Website Development RFP Guide

Website Development RFP Guide
Article by Maria MartinMaria Martin
Last Updated: June 15, 2023

Research says that it takes 7 seconds for brands to make a first impression. Another study reveals that 94% of users mistrust a business website due to poor design and functionality.

Given the importance of a highly functional website, finding the right web development companies to build your website is key. This journey starts with a well-structured website development RFP (request for proposal) that includes every detail of your project down to a T.

In this article, we’ll discuss what an RFP for website development is, including its primary components and the format you need to follow. We also provide a free, downloadable website development RFP template that you can use for your project.

What is a Web Development Request for Proposal?

A web development request for proposal (RFP) is a document that a service buyer needs to create in order to find the right website development company that can supply the platform that suits their business needs and goals.

This official document includes your specific project requirements and deliverables alongside your company and contact information. In this article, you will learn which are the essential components of a website development RFP as well as the required steps for writing one.

A well-structured RFP will allow you to compare different web development vendors that submit their bids in an RFP response.

The RFP process, together with your RFP document, will offer an objective perspective upon vendors which will help you select the best provider for your project’s goals.

Why Should You Create an RFP for Website Development?

An RFP for website development simplifies and improves the process of how companies connect with potential providers by offering all the required information to them.

With the help of these concise and finely structured documents, clients seeking to outsource web development services will have the best chance of finding that one provider that fits their project needs and requirements. It also helps in maximizing the project budget or optimizing the timeline.

A solid, well-written website development RFP also streamlines the communication between you and the development supplier while addressing your future expectations and their competencies.

In short, this is how RPFs are useful for both clients and vendors:

  • Simplifies the search and selection process for the web development company
  • Reveals the positives and negatives of each potential vendor
  • Optimizes the website development time and budget
  • Accelerates the price negotiations process
  • Offers providers the chance to acquire a new client
Agency description goes here
Agency description goes here
Agency description goes here

What Does a Website Request for Proposal Include?

Just like other RFPs, a website request for proposal contains the essential procurement information such as your company overview, your project scope and requirements, your website goals and more. Scroll down to the next heading to unwrap each component of your RFP in more depth.

The mandatory elements of RFP for website development are:

  • Project summary
  • Company background
  • Your website’s current inventory
  • Your website’s audience
  • New website goals and objectives
  • New website functionality requirements
  • Extra functionalities
  • eCommerce section
  • Budget
  • Project requirements
  • Project deadlines
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How to Format Your Website Development RFP in 10 Steps

  1. Provide a Project Overview
  2. Share Your Company Background
  3. Discuss Your Current Website
  4. Zero In on Your Target Audience
  5. List Your New Website Goals
  6. Itemize Your New Website Functionality Requirements
  7. Include eCommerce Details
  8. Present Your Budget
  9. Communicate Your Project Timeline
  10. Give Your Contact Information

Here’s how you properly format your RFP for website development in 10 essential steps:

1. Provide a Project Overview

Start your RFP by giving a high-level overview of your web development project. Provide the essential information about your project so that prospective vendors are hooked and continue reading your document.

In this section, include information such as:

  • A short introduction about your company (name, purpose, industry)
  • The reason why you want to create a new website/ revamp your outdated website
  • The end goal your company is looking to achieve with this project

2. Share Your Company Background

Dive into your company’s background and explain your business in a clear and concise way. Make potential web development vendors understand what your company is all about.

Mention aspects like:

  • A brief history about your company
  • Business values and brand mission
  • Products/services provided
  • Brand image and positioning in the market
  • Unique value proposition (UVP)
  • Target audience and existing customers
  • Niche market
  • Competitive landscape
  • Key stakeholders
  • Web development project’s leader
  • Location
  • Links to your online presence (website, social media)

3. Discuss Your Current Website

This is where you expand on your existing website situation - how it performs, what it lacks and the bits that are not working properly. Map out what issues your future website will solve.

Don’t be afraid to list all the complaints you received regarding your website. Alongside your current traffic and conversion rate, make sure to bring up website issues (if any) about:

  • Navigation
  • Menu
  • Messaging
  • Design
  • Checkout errors
  • SEO
  • Mobile-friendliness
  • And more

4. Zero In on Your Target Audience

Defining the type of audience is a highly valuable component of website development. It’s vital information for the web development company you will hire.

