9 Min. Read
April 7, 2023
In the online era of business, web design has become increasingly vital for companies of all kinds. Whether you’re creating a new website for your freshly-founded business or recreating an old one as part of a rebrand, almost all companies will need to look at the specifics of creating a website.
While there are tools out there to help the average person create a website on their own, these platforms can be limiting and generic, unable to provide the flexibility you need for a functional website. That’s when working with a web designer is your best bet. But how much does it really cost to get your own website from a professional web designer, custom-built and complete with security features and all the other important elements?
Web designers typically charge about $75 per hour. A company website, even for small businesses, could potentially cost between $5,000 and $10,000, with $6,760 being the average cost to set up, design, build, and create content for a basic website ongoingly. This figure also includes maintenance and training for the client. You should also note that a fully custom website will cost more, according to Website Builder Expert.
Whether you’re looking to hire the right web designer for your business or you’re a freelance web designer yourself, understanding what the typical website costs are is vital.
In this article, we’ll cover:
- How Much Do Web Designers Charge?
- 4 Factors to Consider When Determining Web Designer Charges
- Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Do Web Designers Charge?
Web design pricing is charged either by the hour or by a flat fee per project. Some website builders will only do one or the other, while others will use both payment models depending on the client and the scope of any given web design project.
Reasonably skilled freelance web designers make about $75 per hour. This figure can vary, though, according to CSS-Tricks.
Website Builder Expert estimates that the cost to design a website is $30 to $80 per hour, while the cost to actually develop the website is $100 to $180 per hour.
Freelancers typically make a higher rate than in-house web designers because they don’t receive health insurance and other perks that employees receive. Freelancers also have much less job security as they go from contract to contract rather than having a steady, reliable stream of work from an employer. A higher rate compensates them for the lack of long-term commitment from clients.
A few factors determine whether a freelancer will charge more or less than $75 per hour:
- Pet projects – A freelancer might offer a nonprofit, a friend, or a family member a lower rate.
- Project length – Long-term web design projects might deserve a slightly lower hourly rate in exchange for a greater amount of hours worked.
- Project difficulty – As a website builder, will you need help from a programmer, developer, or graphic designer? If so, charge more to cover the rate that these professionals will charge you.
- Uniqueness – If the project is similar to another one you did in the past, you can reuse the foundations of that project and complete it in less time. If you want to make a good impression on your client, you can choose to charge less, considering the time saved.
- Page count – More pages to design means more work for the website builder. Extras like a blog or an e-commerce component can also drive the total up.
- Commitment level – If you can only put in a few hours of work here and there instead of committing to the project full-time, consider lowering your price to make clients more likely to hire you.
- Client relationships – Some web designers will charge a new client less to land the project, though this might set a bad precedent with that client in the future. Alternatively, some website builders will offer discount rates for repeat clients in the hope of receiving more work from them in the future.
Clients love paying web designers flat rates because they know exactly how much they’ll pay upfront. Web design freelancers often dislike flat rates because you can almost never be 100% sure how long a project will take, especially if the client asks for endless changes, according to CSS-Tricks.
It’s a good idea to question the client extensively before providing prices to make sure you understand their budget and project requirements.
Here’s a basic web design price list:
- Setup: $160
- Design and building: $5,000
- Content creation: $500
- Client training: $600
- Maintenance: 500
- Total: $6,760
The average cost of basic website created by a freelance website designer is $6,760, according to Website Builder Expert. This cost only covers the first year.
That said, each cost can vary depending on many things, from the experience of the web developer to the current market for freelance web designers. Setup can cost as little as $50 and go as high as $200, depending on the website domain cost and other factors. A custom website design will usually cost a minimum of $5,000 but can go upwards of $10,000 for more complex projects.
Content creation varies from $500 to $5,000 depending on how much content the client wants and how often they want it. Plus, the annual cost of website maintenance costs about $500 to $1,000.
If you choose to charge your clients a flat rate for a new website, it’s best to break down any potential total by the estimated hours the project will take you. This gives you a rough hourly rate, which will make it easier to decide if the website will be a worthwhile project.
4 Factors to Consider When Determining Web Designer Charges
Still figuring out where to set your prices? Whether you’re a freelance web designer or part of the leadership of a full web design agency, it’s crucial to consider these four factors when deciding how much to charge.
How much skill and experience do you (and/or your team) have in the world of web design services? If you’re only in your first year, you likely won’t get much business by charging at the upper end of the pricing spectrum. However, if you have several years of experience under your belt with the skills to match (and have a portfolio of your work that reflects that), you can easily charge more than the per-site average of $6,760
Type Of Website
Are you creating a simple, informational website for a small business or a complex website full of pages, resources, embedded images/videos, and other extra features? Will the website have the option to create an account and log in (and therefore need additional security)? Learn as much as you can about the standard prices for different types of websites before agreeing on a price with your client.
Scope And Size Of The Project
Certain websites take much more work, time, and effort than others. A one-page site that simply lists basic information about a business could be done in as little as a week. But more complex sites, especially multi-page websites with extra features like a blog or online store, can take much more time to design and implement. Always get a clear sense of the scope of the website design project before agreeing on a price.
Current Market Rate
Lastly, it’s important to keep the market rate in mind when setting your rates. As a freelance web designer, you have the luxury of setting your own prices as you see fit. This means you can keep your finger on the pulse of the website builder market and can raise and lower prices while still remaining competitive. This ensures a steady flow of work and fair pay for each project.
For freelance web designers, developers, and website builders, understanding how much to charge is a crucial part of getting your business off the ground. It takes thorough research into the average rates, the current market, and an honest evaluation of your skills and experience to arrive at the ideal rate for web designers and clients alike.
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FAQs on How Much Do Web Designers Charge
How Much Should a Web Designer Charge?
Freelance web designers determine their hourly rate based on their expenses and skill level. However, it’s also common for this rate to change depending on other factors, such as a given project’s complexity. Web designers with the necessary skills and experience should aim for a rate of at least $36 per hour.
How Much Do Web Designers Charge per Hour?
A freelance web designer must set their minimum hourly rate to accommodate all of their expenses as well as to ensure they actually make a profit on each project. For those web designers who choose to charge an hourly rate, it’s common to see a rate between $31 to $42 per hour, with the average being $36 per hour.
How Much Do Web Designers Charge per Website?
The going rate per website can vary drastically depending on the web designer and site in question. An entire business website can cost as little as $500 or as much as $5000, depending on complexity, the skills and experience of the designer, deadlines, and more.
How much do freelance web designers charge?
Freelance web designers tend to earn more in gross profit than employees since they have to pay all of their own taxes and expenses. Depending on the specifics of their web development services and the web design project, a designer will charge anywhere from $30 to $80 per hour.
How much does a one-page website cost?
You could potentially have an entire one-page site designed for you for as little as $500. Although the price of a one-page website can still vary depending on specifics and the designer you hire, they tend to be the very cheapest option when paying to have a new website created.
Jason Ding, CPA
About the author
Jason Ding is a seasoned accountant with over 15 years of progressive experience in senior finance and accounting across multiple industries. Jason holds a BBA from Simon Fraser University and is a designated CPA. Jason’s firm, Notion CPA, is an accounting firm with a business-first focus. The firm specializes in preparing personal and corporate taxation while providing fractional CFO work and leading the accounting and finance function for several small-to-medium-sized businesses. In his free time, you’ll find Jason on the basketball court, travelling, and spending quality time with family.
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