Web Design Agreement and Contract

Version: 20190930mo2030


Thanks for choosing me to work with your website needs. Before we get started, please read and sign the following agreement and contract. It’s written with the intent to alleviate concerns and apprehension, and based on a trust between all parties involved.

As your consultant, I know that, according to this agreement, you’re free to switch at any time to another consultant. So, I’m motivated to deliver on the goals we establish.

It’s important to know that in over 20 years of web design consulting, it’s never been necessary with any client to enforce or refer back to any of the guidelines in this agreement. Most of my work has been started and satisfactorily completed only with informal emails and a handshake. However, having these measures in place helps protect and reassure all parties by clearly outlining the rights, obligations, and expectations of all involved.

Agreement Overview

In working with Greg Johnson “Iowa City Web Design Artist” (hereafter Greg), as the customer, I will provide the best description possible of what my goals are and all the necessary content required to complete the project. This information will be developed through a series of email exchanges or handwritten notes culminating in a numbered list of goals / tasks that we will work from. I’m free to add to that original list, or modify it, but additional time will increase the estimated cost and time required to complete the project. Greg will keep me updated along the way with regard to costs and as the customer I’m free to cancel at any time, paying only for the time, materials, and costs incurred so far.

Projected Time and Cost

I understand that the work completed will be billed by the current hourly rates as stated on the website. I know that every effort will be made to complete my project in a timely and cost effective way. I recognize that an estimate is not the same as a fixed bid. The price estimate discussed via email or in meetings is based on what are perceived to be the project goals, and the anticipated time required. As the parameters of the project change, or as complications arise, every effort will be made to keep costs down, but any additional time incurs additional costs. Complications may include, but are not limited to, existing issues described below. In the case of cost overruns, Greg will at his own discretion offer gradually increasing discounts off his normal rate, to demonstrate his willingness to finish the project, and to have a built-in monetary incentive to complete the project as soon as possible.

Existing Issues

In the case of an existing website, I will provide the required logins to access and update the site. Known, unknown, or emerging problems with the existing websites may increase the time and cost required for the project completion. This could include outdated CMS systems (such as a WordPress or Drupal site that hasn’t been updated recently), incompatible / outdated plug-ins, highly customized programming previously done without any documentation, or old themes that are outdated and broken. Sometimes the process of updating a website to make it more secure, can cause outdated components not to work. The customer assumes the liabilities of these unforeseen issues.


Greg assumes no liability for delays, damages, losses, or costs incurred from existing issues, emerging issues, missed deadlines, missing or incorrect content posted on the site, or other problems that arise. Any problems found, if needing correction, will be paid for by the customer. Backups of files, text, images, videos, and other content is the responsibility of the customer. Greg assumes absolutely no liability at all. If the customer is dissatisfied at any time, their remedy is simply to engage another web design consultant. In that event, Greg will, to the best of his ability, provide notes, documentation, logins, and other materials needed to continue the project. The loss to Greg for failing to satisfy the customer is that he will forgo additional income from the project or referrals that might have been.

Intellectual Property and Confidentiality

The web development and marketing practices, techniques, and principles that Greg uses have been developed by him over many years and are in some cases based on existing commonly known best practices. He has graciously shared these techniques online in numerous articles, courses, and online documents over the years. He is happy to share these techniques with others, but does not want someone later claiming that his techniques are their own intellectual property. Therefor, the customer agrees that the methods used in developing their site are essentially open source.

The community of customers served by Greg are very happy to know that any insights, developments, or derivative works can benefit all in the community. This is a cooperative approach rather than competitive approach. Cooperation, collaboration, and transparency produce highly effective outcomes for all.

Greg will be diligent and respectful when it comes to confidentiality of the customer’s business and information. However, he does not assume any liability for any later perception or claim that he has misused or repurposed any of that information.


The written and media content provided by the website owner and used on the website will remain the property of the website owner, even if editorial changes are made by Greg. If Greg contributes his own photography or other content that is purely his, he retains the right to use those elsewhere, but will allow the website owner to use the content without any additional fee. Greg retains the right to revoke the use of his own personally developed photos and other content not developed at the cost of the customer.

Right to Switch

The customer is not bound to continue working with Greg and can switch to another web developer at any time. The customer is only obligated to pay for the work performed and expenses already incurred if any.

Training and Documentation

To make the ‘right to switch’ a viable option, Greg will provide documentation and/or training on how to update and maintain the website so the customer is not dependent upon him or any other web consultant. This will be provided at the regular hourly rate. Greg will use standard templates and practices, providing documentation for anything out of the ordinary, so as much as possible, anyone else can step in and understand how the site and related services have been setup.

Ongoing Hosting and Maintenance Fees

Rather than paying Greg ongoing costly fees for monthly ‘site management and hosting’ payments will go directly to the hosting company selected by the customer. The customer will be listed as the primary administrator and domain (web address) owner. This reduces costs, empowers the customer, and ensures that the customer can switch to any developer they choose at any time.

Contract Agreement Version and Revisions

Some contracts conclude with a stipulation that the contract can be updated or modified without notifying the customer — which essentially would make such contracts irrelevant. This contract is currently at the revision number indicated at the top of this page. Please make a note of it for future reference. When you agree to this contract, you’re agreeing to the current version of it. If it’s necessary to have you agree to a new revised version, you’ll be given an option to do that, and a change-log showing modifications will be indicated using the Microsoft Word document comparison feature.

Signature of Approval

By typing my name below, and clicking submit, I agree to the terms and conditions outlined in this web design agreement and contract. described above.