Want to save money on a website?

piggy bank
Of course you do. Everyone does. That's why we give you an estimate at the beginning of the process and do our level best to stick to it.

Now, whatever people may think, web development is an unpredictable science and various technical gotchas can lay in wait along the way, which may result in us having to spend more time on this or that than we'd originally anticipated.

This isn't helped by web technologies that are constantly changing and - sometimes anyway - evolving. That's because even when it turns out to be a change for the better, everything on a website tends to depend on everything else - and if you change the notches on the belt, the trousers may fall down.

But what clients don't often realise is how much they can affect the final bill - how much control they can exert over what they end up paying.

We're not going to name names, for obvious reasons but let's take two examples at opposite ends of the spectrum.

* client one has a firm idea of the new web site's purpose; they have the pictures and most of the text; they're routinely available by email; they make decisions quickly (not hastily, there's a difference) and they're engaged in the project. Result? The website comes in on time an bang on budget. No nasty surprises.

* client two has a firm idea of web site's purpose too - they've even got a written spec; but they change their mind a lot; they know what they don't like but are less certain of what they do; most significantly, they're completely blocked and unable to deliver any content at all; the site has now been in 'development' for a record 18 months. It won't come in on budget.

Over the next couple of blogs we're going to suggest some ways that you - as a client - can help us to ensure that a website comes in on budget. See you then.