Super loaded question but very easy to answer using simple math and some basic understanding of the logic.

First and foremost let’s see how many people are involved when it comes to making a website, you may ask “Hey Krishna, look man I am just a simple small business owner and I am not interested in a gigantic company to do my project.” which is ok but it does not always mean if the company is large, or team is gigantic that your invoice will be huge too.

Any product development that would scale to large audience involves following people:

  1. Graphic Designer
  2. Front-end developer
  3. Back-end developer
  4. Content Writer
  5. SEO specialist
  6. Server Guy or Gal
  7. Focus group for testing
  8. Consultant for project scoping

Now that we know how many people are involved let's see what everyone actually does.

Everyone involved on a project acts like a puzzle piece, when connected it reveals the big picture.

Graphic Designer:

These are the talented group of people who are responsible for translating your dreams and literal text into something very beautiful. They take the ideas and concepts and turns them into User Interface designs.

User Interface includes but not limited to selecting colors, designing buttons and screens, choosing the right font and more.

According to the stats from payscale.com, a graphic designer makes approximately $45000 Canadian dollars annually in Vancouver. To give you the scale of comparison a house in Vancouver or nearby Vancouver ranges anywhere from $1mil to $2mil on average (less than 6k sqft). If a designer ever wanted to buy a house of his own he would need to put down a minimum of 35% down payment (some people can get a mortgage by paying down only 10%).

35% of $1.4 million dollar house equals $490000. Therefore a graphic designer in Vancouver Canada would need to save all the money he makes for approximately 10.8 years. Now once he has saved all that money don't forget his monthly mortgage and annual taxes are still due which on average will be about $5000 per month which equals to $60000 annually which unfortunately is higher than his salary.

Summary a Graphic Designers can't afford a house period, at least not with the average salary.

Ok now you will say hey man its going to be a super long read if you are going to breakdown salary for each person involved in making the site and plus I am not interested, just tell me how much its going to cost for me to get a website.

Let’s speed up then. Front-end developer is responsible for taking your graphic designs and converting them to Html, CSS, and Javascript now for many websites this is all you need therefore if you are amongst those that need a simple site that gets the info out on the web then you should be good with just two people, a designer and a front-end developer who can do the basic backend.

What is a simple website?

A simple website can be but not limited to portfolios, restaurant site (minus the ordering, delivery etc systems), information site with about 10–15 pages, static landing pages, dynamic landing pages and more.

The cost to get a simple site?

Anywhere between $1000-$5000

Why the range of cost?

Every agency or freelancer have their overhead costs in order to run the business. Things like business cards, printing, internet, computer, time, skills, electricity, food, water. All these items add up cost fairly quickly thus compensating your devs with a fair price is not bad.

If you paid $5000 for your site and let's assume the timeline to complete the site was approximately 30 days then the breakdown you will have is following:

Price Paid: 5000
Timeline: 30 Days
People Involved: 1~2
Avg Salary: ~$3700/month
Office rent: $1500 per month or $50 per day (WeWork Canada)
Transportation: $400/month or $14 per day
Communication: $70/month or $2.5 per day
Food: $1500/month or $50 per day

Rent, food, transportation, communication minus the salary equals $230. This is the profit the developer or the agency made on the project they did for you. Now there are desperate freelancers who are either not skilled or under a heavy financial burden they may do the project for even less but let’s be fair when it comes to appreciating the work.

At mis. (Misty Interactive Studios Inc) we try our best to price our services so that all our developers and designers are fairly compensated and at the same time clients don’t go broke.
So wassup with all the other people? Getting there relax…

Let me introduce you to the world of Applications.

Mobile Applications, Web Applications, Enterprise Applications, Desktop Applications, Hybrid Applications, Applications with AI, Applications with Machine Learning, Smart Device Applications and more.

There are so many technologies and apps in the market that pricing a project of scale becomes nearly impossible without going over the requirements of a business.

So to answer your concern “What about all those other people?”, just remember that each and every person involved in app design and development is going to be responsible for your project’s success.

  1. A backend developer will be designing and coding your database that will hold all the information about your users, their payments, the application usage data and more.
  2. SEO and Copywriter will play a significant role in writing those catchy headlines and text that once promoted properly can do magic. PS. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization.
  3. Server, this is going to be a short job as its required only once to set up a scalable server, but you would need to put one IT guy on retention to maintain the server and ensure there is practically no downtime.

To summarize applications of any nature ranges anywhere from $10000 Canadian dollars plus tax to $1mil+. The apps costing in millions are because they require a high level of security, data handling, and deep understanding of the company operates. A generic client for this scale would be MNCs (Multi-National Companies) with over 5000 staff members.

I kind of rushed through the last bit because I am going to be writing another article talking more in detail about Websites and Applications to give you a better understanding on what you are paying for and what you will be getting in return.

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