I just had to laugh when I read the following on the Taoti Web Design & Marketing site because what they said is so true.
Estimates are very much a "what you put into them is what you get out of them". The more detail and thoroughness of your input in the form below, the more information we have on which to base meaningful information and pricing. We’ve given you the ability to answer freely but please use that space! If you don’t provide sufficient detail in this form, we’ll have no way of knowing what you want, and as all our work is custom, we can’t price it if we don’t know what IT is. Remember, this isn’t a sandwich you’re asking for! Websites are complex structures, so we need sufficient information to really help you.
Of course this raises the question, do people want their websites to be like sandwiches? For example, should it be like Quizno’s Subs, where you can only choose from three size types and a limited selection of ingredients? With this approach, developers can then say the following when asked for a quote with no details of the project, "Sure the small website sandwich is $500, the medium is $1000, and the super footlong website is $2000".
"Ok, that’ll be $500 for your small website sandwich sir."
"But I only wanted two of the five ingredients?"
"Sorry sir, those are our prices. Do you still want the sandwich?"
"Hmmm, well I guess…"