For many businesses, the cost of a website is too high to be feasible. But if you don’t have a website, you’re losing opportunities for your business to grow.
Your business website is often the first impression you’ll make on potential customers. This primary marketing tool helps them learn more about your company, get information about your products and services, and contact you. It has also proven to be an effective way to generate leads and make sales online.
So if you want a piece of that pie, having a functional website is crucial.
But, how much does it cost to build a website for your business? And how long does it take?
Let’s find out.
How Much Does Building a Website Typically Cost?
The answer depends on the features and functionality you want, who builds the site, and how you plan to maintain it.
When it comes to building your website, you have 2 options:
- You can create and manage the site yourself,
- Or you can hire someone else to do it.
Now it’s hard to say without knowing exactly what kind of website you need and the features you want to include. But there are some general pricing guidelines you can use to estimate the cost and timeline.
Let’s start with the low end of the spectrum.
A basic website (5-10 pages) will typically cost anywhere from $1,000 to $2,500.
This type of site is great for small businesses that don’t have a lot of extra cash to spend, but still want a professional website to help grow their business.
The mid-range website (10-25 pages) will typically cost anywhere from $2,500 to $7,500.
This type of site tends to be more robust and includes more features like e-commerce integration, custom forms, and more. This is ideal for small businesses that want a standout website that goes beyond the norm.
The high-end website(25+ pages) which will cost anywhere from $7,500 to $12,000+.
This is a good fit for larger small businesses that need an expansive, robust site with additional integrations or customizations.
How about if you want to build your website?
It can cost you as little as $50 per year or hundreds of thousands of dollars. It all depends upon your needs and goals.
If you decide to build your site with WordPress, you can get a new site for less than $50. For example, hosting a WP site with Bluehost will cost you only $2.95 per month, and that includes the registration of a custom domain!
You will need to invest a few bucks extra on a premium theme (which will probably be something in the range of $40-120), maybe a few premium plugins (on average, a plugin will cost you about $30), but that’s pretty much it.
Design & Development Cost Factors
How much a website cost depends on your needs and what you want out of it. Some websites are simple, while others can be complex or require ongoing maintenance. Here are some things that affect pricing:
Size/ Page Count
The first and most important factor that determines the cost to build a website is the size, or more specifically, the number of pages your site will have.
Some websites have just a few simple pages (Home, About Us, Contact Us, etc.) while others are bigger, like e-commerce sites or membership sites that have hundreds or even thousands of pages.
Hosting and Domain Fees
Hosting is the place where your website “lives” on the internet — it’s where visitors go to see your site. Domain fees are an annual cost of keeping a domain registered.
Static vs. Dynamic Content
Static content is pages that don’t change very often (if at all). Dynamic content changes based on visitor behavior or other factors. A site with static content can be built by one person who doesn’t have to deal with much complex coding. However, dynamic sites—CMS (content management system)—requires a more complex technical setup that can be costly to maintain over time.
Design and Development Timeframe & Costs
Designing a website can take anywhere from weeks to months, depending on how complex it is and how long it takes you to get all the content together for the buildout phase of development. Development costs depend on how much custom code (rather than code templates) has to be written and tested along the way, as well as any third-party service integration requirements.
What happens after the project is complete? If this is a one-time project, then ongoing maintenance isn’t needed (unless something breaks). However, if this is an ongoing project with new pages added regularly or a blog post published weekly (or both), then there will be costs associated with those updates.
Aesthetic requirements/ Complexity of design
Your design is the public face of your business, so it’s worth getting right. You will typically need to provide at least one example of a similar look and feel to the site you have in mind, as well as any colors, logos, or branding that should be incorporated into the design.
The more complex your design needs are, the more time it takes for your designer to create and implement them, which drives up costs.
If you already have all of the content for your site (photos, text, etc), you’ll save both time and money — in most cases, this is a free element of your website design package. However, if you need help creating or sourcing content for your site, this will impact the overall price.
An e-commerce site allows visitors to purchase products directly from your site using an online shopping cart and payment system. E-commerce websites require more security features than standard websites because they store sensitive information such as credit card numbers, so they cost more than standard websites.
These are just some of the factors affecting the price of website design and development. Let us now take a closer look at the two options for building your website that we mentioned above.
Option 1: Benefits and Costs Associated With Hiring a Professional
Hiring a professional for your web design and development offers numerous advantages. These include:
A professional will have the skills and knowledge to create a quality website that will prove effective in achieving your goals. This means that you’ll be able to sell more products and services, generate more leads, attract more visitors, and much more.
