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Paying for value

Outsource Failure – Lesson 1 – You get what you pay for

What price a good web designer?

Probably one of the biggest disservices job sites such as oDesk have done to the market place is to promise to employers that there are freelancers who will build websites for $250. It is impossible to design, build, migrate and test a new responsive website for that price.

Unless of course you live in Vietnam where $1 will give you VND20,000.00. But then how good is your Vietnamese?

It has put a value into the minds of people who don’t know how complex websites are that is far removed from the reality. Just think, how would you make something automatically resize to any screen size. Would take some skill wouldn’t it?

Well designed websites that work responsively are not as easy to deliver on as one thinks. They require excellent design skills and exceptionally competent developers. Add to that the support of a good technical person to deal with a variety of hosting providers and migration issues and you know you are looking for some good skills.

And the good folk are not cheap. Why should they be after all the effort they have put in to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to build responsive sites.

It’s not necessary to overpay

This doesn’t mean that you have to overpay. Of course we all need to work to realistic budgets and sometimes they are truly tight. And yes client is pushing like crazy to get the best deal possible. After all we are living in a society where getting the best price is a mantra, a way of life.

It is understood that small business owners don’t have huge budgets to throw at websites. They might not even see much value in having an online presence. Surely that Facebook page is enough? And business comes via word of mouth. Referrals are what makes a small business work.

Sure it does, mostly, but add to that a good website that supports a business person’s efforts and you have a quiet helper assisting along the way which could provide a return far in excess of the money spent on it.

Paying too little gives you rubbish

If you look for freelancers or outsource partners who are cheap you get lousy work. It’s a fact. The good people have worked hard to acquire the skills they need to deliver on a good product and they know what they are worth.

So why is it that there are so many unskilled freelance and web design businesses in business? It’s because they have learnt the talk and know how to sell you on a bad deal without you ever knowing.

How do you protect yourself against these? Don’t get caught by the low price. Be prepared to pay a little more. Easy as that. If your first question is ‘how much’ rather than ‘how good’ are you then you will continue to play the price game. And for that ‘you get what you pay for’.

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