As you might imagine, we get this question a lot. If you’re wondering: how much does a website cost anyway? Well, the short answer is “it depends.” That’s probably not the answer you wanted to hear, but it’s the right answer.
We can’t really give you a concrete answer on how much a website costs because it can vary so widely. In fact, Forbes wrote an article on how the price can vary so widely that it’s almost not worth trying to set a one-size-fits-all price. It all comes down to one thing:
You Get What You Pay For
Just like in every other aspect of business, you get what you pay for when you buy a website. Sure, you can get a website for $500, but do you really want to skimp on something as important as your website?
Of course you don’t.
Your website is your business’ online storefront. It’s the only place on the web that you really own, so you want to make sure it connects with your ideal customers and represents your brand well. You want to have full control over your site as your business grows, and you want to start with a solid foundation that can support you now and as your business evolves. You want a website that actually does its job in generating leads, setting appointments, selling products, driving donations, or accomplishing whatever goals apply to your business.
Which means you’re going to have to spend some money.
Here are the questions you should really be asking yourself:
- How much does a website cost if it’s low quality and I have to pay to get it fixed in 6 months?
- How much does a website cost, really cost, if it doesn’t bring me any new customers or even do much of anything for me?
- How much does a website cost me when it doesn’t show up in search engines until the third or fourth page?
- How much does a low-quality website cost me in the long run?
- What is it worth to me to get a high-value website that works right the first time and does what I need it to do?
How Much Does A Website Cost If It’s A Long Term Investment?
If you want a website that is truly valuable to you, a website that makes money (instead of just sitting there), then you need to think of it as an investment. How much would you pay to bring in more business?
Your website isn’t about just bringing in more business, though: it’s about legitimacy too. It’s about your brand. Think about the last time you went to a bad website – You couldn’t find what you were looking for, or you were frustrated by broken links, outdated content, or confusing layouts. Now, what was your opinion of that business after that experience?
I’m guessing it wasn’t too good.
Like any investment, you can’t just throw money at something once and expect it to work forever. New air conditioners have to be serviced after they are installed, new computers have to be protected with antivirus software, and new websites have to be regularly maintained and updated with new content.
If you’re thinking about getting a new website, you have to think in terms of what kind of return you want to see on your investment. If you’re early in the life of your business and you just want a site that is going to sit there and prove that you are, in fact, a business and that you do, in fact, exist, then maybe your initial investment is going to be low.
But if you want a website that is going to DO stuff (you know, sell products, get customers to contact you, that kind of thing), then you need to consider a larger investment.
If you’re ready to talk more about that investment, click here to contact us about your new website.
Ok, But Really — How Much Does a Website Cost?
If you jumped straight here to get your question answered, let me recap for you: the answer is always “it depends”. We’re happy to share some baselines with you though.
A custom design (typically 3 designs and up to 3 rounds of revisions) developed into a WordPress theme with us starts around $3,000 – $4,000. That doesn’t include fancy features, content writing, SEO or any of the other myriad of things it takes to make a successful website. We’ll have to hash out what you really need and who’s shouldering the work before we can give you an accurate quote.
If that seems outside of your budget, there’s still some options for you:
How To Keep Cost Down By Doing Some Of The Work Yourself
There are 3 primary ways we can keep the monetary investment in your website down:
- Start with a predesigned theme.
- Write your own content.
- Budget everything else in later.
Custom website design and development is not a necessity. You can start with a predesigned theme with colors and fonts customized to match your brand. Come back later and build out functions, features, and specific design when you have the increased revenue to invest.
Write Your Own Content
Most website companies (ourselves included) do not include content in part of the cost of developing your website. The price we threw out up there, that doesn’t include all the information about your business, all the initial blog posts you want on your website, all the content on the front page that draws customers in.
Content costs extra, but if you make it yourself – if you write all the content that needs to go on every page of your website, then you can save yourself some money.
Budget Everything Else in Later
If you build it, they will come — unfortunately, that doesn’t work for your website. There are many pieces to the website strategy pie, and many of them you can either do yourself or work into the budget down the road a bit.
You’ll want to start thinking about these things:
- Conversion Strategy
- Social Media
- Email Marketing
- CRM integration