One of the easiest ways to get started in programming is to start with web development. Like you when I started I had a lot of questions about how much money I could or would make, but unlike you, I had no clear answers. I aim to help you understand what is possible with web development.
Answer: Web Development solves a real problem for businesses that need to move part or all of their operations online. You can make a lot of money by being the person that helps a business move online especially if you know what you are doing and the best ways to help that business.
Rich is relative, and I took this question exactly as it came. I can tell you as a web developer you can have more time freedom, more control over your projects, and make more money. But to do this you are going to have to work very hard, and be able to provide value to your customer in helping them with exactly what they need.
I know this might bring up more questions for you about how can you help a business or how you might know what to do, and I will have other content for that in the near future (I will update this paragraph). But before you think you have found your perfect career path I know there are some other related questions you might want to be answered.
So lets stick to the money theme of this post and keep going down the path.
Do Web Developers Make Good Money?
If the amount of money you are bringing home matters the most then you should check out my YouTube channel where I’m going to talk about these things. Make sure you subscribe and turn on notifications so you don’t miss anything.
Yes. Web developers can make very good money. It is my opinion based on experience that it is easier to make good money as a freelance web developer, but it is very possible to make good money as an employee.
Things change based on your type of relationship with the customer or boss, but if you are actually an employee it may take a bit of negotiation and planning on your part to make good money.
It is my experience both in people I work with, have hired, or friends that are web developers that most web developers are not paid well as employees unless they are very good at frontend development or are full-stack web developers.
When it comes to freelancing things change a bit because you have more freedom in how you approach things allowing you to possibly hire people if needed.
Now you might be wondering what kind of ranges are reasonable for the different types of web developers keep reading to find out.
How Much are Web Developers Paid?
For this I will break it down into 2 categories I know this won’t cover every possible situation, but it will help you to get an idea of the lay of the land. Also, there are big differences in pay depending on the area. Spending some time on a job website looking at salaries offered you can see near any tech hubs in the USA you are going to find a lot more jobs that have higher pay.
Freelancer: I did freelancing for almost 5 years, I kind of did it before I “officially” started as well but I didn’t actually charge enough to consider it a job it was just a way to earn pocket money. However, when I started getting serious about freelance web development I was able to maintain an hourly rate that was $85+. I write it like that because I was able to maintain a minimum price of $85 /hr but often would see the rate surge to as high as $125 /hr especially when helping a client that was similar to another client I have already helped. This allowed me to spend less time working to make a very good living.
Salary/hourly Employee: My first hourly job as a web developer was a contract for $55,000 /yr and the promise of part of the company once completed. Due to a bad experience, I have not done a similar deal but now look for offers that have a full salary with profit sharing or stocks, etc… I have hired several web developers with the lowest being paid $18 /hr and the highest being paid $37 /hr. It is very reasonable to expect that most employee web developers are going to make based on location:
- $35,000 /yr to $65,000 /yr in the Midwest
- $50,000 /yr to $120,000 /yr near tech centers
The numbers change based on skill and experience for both freelancers and for employees, however, having strong negotiation and communication skills are going to ensure you are on the higher end no matter where you are located.
As mentioned before if you want more details either keep checking this blog for updates or subscribe to my YouTube channel.
Last question I got I thought deserved a little more detail although I touched on it already. Let’s break down how much web developers by freelance.
How Much Can a Web Developer Earn From Freelancing Websites?
I know we already touched on this a little above but there is really so much more to say about this I wanted to answer this other question I got separately. There is a huge difference between doing web development as a freelancer and offering full websites as a freelancer. We will look at some of those differences.
A Freelance Web Developer making websites can easily earn $100,000-250,000 /yr. The freelancers that are making the larger numbers have a plan and clear objectives. They know what they are good at and they only do those things. If other activities are required they either have people to recommend to the business or they will subcontract other freelancers.
Unlike freelance web development fixing things or solving small problems, selling websites is a more complete solution that takes more time and effort on your part. To succeed you need to be organized and skilled in many areas or know people that are.
The best freelancers that make the most money are not the ones that try to do everything themselves. Instead, they are the people that work with others, often recommending friends or colleagues for parts of their jobs. The best freelancers in a way act like a manager coordinating all the pieces to get a website done.
People like this are able to charge $10,000-24,000 for a website because they solve a real problem. The business owner has a need and this freelancer is able to fill that need.
This may not be the perfect fit for everyone and maybe you want to be one of the freelancers that one of the manager types will call to do work. If so you can still easily make a lot of money by working with several different providers and providing quality work at a fast rate.
I can tell you from experience there are literally millions of dollars of lost opportunity each year because the people selling the websites can not get them built fast enough to meet the demand.
This is why I’m going to make some more content on this subject in detail so please keep checking back at my blog and follow along as I build things. You might also consider subscribing to my YouTube channel as I will be releasing good content there covering all these topics and more.