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How Much Does a Website Cost: What to expect?

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There is no denying that a website is one of the most effective marketing tools there is. Your website is the heart of inbound marketing and is the first thing prospects look at before purchasing or even speaking with you.

So, the question is not why you need a website, but rather how much does a website cost? Unfortunately, it’s difficult to determine an exact number since there are many factors that contribute to the cost of building and maintaining a website.

Fortunately, we have gathered all of the information you need to make an informed decision about the cost of a website.

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Factors That Influence the Cost of a Website

Since the nature of each business differs, so do their website requirements. For example, the features you need to build a blogging website are entirely different from those you need to build an ecommerce store. But there are some features that every website needs. The following are the six most important factors that determine how much it costs to build a basic website:

1. Domain Name

A domain name is a one-of-a-kind, easy-to-remember address used to tell your customers where they can find you online. It’s the first thing that you should consider when building a website. A new domain name will typically cost you anywhere between $10 and $20 a year. But if you want a pre-registered domain name, it could cost you thousands of dollars. 

Different variables that affect the cost of a domain include:

  • Domain Registrar – A registrar is a company that assists you in purchasing and registering your domain name. There are several registrars to select from, each with unique packages and features at different price ranges. Some of the most popular domain registrars are NameCheap, Google Domains, and Domain.com.
  • Top-Level Domain (TLD) – TLD refers to the part of the domain name that comes immediately after the “dot” symbol, for example, .com, .org, or .xyz. Due to their popularity, TLDs like “.com” and “.org” are more expensive than TLDs like “.site” or “.xyz.”
  • Duration of commitment – Most registrars charge varying rates based on the length of the contract. A longer commitment will save you money in the long run, while a shorter contract will save you money in the short term.

2. SSL Certificate

A secure sockets layer (SSL) certificate is a digital certificate that authenticates the identity of a website and allows for an encrypted connection. In simple terms, SSL protects internet connections by preventing thieves from accessing or changing data sent between two computers. If a website has an SSL, you will see a padlock icon next to the URL in the address bar.

You can get your SSL certificate for $0-$200/300 per month. While most vendors charge for SSL certificates, certain firms give them away for free. Experts recommend purchasing an SSL certificate for maximum protection. A purchased SSL certificate generally includes additional security features such as a longer warranty and stronger encryption levels.

3. Website Hosting

The practice of renting or purchasing space on the internet to house a website is known as web hosting. Like domain names and SSL certificates, website hosting is an upfront and recurring cost.

The cost of website hosting ranges from $24 to $10,000 per year. That’s a huge price range, which is why it’s helpful to categorize hosting expenses as follows:

  • Shared Host – A shared host service refers to an arrangement where your website shares a web server with several other sites. It is an affordable option but isn’t particularly fast or secure, since you’re sharing resources with others. Shared hosting typically costs between $24 and $120 per year.
  • Website Builder – A website builder enables you to construct a website without any technical knowledge. It comes with hosting services, so you don’t have to worry about purchasing that separately. A website builder with hosting services can cost between $60-$180 per year. 
  • Virtual Private Server (VPS) –  VPS hosting is a type of hosting that employs virtualization technology to offer you dedicated (private) resources on a server with numerous users. It generally costs between $240 and $600 per year.
  • Dedicated Server – A dedicated server is a kind of web hosting in which you have complete access to a server. If you have more than 100,000 visitors per month, then a dedicated server is a necessity. It typically costs from $1,200 to $24,000 per year.

4. An Attractive Website Design

Your website’s design serves as the foundation of your site. It covers typography, color palettes, headers and footers, backdrops, and page layouts. Apart from the appearance, it also impacts the functionality, performance, and security of the website.

Several companies sell ready-to-use website themes for around $100-$150 each. You may be able to find some themes for free, but we strongly advise that you invest in a high-quality theme, since 94% of users form their first impression based on its web design only.

how much does a website cost

5. Descriptive Website Pages

The number of pages your website has can greatly influence the cost of your website. For example, building an ecommerce website with 500 pages will cost more than building a simple website with only a few pages. The number of pages you need will be based on how many products and services you offer, whether you want a blog, and several other factors. You can expect to pay $1000-$10,000 for up to 250 pages.

6. Website Functionality

Website functionality includes all aspects of user interaction, including interactive elements and dynamic content. The cost of a website is significantly influenced by functionality. In other words, the more functions you add to your website (videos, ADA-compliant content, search bars, etc.), the more it will cost. 

Here are a few other features you can add to your website:

  • Ecommerce Functions – This includes things like customer portals, multiple payment options, etc. that are necessary to sell products or services online. Ecommerce capabilities can run you anywhere from $2000 to $25,000.
  • Subscriber Opt-In – Adding this function is necessary if you want people to subscribe to your newsletter or email list. This will typically cost you around $50 per month.
  • Membership Portals – As the name implies, this is a section of the website that is only accessible to registered users. Adding a membership portal feature can cost you anywhere from $89 to $399 per year.

