Many web design companies will charge you per page or per hour, others will have a set price for a package deal. If you want a fairly straightforward 10-15 page website you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 dollars – perhaps even less. Prices can differ greatly between design companies.
If you are looking for a content management system to run your website, you have a lot of options to choose from. Most content management systems include a lot of e-business functionality and pricing can start from around $2,500 and can go up very quickly depending upon your needs.
The final price of your website depends greatly on the complexity you require. If you need an online shop with automatic online credit card processing you will need to budget for a lot more. With an e-commerce site you will need to purchase a Secure Server Certificate which can cost from $150 US to $200 US depending upon the encryption level you need. To learn more about SSL certificates visit www.geotrust.com or www.thawte.com.
When you consult with your web designer make sure you find out about any hidden costs. Get the company to confirm whether you will have to pay extra if the development goes over any time allocations they may have. If you are paying by the hour for the development, make sure they break down the costs so you know exactly what you are paying for.
You will also need to budget for ongoing maintenance of the website, as most web companies will suggest you have an ongoing support and maintenance contract. If you want a successful website you need to keep the content up to date. You will also need to budget for ongoing search engine management as there is little point in having a beautifully designed and highly useful website that no one can find!
Web Hosting Costs
Some web hosting companies will bill you a flat fee per month based on the amount of disk space required (10 MB’s, 20MB’s etc). Others will be based on how much traffic your site generates. Many hosting companies charge a base rate per disk space and then a charge per megabyte (MB) of traffic over any limits your account may have.
Be aware that if your site is very successful and attracts a lot of visitors you may find that your hosting gets more and more expensive. If you think that your site is going to be extremely popular with a lot of visitors, look into having your own dedicated web server telehoused with a hosting company.
Unless you have the expertise, the equipment, and a lot of bandwidth, do not even consider hosting the website yourself.
Your website is part of your overall marketing mix, and as such you should build the cost of the site and any ongoing costs into your annual marketing budget.