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Web Design Contract Template

By: Steve Stormoen / Friday, November 22, 2013

A strong web design contract does more than just create an agreement between you and your client. Your contract gives you an opportunity to showcase your professionalism, set your client’s expectations, and build the foundation for a profitable working relationship. To do so, this article will help you with every step of crafting a top-notch web design contract—what terms it should include and how to get it signed online using RightSignature.

What clauses are critical in your web design contract? What’s the best way to appear confident and experienced to your clients? Read on for the answers to these questions, plus a free sample web design contract template.

Free Web Design Contract Template

 Sample Web Design Contract
Web Design Contract. Click for full template
Your web design contract is more than a legal document—it’s also a way for you to show off your business acumen and design chops. Use your aesthetic judiciously when crafting your contract—typography, layout, and well-organized content are a demonstration of your expertise and also make the agreement easy to read and sign. Then, use the right tool for the job. Your client expects you to be ahead of the technology curve, so don't slow them down with a paper contract. The template above is set up using RightSignature, so you can see how easy electronic signature software is to use, both for you and your clients.

Creating your web design contract from scratch may seem like a lot of work, but there is no harm in referencing and reusing what has worked for other designers. This free sample web design contract contains everything you need to get started with a comprehensive, professional contract. For professionals looking to build a personalized web design contract, here are 4 sections that should be included.

4 Key Sections for Your Web Design Contract

1. Scope of Work, Deliverables, and Schedule
Before you begin your work, you need to know what you’re working on. The Terms of Agreement section in your web design contract should include the scope of your work, as well as a thorough description of what your final deliverable product will be. Does your client want you to provide all the content for the website? Are you expected to build a web store and payment system? Each component should be described in detail.

Additionally, your terms of agreement will include milestones and schedules. For example, you may specify that you will show a mock-up within two weeks, and a working template or prototype within one month. Depending on the pace of the project, it may be wise to clarify that your client must provide approval or feedback within one week of receiving drafts.

from xkcd.com
2. Confidentiality and Original Works
While working on a web design job, you may be party to your client’s confidential information. Naturally, many employers will want to include a confidentiality clause, similar to a non-disclosure agreement, establishing the disclosure and protection of that information.

Additionally, a clause establishing the ownership of Original Works is standard. During the time period you are employed by your client, you may create other web design works which may or may not be influenced by the proprietary and confidential information disclosed to you by your client. An Original Works clause resolves who would gain ownership of such works.

3. Terms of Compensation
Here’s the big one: how are you getting paid? In the Terms of Compensation clause, you will list your standard rate of compensation, as well as when and how it will be delivered and accepted. However, this is far from the only item you need to iron out in this clause.

Next is the ownership of your content. Web design is creative labor, but you are designing for the specifications of your client. Who will own the intellectual property of your design, once your work is completed? Will you be able to list yourself as the author of the site and use the design sample in your own promotional materials? Be sure to spell these issues out in as much detail as possible.

Finally, you should detail in the Terms of Compensation clause who will be maintaining and updating the website you will design. If you are responsible for updates and maintenance, you should include your rates for such work. If not, you may negotiate with your client a period of training for the client’s staff to do such work, including your wages for such work.

4. Additional Terms
The final major clauses you will want to include in your web design contract will cover any additional terms that don’t fit into those above. This includes a stipulation for attribution in the event of changes to the website, a warranty against future major errors, an acknowledgement of your position as an independent contractor, and jurisdiction and choice of law, preferably in your state and county. Finally, your web design contract should include a clause confirming the primacy of this contract over any other verbal or written agreement you may have with your client regarding your work.

Use RightSignature to Get it Signed

Use RightSignature digital signature software to send agreements to your clients to sign online. RightSignature is fully brandable and will impress your clients from the start. They can sign documents on any computer or even on an iPad, iPhone, or Android device, and executed agreements include a Signature Certificate with audit log for legal strength.

Sarah Parmenter, founder of You Know Who Design, says:
RightSignature is a truly stunning app. I use it as a business closing tool. With RightSignature, I can present a highly professional image and close deals with clients around the world."
In the competitive field of web design, you can use a solid contract to stand out from the crowd and protect your relationship with your client... and avoid the web design project from hell.


Disclaimer: This article was not written by an attorney and does not constitute legal advice. If you have any questions about the legality of your web design contract, please consult an attorney.

Power User Tip: Contact Searching from Your Address Book

By: Steve Stormoen / Monday, November 11, 2013


RightSignature's Contact Searching feature acts like a built-in address book, allowing you to easily send documents to previous signers or contacts from your email or CRM in just a few clicks. If you send documents repeatedly to the same recipients, or if you use one of our many cloud software integrations, this feature makes RightSignature even more efficient.

Contact Searching for Previous Signers

To enable RightSignature to automatically suggest the names and emails of people to whom you have previously sent documents, follow these simple steps.
  1. Login to RightSignature and click the Account link, then click the Settings tab.
  2. Scroll down to “Document Builder”. Find the “Contact Searching” setting and check the corresponding checkbox, so it says “Enabled”.
  3. That’s it! Now, whenever you send a document with RightSignature, for any signer or CC, begin typing that contact’s name. RightSignature will automatically suggest your previous signers in a drop-down menu below—simply click on that signer and RightSignature will auto-complete the name and contact information.

Contact Searching from another Cloud System

RightSignature also allows you to import contacts from other online software services, including Gmail, SalesForce, and dozens of others.

If you would like to import your contacts from another system, login to your account and scroll through our Integration Addons directory. Check the radio button next to “Contact” on the top menu bar to see integrations designed to allow RightSignature to search your contacts from the partner software system.


Follow the directions on-screen to activate your chosen integrations. Then simply follow step 3 above to easily send documents to your contacts.

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