Most businesses these days cannot function without a website since a website is usually the first point of contact between a visitor and the organization. Yet there are many who are simply baffled with the idea of going ahead in trying to construct a website. The chief reason which comes to one’s mind is — Well, how much is it going to cost me? This article has been written in order to address the cost factor, as to how much does it cost to make a website?
Being candid, it is very difficult to exactly pinpoint the cost of a website as there are many factors that come into play while deciding the cost. There are some websites which consist of simple static pages and there are some which have content-rich features, being designed by the latest technologies in the designing space. So, obviously, the cost of both just cannot be the same. Additionally, as we have been involved in website development for businesses of different sizes, we know that it is near impossible to put an exact figure to that. Having said that, this exercise shall bear no fruit if the reader at the end of it all does not have any idea of the cost which is associated with the development of a website.
At first, we shall have a look as to why it is impossible to have a cost figure right away about website development and then we shall proceed to see how much does it cost to make a website?
Reasons behind being unable to arrive at a generic figure on website development:
- Lack of uniformity: The area of web development is an area that lacks standardization and as such there are no set standards that are followed. In order to develop a website, there are many different technologies that can be followed. You can use WordPress, Angular or PHP in order to develop a website. So, accordingly, there is a huge difference in the cost factor which comes into play as the cost of development associated with the three technologies is very different. Additionally, a given requirement of a client can be addressed in multiple ways as a result of which it becomes all the more difficult to straightaway say — how much does it cost to make a website. Also, the manner in which two organizations develop a website using the same technology will be very different since there are no standard practices involved which are followed by all organizations.
- Planning complexity: A website shall contain many features that combine to form the website as a whole. Now, these individual features take time to develop which depends on their level of complexity. There are some types of features that might require just a few hours of effort while others might require ten times more time as it might be more complicated and need specific inputs.
- Continuous effort: Websites, at the end of the day are categorized as products that are sold or purchased just like normal products. In fact, it shall be better if the same is categorized as a service since it is a result of a continuous development process that leads to the development of a website. This continuous development process requires the dedicated effort of the team involved in the development process which is in terms of the time and man-hours put behind the website’s development. Again this is one reason for which it becomes difficult to straightaway put a figure as to how much does it cost to make a website.
- Variable quote figures: A point to be noted here is that there has been a significant rise in the number of web developers who pursue web development. There are freelancers, small companies, large organizations who are involved in web development as a result of which the price quoted for a piece of work using the same technology can vary hugely. Also, geographical location has a big role to play. So, as you can understand, putting a figure straightaway on how much does it cost to make a website is a tall order.
- Different pricing models: There are organizations that offer a fixed quote on the development of a website whereas there are others who work on an hour based pricing model. There are some key points of both approaches. In the case of a fixed price project, there is a set price. This is perfect for a project which has finite deliverables and the scope of the project can be predicted beforehand. The downside is that it may so happen that a website that was thought too simple to be built may end up taking more time than initially thought. This results in the effort of the development team being extended while the price remains the same. In the case of hourly projects, an invoice is generated for the number of hours being put in a project. This is a better approach for projects which are planned for the long term as developers are not totally sure on the time it would take to fully execute the project.
Well, the above points taken together collectively lay the ground for why it shall be impossible to put a figure on how much does it cost to make a website. Going forward, let us have a look at the types of possible websites before we attempt to arrive at a figure on how much does it cost to make a website.
- Small Business website: A small business website is a website that has very basic information to display. There are hardly any key functionalities involved other than a couple of images and has anything less than 20 pages.
- Medium-sized Business website: These are commercial websites that are enabled for content management systems, have unique functionalities that are customized as per business requirements. Also, they contain many pages which have their own specific purpose and the design layouts are customized in order to reflect the need of the business.
- E-Commerce website: An E-Commerce website is an online E-Commerce application from where customers can perform shopping activities in terms of the products or services being offered by the website. In such websites payment gateway integration is an important factor and so is a CMS, imagery, content creation, SEO activities, etc. All in all, it is much more complex than a medium-sized business website. Incidentally, we offer customized E-Commerce website development based on the Magento platform. Do get in touch with us if you have any such requirements for your organization.
Have a look at this blogpost which talks on how to speed up your Magento based E-Commerce website and give customers a better shopping experience.
- Large Business website: A website which has several hundred pages, a content management system, functionalities which are designed to address specific requirements, customized design layouts, integration of blog posts, SEO strategies, etc fall under the category of large business website. Obviously, of all the types of websites discussed so far, this is by far the most complex type of website.
