Hiring price for someone to develop website 'look'?

  • jbonjovi
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi,

I am interested in having someone develop my website 'look'. Meaning, I would be doing all the programming of the site, but I am not good at the finer points of making the website look good. I can tell the designer exactly what i need, and the structure, but i need someones design skills to make it look good ie. making a nice background gradient, menu, banner, logo, etc.

Also, Its a html based website not flash based.

I have looked at website templates and am not finding what I like, thats why I would like to work with someone to explain what I am looking for.

I was looking at local schools for designers, but i am not sure how much to pay a student for this type of service. Does anyone have suggestions. They would be basically designing 2-3 pages in photoshop and a few custom banners and logos (from photos i will supply them).

I am looking to spend about $2500. Is that reasonable? I am hoping it wont take more than 6 weeks. What are your thoughts?

Thanks Everyone!!
  • Jackend
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hm, im not sure but I do not think it will be more then 2500.

I can design myself, but probally not on the level you are looking for ^^

~Jack
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Post 3+ Months Ago

yeah jbonjovi ... I am sure that that is more than enough ...
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Post 3+ Months Ago

lol I think that's a bit more than reasonable but I can work for that ;)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I think for that amount, you should be able to secure a good designer for 2 weeks (80 hours), total.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I agree with digitalMedia's estimate and just a reminder that you should make sure to look through portfolios of potential designers to make sure they're worth that money.
  • jbonjovi
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks for your reply everyone.

I guess its a debate between hiring a great designer for a few weeks, or a student for several more.

I guess in the long run i just need someone with the right photoshop(any graphic editor) skills that they can give me a design I like. I would be doing all the coding myself.

Do i pay per hour, or by design? For example, if its estimated that 2 weeks cost $2500, they may get my 3 pages designed in 1 week. So i pay them full salary? and what if they took longer? do i pay them more? Or do i pay a set fee when they get the design right. Im a bit confused what industry standard is for payment.

Thanks everyone!
  • graphixboy
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Thats pretty much up to the designer. There isn't really an industry standard per say. Keep in mind that you might hire 1 person for $50/hr and getting something you like might take 40 hours or you could hire someone else for $25/hr and it might take the second person 80 hrs. (pretty much a wash at that point)

Hourly vs fixed is a debate for most freelancers as well since they know nothing about you. For all the freelancer knows you could be a person who's never satisfied and wants round after round of revisions. In that case the freelancer is very unlikely to want to work for a set rate because after 100 hrs they'll be working for almost nothing per hour.

Personally I would probably opt to charge a flat rate, but I would layout exactly what you should expect to get for that rate (deliverables and not hours). For example I might say $2000 gets you two separate design directions. You pick a direction and you get to revise that chosen design 2 times. From there you get 3 unique page's based on that chosen design, two unique headers and two unique logos also based on the chosen direction. At that point its not your problem if I get the work done in two hours or two months (granted there's usually a completion date, but it doesn't matter if I choose to work 90 hr weeks to get it done) as long as I complete the deliverable listed.

With my example your paying for a product (deliverables). If on the other hand you choose to pay someone hourly then your paying for a service and you continue paying for that service until you both agree that its completed.

This is why its important to find someone who's previous work demonstrates an ability to accomplish what you want and also why its very important to layout exactly what you expect to receive at the onset of the project. This way both you and the designer start on an even footing with a measurable/achievable goal. (Its very important for both of you to know when the project is completed)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

graphixboy wrote:
Thats pretty much up to the designer. There isn't really an industry standard per say. Keep in mind that you might hire 1 person for $50/hr and getting something you like might take 40 hours or you could hire someone else for $25/hr and it might take the second person 80 hrs. (pretty much a wash at that point)

Hourly vs fixed is a debate for most freelancers as well since they know nothing about you. For all the freelancer knows you could be a person who's never satisfied and wants round after round of revisions. In that case the freelancer is very unlikely to want to work for a set rate because after 100 hrs they'll be working for almost nothing per hour.

Personally I would probably opt to charge a flat rate, but I would layout exactly what you should expect to get for that rate (deliverables and not hours). For example I might say $2000 gets you two separate design directions. You pick a direction and you get to revise that chosen design 2 times. From there you get 3 unique page's based on that chosen design, two unique headers and two unique logos also based on the chosen direction. At that point its not your problem if I get the work done in two hours or two months (granted there's usually a completion date, but it doesn't matter if I choose to work 90 hr weeks to get it done) as long as I complete the deliverable listed.

With my example your paying for a product (deliverables). If on the other hand you choose to pay someone hourly then your paying for a service and you continue paying for that service until you both agree that its completed.

