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  1. #1
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    Selling my websites the right way.

    Hi there.

    So now I really plan to sell websites, but I don't know the right way to do it.
    I have a domain name where I gona have my portfolio and whatelse my website is gona contain.
    Well.. that's not really what my question or issue is.

    I wanna sell the website without any struggles, with that I mean it should go as smooth as possible.
    I'm thinking of making some ready templates wich I may use to have ready for the client or anything like that.

    But when I meet my client, is this the right way to handle him/her.

    1. The client tells me exactly how he want's his website to look, how many pages it should have, and what it should be able to do.

    2. I come back with a price.

    If he accepts the price he pay me 50% of the total price.

    3. He give me all the containing stuff that is gona be on this website (pictures, text etc).

    4. I start making the website and I should be able to finish the website without asking him anything during the process.

    5. If he finds out during my process of building the site that he wants to add a picture or text is it for payment. Also if he forgot it. Everything should be given in the beginning.

    6. Now his site is finished and he give me the rest 50%.

    7. I upload the site to his domain name.

    Is this a good thing to do? Any ideas, whats bad/good with this.
    Everything is appriciated.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    The client tells me exactly how he want's his website to look, how many pages it should have, and what it should be able to do.
    That will never happen. Clients have no idea. You have to work through with them what the site needs to say and do, and help them decide these things.

    If he accepts the price he pay me 50% of the total price.
    Fair enough, as long as it's not a huge price.

    He give me all the containing stuff that is gona be on this website (pictures, text etc).
    In your dreams.

    I start making the website and I should be able to finish the website without asking him anything during the process.
    In your dreams.

    Everything should be given in the beginning.
    It will never happen.

    Now his site is finished and he give me the rest 50%.
    It's safer to set a date for the final payment, whether the site is finished or not. Some clients never agree that the site is finished.

    I upload the site to his domain name.
    IMHO, it's better to build it online (even if hidden from the public). You client will want to see it during development, so if it's not online, you'll have to host it from your own computer, which can be tricky.
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  3. #3
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    But how am I gona do it so everything goes as smooth as possible?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    But how am I gona do it so everything goes as smooth as possible?
    You need to keep talking with the client and educating him as you go. It takes a lot of work, and you have to keep positive—even when you want to wrap your hands around the client's throat and make his eyes pop out.
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  5. #5
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    But how am I gona set a fair price from the beginning. During the process of the website he can just keep pictures comming, wanting me to have another that , another that and one more there and one there.


    Quote Originally Posted by ralph.m View Post
    You need to keep talking with the client and educating him as you go. It takes a lot of work, and you have to keep positive—even when you want to wrap your hands around the client's throat and make his eyes pop out.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    But how am I gona set a fair price from the beginning. During the process of the website he can just keep pictures comming, wanting me to have another that , another that and one more there and one there.
    This is why it's really hard. You have to specify from the start exactly what your quote is for and what it's not for, and make it clear what extra cost will be involved in adding extra things in. If you just agree on a price with no clear guidelines on what you are agreeing to, the client will eat you alive.

    This is why you really need to talk a lot at the beginning, to make sure everything is really, really clear. And when something is changed, or he asks for something extra, make it clear at that point that this is extra.
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  7. #7
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    Yeah I get it.

    But it's better for me to get everything that hes gonna have on his site, such as gallery images, all the text that the site should contain.

    Why is that "in my dreams" ?
    Quote Originally Posted by ralph.m View Post
    This is why it's really hard. You have to specify from the start exactly what your quote is for and what it's not for, and make it clear what extra cost will be involved in adding extra things in. If you just agree on a price with no clear guidelines on what you are agreeing to, the client will eat you alive.

    This is why you really need to talk a lot at the beginning, to make sure everything is really, really clear. And when something is changed, or he asks for something extra, make it clear at that point that this is extra.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    it's better for me to get everything that hes gonna have on his site, such as gallery images, all the text that the site should contain.

