website cost

‘How much will a website cost me?’ is a small question with a very big answer.

A small, simple site that won’t have to handle much traffic or data will be fairly inexpensive to design, build and host. Whereas, a search engine to rival Google could easily cost millions, if not billions.

But since ‘that depends’ is the least useful answer ever, let’s break the problem down into its components. Then we’ll give some examples of actual costs.


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Pre-Website Costs: Laying The Foundations

Before you can even start building a website, you need to get some key elements in place. If you’re using a web design firm, they will usually be able to do this part for you.

Domain Name

Registering your domain name – the essential address of your website, and perhaps the thing that best defines your online brand – is always the first step. Luckily, if your chosen domain name isn’t already taken, registering it as yours can cost as little as 99p.

Hosting

Hosting for small sites can be found for between £1-£60 per month, but can be much higher depending on your needs. Again, Google is an extreme example. They own their host machines for the most part, but keeping them all running costs more than the tax base of several small European countries.

To find the best deal for your site, have a search online as there are many, many hosting sites for you to review before making a choice.

Now that you have somewhere to keep your website, you need to build it. Most people hire a web designer or agency to do that. It is possible to do it on your own, but unless you’re willing to spend years learning how to do it right, you’ll get the best results using a professional.

Ok, So How Much Will My Website Cost?

Small Business Website Costs

For a small site with no e-commerce functionality and no additional of the ‘bells and whistles’, you can expect to pay between £500 and £700, all in.

For that price, you can expect 4-6 pages with basic features such as social media links, a blog platform, picture galleries, and email support. You will have to supply your logo, pictures and copy, though.

Costs:

  • Domain Name – £0.99 – £35+ per annum
  • Hosting – £1-£60 per month
  • Basic design work – £500-£700
  • Maintenance costs – £0-£20 per month
  • Total First Year Cost – £513 – £1,700+

Medium Sized Business Website Cost?

For a medium-sized business website, again without e-commerce functionality, you can expect to pay between £1,000 – £4,000.

This will typically get you 10-20 pages, email support and a few minor features. This kind of price package and web design work is geared more towards growing businesses and companies looking to refresh an existing website. At this level you’ll have the opportunity to commission fresh content if needs be, or you can supply your own.

Costs:

  • Domain Name – £0.99 – £35+ per annum
  • Hosting – £1-£60 per month
  • Design work – £600-£1,400
  • Basic programming work – £400 – £1,800
  • Content creation – £100 – £1,000
  • Maintenance costs – £0-£30 per month
  • Total First Year Cost – £1,000 – £5,000+

Large Business Website Costs

Larger business websites quickly rack up costs due to sheer size and number of pages they accrue, especially if they are also eCommerce sites displaying hundreds of product lines. These sorts of website can run from £10,000 to as much as £30,000+.

there typically isn’t a page limit on bigger sites, as this is going to be determined more by hosting and bandwidth capacities than anything else. Expect to pay for expert programming to ensure your hundreds of products are displayed properly, for engaging SEO content, and any other additional plugins and functionalities that you require.

  • Domain Name – £0.99 – £35+ per annum
  • Hosting – £1-£60 per month
  • Design work – £1,200-£7,000+
  • Programming work – £1,000 – £5,000+
  • Content creation – £100 – £2,000+
  • Maintenance costs – £0-£70 per month
  • Total First Year Cost – £2,300 – £15,500+

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And How Much Do All My Website Extras Cost?

Of course, a winning website shouldn’t look like any old off-the-shelf site. You’ll will more than likely want to also include some special features to keep the customers interested once they’ve found your site. You may also need someone to write the content of the site for you. Here is what you can expect to pay for some of these important extra features:

  • Content production can cost anywhere from £10-£100 per hour, depending on the level of experience and specialisation of the writer.
  • eCommerce plugins can vary in size and scale and will cost between £500 and £3000.
  • Customer membership / log in and account dashboards will cost between £1300 and £3500 depending on the scale of coding required.
  • Full integration with your back-office systems and data will cost anywhere from £600 to £6000, depending on your needs and how old those systems are.
  • Distributor directories, databases and searchable files can cost between £600 and £2000.
  • Imagery can be as cheap or as expensive as you want it to be. There are plenty of free image sites out there, but then nothing screams professional class like high-end bespoke photography.
  • The cost of migrating of data from your older servers or systems can vary widely, depending on how much there is to transfer.
  • Advanced SEO, marketing, social media and e-commerce features are available as well, but don’t have any easily determined price scale. The more you need, though, the more it will cost.

Design As A Service

One important thing to remember is that website design is not a ‘product’. You can’t really say that a website ‘should cost £10,000’. You can’t just put the money on the counter and say ‘give me one of those’.

A good designer will take the time to determine what you really need the site to do, and how to make sure it does that well. Your customers are another huge factor as younger customers will expect a very different look and feel than older generations. The design service is oriented around understanding what your customers want and need, and making that a part of the site’s DNA from the very beginning.

That kind of attention takes time, but results in truly unique sites that really do their jobs well. That is good design, and that is what you are really paying for.

Ask ‘How Much Does The Right Website For My Needs Cost?’

The largest commercial sites really do cost in the tens and even hundreds of thousands to create and run, but then they can expect to earn 100-200 times that amount every year for their owners. If your goals are more modest, then spending between £2,000-£10,000 on a site is more than reasonable.

The key to spending the right amount on your site is knowing what you need it to do, and having a reasonable expectation of how much income it will be responsible for. Spending too little can result in an under-performing website that may have to be completely replaced sooner than you would like. The drawbacks of overspending are self-evident. Just make sure the site does what you need it to, and in the way that your customers want it to.

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