For a freelance web designer, it is quite a challenging task to figure out the worth of your time, and it could take some time to learn the cost of the different projects. There could be assignments that, in spite of low payments, take a little of your time, and that makes them worth it, while some other projects would come with a fat paycheck, but could take over life. Hence, in venturing into the world of freelance web designing or development, the key is to figure out the correct rate. Now granted, what you can convince your client to pay you that determines the charge, but there are certain factors that could help you come to your goal rate. To help you figure out the rates as a freelance designer, here are few tips for you:
What the client is really asking for
At the outset, find out the components and features that the client wants. There must be some cost variations between building a personal blog and a website for a large-scale business. A big challenge for a freelancer is finding ways to deal with changes in project scope. Hence, you need to consider the following.
How demanding the client is
You could come across demanding clients, some offers the projects, and only provides answers to your queries, while some others might be micromanaging things all through the project. You need to factor in the second type of clients while charging. However, you need to consider the following as well.
Your skill level
It is important for you to be honest regarding the level of experience that you have with different types of projects. Your expertise may be short of what the client needs, and your level of delivering may not be similar to another designer, or else, you may need some more time and research to perform the task. One thing that needs to be noted is that the better-experienced designers are capable of delivering faster, while payments made to beginners are used up for learning. So, you need to consider the following option.
The hourly rates of a designer usually are around $40 on the low-end, while the high-end figure is about $75 (though this figure could be as high as $100 or more for an hour), with $59 an hour as an average.
However, in hourly charging, there are few things that you cannot include. Hence, if there is a need to learn a new skill, you can just discount the hours that are spent in learning, while at other times, billing a flat rate for the project would make more sense. If you make a mistake, you cannot charge for the lost hours. It is justified to bill the lost hours if the client keeps changing his or her requirements. And if the mistake is from your end, or if the client is not satisfied with the work, you better not bill the client, but instead, do some little extra work to deliver, or else offer a discount. Here, it is only your gut and the relationship that you have with your client that matters.
Designers could also charge variable hourly rates depending on the kind of functions that they do (designing, coding, etc.). The hourly rate billing has the advantage in that it is more straightforward to deal with the billing, and also letting the client include some more tasks without any complexity, along with being easy to please without any need for numerous revisions. However, sometimes the client does not find well if the hours spent is running up. Hence, in such circumstances, your option would be the following.
Charging by the project
Your charging could depend on standard packages that include a certain amount of work that you always provide. Usually, a freelance web developer and designer charge depending on the time taken to complete the project (usually, an hourly rate) as calculated from their past experiences and/or the bearing capability of the market. If the hourly or project-based approach does not go well, then you need to consider the following.
Charging by the page
Although a rare payment method, there are some freelance web designers and developers who calculate the cost this way. This would go well for designers creating relatively simple marketing style websites, though this mode of charging should also be considered by designers and developers.