The web developers, designers, strategists and content writers who will work on developing your website must know who you want to convert into paying customers. Your target audience will play a key role in the design and development process, from functionality to design, UX and content.

Make sure to include all the available data you have on your audience, such as:

  • Basic demographic info (age, gender, location, income, education, etc.)
  • User persona/ideal clients
  • User behavior:
    • Pain points
    • Challenges
    • Goals
    • Purchase habits
    • Preferred content
  • And more

5. List Your New Website Goals

After listing your existing website problems and describing your audience, it’s time to identify the prime objective of your website, followed by any secondary ones you may have. In other words, outline your short and long-term website goals.

These website goals may be:

  • Educating and informing prospective buyers on your products/services
  • Selling products/services
  • Building brand awareness
  • Generating more online sales
  • Providing thought-leadership content to attract potential investors
  • And more

6. Itemize Your New Website Functionality Requirements

In this section, you will make an inventory of your desired requirements - being very specific on the new functionalities needed.

It’s important to highlight your wishes according to their priority. This will provide you with a snapshot of your new website plan. It will also help prospective providers submit more rigorous responses, with a breakdown of costs for each service needed - which will further help you in making a more informed decision.

A few examples of new functionalities for your website could be the following:

  • Blog
  • SEO strategy
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • Sticky menu navigation
  • CRM integration
  • Live chat
  • Subscription offer
  • Lead generation magnets
  • Social media icons
  • Store locator
  • Interactive map
  • Customer service interaction
  • Internal search feature
  • Downloadable files
  • Access control
  • And more

Whatever how your wishlist looks like, make sure to list your new requirements as informative and concise as possible. And don’t forget to prioritize them!

7. Include eCommerce Details

If you happen to want to build an eCommerce platform, take into account that this type of project usually takes considerably more time to complete - around 15 to 19 weeks. The hours put in development will also dictate the total cost of the project.

In this case, your website development RFP should contain eCommerce specific details like these, among others:

  • Expectations and conversion goals
  • Cart and checkout new user experience
  • Product quantity/stock-keeping unit
  • Mobile compatibility
  • And more

8. Present Your Budget

It’s vital to bluntly present the budget for your website development project. This will help you receive punctual and accurate responses from specialized vendors.

Prospective providers will also be informed about the exact set of services you need so they will follow suit with their responses.

Present your budget in a transparent manner and express your openness to pricing negotiations.

It’s important to have in mind that the cost for web development services varies from one company to another, based on these factors:

  • The company’s reputation and size
  • The number of developers involved in the project
  • The scope and complexity of your project
  • The number of features and functionalities

9. Communicate Your Project Timeline

In this section, make sure to offer realistic dates on your project deliverables and try to specify whether the deadlines are fixed or flexible.

These dates should refer to:

  • The suggested dates for project kick-off and completion
  • The deadlines for each stage of the project cycle
  • The proposed website launch
  • The duration of the project

Additionally, be sure to include the timeframe for the entire website development RFP process, including the dates of:

  • The RFP document distribution to prospective vendors
  • The interval during which you will accept RFP responses
  • The date when you will narrow down the most qualified web development companies
  • The date when you will contact the winning website development vendor (and those that were not selected)

10. Give Your Contact Information

In the end, remember to let potential vendors know who is the main point of contact for your website development RFP. Take this opportunity further to state the deadline for your web development project.

RFP Template for Website Development

RFP template for website development is useful for creating your own request for proposal from scratch, because it already contains all the essential fields and questions that just need filling out by the agency.

You can also download your copy of a free website development RFP template to the right on this page.

