How Much Does a Website Cost?
This is probably one of the most common questions we get asked, but, it’s not a straightforward one to answer.
There’s a huge amount that goes into creating a great quality website.
A website that is actually built for your business, and not a template that a developer/agency already has and that they make you fit into.
So, instead of writing a random figure on this page and telling you that’s how much a website should cost, we’re actually going to give you a list of the key things you need to consider and factor into your budget when preparing to have a website built.
After all, your website should be bespoke to your business’s needs, and therefore the price will reflect what you actually need and the work it takes to deliver that.
Let’s dive in…
The first thing you need to do when planning a website is to work out what you want to put on it.
For example, how many pages will you need and what will be on each page?
After all, a website developer will never be able to give you a proper quote if they don’t know what you want.
If you’re not sure then why not arrange a call or meeting with a web specialist (like us) to talk through your business and your goals and create a content plan?
Alternatively, you can explore your competitor’s sites and get a feel for what you do and don’t like. This is also a great opportunity to see what their sites are missing or doing badly. Meaning you can ensure that your own website doesn’t make these mistakes, putting you a step ahead of your competition.
Equally as important as the content, is what you want the site to be able to do.
Do you want an email sign-up form?
Do you want enquiries to feed straight into your CRM system?
Do you need e-commerce, aka an online shop?
What about a Google Maps integration? A blog so you can share news and updates? A social media feed? Or the opportunity to run adverts?
There is so much you can do with your website. So it’s important to think about what you need and what you want it to do.
From a budget perspective, it will always be better value to have the functionality designed and built into the site from the start, rather than adding it in at a later date. Think of it as getting measured and buying an outfit knowing it will fit. Rather than buying it and later finding you need to pay for lots of tailoring.
However, if you don’t have the budget/or need the site to do everything from the start it’s still a good idea to have a plan of what you will need from it as the business develops. This ensures that your developer will build the website in a way that means it can evolve with your business rather than being scrapped and having to be rebuilt later on.
Don’t underestimate the importance of the design of your website.
75% of people will judge credibility based on the aesthetics of a website. And 57% of people won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed site.
If you don’t have a clearly defined brand identity with a brand guidelines document to give to your developer then you’re going to need to invest in getting one.
Your website is one of the first places potential customers will go and when they get there you want them to know it’s your brand they’re looking at.
We see so many generic websites, there’s nothing visually impactful, unique, exciting, engaging or memorable. They blend with their competitors or worse, they pale in comparison.
Your website should create an impact. It should showcase who you are and what makes you different. It should engage your visitor and make them remember you. After all, yours won’t be the only website they look at when they’re doing their research for who to buy from or work with.
This is your website’s address.
There are loads of companies that sell domain names, and their cost varies depending on how desirable your proposed domain is.
Domain name sellers almost always have great introductory deals. So, before you buy, make sure you check how long the deal is for and what the costs will be when the deal comes to an end.
The basic element of hosting is the storage space on a server where your site will live.
You rent this space and in return, your hosting company will offer varying service levels.
There are a lot of hosting companies offering what appear to be crazy cheap deals. But beware, as they’re generally for the absolute minimum level of service and are more for hobby websites and blogs.
You normally have to add a lot of bolt-ons to get the package you need for a business, or you compromise on the speed and performance, which in turn impacts your search engine ranking and user experience.
So make sure you check what’s included vs. what you’ll need before you sign up.
Check for things like email accounts, SSL security certificates, regular backups (should the worst happen), caching and CDNs.
Hosting is also another area where you’ll find cheap introductory deals only to have a huge price increase further down the line. Again, check all the costs on this one.
As well as all this, you may not realise that the internet is a major secret polluter and your hosting is a contributor to this.
If you want to limit your business’s digital carbon footprint then you should look for a green hosting provider, like our sister company, The Green Hosting Co.
This is a hugely important, but massively underappreciated part of any site.
Don’t forget that design attracts but copy sells.
If you have poorly written information on your site that doesn’t engage with your target customer then you’ve lost them and they’ll look elsewhere.
All too often we see sites that are either packed full of huge blocks of copy or the copy is written in such a way that it’s dull, hard to read or just plain rubbish.
The beauty of great copywriting is getting across the benefits – not just the facts – in a way that talks directly to your target customer. It makes them feel like you are there for them and it’s written in a way that’s easy to digest and remember.
So, if you aren’t a copy wizard then this is something that you should factor into your website build budget.
This is kind of an obvious one, but, you can’t build a great site without great imagery.
The old saying, ‘a picture says a thousand words’ is 100% true.
However, people are savvy and can generally spot a stock image a mile off. This means that investing in a commercial photo shoot to capture your unique business is definitely something that’s worth the investment.
Just like photography, videography is a really important area for your website build.
Video is becoming one of the most powerful tools in your branding and marketing tool kit. We could bore you with a huge list of stats and figures about why video is something you should consider. But instead, we’ll give you just one…
A whopping 72% of people prefer video over text when learning about a product or service.
And figures like these are only growing. Which means it’s wise to have a video content plan for your business.
Plus, one of the beauties of having video content made for your website is that it doesn’t just have to live on your site. You can use it for your social media activity and online marketing. Meaning it’s an investment that can serve you in many different ways.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
As well as the elements listed above, you also need to consider search engine optimisation.
Now, this can be an incredibly expensive part of running a website. However, there are some really basic things that all sites should have. Things such as meta titles and meta descriptions, search engine optimised copy, alt tags, keywords, internal and external links and most importantly, a fully responsive, mobile-friendly design.
Also, if a website is poorly built it will be hard for search engines to find, crawl and list. Alongside this, a bad user experience will mean that visitors will leave your site quickly, creating a high bounce rate, which is not good for your search engine ranking.
There are many things that affect a site’s SEO ranking, so you should ensure that you’re chosen website developer and designer will be doing these basics to get you started.
And that’s it…
You now know why it’s not easy to answer, ‘how much will a website cost?’
The person on the receiving end of this question will need to ask you a whole host of questions in return. And if they don’t, are they really building a website that will do what you need it to?
Written by Kayleigh Nicolaou
Explore more like this...
Did you know that a whopping third of all websites worldwide are built using website builders?...
In today's digital age, having a website is essential for any business. It’s your online...
In today's digital age, web design holds immense potential for charities and non-profits to make a...
Are you planning to have a new website built for your business?
Then get in touch with the form below and let’s have a chat about what you need, how we can help and of course, how much it’s going to cost.
Plus, if you found this useful be sure to subscribe to our quarterly newsletter for tips, advice and insights to help your business.