    Why is that "in my dreams" ?
    It's a good aim, but traditionally, it's very hard to get clients to supply this stuff. They are busy, and often take months to get around to it ... and you have to keep reminding them etc. It can be very frustrating. Most clients I've worked with simply don't know what to say about their business, so you have to help them a lot with content.
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  9. #9
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    Yeah. That's true.


    I didnt get what you mean here "It's safer to set a date for the final payment, whether the site is finished or not. Some clients never agree that the site is finished."
    Quote Originally Posted by ralph.m View Post
    It's a good aim, but traditionally, it's very hard to get clients to supply this stuff. They are busy, and often take months to get around to it ... and you have to keep reminding them etc. It can be very frustrating. Most clients I've worked with simply don't know what to say about their business, so you have to help them a lot with content.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    I didnt get what you mean here "It's safer to set a date for the final payment, whether the site is finished or not. Some clients never agree that the site is finished."
    The problem with telling the client he can pay the balance "when the site is finished" is that he may never agree that it's finished. This happened to me once. Long after I had done everything I agreed to, the client wouldn't pay, because he wanted more and more added to the site. So if you make an agreement that the balance will be paid on a certain date, it doesn't matter if the site is finished or not.

    There was a recent SP article about this.
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  11. #11
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    Ah okay. But isnt that why in the beginning you and him discuss what the website is gona contain, and if he wanna ad something it's for payment?
    Quote Originally Posted by ralph.m View Post
    The problem with telling the client he can pay the balance "when the site is finished" is that he may never agree that it's finished. This happened to me once. Long after I had done everything I agreed to, the client wouldn't pay, because he wanted more and more added to the site. So if you make an agreement that the balance will be paid on a certain date, it doesn't matter if the site is finished or not.

    There was a recent SP article about this.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    Ah okay. But isnt that why in the beginning you and him discuss what the website is gona contain, and if he wanna ad something it's for payment?
    Yes. You just have to make it very clear (in writing) what you have agreed to. In detail.

    And give examples of what "extras" would be.
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    SitePoint Guru bronze trophy TomB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ralph.m View Post
    It's a good aim, but traditionally, it's very hard to get clients to supply this stuff. They are busy, and often take months to get around to it ... and you have to keep reminding them etc. It can be very frustrating. Most clients I've worked with simply don't know what to say about their business, so you have to help them a lot with content.
    Indeed! A very important first step is sitting down with the client and getting them to understand what the website is for. In my experience, clients also tend to approach things from entirely the wrong angle. Small business especially. The ones I work with on a daily basis all suffer from the same issue: They position the website for themselves rather than the people using the site.

    For example: Wanting to put a history of the business on the home page. Nobody landing on the home page cares who founded the business and when, they want to know what services you offer now.

    Another recent example of this is a client who insisted that the contact form had a mandatory postcode field so that it could automatically send the enquiry to the correct branch. The problem was, from a user's perspective they aren't expecting to provide such information just to ask a question about one of the products.

    Clients will *always* make things more difficult than you expect and will move the goalposts indefinitely if they think they can get away with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TomB View Post
    They position the website for themselves rather than the people using the site.
    Yes, well put. And it's really important to educate them about this. It's very easy for them to get overexcited about fancy effects (complex menus, sliding galleries etc.) which seem cool to them and make them feel good, but actually are a pain in the rump for users. These days I'm pretty blunt: "OK, so just to clarify: you want to make this site as difficult as possible for visitors to use?" I love the look of shock I get when I say that.
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  15. #15
    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    I thank you guys what you are saying. I don't really have replies, but what you're saying is giving me something.

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    I belong to a group of web developers and we all have those same issues:

    1. Clients don't know what they want. Even if they tell you they want "A", "B" and "C", as soon as you give it to them, they realize that's not really what they wanted. And they blame it on you, because otherwise they have to pay again to re-do it.

