Joomla Project Costing - Extensions and Other Elements

By Justin Kerr
July 01, 2010

Table of Contents

Third-Party Extensions

A single Joomla extension may be just one small element of a Joomla Web site, or it may power most of the functionality that the site delivers. Thus, costs for implementing a Joomla extension can range from being negligible to consuming the bulk of the budget for an entire project.

A good approach for estimating extension costs is to treat a specific third-party extension as a mini-project inside the larger Joomla Web site project. Try to estimate the time it will take for extension installation and configuration, visual styling and functional integration, integration with outside services or resources, cross-browser and usability testing, and content production inside the extension.

It's a good idea to keep track of specific extension implementation costs from project to project in order to establish some benchmarks. Also, as most Joomla extensions are either free or of nominal cost, it's quite practical to set up a test case scenario to evaluate the project costs of implementing any particular extension.

Other Tasks

A successful Joomla project will benefit from (and probably require) any number of other services as part of the total Web site implementation. These may include:

Training and Documentation
It is important to ensure that the client is able to take advantage of Joomla's excellent content management capabilities, and provision of documentation and training can go a long way toward supporting this activity. A custom documentation package is a reassuring reference for many clients, and most of it can be reused from project to project. Two to three hours of on-site training should be enough to get a client comfortable with logging in, managing content, and approaching some of the more specific or technical areas of Joomla (for instance, managing menu items or modules).

Creative and Communications Services
Especially for SMB clients, a range of creative and communications services may be required as part of launching the Web site project. Small businesses typically won't have internal marketing resources to leverage, and they will turn to the Joomla service provider for answers. These "soft" services represent significant revenue opportunities.

Ongoing Services
Most clients will be interested in some level of ongoing provision of service or general availability to troubleshoot if something goes wrong. In addition, many smaller clients may wish to outsource ongoing marketing and communications tasks, as they don't have an internal resource to which this can be assigned. Recurring business from existing clients is a great way to build a revenue base. Contracts for this type of work frequently succeed a flat-rate project contract, and it is often helpful to tell clients up-front that this is an option.