Why Website Developers Abandon Clients

Website Designers and Developers leave clients in a lurch way too often.  I hear about it all the time – almost weekly from new clients.  Each time I am told such a story, I am dumbfounded.  One doesn’t just abandon a client in the middle of a project.  That’s not good business, and it’s bad for reputation.  So I got to thinking:  Why might this unfortunate situation be so common?  

There is no good reason for developers to abandon clients in the middle of a project.


Call me radical, but that’s what I think.  I understand that a job offer may arise that cannot be refused, but that’s not an excuse!  One ought to at least complete a project, or it hand it off to another designer / developer before dropping off the face of the planet.  Appallingly, that’s not what has been happening.

Over and over I meet small business owners who have been ‘left at the alter’ with a website that is 75% done and full of bugs.  They’re in a panic over the situation, with clients of their own trying to navigate a broken website, and are scarred by their experience.  Inevitably, people talk, and I’m sure these small business owners have told their friends and co-workers of their experience.  The result is a demographic in need of a great website to showcase their hard work but that is afraid to go get it.  Abandonment hurts small businesses and the entire designer / developer community.

I get asked often what guarantee I can make that my team won’t do what others have done.  Beyond a contract with a tight timeframe and steps for dissolution of a relationship should something come up, all I can do is look a client straight in the eye and explain why I am in business and why we won’t go anywhere.  A commitment is a commitment, and I intend to keep mine.

Did your developer leave you hanging?  Would you mind telling us about it?

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