Well, now that you know the different types of websites, you can decide for yourself the website which would best suit your purpose and let us progress in our journey of trying to find out how much does it cost to make a website? Let us have a look at the main components which determine the cost of a website — this in itself will lead us to an idea on how much does it cost to make a website?
- Domain name: As you are building a website, you definitely want people to reach your website. In order to do so, they have to type the URL in their browser in order to reach your site. Rather than typing your IP address, a URL or the domain name is a convenient way for visitors to visit your website. A custom domain extension shall be costing you for which you need to make payments which are in general made annually.
You can buy 1GB space for as low as $5 per month from Digital Ocean.
- SSL Certificate: Since the security of your website shall be of prime concern SSL certificates shall be of prime value. Now, what are SSL certificates? SSL certificates encrypt sensitive data like personal information, data involving financial transactions, etc. If you happen to run an E-Commerce website then an SSL certificate is a must as it protects sensitive data about your customers. In general, these certificates are issued by certification authorities and the payments are in general made annually. As an eg, for GoDaddy’s standard SSL certificate you shall have to pay just $69 for one year.
- Website Hosting: In our journey of trying to find out how much does it cost to make a website, we have covered a fair distance. As you already have a domain name by now, it shall be important to get in touch with web hosting companies to host your website. The pricing is dependent on the traffic which your site shall encounter and the features which have been included as a part of the website. The mode of payment is in general monthly and annually though an annual payment plan works out to be cheaper. You can opt for the services of HostGator Cloud where they charge $2.99 per month if you happen to opt for a 1,3 or 6 month(s) plan.
- Content Management System: A content management system is required in order to display text, images, videos, blog posts, etc on our website. Actually, it is not mandatory but a CMS makes your website look more efficient and most importantly shall save your time. As far as a choice of CMS is concerned, it actually depends on your requirements. If you need a customized content management system, you shall have to pay a lot whereas a CMS like WordPress is absolutely free.
- Expenses on web design: In order to make your website have a professional look, it is important that you should engage professionals to do the designing for you. Let us have a look at the way where expenditure is incurred:
- New design or full redesign: If you are planning to launch a new website or want to redesign your existing site, both shall entail expenditure from your end. The level of expenditure ranges from the amount of re-work which has to be done in case of re-design and the features which you shall want to be included in case of launching a new website. Things like the type of CMS being used, customization being required, etc have a major impact while deciding the price factor.
- Theme design: Well, we started with the objective of finding how much does it cost to make a website and we have covered quite a distance. You might be aware that there are some content management systems like WordPress which provide themes by which you can change the format and look of your website in an instant. It surely is a good thing, but mind it, there are several like you who shall be using the same and your website shall end up looking like a copy of theirs and in these days of being original, you can’t afford to take that risk, can you? So, it is advisable that you pay a little and get premium themes, the price of which depends on their features. Also, if you happen to be using free themes, you need not worry about the price.
- Responsive web design: A couple of years back, in 2015 Google started rewarding websites that were mobile-friendly. Thus responsive websites gained prominence. Now, what are responsive websites? Responsive websites are able to detect the platform on which the website is opening up and accordingly adjusts to the screen size. Nowadays most websites are responsive and if you happen to be saddled with an older website you have to just make a one-time payment in order to convert your website to a responsive one. When you do factor in as to how much does it cost to make a website, do factor in the cost of making a responsive website and enjoy the results in Google’s search engine rankings.
- Database: Your website development plan must include expenses incurred on a database system since websites handle a lot of data and there has to be an efficient way to deal with it. This is possible by the inclusion of a database management system that facilitates efficient data management.
- Website maintenance: The figure for how much does it cost to make a website must include website maintenance expenses. Websites need to be maintained in an efficient manner and regularly updated so that they can perform efficiently. This is, in fact, is not a one time but a recurring cost that you shall have to spend because regular maintenance ensures that the software and hardware are in place which in turn leads to the efficient performance of your website. Just to give you an idea you better set aside $300 per month roughly on account of website maintenance.