Here is an example of what a well-rounded RFP template for website development should contain:


RFP Sent: [date]
Responses Due: [date]
Send proposal to: [Name, email address]
Finalist Agencies Selected:[date]
Chosen Agency Selected & Contacted:[date]
Project Kick-off:[date]
New Website Launch Target Date:[date]

Your Company Overview

Website Objectives

Primary Objective:
Additional Objectives:
Target Audience:

Current Website

[website URL]
Launch date:

Project Scope and Functionality Requirements

[Requirement 1]
[Requirement 2]


Proposal Requirements

Overview of your agency
Overview of how you will meet our goals
Scope of your work (research, design, development, post-launch errors correction etc.)
Elaborate on your proposed platform/CMS
Outline of your website design & development strategy
Proposed website timeline from kickoff to launch
Details about your team
Recent design & development examples
Any key differentiators about you?
Pricing with optional elements line-itemed
Terms & conditions

Best Web Development and SEO Service Providers in 2023

DesignRush has curated this list of the top three agencies offering excellent SEO and web development services with the importance of a well-optimized company website. Browse through them, make an assessment, and choose what’s most fitting for your business requirements.


  • Location: 13 Hawley Cres, London, NW1 8NP, United Kingdom
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: SEO, Small Business SEO, SEO Consultancy, Enterprise SEO, eCommerce SEO, Search Engine Marketing, PPC, Digital Marketing, Influencer Marketing

Based in London, ZED SEO comprises a small team of four experts who have worked with local and international brands across the UK, US, Europe, Australia, and the UAE.

Spearheaded by Matt, an SEO expert, and Chris, a seasoned software engineer, ZED SEO offers White Label SEO services to businesses of varying sizes. They can help grow your online presence by developing your company website, which drives massive organic traffic and conversion.

Established in 2015 with one goal in mind – search engine optimization, ZED SEO offers passion and delivers high-quality smart products.

2. Gurusol Technology 

  • Location: SCO 1066 1067, Sector 22 B, Chandigarh, 160022, Chandigarh, 160022, India
  • Average Hourly Rate: $12/hr
  • Expertise: Website Design and Development, SEO, PPC, Content Marketing, Graphic Design, Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, Email Marketing, Brand Management, SMS Marketing, Social Media Management, Online Reputation Management, CRO, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Mobile App Development, iOS App Development, Android App Development

Providing design, development, optimization, and support, Gurusol Technology showcases expertise across the numerous facets of digital marketing. It is named one of India's best web design and development agencies, offering a 360-degree solution to its client's needs.

With over five years of solid experience in the field, Gurusol’s high-performing developers and marketers innovate to create consumer-centric websites that combine SEO, SEM, PPC, and Google Ads in their strategies.

Top Notch Beauty Parlour and Jasvinder Sharma are two of their most notable clients.

3. Presta

  • Location: Dobracina 30b, Belgrade, 11000, Serbia
  • Average Hourly Rate: $60/hr
  • Expertise: Website Development, Mobile App Development, PHP Development, Software Development, UI/UX Design, Shopify, WordPress Website Design, WordPress Development, eCommerce App Development, Logo Design, Salesforce, WooCommerce Development, eCommerce Web Design, Small Business Website Design, Responsive Website Design, B2B Website Design, Web Design

Presta is a group of professional thinkers, makers, and leaders with the proficiencies to remake your brand and manage your business's digital requirements.

The Presta team values simplicity and working synergistically toward a single vision, i.e., building inspiring digital experiences. They follow the process of discovering solutions, designing, developing, and deploying applications and websites. Its passion and mission are to create a bold, remarkable, and purpose-filled unique web experience that resonates with consumers.

On the roster of their satisfied clients are Scratchy, Dechkotzar, and International Water Association.

4. Shivam Selam Digital Studio

  • Location: Downtown TVA, Dispur, Guwahati, 781001, India
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Web Design, Web Development, Digital Marketing, eCommerce SEO, PPC, Lead Generation, UI/UX Design, B2B, Search Engine Marketing

Shivam Selam Digital Studio is your best pick if you're looking for a web development company that prioritizes your growth.

Shivam Selam is a full-stack web designer based in Guwahati, India. He founded the digital studio to serve as a one-stop shop for all of his clients' digital needs.

Whether you need help developing a new website or optimizing your existing one, Shivam can give you the tools you need to ensure your site performs at its best.

Aside from being a full-stack web designer, Shivam has experience with content marketing and conversion optimization.

