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How much should I charge?

nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
edited May 2007 in Thought Leadership
Hello,I have  a potential person that needs a site designed.  They want thier customers to be able to have password protected access to the site. I have not done this type of web programming work before. So I am not too sure how difficult something like this would be. Further I`m not sure how much I should charge for a project of this size. So my question is: How much should I charge for something like this? Is this type of work complex and time consuming, or is it fairly simple? I appreciate any and all input you all can provide.


  • omupasomupas subscriber Posts: 7
    I`m not too familiar with web design/development, but I know there are a handful of people here who probably can guide you in the right direction.
    In the meantime, maybe you can try to price out the project yourself by "shopping" your competition.  Call a few of your competitors, or even google a few web designers, and ask for quotes on a similar type project.
    At the very least, you can get a general idea on what that type of project costs and you won`t end up undercharging or overcharging your potential client.
  • stevesteve subscriber Posts: 14
    In my opinion you shouldn`t charge for something you have no experience doing.

    I`d recommend that you tell them up front that you are inexperienced
    doing what they need. If they`re willing to let you do it for the
    experience, go ahead. If they`re happy with the job you did, they can
    pay you what they think it`s worth when you`re done. The greatest
    benefit to you is learning a new skill.
  • nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
    In my opinion you shouldn`t charge for something you have no experience doing.

    I`d recommend that you tell them up front that you are inexperienced
    doing what they need. If they`re willing to let you do it for the
    experience, go ahead. If they`re happy with the job you did, they can
    pay you what they think it`s worth when you`re done. The greatest
    benefit to you is learning a new skill.
    That though has passed my mind steve. I still may do that If I feel that this job is out of my range. I`m not sure why they even want password protection Nicole. From the sound of things it is a portfolio site.
  • stevesteve subscriber Posts: 14
    He already doesn`t know how much to charge for a job he doesn`t know
    how to do. Add in the additional unknowns of how much to pay someone
    else and how to know if the job was done right. This whole thing sounds
    like a recipe for disaster if you ask me. Best to stick to what you
    know how to do. 
  • nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
    Yeah depending on how much time and or energy it takes to learn how to do this I may not. I have too much on my plate already to try and do a job that I don`t know how to do. I still plan to meet with the guy to see what exactly it is that he wants. If I determine my skills don`t match what he needs I`m not going to do it.
  • olegoleg subscriber Posts: 13 Bronze Level Member
    What kind of web development technologies are you familiar with?  Is this website being developed in ASP, PHP, JSP or something else? If you provide more detail on what specific technology you`re using, I may be able to point you to some references on how to implement security on your site. 
  • nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
    Thanks Oleg!That`s actually really cool of you. I will try to do the log in info in Access and Dreamweaver. I found a tutorial on doing a simple one with these two tools. I don`t think it`s a website that needs to have data encrypted. From what I understand he simply wants to secure his portfolio work. I did find some tutorials that used ASP. Just for future refference what is the best way to do a login page.
  • olegoleg subscriber Posts: 13 Bronze Level Member
    There is really no "best way".  The right answer depends on what kind of environment the website will be running in, how secure the information needs to be, etc.  In any case there is always a number of options.
    An Access database can be used to store the data.  I am not familiar with Dreamweaver but I would guess that it has some kind of built in server-side scripts that will allow you to access the Access  
    Any website that accesses a database usually does so using a server-side scripting technology.  ASP, PHP and JSP are the most common ones; there are others.  If you want to get into any kind of serious web development work, it is a must that you become familiar with at least one of these.  ASP only runs on Windows servers, PHP generally on Linux and JSP is platform independent; there are other differences between but that is too long of a discussion to get into here... PM me if you want more detail on any of this.
  • stevesteve subscriber Posts: 14
  • nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
    I actually met with the guys. I let him know upfront that I didn`t know what I was doing but I was willing to learn. Turns out they`re a startup too so they`re willing to be patient while we learn with them.Now I get the consultant joke but are they really that bad? I mean are consultants thought of as more "action takers" or are they seen as the "planners"
  • stevesteve subscriber Posts: 14
    Are they really that bad? Marvin, Marvin, Marvin. Coding secure logins is not all you have to learn.

    Every joke has at its core a kernel of truth. Take the following for instance:

    A shepherd was herding his flock in a remote pasture when suddenly a
    brand-new BMW advanced out of the dust cloud towards him. The driver, a
    young man in a Broni suit, Gucci shoes, Ray Ban sunglasses and YSL tie,
    leaned out the window and asked the shepherd... "If I tell you exactly how
    many sheep you have in your flock, will you give me one?" The shepherd
    looked at the man, obviously a yuppie, then looked at his peacefully
    grazing flock and calmly answered "sure".

    The yuppie parked his car, whipped out his IBM ThinkPad and connected it
    to a cell phone, then he surfed to a NASA page on the internet where he
    called up a GPS satellite navigation system, scanned the area, and then
    opened up a database and an Excel spreadsheet with complex formulas. He
    sent an email on his Blackberry and, after a few minutes, received a
    response. Finally, he prints out a 130-page report on his miniaturized
    printer then turns to the shepherd and says, "You have exactly 1586 sheep.
    "That is correct; take one of the sheep." said the shepherd. He watches
    the young man select one of the animals and bundle it into his car.

    Then the shepherd says: "If I can tell you exactly what your business is,
    will you give me back my animal?", "OK, why not." answered the young man.
    "Clearly, you are a consultant." said the shepherd. "That`s correct." says
    the yuppie, "but how did you guess that?" "No guessing required." answers
    the shepherd. "You turned up here although nobody called you. You want to
    get paid for an answer I already knew, to a question I never asked, and
    you don`t know crap about my business...... Now give me back my dog."

  • nothinglikeitnothinglikeit subscriber Posts: 27
    LOL that`s funny. So would you consider a Web Programmer or Graphic Designer a consultant or contractor?
  • olegoleg subscriber Posts: 13 Bronze Level Member
    I`ve worked for a software company that randomly decided to rename their Development department to Solution Consulting.  The programmers therefore became solution consultants. What does it mean?  Absolutely nothing.  A contractor is anyone whom you temporarily hire to do work for you.  A consultant is, well I`m still not to sure about that one.In the software world the best way to learn is by doing.  Don`t let your lack of knowledge stop you - if you`re willing to do a little research you will learn as you go along.  You may look back at this Access/Dreamweaver concoction 3 years from now and ask yourself "What the hell was I thinking?"  But you can`t become an expert without starting somewhere...
  • winwinwinwin subscriber Posts: 0
    Take a look at http://amember.com/</A>
    $140 and free install
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