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I'm a freelancer, a company I'm working with (which has a government as customer) asked me to write an app (web-based and/or system) to allow them archiving documents, and making them downloadable by given users/groups.

I'm planning to make it with APIs, and to make a light web interface and a cross-platform desktop app.

My question is: How much can I sell it? Based on time developing? A very light, free and nude app (same as dropbox), then make them pay for each functionality (users/groups/ssl/resume downloads/desktop app...)? Or make a global price, based on approximate cost, based on I don't know what ?

It's my first closed source project.

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Generally you and the company you work for have to be agree about a delay. This delay has to define development time and debugging time. This delay (in days of work) will define the actual price you estimate your work. So you have to know how much you want to sell a day of your work (fyi in France a freelance programmer -web or system- is paid 400 to 700 euros / $500 to $880 -it can go much much higher than that-). Then if you work for a big company you may deal some bonuses. If the company is happy with your work. If everything is fine, you can deal the extra features that will come after your initial deal.

So:

  1. determine how much time it will take for you to develop the whole thing
  2. browse the internet (websites like gun.io) to find how much others are paid
  3. determine extra features if needed
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In France however, a big company won't always want to hire you on such big contracts. There is a law stating that if the company makes more than 66% of your overall revenues, it legally has to hire you if something goes wrong. –  Florian Margaine May 24 '12 at 7:10
    
@FlorianMargaine Not the right thing to discuss here, still. Does your comment mean that if the share of the total revenue accruing to me originates more than 66% from a single concern, then it must here me. So if my revenue is $10000 euros out of which a single company pays me $7000, should the company legally hire me? –  Ubermensch May 24 '12 at 7:32
    
If your company goes bankrupt, yes. IANAL though, so you'd need to confirm this by a professional. –  Florian Margaine May 24 '12 at 7:34
    
The comment was mostly to say that big companies won't usually hire freelancers very often. –  Florian Margaine May 24 '12 at 7:35
    
Thank you for your help. I will talk with them with these information –  Max13 May 24 '12 at 10:09
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