He's driven over 150k conversions through content and worked with a diverse range of clients, from startups to Fortune 500 companies.

5. Raging Bull Digital

  • Location: Minnesota, MN
  • Average Hourly Rate: $100/hr
  • Expertise: Web Design, Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, SEO

Like a bull ready to charge, the experts at Raging Bull Digital are fueled by power, determination, and grit.

Its web design and SEO experts deliver a unique approach to digital marketing, and they do it rapidly without compromising the quality.

The agency offers small-batch, craft digital footprint solutions tailored to your specific needs—whether you need more traffic to your website or want to increase brand awareness.

If you're a small business, partnering with Raging Bull Digital will help you gain the competitive advantage you need to succeed against more prominent firms in your industry.

6. Azency

  • Location: 2035 Sunset Lake Road, Suite B-2, Newark, Delaware 19702, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: $125/hr
  • Expertise: Branding, WordPress Website Design, Shopify, Digital Marketing, SEO

Your online presence is a crucial part of your business.

Your website, for instance, is where you get most of your traffic, so it needs to look professional and clean. It's the first thing people see in your business. That's why you need to make an excellent first impression.

That's where Azency comes in. This agency provides all the tech solutions you need under one roof to help enhance your business's online identity.

From website development to Shopify migration, app development, and branding, Azency has it all.

With its help, you can expect a beautiful website that runs smoothly, great social media content that resonates with your target audience, and a data-driven approach to your digital promotions.

Its team has seasoned professionals who have worked with some of the most prominent organizations in the world, like UNICEF, Hyatt Regency, and the World Health Organization.

7. Smart Rabbit

  • Location: 26139 Sunbury Ct, Novi, Detroit, Michigan 48374, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Web Design, Digital Advertising, SEO, PPC, Google AdWords

When it comes to digital marketing, you can't afford to take chances. You need an agency that will deliver what you need and nothing less.

Since 2018, Smart Rabbit has been championing small businesses by creating Google ads and websites that help them compete locally in their industry.

The agency's expertise is strategy, data, and technology, which means it can help you develop a plan that makes sense for your business and your customers.

Smart Rabbit is honest and straightforward, so you know what they're doing and why they're doing it. This agency won't waste your time with fluff— it just gets right to the point.

8. Digital Operating Solutions

  • Location: 27335 W Hardy Rd, STE 108, Spring, Texas 77373, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: $125/hr
  • Expertise: Web Design, Website Development, Digital Marketing, Social Media Marketing, Software Development

The world is becoming more digital. And companies that don't embrace technology will have a hard time keeping up with those who do.

Digital Operating Solutions (DOS) understand how valuable time is. This agency is not afraid of change, and that makes them powerful.

DOS constantly evolves and improves to keep up with the fast-paced world of technology.

The team believes great websites are built with user experience, so every step is carefully crafted to create an intuitive and user-friendly experience for your visitors.

And their results speak for themselves: 113% increase in blog traffic, twice new users, and up to 60% more page views.

Whether it's a complete overhaul or fine-tuning an existing site, the agency upholds its goal to deliver nothing less than hassle-free, actual results.

9. ThrillX

  • Location: Remote, Mississauga, L5M5L5, Canada
  • Average Hourly Rate: $70/hr
  • Expertise: Digital Strategy, Creative, Web Design, Wearable App Development, Enterprise Mobile App Development, App Marketing, eCommerce Development

No business wants their websites to be dull. You want your website to thrill your users and keep them returning, but you don't have the time or energy to do it yourself.

ThrillX is here to help.

This digital agency specializes in converting websites into breathtaking, immersive experiences that are true to your brand.

Their secret lies in behavioral science. By understanding who your users are and their pain points, ThrillX crafts stunning designs that look good on the surface and address your users' needs.

The agency takes pride in producing sky-high conversion rates for their clients, and they're ready to accomplish the same for your business.

10. Blue Beetle

  • Location: Office 1502, Mazaya Business Avenue BB2, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai, UAE, Dubai, 73463, United Arab Emirates
  • Average Hourly Rate: $130/hr
  • Expertise: Digital Strategy, Web Design, Website Development, UI/UX Design, Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, Digital Advertising, SEO, Social Media Marketing, Inbound Marketing

Want to see your website "sing" and "dance"?

