I've only seriously started learning about SEO, affiliates and making my own hosted sites in the last year. It's both harder and easier than expected but I get by.
The other day someone posted a link of someone they knew offering 2-3 page websites for $250. Always one to say what I think I pointed out that I could probably raise a basic site in an hour or two, for a cost of $20. I was quickly corrected and admitted that I must not have the same coding knowledge or background - I am a newbie after all.
Yesterday, someone asked me to do a quick check on a site bragged about by a friend. Neither asker nor friend had much internet knowledge so I said I'd do a general check.
A half hour search led to the knowledge that someone had paid (at least) $1100 for a website where there was little more than 500 words of text, ten low quality directory backlinks and a half dozen photos and a contact page.
A closer look revealed that it was a simple wordpress theme, with all text and content provided by the buyer of the site (with no SEO at all).
Up till now I didn't realize that people would so willingly fork out huge amounts of money for a generic basic web presence - one that I could probably do in half an hour if the content was handed to me on a plate like this had obviously been.
I guess I'm just sitting here in amazement at the fact that something I taught myself with a bit of googling and a few questions could easily sell for thousands an hour to people who have no knowledge of the internet.
I've seen many examples of people charging far more than $250 - and what's more, the site is then set up so the poor client can't do any updating themselves, but is totally reliant on the designer for everything for ever more. In fact, some designers even set up the hosting and domain in their own name so the client has no access whatsoever.
Actually, I think $250 is a bargain.
Firstly, if you have the technical knowledge, why are you charging an hourly rate you could earn as a cleaner? $40 or $50 is a much fairer hourly rate. Given that, then setting up a new website for a client would involve:
- An hour spent with the client to get an accurate understanding of their needs and identify material they want to use(e.g. photographs).
- An hour to do your SEO, find some good domain names, get the client to choose one of them, purchase it and get the site set up
- An hour to do the basic design.
So there's $150 already - and now we get to the risky bit. How many hours do you think you're going to spend in getting feedback from the client, making changes according to their requests, sending them back a new version, making changes according to their requests....probably more than two hours.
So there's your $250 well and truly earned!
The good thing about Wordpress is that once you've handed it over to the client, they should be able to maintain it themselves - but the reality is that they'll ring you every time they get stuck, for months, and not expect to pay any additional.
I have a site I paid for there, same situation. Only because I have not created it yet, and been playing around to get familiar. It does read under construction and by invite only, could this person simply be building their site when they have the time?
Lots of reasons may explain things. The cost of the site is irrelevant. We are so seemingly quick to judge, but honestly, it is none of my business, just threw a possibility out there
$250 is cheap, very cheap
Your seriously underestimating the time expense involved with client relations, the cost of your own education and internet and software and expertise and the cost of marketing your services in the first place.
Plus, Someone who buys their own hosting and domain is still looking at a base cost of around $60-120 a year just for the hosting.
Bill and Marisa nailed it.
That is because there is not a proper relationship between the client and provider. Now, I gotta write a hub on it.
In reference to your learning of SEO. Be leery of what you read here. Following the information in many of these article may incur Google penalties. Search out a dude that rolls with the name of "Grizzly Bear". I think he has started taking down his SEO content, but he is the real deal. He is not a pro writer that learned a couple of tricks and then tried to monetize it, but he is a pro ranker and Elvis would call him the king.
Dang, now I gotta write an article about that as well. No one will believe it because my account does not get that much traffic yet, but it will. When semester finally ends I will give it a go. // i am so tired of math. wonder how high my building is.....splat!
I know. I have seen too many people get ripped off for expensive sites that they easily could have done themselves.
Of course sometimes it goes the other way in that I'll have someone with really complicated plans who insists it must be easy because some friend did a Wordpress site in ten minutes.
But much more of the over charging, unfortunately.
If I could get a bit more oh fey with building word press sites I could probably do that too! Hubby builds in Flash, sites and applications and gets paid good for it when he can get the clients, funny to think I could possibly do similar with WP with far less education and offer 'deals' to get more clients then him
This is interesting. I recently read a thread about how sites and domains are sold on in auctions. It just goes to show that anything can be learned when it is demystified.
*thinks... why cant I build a wall?*
I myself have built wordpress sites for others also. Trust me, it's not worth it. Why? Because once you build it, they will forever come back to you with any little problem they have with it.
Or they are forever saying it's not right,
that they need a picture of their dog poopie on the front,
that it needs more pop,
it's not the right color,
their brother-in-law has some great pictures they want on it,
Someone hacked into the wordpress account so it must be your fault and you need to fix it,
They now want a store in it, can you add that for 10 bucks,
They want this poem they wrote to scroll across the front,,,,
And on and on,,, it's not worth it. You have to be brutal about what you will do and when it's done, it's done.
Even then you'll still get blamed for something and be compared to sites that have major programmers working on it.
Trust me,,, don't do it!
You are right, that there is ongoing hassle involved. Even more when you do it for friends.
The thing is to price in the hassle if possible. A rough rule might be x for the intial work, and then 10% of x annually for ongoing support.
But there's more to making a living than just doing the work unfortunately..
LOL, clients are a pain in the bum aren't they! That's why the idea of passive income is so attractive.
That's exactly it.. I still have former clients contacting me from ten years ago asking to have something changed. Really, it's html, and with all the new software out there now, almost anyone can do it.. That was exactly why I got out of it - too much hassle.
Actually, I thought it was mostly about valuable domain names. That contents of such modest volume and quality can command such a high price comes as a surprise to me. Thanks for sharing this information.
I graduate in Graphic Design and freelance work is hard, many companies are beginning to learn SEO themselves and want it for dirt cheap.. If you do find someone who wants a job done the competition is astronomical.
I recognize your basic "They get that much money?? And that's all they do for it????" as something I felt long before I knew anything about the Internet.
In fact, when I lived in the Chicago area, I occasionally daydreamed about being a ghost payroller for some alderman. The only obligation was being the alderman's pal. They had a job title and a good salary, but they never seemed to do any actual work, or even show up in the vicinity of the alderman's office very often. So I mused, how could I go about becoming an alderman's pal?
That pleasant daydream came crashing down the day the feds decided to crack down and ghost payrollers started going to jail even faster than the aldermen did. There's always some downside to every scheme, isn't there? Either you have to work harder than you thought or you get into some other kind of trouble!
I do okay in this area. I'll set up a blog with a basic Wordpress template for FREE if the client chooses to host through my affiliate account. I will also charge $150 for one hour of training and provide them with my own instructional eBook.
I only pick up 2 or 3 clients per month which really adds to my bottom line. I also avoid most of the hassles of doing "tune ups" because I charge $150/hour. The one time a client agreed to my charges, I hired my sister to do the work for $50/hr.
The point is, if you want it to work then you set the rules. The client either accepts your rules or they find someone else. The trick is to appeal to the FREE blog set-up.
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