Creating a Website RFP
Creating a website RFP doesn't have to be a painful process. In fact, it can actually be enjoyable if you have a basic framework from which to work. Most RFP's are created by pulling down an example from a site and modify to suit your needs, but we find that there is often extensive unneeded language in these sample RFP's that create unnecessary confusion and work for the client.
Pro-Tip: Consider Starting with an RFI. Learn More about Creating and RFI.
Step One: Define the Must-Haves
The first step in creating an RFP is to roughly outline the core elements of your new website.
Some examples of this would be:
- A Content Management System that allows our internal staff to manage our web content easily
- A site that loads quickly (under 5 seconds) and that is available 99.99% of the time
- 5 hours of support each month for the first year
- 4 hour response time for issues
- Site must be responsive (mobile optimized)
- A Print-friendly version of the site
- Site should be search engine friendly out of the box
- Site must comply with specific accessability requirements (such as BS8878 or WCAG)
- Site must comply with specific security requirements (such as HIPAA or FERPA)
Provide Some Background on Your Organization
You should provide a paragraph of text as an overview of your organization. MOST IMPORTANTLY: outline how you would like to position your brand - explain how you would like your school, business, or government organization to be viewed by the visitor.
Outline Your Expectations for the Website
- What should the site produce (leads, sales, awareness, support, etc)
- How will your site performance be measured and at what intervals (# of sales, # of leads, etc)
- What level of expertise should be needed to perform day-to-day website updates?
- How fast should your website load? Often you can say "comparable to industry average"
- What Impression will your site give the visitor?
It's helpful to list your technical preferences (if you have preferences) such as
- Content Management System platform
- Hosting platform
- Database platform
- Blog platform
This is by no means necessary for a good RFP but some orgs have IT staff that require certain platforms be used, so bring it up early in the discussion, it can impact the pricing, timeframes, capabilities,etc