That's the kind of experience you can get with the team at Blue Beetle. They create dynamic and engaging websites unique to your business and its needs.

Blue Beetle loves what they do, and it shows in every pixel on every page of their work. Their designs are breathtakingly vibrant and full of life, creating unique experiences that captivate your users.

The result? High conversions, increased revenue, and relevant leads.

They've been in business since 2004, so you can trust them to help grow your business and get you where you want it to be.

11. PNdigital

  • Location: Kemp House, 152 - 160 City Road, London EC1V 2NX, London, EC1V 2NX, United Kingdom
  • Average Hourly Rate: $100/hr
  • Expertise: Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, SEO, PPC, Facebook Marketing, Content Marketing, eCommerce Marketing

PNdigital is voted the best SEO agency in London, and it's no wonder why. Having been featured on Fox, NBC, and CBS, this agency has solidified its name in the digital marketing world.

Its proven record of increasing sales for its clients by 109% (or more) makes them the go-to company for businesses looking to grow its brand.

This agency has been featured on Fox, NBC, and CBS— they've done the work that gets results.

Whether you're struggling to get your brand in front of new customers or want to improve your current position, PNdigital brings incredible work to show off your brand's true value.

12. Ahumka Digital

  • Location: 14/F, China Hong Kong Tower, 8 Hennessy Rd, Wan Chai, 999077, Hong Kong
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Digital Strategy, Branding, Web Design, eCommerce Development, Website Development, Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, SEO

Have you heard of the "Don't make me think" design philosophy?

It's when a website has a design that lets users do what they need to accomplish as directly and efficiently as possible.

Ahukma Digital specializes in such designs, giving your users a seamless experience.

The agency believes a good design should be simple, straightforward, and drama-free. But it doesn't have to lose its "wow" factor.

It can give you a winning design that is attractive, engaging, and informative—all while being easy to use.

13. AppWT LLC

  • Location: 14365 Yale St, Livonia, Michigan 48154, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: $75
  • Expertise: Web Development, WordPress Development, SEO, Lead Digital Marketing...

AppWT, which stands for "Applications, Websites, and Technology", is Accredited by the Better Business Bureau. They host and create custom, modern, responsive, and cutting-edge websites. They also offer Graphic Design, Logo Design, Digital Marketing, and Video Production.

The company conducts most business and training online, but also has access to over a dozen business locations throughout Michigan for in-person training as needed, which covers all 83 Counties in Michigan.

They invest in the people before the profit, since hey work remotely they can keep our prices affordable.

14. Phantom Eye Design

  • Location: Online Service, Athens, Georgia 30601, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Web Design, Small Business Branding, Graphic Design, Small Business Website Design...

Phantom Eye Design builds professional websites so you can stand out and win more clients. They handle it all - strategy, design, content, photos, management, and more so clients can focus on their business and customers.

Beautiful design and clarity-focused strategy is their recipe for building a successful website, as well as creating healthy websites built with search engine optimization that will increase their clients' company's visibility online.

15. Bakklog

  • Location: Posthoornstraat 17, Rotterdam, 3011 WD, Netherlands
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Logo Design, Product Design, Web Design, Healthcare Website Design, Restaurant Website Design, Real Estate Web Design, B2B Website Design, Small Business Website Design, Website Development, WordPress Development, Digital Marketing, SEO, Real Estate SEO, Small Business SEO, SEO Consultants, and Local SEO.

Bakklog is a renowned software agency located in Rotterdam, Netherlands that has received global recognition since it was founded in 2017.

Bakklog offers a range of services, classifying their expertise within web design, logo design, product design, SEO, and digital marketing - creating the optimal platform for businesses to capture visibility. Bakklog has proudly worked with startups such as Tumblr, and Viewnary alongside Fortune 500 Corporations.

Bakklog is renowned for its dedication to diligence, creativity, and innovation in all its endeavors; enabling every project delivered to exceed expectations. Bakklog supports international clients from various countries such as Western Europe, Asia, North America, and the Middle East with first-class solutions.

