Here are 7 great tips for writing a web design contract:The importance of a web design contract can never be overemphasized. It contains business details between the web designer and the client regarding the web design project. This particular contract provides protection for both parties from fraud and liability, so it has to be written carefully.
- State the components of the contract clearly
As with any legal documentation, web design contracts have to be clear and formal. This is extremely important because they contain vital information about the project, the processes by which it is to be done, and the expectations on both ends of the party.
- Make it concise
Contracts do not have to be long. So long as it contains the necessary details of the project and the expected responses of both parties, then it should be enough. Remember, there should have been a web design proposal that both the designer and client have agreed to before the contract was even made.
- Make conservative projections
In making a web design contract, do not cut your project costing too close to the bone. It would still be wise to consider a margin of error because there are a lot of things you need to consider. Aside from the usual costs like domain name registration, hosting fees and outsourcing for sections of the site, you still need to take into account business-related items such as travel time, electricity, telephone, and other consumables. Even the web design proposal has to be considered.
Allow space for delays as well. In web design, things rarely go strictly as planned, and delays can be normally expected. Since these also take up the designer’s time, the work done as a result of such delays should also be paid.
- Emphasize expectations and commitments
It is normal for web projects to be delayed. It is important for the clients to be aware of what will happen if they do not supply information when requested, or if they request changes in the middle of the process, as well as the designer’s response if the designer is running behind in the project. A web design contract should be clear on payment details and the consequences of failure to pay for the services provided.
- Include revision schedule
A revision schedule limits the number of revisions or the time with which revisions to the project are to be entertained. This prevents clients from using up more than the expected hours to be put in the project. After such limit is reached, then the client agrees to compensate the designer for additional work.
- Include Non-Disclosure Agreement for additional protection
While not always necessary, providing non-disclosure agreements to the client can be good because it makes them feel confident about their secrets. It can also be used to protect the proprietary knowledge put to use while working for the client.
- Run it by a lawyer
It is always a good idea to have an attorney / lawyer look at the web design contract before having it signed, as legal specifics may vary by city, county and state.