If you’ve been in the position of getting estimates for design work, you know that estimates can vary greatly. That’s because there are numerous factors affecting the bottom line. This also explains why experienced designers won’t just quote a price off the top of their head—they need to know what’s involved in order to develop an accurate estimate.

Overall

  • The experience level of the designer. Someone with extensive experience is likely to have a higher billing rate than someone new to designing. But working with a seasoned professional will open the door to a more sophisticated knowledge of design, a better working knowledge of timelines and project management, and a wider array of experience.
  • Timeline is critical too. If your project is a rush job, or requires the designer to work overtime or on weekends, the cost will increase.

Brand Identity Factors

How important is brand identity? A striking, highly visible logo that has significant impact costs more than one less prominent or visible. For example, the Starbucks logo is known and recognized by a huge audience. In contrast, a logo for a privately owned, nonchain coffee shop only has a local audience, and is much less prominent or visible.

Time and quantity are the biggest factor when estimating brand identity design costs.

  • How many rounds of creative development and revision are needed? The more rounds and revisions, the higher the cost.
  • How many logo versions are needed? A larger company may have needs for logos to be used in a variety of ways, which increases the complexity of the work, as well as the time frame.
  • How many/what types of identity pieces are needed? Examples: Letterhead, business cards, PowerPoint template, etc. The quantity affects the price.

Website Design Factors

Websites have technical aspects not present in print or brand identity work.

  • Which/how many technical features does the site need? Tech functionality, such as password-protected member login areas or e-commerce add to a site’s complexity and cost.
  • How sophisticated is the user experience? How will the viewer navigate the site? Will the site handle a process like an application or survey? Will it require database integration?
  • How many pages/how much content does the site need? Content (images and text) needs to be acquired, written and/or edited, then added to the site with appropriate styling, all of which takes time.
  • Consider the ongoing costs. These may be yearly or monthly, and aren’t included in the initial website design: Domain name registration, web hosting and maintenance, SSL certificate (security).

Print Design Factors

The cost for designing a print piece is largely based on how much time it takes, with a few other factors.

  • Design elements: Stock illustration or photography is relatively inexpensive, depending on the quantity needed. If you want custom illustration or photography, or a large quantity of stock items, the cost increases.
  • Content: If you need help writing or editing, that’s an additional cost.
  • How many pages? More pages = higher cost. For example: Business cards versus a book or catalog.
  • Is it print only or a mix? Example: You create a print magazine and need an interactive PDF of it to post on the website. Adding interactivity or multiple file formats can increase the cost.
  • Other costs to consider:
    • How will it be printed? Printing costs vary greatly depending on number of colors, print quantity, and print method.
    • Mailing or delivery costs.
    • Future revisions or editions (examples: newsletter, catalog, etc.).

 

Ready to Learn More?

Solberg Creative has extensive experience in the world of design, whether it’s print or web. See just a few examples of our design work here, or reach out to us for information or an estimate.

__________

Photo by HalGatewood.com on Unsplash