go out there. They’ll ask multiple suppliers and they’ll get a range. It can go to an oDesk or a Freelancer.com and someone will say, ‘Yeah, we’ll do your website for $100.’ Then they’ll go to another agency [that] says, ‘$50,000 or we won’t get out of bed for you.’ There’s such a wide range of prices out there; it is hard to differentiate,” he says.
However, business owners are more in control of the end price they pay for web development than they often realise.
The most important element for keeping costs under control, suggests Tim, comes down to simple planning.
“I think you need to go into it with an understanding of what you want to get out of it,” he says.
For a new workplace fit-out, you would have a good idea of exactly what you want and thus the quotes you receive from tradespeople are fairly closely aligned around this. Tim’s advice involves taking the same approach to a website project.
“You need to know who your target audience is, where your people are coming from. Are people actually searching for your business, or do you actually need to go and find them? If they’re searching for your business, then you can use a tactic like SEO to get them to the website. Otherwise you might need to go out and find those guys.”
By understanding this from the outset, you can get quotes from developers that more accurately reflect the amount of work involved, and also reduce the cost down the track of having changes or additions made, or worse, paying for the development and then subsequent removal of unnecessary items or types of functionality.
“Your website is so key to your business that we need to sometimes go in there to go, who is your target audience? What is your messaging? What are you trying to say to those people out there?,” Tim points out.
“If we need to get involved in that, that’s where that website cost can get up.”
Hear more insights on managing the rollout of a new website and ensuring its functionality meets the needs of your customers and your business on the My Business Podcast below: