How to Write an RFP for a Web Design Project

Updated: August 11, 2009

Your company has decided to rebuild its website, or create a new one, and now you have to find somebody to do the work. How do you go about creating a team that will lead you to success? One of the key components of a web project should be writing an RFP (request for proposal). It not only provides you the opportunity to think through the details of your project, it gives you a detailed outline to discuss with developers.

Hiring a developer who gives you a price based on a conversation is a risky approach to web development, and the RFP assures you that the developer has a clear idea of your expectations. Also, if you are getting bids from multiple developers, the RFP is a way to ascertain they are all bidding on the same thing. The bids you receive will also be more accurate since the developers can closely estimate time required based on very specific tasks that need to be accomplished.

What should you include in an RFP?
The following outline shows you the components of a strong RFP. If you feel an area is not important to your project, you should still include it and state that it is not of importance (i.e. in the Interfaces section you might write: There are no external interfaces that the site needs to integrate with.)

2) Project Synopis
Provide an overview of the project. Answer the following questions:

  • Are you redesigning an existing site, enhancing an existing site or building a brand new site?
  • What is the reason for making these changes now?
  • Who from the company will be involved in this project?
  • What are the technical challenges that may be faced in this project (i.e. company has an in-house CRM system that must be integrated into the site)
,

3) Information Architecture
Defining the site flow, or information architecture, is a critical piece towards getting a firm bid. While the information architecture will likely change as the project evolves, the initial information architecture gives the developer a firm idea of how many screens are involved and what sort of functionality those screens entail. Using a prog

While the process of creating an RFP may seem daunting, it is the best way to assure you've received a solid estimate. It also gives you an opportunity to interact with the developer and get a feel for what it would be like to work with the company. Hiring a web developer does not have to be challenging, and the RFP process will ultimately save you time when your project is developed.

Your company has decided to rebuild its website, or create a new one, and now you have to find somebody to do the work. How do you go about creating a team that will lead you to success? One of the key components of a web project should be writing an RFP (request for proposal). It not only provides you the opportunity to think through the details of your project, it gives you a detailed outline to discuss with developers.

Hiring a developer who gives you a price based on a conversation is a risky approach to web development, and the RFP assures you that the developer has a clear idea of your expectations. Also, if you are getting bids from multiple developers, the RFP is a way to ascertain they are all bidding on the same thing. The bids you receive will also be more accurate since the developers can closely estimate time required based on very specific tasks that need to be accomplished.

What should you include in an RFP?
The following outline shows you the components of a strong RFP. If you feel an area is not important to your project, you should still include it and state that it is not of importance (i.e. in the Interfaces section you might write: There are no external interfaces that the site needs to integrate with.)

2) Project Synopis
Provide an overview of the project. Answer the following questions:

  • Are you redesigning an existing site, enhancing an existing site or building a brand new site?
  • What is the reason for making these changes now?
  • Who from the company will be involved in this project?
  • What are the technical challenges that may be faced in this project (i.e. company has an in-house CRM system that must be integrated into the site)
,

3) Information Architecture
Defining the site flow, or information architecture, is a critical piece towards getting a firm bid. While the information architecture will likely change as the project evolves, the initial information architecture gives the developer a firm idea of how many screens are involved and what sort of functionality those screens entail. Using a prog

While the process of creating an RFP may seem daunting, it is the best way to assure you've received a solid estimate. It also gives you an opportunity to interact with the developer and get a feel for what it would be like to work with the company. Hiring a web developer does not have to be challenging, and the RFP process will ultimately save you time when your project is developed.

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