I have a web client who is taking up a hugely disproportionate amount of my time on a relatively simple low budget project. It is forcing me to think about the way I deal with clients and setting stricter boundaries, because I cannot allow this to happen again.
This is a job I started in early March that could have been comfortably finished in 10 days if everything was organised, but here I am almost 3 months later still waiting on basic materials I am now told will not be able for another couple of months. This is very frustrating, not least because I was previously given a deadline of mid May to finish everything.
It’s a fairly small website under 15 pages, yet I have so far received around 150 emails as the client changes their mind or requests feedback in areas that are often not even related to the the web design work. There have also been various meetings and several phone calls that have frankly left me drained by the endless back & forth, so I now feel I have to write an email explaining why it is just not feasible to work this way.
We originally agreed a fixed price, but this has been like asking a decorator to paint a room numerous times over 5 months for the same cost, while offering feedback on what car they should buy and how they should deal with their business taxes.
Not long ago they asked me about the bill for all of this, saying they appreciated I had done more work than expected, but they had only budgeted for a figure that was 30% less than I originally quoted!! I am pulling my hair out here and trying to calmly write an email to explain how ridiculous this has become.
From what I have heard, this is the way the client typically operates, so I know it is not just me. Has anybody else come across clients like this and have any advice how best to handle a case like this? I want to be paid and ideally I’d like to finish the job, but I cannot entertain continuing in this fashion.