Basic Web Design Contract: Getting It Right

by Ruben 2 Minutes

Whether you are running a web design agency or are working as a freelancer, it is important to create a web design contract before starting any project. Proceeding without clarifying expectations is one of the most fatal mistakes in any business. There are many aspects that will go into creating a web design contract. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the most important factors:


The title says it all. Most disagreements between agencies/freelancers and clients comes down to payment. Everyone wants to get proper remuneration for their efforts. Misunderstandings arise when the client and the provider fails to see eye to eye on what “reasonable” should be. This is why it is important for the project expectations relating to be clearly outlined on the contract at the very start.

These should include the payment method (PayPal, credit card, or check) and the expected date of payment. If you are working with milestone payments, the sum of money at the end of every milestone must be specified in the beginning.

Timeframe of Delivery

The timeframe of delivery can significantly vary depending on the client’s specification. Everything should have been discussed beforehand. In essence, the most critical aspect is to ensure that you’ll be able to meet the deadline stipulated in the agreement. Failure to do so may lead to the cancellation of the contract and forfeiture of payment.


No matter how good you are or how long you’ve been in the industry, there will invariably be clients who will ask for unreasonable amounts of revisions. Some may change their requirements constantly while others may provide an endless list of additional requests for more features on the site. Whatever the case may be, it is important for you to protect yourself. Even the most basic web design contract should contain stipulations about how many times the project can be revised.


The web design contract should clearly state who owns the rights to the work. If the client hires you to complete the project and paid the agreed amount for it, the work should be legally his property. However, there are cases when the designer may retain the copyright for certain elements of the work. Everything should be ironed out at the contract.

Other Tips

Before sending the web design contract to the client, it is critical to go through it one more time and proofread everything. Make sure that the terms are clear and easily understandable. Ideally, it should also contain an emergency clause for cancellation in case you need to cancel the contract for any reason. This will protect both parties from unexpected eventuality. Always remember that the web design contract should be both fair to you and the client.

If you’ve never written a web design contract before, there’s no need to worry. There are professional templates and contract writing tools that are available in the market. Using these resources can help you save time and hassles. You’ll also get peace of mind in knowing that all the important elements in the contract will be covered.

Get Our $270M Client Proposal Kit (free)

by Ruben
Ruben originally founded proposal software, Bidsketch as a one-person company while working as a software developer for a billion dollar payroll company. Since its early days as a “company of one,” Bidsketch has grown to help over 2,000 paying customers win billions of dollars in new business and save thousands of hours in the process.