Website Costs Explained With Examples
The rather glib response to the question, "What does a website cost?" is "About the same as a car". Although unhelpful it's making the point that there are as many variations of websites as there are makes and models of cars.
To create something more meaningful and helpful the information below explains the different types of websites and the associated costs of each. If you've got any specific questions or you'd simply prefer to talk about your requirements please simply get in touch.
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What Does Your Website Need To Do?
The first question you need to ask when figuring out a suitable budget is what is your website for. Here are some examples:
- An E-commerce website - a site that sells things
- A simple brochure website - a site you can direct people to when you meet them or talk to them.
- A Lead Generation website - a site you expect people to find in Google™ so it generates enquiries.
- A Customer Service website - a site that provides a self-service function for your clients.
- A Landing Page website - a site to send traffic to from Google™ Ads or Facebook ads.
- A Hybrid website - a site that uses a combination of the sites listed above.
We'll now provide some example website costs for each of the types of the website listed above. The costs are based on you paying for someone to do the work for you although in some instances you can use a DIY approach and we'll highlight that as well.
Example E-Commerce Website Costs
The good news with respect to e-commerce websites is there are several excellent options that offer a turn-key approach. Systems such as Shopify and Big Commerce provide all the functionality you need for one low fixed cost.
Using these systems you can build a fantastic e-commerce website without the help of an expert or you can hire an agency to create the site for you. Factors affecting the cost include the amount of design work you need and the number of products you want to add.
Assuming you use a ready-made theme or design and have around 100 products your site should cost around £3000 to £7000 to build with an ongoing cost of under £100 per month.
Example Brochure Website Costs
Brochure websites are very inexpensive to create and the market is well served by both DIY options such as Squarespace and Wix and a lot of small website design companies. If you want your site built for you, expect to pay around £300 to £500 although this will be built using a ready-made theme adapted to accommodate your brand.
Remember, a low-cost brochure website will rarely be an effective lead generation website, a site that gets found in Google™ by potential customers, but it's a cheap and cheerful way of putting your business online.
Example Lead Generation Website Costs
Most organisations want their website to be part of their business growth plans. This means they need a site that is found by potential customers on the major search engines. Once found the website needs to persuade the visitor to get in touch so it needs to look credible.
Although it's possible to build a low-cost brochure website as the foundation for a lead generation site, it's more usual for these types of sites to be fully custom designed. This requires a significant investment and a typical cost of the base site consisting of around 30 or 40 pages is £12k to £20k. The base site will then be expanded over time and you should budget for £30k to £50k in total over the first 12 months.
These costs are made up of the initial design and build, and a significant ongoing effort to expand the site to grow its digital footprint. But remember, making this level of investment will put your business in front of your ideal customers when they search on Google™ or Bing™.
Example Customer Service Website Costs
Customer service websites are often custom-built to serve a specific purpose. For example, we had a client who needed to give their customers access to equipment documentation and certification.
To deliver this we created a self-service portal that saved the client the equivalent of 20 hours per week servicing phone calls from customers.
The cost of these types of sites ranges from £5k at the lower end to £100k plus at the higher end. Commonly they are in the £10k to £15k price range.
Example Landing Page Website Costs
Landing page websites are often single page sites where paid advertising such as Google™ PPC or Facebook ad clicks are directed. They can be a very cost-effective way of promoting a new service or an event. We created this landing page for an event and sent traffic to it from social media. It sold out in a week.
A typical or example cost of a landing page website is around £1200 at the lower end to £3000 at the higher end.
Example Hybrid Website Costs
There's no easy way to provide an example cost of a hybrid website. It's possible to bolt functionality onto a low-cost website - for example, Squarespace offers an e-commerce bolt-on. The most cost-effective approach is usually to use the right system for the site's main requirement. For example, if you're building an online shop but you want your site to generate leads from the search engines the two e-commerce platforms mentioned above would provide the right foundation.
The Final Word On Website Costs
Hopefully, the information above has provided some clarity. Effectively the cost of a website is dependent on the effort required to create it. If you're happy to use a DIY tool and an off the shelf theme the cost will be minimal, but it's likely the result will be mediocre and ineffective as a business growth tool.
Any credible web design agency will be more than happy to sit down with you and discuss your project so they can give you an idea of the required budget. As with most things in life, if you buy cheap you will nearly always have to buy twice, or maybe even three times.
Despite the huge success of self-build website tools creating a fantastic website that adds real value to your business is still a highly skilled endeavour.