Now that you are aware of the important factors that determine how much a regular website costs, let’s take a look at what an ecommerce website might cost.

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How Much Does an Ecommerce Website Cost?

Do you know in 2021, there were 2.14 billion digital buyers worldwide? That’s a huge number, and it’s only going to increase. If you want to stay in business, it’s crucial to start selling your products and services online.

Your ecommerce website is a gateway to selling online. It may be used as an addition to your brick-and-mortar business or as a separate business endeavor. In any case, you need to build a secure ecommerce website that creates an excellent buying experience for your customers.

But how much does an ecommerce website cost? That depends on the factors that we mentioned above and how you want to go about building it. The first question you need to ask yourself is: Do I want to learn how to build a website myself and save money, or do I want to hire a professional and save time?

Do It Yourself (DIY)

The DIY approach is an economical way to build a website. You can DIY your ecommerce website in two ways:

1. Develop It Yourself

By choosing this method, you will only pay for the basic costs needed to set up and host the website. This includes the cost of the domain name, hosting, SSL certificate, and an ecommerce platform like Shopify or WooCommerce. This will cost at least $500-$1,000 but can cost much more.

Pros:
  • It is a cost-effective choice for developers who are happy to pull a few all-nighters.
  • A viable method to launch a small ecommerce business or side hustle.
Cons:
  • It is an extremely time-consuming process. 
  • The functionality and design of the website are restricted by your coding abilities.

2. Use an Ecommerce Website Builder

You can quickly build your online store by partnering up with an ecommerce website builder. But keep in mind that online store builders have limitations, like the number of products you can upload or the number of options a product can have. Therefore, before signing up for one, make sure those restrictions suit your requirements.

Below is the cost of several of the most popular ecommerce store builders:

how much does a website cost
Pros:
  • Monthly plans are reasonably priced for small online stores.
  • CMS with integrated operational tools is easy and intuitive to use.
  • Built-in payment processing and security.
  • The quickest way to build a brand new store.
Cons:
  • Not all ecommerce platforms enable custom code and integrations.
  • Many website builders can’t support larger stores.

Hire a Freelancer

Hiring a freelancer is a reasonable way to build a more advanced ecommerce website. If you need a small store, you may get a premium template and have a web designer or developer modify it for less than $1,000.

But if you want a complex website with custom functions and extensions, plan to spend $5,000–$10,000 on a small store and up to $50,000–$80,000 for a more comprehensive storefront on Magento or Salesforce Commerce Clouds. 

Pros:
  • Get a professional-looking ecommerce website without learning to code. 
  • Add the add-ons, integrations, and functionality you require rather than relying on defaults.
  • Design a customized shopping experience that is directly aligned with your brand.
Cons:
  • If the project is too complex, hiring a freelancer can be very expensive. 
  • If in the future you need some changes to your website, there is a possibility that the freelancer won’t be available to work. And it will take some time for a new freelancer to get familiar with the existing code. 
  • Additional costs for support and maintenance.

Work With an Agency

Working with an agency can be a more costly choice, but a competent ecommerce agency partner is much more likely to help you generate a substantial ROI. Working with an ecommerce service provider for an enterprise website might cost between $10,000 and $250,000, depending on the size and complexity of the site.

Generally, agencies offer a whole range of services, from conceptualization and branding to development, roll-out, marketing, and maintenance. Additionally, instead of being constrained by features provided by a website builder, an agency will help you create a scalable website that grows organically with your business and generates a long-term ROI. 

Pros:
  • Agencies help in creating a high-performing online store that satisfies your present business demands while also being scalable for future development.
  • There are no restrictions, so you can select any ecommerce platform or build a fully customized website.
  • Agencies typically provide an all-inclusive plan that covers website design, maintenance, and SEO.
Cons:
  • They are often too expensive for small business owners.
  • Agencies may take more time to complete projects.

Ready to Build Your Website?

We hope this information helps give you a better understanding of how a website’s cost is related to its design and functionality.

Remember that the cost of a website also depends on the additional resources you may or may not have, such as time, technical skills, and design abilities. If you have plenty of time, you can acquire new skills, but if you’re short on time and have sufficient money, you can outsource the task to a professional.

If you have a website that you’re ready to start marketing, we’d love to hear from you. We offer a wide range of marketing services, including content creation, email marketing, and organic SEO services. Schedule a time to meet with us to find out how you and your website can start winning.

We help Build your website and let you win through it!

The team at Win at Ecommerce would love the opportunity to talk with you. We can give you a free evaluation of your technology and help your business win.

Win at Ecommerce

Win at Ecommerce

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