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Why web design & development doesn’t cost $399

Why web design & development doesn’t cost $399

Web design in this day and age can be confusing. Who’s good? Who’s bad? How do I know? What’s the difference between going to a web design studio and going to someone that posted an ad on craigslist for $399? Well we will explain some very important facts to let you know exactly why web site design and development does not cost anywhere from $299-$499.

This will be a comparison of “cheap web design” to “professional web design” and why professionals do not charge $499 and under for a web site and why spending the extra money will be worth it.

What is web design?

Web design is a company or individuals web presence. It can be a great way to generate leads, gain exposure, relay news, start a community, assist a cause and much more. Your web site is a first impression of what you are relaying to the viewer. With this said I can’t help but to think, why waste your time on a cheap sites when if done correctly your site can save you time and money.

Designs for $399 or less

The web is flooded with ads and posts about “cheap web design” or web design at a unrealistically low price. It is important to realize you wouldn’t go to a doctor if he worked out the back of a van. This applies the same for web design. Prices incredibly low as well as quality. Most of these sites consist of straight HTML programming and are designed with no marketing or viewer consideration in mind. Most $399 web ads are web templates (or template resellers) which are pre made web sites which may not be compatible with browsers and you may be sharing the same design with someone else. Read: What’s so bad about web templates? gives a great explanation. The old expression “you get what you pay for” comes to mind. It is also important to know almost all of these sites do not come with a CMS.

The Bad

Here is a list of bad design features that will help you separate the good from the bad.





The examples above go against much of what makes a web site effective.

Ask yourself these questions in regards to the web sites above:

  • Convey the company’s personality, character or attitude?
  • Relate to your clients by conveying a feeling of familiarity and credibility?
  • Have association with quality and satisfaction?
  • Can I contact the website owner quickly and effectively?
  • Is the website communicating news to me in a effective way?

The Good




Now take the same questions from above and apply them to the good examples.

Why is the difference so apparent? There are many examples and variations of web sites out there. This is an extreme compare and contrast. Most of the bad web sites will not look that bad but the question to ask is, “Will it do what I want it to do?”

Professional web designers have process and procedures put in place to assure effective design involving proper research, preparation, conceptualizing, understanding of the clients needs, implementing them correctly and so they are effective. This is why professional web design does not cost $499 and under.

The design process of a professional web designer typically consists of:

  1. Gathering Information: They conduct a questionnaire or interview with the client to get the design brief.
  2. Research: They conduct research focused on the industry itself, on its history, and on its competitors.
  3. Reference: They conduct research into logo designs that have been successful and current styles and trends that are related to the design brief.
  4. Sketching & Conceptualizing: They develop the web design concept(s) around the brief and research.
  5. Presentation: Showing the concept site based off of all of the information collected and demonstrating how it will all function.
  6. Development: Taking the approved concept and developing (or coding) it in to an actually web site.
  7. Presentation #2: Showing the developed site based off the first presentation and demonstrating how it all functions.
  8. Making The Site Live: Taking the site developed and uploading it to the domain and hosting accounts.

With all that said here are some links to some other sources as to the importance of web design:

Why good website design is important

Why Having a Quality Web Design Matters

Top 10 Mistakes in Web Design

Don’t have a professional web design? Check out our Portfolio and if you like what you see then Contact Us and we can give you a quote for free.

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