Market Data

Digital Agency Rate Card Survey 2011

By Econsultancy,

There is a newer version of this report available: Digital Agency Rate Card Survey 2016


The Digital Agency Rate Card Survey is based on a survey of more than 350 UK digital agencies carried out in 2011. The principal objective of this Econsultancy research is to show what UK digital agencies charge for different types of skills and levels of seniority, and to understand how and why rates may vary, for example by size of company.

The survey will help you benchmark day rates for more than 50 individual job roles including positions such as creative director, digital content strategist and social media consultant. We are confident that this report provides real practical value both for those working client-side who want to understand what the going rate is for different services, and also for agencies who want to benchmark their own fees.

The report also contains sections on business confidence and projected turnover increases which have once again enabled us to provide top-line data about the health of the industry. The report findings contain overall averages for the following types of agency job role, with a further breakdown of the day rate average by size of agency:

  • Director / Partner
  • Commercial / Strategic
  • Project / Account Management
  • Creative
  • Content, Usability and Accessibility
  • Technical
  • Media Planning and Buying
  • Online Marketing, eCRM and Market Research
  • Search Engine Marketing
  • Social Media
  • Affiliate Marketing, Email Marketing and Web Analytics
  • Testing / Quality Assurance and Training 

Highlights include:

  • The proportion of agencies surveyed with more than 50 employees has increased from only 5% in 2003 to 18% in 2011. One in nine agencies surveyed now has more than 100 employees.
  • Decreases in daily rates are evident across areas including project and account management, creative, search engine marketing and media planning / buying.
  • Agencies now typically have more reliable income streams, with a significant increase in the amount of work done on a retainer-basis. For the largest agencies, 40% of work is done on a retainer basis.
  • The proportion of agencies surveyed that are ‘quite’ or ‘very’ optimistic about the future of their business over the next 12 months has increased from 90% in 2008 to 94% in 2011. However, slightly fewer agencies are ‘very optimistic’ this year (35% compared to 39% in 2008).
  • The most significant challenges agencies face include increased competition and commoditisation, staff recruitment and retention, declining client budgets and increased difficulty attracting clients.

Download a copy of the report to learn more.

A free sample is available for those who want more detail about what is in the report.

Table of contents

1. About Econsultancy

2. About this survey

3. Executive Summary and Highlights

4. Profile of Responding Agencies

5. Business Confidence

6. Charge-out Rates

7. Nature of Work


  • Pdf Disabled Digital Agency Rate Card Survey (1.38 MB PDF)
  • Pdf Disabled SAMPLE: Digital Agency Rate Card Survey 2011 (392 KB PDF)

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