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The cost of a wordpress design

I’m in the market to have a WordPress design done. I need a little help on what I should be looking for on the seller’s gig.

I need to build from scratch the header, the banner, the links and plain white or black background. I will be uploading the articles myself. I will need category sections so I can upload new articles and still have old articles available.

I was looking at the TRS only for this work. The price range varies from low of $50 to over $500. It does, however, seem to be fixing only, upgrading only, developing, etc.

First, I am guessing, I should be looking to hire a developer - correct, incorrect?
Second, the Average price range for this type of work? $50 seems kinda low but I’m not familiar with the intricacies of developing Wordpress.

I’ve developed a whole web-site myself but that was a long, long time ago.

Any help in answering those questions would be greatly appreciated.

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This is going to be a long one :smiley:

The cost of your project depends on quite a few factors

  • Website functionality. Custom solutions are usually rather expensive so the more flexible you are the less it will cost you. Most developers use data-driven solutions so don’t get caught up in technical gimmicks. A good developer knows what is an effective solution and what’s the easiest way to implement it.

  • Design requirements. The more you trust your developer’s vision the less expensive it will be. If you let your developer pick out the color palette, typography and design elements then it will take less time to develop your site, which of course reduces the total cost. I can’t speak for others, but I spend about 10-15 hours each week reading articles about the latest trends, listening various Wordpress related podcasts and of course testing new technology. We might not know your clients, but we know what kind of design works 80% of the times.

  • Developer’s tools & resources. Professional developers have their own toolset for developing websites. They have probably invested in various themes & plugins. If they are using high-quality premium plugins then, of course, the cost will be higher, but on the other side, your site will also get more value. For example, I invest about $200-$300 worth of premium plugins in my clients’ websites. I want to make sure that if someone asks me about my previous work I won’t be embarrassed to show some of the sites I’ve built :slight_smile:

  • Usability and maintenance. The more flexible backend you want the more you need to invest at the beginning. I would recommend Divi, Elementor, Thrive Architect or even a Beaver Builder. There are pros and cons for each of them so it often comes down to personal preference. The idea is to pick something that will be around next year and you shouldn’t have to worry about upgrades.

  • Communication and development process You can hire someone for $5 who learned WordPress from Youtube videos. Or you can hire someone who actually has a streamlined process to cover all the basics. (Project scoping, proposal, design drafts, demos, revisions, platform testing, SEO etc.)

First, create a project brief that’s detailed enough to avoid any confusion later

  • What is the primary goal of your website and who’s your target audience?
  • List your functionality requirements (blog with categorized posts, contact form, social media integration etc.)
  • List or sketch your design requirements (color palette, typography, style etc). If possible, look up a site that looks similar so that you can explain it better. A good developer won’t copy it, but it helps a lot.
  • List any additional services you need (on-page SEO, security, analytics, consultation etc.)
  • At the end add your budget and timeframe. You can leave budget open and the more time you add to the ETA the less it will cost you.

It sounds like a lot of work, but it will ensure you won’t be disappointed later :slight_smile:

Add a few interview questions to learn about your developer (knowledge, experience, communication)

  • Which theme will you be using? If you have a preference then mention it. If they give you a theme name that you don’t know then do your own research. Find out what others say about it.
  • Which plugins will be added to meet the functionality requirements? (Will the license be included?)
  • Can you please describe your development process? (Can I see a design draft before development?)
  • Can you send me 1-2 sample sites similar to this?

I don’t do blog centric sites myself, but most of these tips apply to all WordPress sites. Try to find a developer who’s experienced in creating blog sites. Most developers focus on a specific niche such as eCommerce, membership sites, local business websites, LMS etc.


Wow! :tada::balloon:

Thank you very much for the thorough and awesome tips on finding a designer. Whew, that was way more involved than I anticipated.

I’m gonna give it a try and see if I can do it myself before hiring anyone. If I do end up hiring someone, I’ll just delete everything and let him/her do it from scratch to minimize headaches for both of us! :slight_smile:

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