Creating a website is a time-consuming process. If you do it yourself, you’ll need to spend countless hours learning about design and development before you can even begin to build your site. On the other hand, if you hire a professional, they’ll be able to guide you from start to finish without taking precious time away from your business.
Website Speed Optimization
One of the things that can make or break your website is its speed. Visitors are more likely to bounce off your website if it takes too long to load or is slow to navigate. Professional web developers know how to optimize your site for speed so that it loads and navigates fast. They also know how to compress content so that it loads faster, add and remove unnecessary files on your site, among other things.
Saves Money in the Long Run
You might think that it’s less costly to do it yourself — but this isn’t always true! For example, if you spend two weeks building a site only to realize that it doesn’t convert visitors into customers; then you’ll have wasted valuable time and money on something that won’t help the company grow.
Responsive design- SEO optimization
Responsive websites look good and function well across all devices – desktops, tablets, and mobile phones. They also adjust based on the size of the screen it’s being viewed on. Mobile-friendly websites can also be found easily on search engines like Google as they are ranked higher than non-mobile friendly sites. These professionals will ensure your website meets all these requirements so that it ranks high on search engines and provides users with an incredible experience when interacting with it.
They understand and can implement the best tools and technology, they will give you multiple options to choose from, and they can do it all, from logo design to website development to SEO.
Professional web designers and developers provide their clients with ongoing support and maintenance. They are also more reliable than freelancers.
If you want to work with a professional web developer or designer, you can expect to pay anywhere from $6,000 to $9,000 for a custom business website. This includes an upfront cost of around $2,000 to $3,000 followed by around $70 to $100 per month in maintenance costs.
The main drawback with hiring a professional especially for a small business is the cost. However, the benefits of working with one have proven to outweigh the costs in the long run, including saving you much-needed time.
But if your budget cannot accommodate one, there’s also an option of building a website yourself(DIY) with the help of platforms like WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, or Weebly.
Option 2: Benefits and Costs Associated With Doing It Yourself (DIY)
There are various advantages to building your website. These may include:
When you begin looking into creating your website, you can get overwhelmed with the various options available. You’ve got to choose a good domain name, hosting service, a WordPress theme, and more.
If you are doing it all yourself, there are a lot of costs associated with building and maintaining your website:
DIY is a very feasible option if you’re building a simple site with minimal functionality and you’re familiar with website creation tools. However, if you have limited time, and want a more complex layout, one that will give you an edge over your competitors, then it’s best to hire a professional.
Expensive Website Design & Development Mistakes To Avoid
Websites are like snowflakes, each one is unique. Just because you have a site doesn’t mean it’s a good one. Take these 8 mistakes that many companies make and do your best to avoid making them yourself.
1. Not Having a Clear Goal for Your Website
The first step in building your website should be figuring out what you want it to accomplish. If you don’t have a clear goal in mind, then it will be difficult to create an effective website and even more difficult to measure whether or not you’ve made progress toward it.
2. Having an Unclear or Generic Message
A website can be a great marketing tool if the message is clear, professional, and persuasive. But if the message is unclear or generic, the site will likely be ineffective at best and detrimental at worst.
3. Not Designing for Your Target Audience
If you don’t know who your target audience is and what they want to see on your website, then you are shooting in the dark with your marketing efforts.
4. Not Applying SEO Best Practices
Every company should put SEO best practices into place when designing a website so it can be found easily by search engines and users alike.
5. Not Using Landing Pages
Landing pages are pages on your website that are specifically designed to convert visitors into leads. Without them, it’s nearly impossible to determine which marketing campaigns are working and which aren’t.
6. Not Having a Responsive Design
A huge mistake that many businesses make is not developing their websites responsively or mobile-first (meaning their website will display correctly on any device — desktop, tablet, mobile phone). The reality is that more than 50% of internet users browse on their mobile phones. If your site isn’t optimized for mobile devices, you can lose out on potential business.
7. Incompetent Web Designers
There are many web developers out there who don’t have any experience in designing websites. They will take your money and give you nothing in return. Make sure that you do some research about the company before hiring them for your project.
8. Not Budgeting Your Project
You need to be prepared with your budget before getting in touch with a web development company. It makes things easier for both parties if you have already decided how much money you are ready to spend on your website.
While there are plenty of free and low-cost options when it comes to building your site, these usually come with compromises that can lead to design issues and lower search engine rankings. Hiring a professional website designer and developer, on the other hand, is an investment that will pay dividends for years to come.
All in all, as long as you’re picking the right method, building a website can be incredibly cost-effective. It not only presents your business in a polished way, but it helps you reach customers on the web. When you start adding up the advantages and benefits of having a site, it’s hard to beat the value that design brings.