Half a project

I lost a client halfway through a project. It was a small brochure site for an industrial type business.

About 6 weeks ago, the client contacted me and let me know that he wanted to terminate the project. He has a guy that works for him that wanted to take a crack at it. It was a weird situation. I think it partially stemmed from the fact that he expected me to write his content for him. (but it was clearly stated in our agreement that the client is responsible for getting me all the content, and I was very upfront about what I would need from him the whole time.)

So I agreed to give him the website “as is” at that point. He had paid 50% upfront, and that covered most of what I had put into the project. (Thanks to all the tips from everyone on sitepoint)

So now the website is up, the other guy that he had finish it used 60% - 70% of my design, and altered with some of his own ideas. He has the “designed by” credit at the bottom of the page, and I have nothing for my portfolio.

It has left a bad taste in my mouth.

Should I have handled anything differently?

It sounds like you handled the entire process professionally and properly. Thankfully you weren’t out money as you collected 50% of the project up front. Financially, clients are just a gamble.

In terms of the design, I would be miffed as well but at the end of the day it’s not worth creating a problem over. While it would be nice to have a credit and link back to your site, the link probably isn’t worth very much and if it’s just a “brochure site” then the credit probably won’t see much traffic anyway.

Thanks Jeff:

At the time that this went down, I felt like I handled it properly, but there is always room for improvement. He is a small business, which all of my clients are, and I really just wanted to help him get his website remade. The end result is very disappointing and unsatisfying.

I more or less just wanted to post as a case study for others, and to say thanks to everyone who posted their issues with clients before me. This place has been a great resource.

50% up front every time. One of the best things I ever learned here.

You can still use the design in your portfolio. You can use it as you designed it or as it looks now - your choice. You can use the original comp and tell potential clients that it was taken over in-house by a client, or whatever you want to say.

Unless you are prohibited by using the design by your agreement, why not use your work in your portfolio? As for the link, it sounds like the site doesn’t look so great anymore so that link may not be that valuable :slight_smile: