Owning a personal website is more like having a business card. It gives an identity and a personality to your business. There are many ways you can get a website built. You can hire a team of designers and developers or get them on a freelance basis if you feel your business will grow and expand rapidly. If you don’t really want to be involved but want the same level of professional output, you could go for a website building agency. They will build the website and even maintain it for you for a fixed fee. If you have some time on your hands and want to build the website yourself, you can opt for website builder platforms that provide website templates to edit yourself and create a website.
Trying to understand how much does it cost to make a website can be quite tricky. Every means of creating a website has some cost-benefit over the other, depending on user preferences. You wouldn’t want to be halfway through the process only to realize that the cost is putting a dent in your pockets.
So before understanding how much does it cost to make a website, you need to know which of these can be the best option for your specific requirements. To pick the most cost-effective website building option, you first need to know what can affect the cost of a website.
How Much Does a Website Cost?
To answer the question ‘how much does it cost to make a website?’, you need to assess the reason for building the website in the first place. The objective of building the website is not the absolute cost of building the website, but it does tell you what features you will require to start with. Building and the maintenance cost of a website can vary as each platform has variations in their pricing. So if you want to know how much does a website cost, you’ll need to assess the needs of your website.
• Website Essentials
When you’re trying to calculate how much does it cost to make a website, you need to find out what your website needs. It can be the fundamentals such as buying the domain name, website hosting cost and cost of getting an SSL certificate.
• Website Design
It can sometimes be tricky to know how much does it cost to make a website as you’re not sure how to break down and evaluate each and every aspect of your website. This is especially true for website design. You can get a web design for a reasonable price, but you might have to compromise user experience and SEO compatibility of the website. The cost of a website often depends on the complexity and uniqueness of the website.
• eCommerce Functionality
If you want your website to carry out sales and transactions, you will need to include eCommerce functionality on your website. The cost of a website increases with the number of pages devoted to stock management, payment options, shipping options, and product pages.
• Marketing and SEO
Making a website does not ensure its success. You need to invest in strategies that elevate your online presence. This is in addition to the making cost of a website as you might need to hire a professional to optimize website performance and carry out SEO optimization on a regular basis.
A website isn’t a one-off project. You will need to maintain the website, which means updating and fixing the website on a regular basis. There are free and paid tools for this process or you could hire an expert to maintain your website. The cost of maintenance will depend on the level of sophistication of your website. As the features, plugins on your website increase, so does the frequency of repairs and updates.
The points that you just read will help you get some clarity on those ‘How much does it cost to make a website?’ questions. But the major factor that can determine the cost of a website is who you chose to build the website with. As we mentioned earlier, you can either hire a designer, a website building agency, or use a website building platform to make your website. They all have their own sets of pros and cons, so it's more about what's the best fit for your requirements than which is the best way. You can have a small business or private practice which might need a personal website. In that case, hiring a freelance developer or even building the website on your own is a more feasible option than going to a website developing agency.
But right now, you need a clear picture of how these options weigh out against each other in terms of cost. Hence, we’ve created a brief cost analysis of building a website when done through a website developing agency, a professional developer, and a website building platform.
Cost Analysis of Building a Website
The question ‘how much does it cost to make a website?’ can have different answers based on the medium that you choose and the level of sophistication of your website. We look at the cost associated with each of the three media.
• Web Design Agency
Suppose you’re looking to hire a professional web design agency. In that case, you must be ready to shell out anywhere between $2,000 to $20,000 and more depending on the quality of the web design agency. This option is best for multinational companies and big firms with loads of transactions everyday. You can get all the high-end features for your website, have amazing website performance, be on top of every search engine result and more.
A design agency has a team of top professionals in every aspect of the web development process – from graphic design, coding and copy-writing to digital marketing and search engine optimization. This is what you usually get when you go for a web design agency. Hence the associated cost. It isn’t a practical option if you’re going for a regular small-business website.
Image taken from Strikingly’s user website
• Freelance Developer
There are several pros for a small business to hire a professional web developer. You can communicate your ideas directly to the person making your website and tell them how exactly you want it. Hiring a decent web developer with about 6-7 years would charge somewhere between $40-$50/hr. But, this doesn't include the charges of web designer who you might have to hire as the developer only deals with backend codes. The designer would also charge a similar amount on an hourly basis.
Image taken from Strikingly’s user website
• DIY Website Builder
A DIY website builder is where you have built-in website templates based on which you can build your website. It’s simpler than it sounds as most of what you’ll be doing is applying changes to the webpage through the customizable options and deciding if you want to go with it or not. Website builders such as Strikingly work on a monthly or yearly subscription plan (depending on what you choose).
Image taken from Strikingly’s user website
A Cost Comparison of Website Building
That should answer all your ‘How much does it cost to make a website?’ and ‘what’s the best platform?’ questions and give you a clear picture of what type of medium you require to make your website. Based on your choice, you can have first have a basic plan of your website like the pages you need, branding and website details, and then approach the medium that is the best fit for you.
Cost Comparison of 4 Best Website Builders
If you choose a website builder to build a website, you will need to know the cost associated with some of the best website builders to help understand how much does it cost to make a website.
Image taken from Strikingly
With Strikingly, you get a free plan as soon as you’ve registered, which means you can build a basic website for free. With this, you’ll receive 5 GB for bandwidth, an unlimited number of sites (with basic functionality),1 product for sale for each resource, and the subdomain at strikingly.com. The pricing is quite cheap considering the features that Strikingly provides. You can go for the limited plan for $12/ month which allows you to place up to 5 products, 2 sites with additional benefits of $24.95 domain credits for one year if they sign up with any yearly plans. The pro plan lets you place up to 300 products, 3 sites with advanced features, and multiple pages for a monthly subscription of $20/ month. You also have a VIP plan for $59 / month where you can host 5 sites with advanced features and over 500 products. You can even select plans on yearly basis and pay upfront for up to 10 years which reduces the overall cost of the website. In addition to this, you can also get a custom domain for $24.95 each per year.
Wix is a website builder hosting wherein like most website builders the website hosting cost is included with the plan. Wix has a wide range of plans depending on user preferences. The unlimited plan starts at $17 per month, ideal for small businesses. If you need add-on features such as visitor analytics and site booster, it will cost you $22 per month with their Pro plan. You can add eCommerce functionality at additional monthly costs. The Business Basic plan can be subscribed from $23 per month while their Enterprise plan will cost you up to $500 per month.
Weebly is great for startups with their pro plan starting at $12 per month, billed annually. Though you can create a website free of cost, for additional features you’ll need to be subscribed to the pro plan. If you need a functional e-commerce site, you would need their Business plan at $25 per month, billed annually at $300.
4. Square Space
Squarespace also offers the Personal plan at $12/month which you can use to create up to 12 pages on this plan. Additional pages and features will be available at $18/month. For those who want to start selling their product, you can avail eCommerce plans at $26/month and $40/month. These plans give you extra features and no additional transaction cost.
The question ‘How much does it cost to make a website’ will always have newer, cost effective answers. But the cost of building a website should not deter you from building your own website. The options have been given to you. As you saw from our list, websites can even be built for free. So don’t let the finances stop you from getting your virtual presence on the internet. Get your free website at Strikingly and enjoy unlimited growth.