Smart Budgeting for Website Redesign

Capacity Interactive AUTHOR: Capacity Interactive
Jul 29, 2010
Min Read


Picture it. You are halfway through your website redesign. You’ve signed off on your wireframes and designs and your programming vendor is coding the site. You’ve allocated your budget just right to pay for the project. Then trouble hits.

The vendor sends you an email. The technical assumptions you made and signed off on for a part of the project were incorrect. The tool you spent so much time planning requires 6 days of additional development to make work. That’s an extra $10,000 you don’t have. You start to panic.

This scenario can easily be avoided with some smart budgeting. Say you have a budget $500,000 to redesign your institution’s website. I recommend holding back 10% of your budget, in this case $50,000 for changes and post-launch optimization. So the number you initially work with is a budget of $450,000 with $50,000 in your back pocket.

Budget half of this allocation, $25,000, for unexpected changes that may come up during the redesign process. Even with the most care and attention to detail, things come up between your signoff on the wireframes and the coding of the site. Sometimes you may not catch something until you see it on your screen on the dev site. Or your vendor may come back to you and a problem they could not anticipate during the planning.

Allocate the second half of the allocation, $25,000 in our example, for post-launch changes. Inevitably, needs and priorities will change from the time you planned the site to when it actually launches. Or some features may not work exactly how you envisioned them during wire framing. Or you catch a bug after your developer’s warranty period has expired. Or there is a feature you just did not think of until later on in the process. Having money tucked away for these instances minimizes the stress that could come from these situations if you are already at your budget limit. And if you don’t encounter any snafus you’ll have additional money for new features and upgrades once your site launches.