- Search Engine Optimisation: SEO is no longer optional but a mandatory part of your business. As the entire effort of developing a website, hosting it, etc will bear no fruit until and unless there is enough traffic that is directed towards your website. SEO ensures just that, by optimizing the content of your web pages so that your website ranks higher when searched by search engines like Google. So, the figure which shall be arrived at while deciding how much does it cost to make a website must include expenses for SEO activities. Also, SEO is an ongoing activity, something which you cannot do without. So, it is better to entrust your SEO responsibilities to a trusted vendor who has been in this business for some time rather than putting your trust in some fake organization who might be charging less. If it is of help, I must enlighten you that we have been involved in the area of developing an SEO strategy for our customers, so you can with ease get in touch with us for your SEO related activities.
- Pay-Per-Click advertising: Well, this again is not mandatory but a feature that is worth paying for. You have to think of ways by which visitors to your website can turn to repeat visitors and ultimately as customers of your enterprise. In order to do so, it is most essential that there are visitors to your website in the first place. PPC advertising ensures just that by making visitors land at your website in lieu of a fee. All you have to do is to place your ad at a convenient location online and each time someone clicks there, he is immediately redirected to your website and you need to make payment based on the number of clicks at your ad. Even though this is not mandatory, it shall serve your purpose by getting visitors to your website and should be factored in while calculating the figure of how much does it cost to make a website.
- Copywriting: It is important that while factoring in the cost to make a website, you do include the need for enlisting copywriting services. Now, you are designing a website so why would you need the services of a copywriter. Well, as you are designing a website you shall need to be put good content in it. It might be that you are good at writing and possess the requisite writing skills yet enlisting the services of a good quality copywriter shall ensure that your potential clients happen to see original high-quality content on your website. Poor quality copywriting shall happen when duplicate content from some other site is found at your site. This actually lessens your credibility and search engines shall be downgrading the rating for your website as search engines rank websites highly which have quality content. Also, this is a recurring expense as you shall have to update your website with quality content on a regular basis. So, get in touch with an efficient copywriter and keep a part of your monthly expenses for this activity.
- Content Marketing: You must have heard about content marketing but you might be amused or puzzled as to how it has any link with your plan to design a website. Remember, customers, go for businesses who have really good content. This content may be through blog posts, videos, infographics, podcasts or any form which makes it engaging for the viewer and gives him a learning experience. Incidentally, trust is a big thing from the perspective of a customer and the trust of a customer comes when he gets information that one can depend upon. You might not be knowing that you may be having the best product or services but are simply driving your customers away as they are unable to relate to or trust the information being displayed by you about your product. Also, content marketing does not come cheap as all the types of content mentioned above are of different types and producing them involves a cost. So, decide on the type of content you would like to see displayed on your website and publish on a regular basis. Needless to say, the estimated cost of how much does it cost to make a website must include the expenditure incurred on content marketing services.
- Social media: Social media provides a platform for businesses to get the necessary exposure without much of an investment. Also, since the reach of social media is massive it definitely pays to be a part of it and reap its benefits which shall ultimately add value to your business. It is advisable that you keep a small portion of your monthly budget aside while you arrive at the figure of how much does it cost to make a website. Running contests on social media platforms is a very efficient way of generating visibility for your business which shall end up in increasing the number of followers on your social media page. Also, you can showcase your product or services in many different but creative ways, as for eg videos, memes, etc. As there are different social media platforms you shall have to take care of them individually or better still get in touch with our social media team who shall gladly take charge of the social media responsibilities of your organization.
Well, we have covered a long way ever since we began our journey to decide on how much does it cost to make a website. Now, the most important thing that happens in developing a website is in hiring a competent team who shall be doing the website development on your behalf while taking care of your customized needs.
We, at Vyrazu Labs, have a competent web development team that is well equipped to handle all types of requirements related to web site development along with customized UI / UX effects in order to take care of your needs. All you have to do is to get in touch with us for a FREE CONSULTATION and our developmental team will take care of the rest. Needless to say, we work across different technological platforms like Ruby on Rails, PHP, Drupal, WordPress, and Joomla as far as web site development is concerned.
How much does it cost to make a website: Well, the point from where our discussion originated was how much does it cost to make a website. It shall not be wrong to mention here that after going through this piece where we have covered almost all possible points in details, you have a fair idea of how much does it cost to make a website. Also, the figure of how much does it cost to make a website shall be entirely dependent on the type of website you want to design, the target audience for whom it is being designed and the features you want in the website.
It must be mentioned here that after you figure out how much does it take to make a website, we can do the same level of quality work at our developmental center at Vyrazu Labs with exactly the same features, complexity at one-fourth of the price.
Please drop your comments/feedback as it shall help in making this engagement more interactive.