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6 Reasons Why Web Development Quotes Vary From Company to Company

March 20, 2017 | mobile apps web apps

As you shop around for web development companies to build an app, you may be surprised to find that the web development quotes that you are receiving for your project vary widely from company to company. One company says that your project will cost $30,000 while another company says that the price tag will be over $100,000.

Even though you are offering the same details to each company when you request a quote, you could be receiving quotes that differ by thousands of dollars. But, why?

In fact, these differences in costs aren’t simply because some web development firms want you to pay more. Actually, the real reason is that there are some important differences between the services that each company offers which are causing you to receive dramatically different cost estimates.

Here are 6 reasons why web development quotes vary from company to company.

1. Outsourcing

When it comes to building apps, many web development firms use outsourcing. They may use it to lower their costs for developing web applications directly or they may use to reduce costs and improve efficiency in other areas of their companies, such as customer service.

There are three types of outsourcing, namely:

  • Onshoring: Onshoring refers to when a web development company outsources a portion of its workload to another firm that is located in the same country or region as the web development company.
  • Nearshoring: Nearshoring refers to when a company outsources to a firm that is located in a nearby country.
  • Offshoring: Offshoring refers to when a company outsources its workload to a company that is located in a far away country. For U.S.-based web development firms, this is typically done by outsourcing workloads to firms located in India, the Phillipines and other locations.

When you receive a quote that is lower than the most expensive quote that you received for your project, there’s a good chance that the cheaper web development firm uses outsourcing. While each type of outsourcing has its own advantages and disadvantages, the main advantage of outsourcing is that it lowers web development costs for the web development firms’ clients.

At Achievion, we take a hybrid approach to outsourcing with a core team in McLean, Virginia and an offshore development shop. This allows us to scale up more complex projects easily while also reducing costs for our clients.

At the same time, we are able to deliver better customer service to our clients, with a 1-hour response time, a concern that has caused some of our clients to turn to us after having experienced poor communication while working with offshore firms.

2. Incomplete Project Requirements

Another major reason why the quotes that you receive vary greatly is because at least a few of the web development firms that you’ve contacted don’t understand full scope of project. If you’re unsure about your requirements and aren’t communicating to the developer about what you actually need, it’s very likely that the actual cost of the project will exceed the original estimate.

To get more comprehensive quotes for your project, make sure to ask your web developer the questions found at the end of this article. In addition, your web developer should also be asking you in-depth questions about your project before providing a quote. If you haven’t discussed much before you’re offered a price by a web development firm, the quote probably isn’t very accurate.

3. Developer Is Undercharging

Sometimes web development firms understand what you want but simply choose to charge less. This can be due to several reasons, including lack of experience on the web development firm’s part or because the company is actively trying to undercut their competitors’ pricing.

Either way, a web development firm that charges much less than the majority of the firms that you’ve received quotes from is a red flag. Given that so many factors contribute to the success of a web application project, price shouldn’t be the only factor in your decision-making process.

4. Open Source vs Custom Web Development

Another reason for why web development quotes vary from company to company is that one company may offer to build you a new web app from the ground up while another company might build on top of an existing open source platform. Depending on your project specifications, a web development firm may opt for open source or custom web development.

A custom solution is one that is built completely from scratch. If you want the flexibility to be able to do ‘anything you want’ with your app, a web development firm may recommend this option. However, opting for custom web development can increase the time and cost of development exponentially.

If the web developer instead uses open source software to build your web app, this means that your web application will be based on code that has already been written by a community of developers. Using such frameworks makes it easier to develop a large, complex app at a cost that is more affordable. Web apps that are based on open source code are easily scalable and are proven to be reliable given that all code and modules have been extensively tested.

However, the main drawback to open source web development is that you’ll have to compromise on some features given that you are bound by the restrictions of the open source platforms that were used to develop your web application. This means that your app will follow predefined guidelines and you won’t be able to implement certain custom features.

5. Licensing

In some cases, a web development firm may exclude or fail to account for the full number of licenses that you will need to assemble your app’s technology stack. As a result, you will need to ask about the products that you might need licensing for as a part of your web development project and request a breakdown of the licensing costs as a component of your overall quote.

6. Warranty and Maintenance

After your web application is built, the costs don’t end there. The cost for your app project can also vary depending on whether your app development quote comes with a warranty and maintenance contract. A maintenance contract ensures that your app continues to work as intended and is kept up-to-date for users.

At Achievion Solutions, we offer our clients a 1-year warranty on every project. This ensures that you are covered in case something goes wrong after your project is finished.

Make sure that your web development firm offers you some sort of guarantee, otherwise you’ll be left holding the bag after you’ve already committed a large sum of money to your web application project.

Questions to Ask When Hiring a Web Development Company

You need to evaluate every web development firm that you receive a quote from thoroughly before making a decision on which firm to work with. To help you vet web development firms, here are a few questions to ask:

  • What is your web development process?
  • What level of involvement will you need from me/my company in order to create my app?
  • Can you provide samples of your work?
  • Who will be on my web application development team?
  • How often do we need to communicate? Will I have one central point of contact?
  • Do you provide training?
  • Do you offer a warranty?
  • What happens if the app breaks or is hacked?
  • How do you manage updates?

Once you’ve asked these questions and you feel comfortable with the answers that the firm has provided, as well as, the costs, you’re ready to start your project.

Ask us your web development questions directly! If you’d like to learn more about how the web development process works here at Achievion Solutions and get a quote for your project, contact us today for a free consultation.

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