This is why its important to find someone who's previous work demonstrates an ability to accomplish what you want and also why its very important to layout exactly what you expect to receive at the onset of the project. This way both you and the designer start on an even footing with a measurable/achievable goal. (Its very important for both of you to know when the project is completed)


Thanks graphixboy, a wealth of knowledge.
When you say '2 separate design directions', typically how does a designer present a direction? by a sketch, or by talking to me?
I do have a good idea of what Im looking for, but wouldn't mind his input to 'make it better'.

Also, if I went with a web design company, do they shy away from signing contracts that state that the work they produce for me is owned by me and they are not entitled to any profits generated from the site, or logo, etc... I dont think a freelancer has a problem with signing, but companies are a grey area to me.

thanks again!!
  • your uptime
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Post 3+ Months Ago

soryy i send one mess 2 time...well sir i wana to work for u ....if u are interested...u can mail me and we can set the all the things
thx
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Post 3+ Months Ago

jbonjovi wrote:
When you say '2 separate design directions', typically how does a designer present a direction? by a sketch, or by talking to me?
I do have a good idea of what Im looking for, but wouldn't mind his input to 'make it better'.
Well that varies by designer. From a visual communication professional you should expect get a sketch at the very least, and NOT simply talking to you. Design is extremely difficult to communicate verbally because we all have different definitions of visual vocabulary (If I say green, I'm probably thinking of a very different color green than you are). Personally I really attempt to provide design "directions" at this stage. Frequently these are called Mood/Style boards in the industry. The goal is to help nail down a visual style (dark, light, modern, retro, grunge, etc) before deciding where buttons are placed on a page. Other designers may give you multiple page layouts with all the details in place, where each layout represents different visual styles.

jbonjovi wrote:
Also, if I went with a web design company, do they shy away from signing contracts that state that the work they produce for me is owned by me and they are not entitled to any profits generated from the site, or logo, etc... I don't think a freelancer has a problem with signing, but companies are a grey area to me.
Its pretty much an industry standard that a completed design belongs to the client with the designer or agency retaining the right to display the work as their creative product in a portfolio. Anything outside of that specific is usually negotiated on a project by project basis. Many agencies will negotiate a reduced fee for a percentage of ongoing profits, etc. Basically the key word there is "negotiate" meaning that you have a say in that process. If you don't like it you don't sign and if the agency doesn't like it they don't sign.

To be quite honest, I think your budget might be more of a detractor for a company than your terms. Most agencies have a base amount that a project budget must meet or they won't take the project. The company has to pay a designer, project manager, receptionist, etc for meeting time, creative time, comps and so on. This means its not unusual for a company to burn through something like $2500 in the first few days of a project. A freelancer on the other hand doesn't have that kind of overhead and is usually more than happy to work with that type of budget.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks graphixboy,

More great insight to the industry which I was not clear on.

One last question if you dont mind:
If I go with a design company or design freelancer(which seems to be better suited for the budget), will they turn over the photoshop/adobe graphics files to me?

So that i may slightly modify them if i need to? Or will they just give me a bunch of .jpgs?

Afterall I am not looking for a programmer, just someone to do the graphics (design).

How common/uncommon is it for design companies and freelancers to give the photoshop/adobe files of all the images?

thanks again so much?
  • graphixboy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well I usually don't provide photoshop comps, but then most of my projects are design and dev so I turn over the working html/css/flash etc and the design files are a non-issue. However, with that said, its unlikely I would have any problem providing working design files if they were requested.

I would assume that in your position as developer you would NEED to receive layered comps to be able to actually build a site, so I would simply make that a final deliverable at the project onset.

I think what it really comes down to for this and most of your other questions is that in the design industry (probably the same for any industry) people don't really like surprises. I think all of us like to know what we're getting into at the beginning. For example, I might be a lot less likely to provide working files if you suddenly asked for them at the end of the project when I thought I was done. On the other hand if you say at the beginning that you need to walk away with working files as a deliverable then I can't see it being an issue.

One point I can't stress enough, and this is for anyone who wants to work with a designer, is that the very best projects are built on mutual trust and collaboration. Take all your cards to the table when your looking for a designer, if they aren't happy with your requests its up to them to propose something different or refuse the project. If you can't stand to make concessions or don't want to pay the price suggested for your deliverables then its up to you to find a different person who's willing to work inside your budget and deliverables.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

graphixboy wrote:
One point I can't stress enough, and this is for anyone who wants to work with a designer, is that the very best projects are built on mutual trust and collaboration. Take all your cards to the table when your looking for a designer, if they aren't happy with your requests its up to them to propose something different or refuse the project. If you can't stand to make concessions or don't want to pay the price suggested for your deliverables then its up to you to find a different person who's willing to work inside your budget and deliverables.


Right on. :thumbsup:
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thanks again to graphixboy and everyone who responded.
You helped me understand more about whats involved when hiring web designer. Much appreciated!

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