16. Alt Creative

  • Location: 3571 Far West Blvd #197, Austin, Texas 78731, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: $150/hr
  • Expertise: Branding, Web Design, Website Development, and WordPress Website Design.

Alt Creative is a professional branding and web development agency in Austin, Texas that has been first-class servicing its clients since 2009.

Alt Creative is not your typical company; Alt Creative prides itself on getting to know its customers—diving into what makes them unique, learning about their successes and challenges, and understanding the goals of the business—all for the sake of designing and executing high-level marketing strategies tailored to the desired customer's needs.

Alt Creative has been successful with implementing this method as proven by its impressive list of clients such as United Way Austin, Greenleaf Book Group, and People Biz Inc., demonstrating Alt Creative’s ability to build powerful relationships through a modern approach to creating custom websites, building brand value through website development, and communicating client messaging.

Alt Creative goes above and beyond to guarantee that all design needs are met for every individual client.

17. Adssential Marketing

  • Location: Ark@Gambas, 7 Gambas Crescent, #04-12, Singapore, 757087, Singapore
  • Average Hourly Rate: $150/hr
  • Expertise: Web Design, Digital Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, PPC, and Social Media Marketing.

Adssential Marketing is a full-service digital marketing agency based in Singapore, founded in 2018 by a group of innovative individuals.

Guiding its clients to gain a competitive edge through its range of services, including web design, digital marketing, SEO, PPC, and social media strategies; Adssential has helped popular companies such as Grab, Singtel, and Pure Nectar reach their goals with the help of their expertise combined with adaptability to changing trends.

Adssential provides professional and informed solutions for businesses that wish to grow and succeed.

18. Aask Digital

  • Location: Longfield Cresc, London, SE26 4DR, United Kingdom
  • Average Hourly Rate: $35
  • Expertise: Responsive Website Design, Digital Marketing, Construction Web Design, Healthcare Website Design...

Aask Digital is a result driven Digital Marketing Agency in London for Small & Medium Businesses. We are a full range London Digital Marketing Agency working 100% in-house for our business clients. We have the skills, knowledge & ability to deliver the best customised Digital Marketing strategies & solutions which helps a business to grow, boost & scale up to the next level. Result Driven cost effective services we offer includes Brand Logo Design, Web Design & Management, SEO Services, Local SEO Services, Social Media Marketing, Paid Ads, Lead Generation, Email Marketing & many more.

19. Breakthrough Local SEO

  • Location: 15970 SW 146th Ave, Portland, Oregon 97224, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: $150
  • Expertise: Small Business Digital Marketing, Small Business SEO, Small Business Website Design...

Breakthrough Local SEO located in Portland, OR is dedicated to helping our clients succeed online. We build great websites and implement proven strategies to get your brand high exposure online.

We take a consultative approach to each client and their needs. Every industry is unique and so are our clients so we work closely with you to define your objective and a path to success.

Get-in on what the big companies have known about for years, Local SEO and drive more traffic to your business online. This type of traffic is highly intent on finding a solution, lets make sure they find you.

Website Development RFP Takeaways

The format provided for creating an effective and exhaustive website development RFP can also be applied to other types of industries and services, such as:

No matter which kind of RFP you need to write, remember to include the key members of your team as they can play important roles in providing valuable information or insights that could contribute to your website development project's success.

Website Development RFP FAQs

1. What does a good website development RFP look like?

A good website development RFP should be clear, concise, and comprehensive in outlining your project requirements and expectations. The key components we just discussed above should be neatly organized, providing as much detail as possible to help potential vendors understand your requirements and expectations.

2. How detailed should a website development RFP be?

The level of detail in a website development RFP can vary depending on the complexity of your project and your specific requirements. However, it is generally beneficial to provide sufficient detail to ensure potential vendors understand your expectations and can provide accurate proposals. While it's important to be detailed, avoid unnecessary complexity or excessive technical jargon that may confuse potential vendors.

Our team ranks agencies worldwide to help you find a qualified agency partner. Visit our Agency Directory for the top Website Development Agencies, as well as:

Get connected with the right website development company for your project.
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