    2. Clients don't give you content. Even when you say you have to have it. So you hire a writer and buy some stock photos. Maybe they'll like it. Probably they won't.

    3. The job is never "finished". They keep dragging it out, trying to throw in a lot of things that were never discussed anywhere but in the clients' mind.

    4. Don't work on their server unless they pay you in advance and you work off a retainer. (They pay you $1,000, you work until that $1,000 is used up and they pay you another $1,000 until you've worked that off.)

    Etc., etc.

    I and many of my colleagues are fed up with clients. You need to have someone deal with the clients and manage them. It becomes exhausting to do everything yourself -- sales, project management, web design, web programming, accounting and billing, etc.

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    SitePoint Addict kvnwpts's Avatar
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    On step number one. If you've discussed how the website is gona be and look and they agree. What do you do if the client comes and tells you that it wasn't at all what they thought it would be. Do you change it for free or do they have to pay for the change?

    How do you handle that?




    Quote Originally Posted by donmarvin View Post
    I belong to a group of web developers and we all have those same issues:

    1. Clients don't know what they want. Even if they tell you they want "A", "B" and "C", as soon as you give it to them, they realize that's not really what they wanted. And they blame it on you, because otherwise they have to pay again to re-do it.

    2. Clients don't give you content. Even when you say you have to have it. So you hire a writer and buy some stock photos. Maybe they'll like it. Probably they won't.

    3. The job is never "finished". They keep dragging it out, trying to throw in a lot of things that were never discussed anywhere but in the clients' mind.

    4. Don't work on their server unless they pay you in advance and you work off a retainer. (They pay you $1,000, you work until that $1,000 is used up and they pay you another $1,000 until you've worked that off.)

    Etc., etc.

    I and many of my colleagues are fed up with clients. You need to have someone deal with the clients and manage them. It becomes exhausting to do everything yourself -- sales, project management, web design, web programming, accounting and billing, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    If you've discussed how the website is gona be and look and they agree. What do you do if the client comes and tells you that it wasn't at all what they thought it would be.
    It's usually expected that the design will need to be revised a few times before you start to code it, so assume that as part of your quote. But state clearly how many revisions you are willing to do—or how much time you are willing to spend doing this—before you start to charge extra. If clients know that it will cost them more money to keep making changes, they may not be so picky.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    On step number one. If you've discussed how the website is gona be and look and they agree. What do you do if the client comes and tells you that it wasn't at all what they thought it would be. Do you change it for free or do they have to pay for the change?
    Do not do it for free! You will end up losing lots of money, go broke and get burned out. Either factor it into the quote or say in the quote that it does not include any major revisions.

    I factor in tweaks to the design, that will always happen. I do not factor in a completely new design (whether it's graphic design or database design) because what if they go with the initial one? Then they'll want money back since they didn't do a redesign.

    I prefer to say this in the quote:

    My advertised rate is $xx per hour. For projects of more than x hours, I lower the rate to $xx.

    List what you are going to do. Estimate that it will take, say, 25 hours, at the lower package rate.

    If any part of the project spins out of control, and it likely will, they need to pay the hourly rate after 25 hours has been spent.

    Keep track of why/what/when caused you to go over your estimated time.

    Always over-estimate the time! It WILL take longer than you think.

    If client decides to cut out some of the items on the project list, they will want money back. That's why I say that projects of more than x hours get the discounted rate. If they cut out half the project, you are losing money because smaller projects are more costly to execute -- the time you spend with administrative tasks.

    Years ago I bought a web development contract from ContractEdge for about $19. It was worth many times what I paid. Your clients take you more seriously when you show them a professional contract like this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kvnwpts View Post
    But how am I gona do it so everything goes as smooth as possible?

    The client do not have much knowledge. This is the reason why he is referring you. You have to made him clear every point and make him understand. You have to decide all steps and explain them to the client.

    <snip>
    Last edited by Shyflower; Jun 19, 2012 at 09:21. Reason: removed fake signature


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