Most small business websites are built for $1500 – $5000 (although custom or specialty sites can cost much more). So what determines how much your new business website should cost? Where are the critical areas where you can save money? It’s not difficult to save at least a $1000 when yo develop your business website so read on and save some money!

1. The Technical ($200 – $300)

  • setup hosting and domain name
  • add emails if needed
  • install WordPress
  • install recommended plugins
  • setup plugins like contact forms and Google Analytics

2. The Design ($500 – $1500)

Typically this is done by having a designer create several mockups using a program like Photoshop. You would review these mockups and decide on the overall look that you like.

Another efficient method to arrive at a design you like is to bookmark websites that you really like the look of to help the designer understand your tastes.

A good design firm will also give you some feedback on your selections depending on what your business goals are.

Many businesses get caught up at this stage on putting so much emphasis on the “look” of the website but forget the “goals” of the website.

For example if the businesses goal is to get as many new leads as possible it’s more important that the site make a compelling reason for a visitor to contact the business and make this easy to do rather than only worry about how the website looks.

3.The Development ($500 – $2500)

Obviously the largest variable in price. This is where you can save the most money. The development is primarily about your content and the home page. To illustrate how a business could save $1000 on their website cost let’s look at these two scenarios;

Client A wants 10 pages about their products and services but has some mediocre pictures and some very brief item and service descriptions. In this case the design company has to spend time finding images and writing content for the client.

Client B also wants 10 pages about their products and services but already has the content completed in a program like Microsoft Word. The text is well written, descriptive and compelling and the images are a decent quality and work well with the text. In this case the design firm just needs to create the pages and convert the Word documents to valid and mobile friendly HTML.

The difference is at least $1000 and if there are more pages even more.

If you’re looking to save money but still end up with a great website this is where your company needs to spend some time. And even if images are a problem then at least try and get the writing done.

Of course some companies have the budget and are happy to pay for a professional writer and designer to work together on the site, but it will cost more.

A good exercise is to write the entire website out first in Microsoft Word first. This is an excellent discipline in many ways but it is not easy. It often helps your business in general and will always result in a better and more effective website.

4. The Final Touches, Review & Launch ($200 – $700)

This is where the site is checked to make sure everything has been completed properly.

Search Engine Optimization – Insure that the site has been optimized to rank well in Google and Bing

Site Is Mobile Ready – Review the site on a smartphone, tablet as well as a desktop. Make any tweaks needed.

Setup With Google Services – assuming everything has been setup with Google correctly (see below for options) check that Google Analytics, Google+ and Google Webmaster Tools are all linked correctly to the website.

Social Media – insure all content can be shared by visitors on their Social Media choices as well as linking to your own business Social Media pages.

Conversion & Tracking – if you will be doing any marketing campaigns we make sure to install the appropriate tracking codes, remarketing codes and make the necessary integrations with Google Analytics.

5. The Monthly Website Charges ($10 – $75 pm)

Hosting – Good hosting will make a difference to the search engines and your customers. Nobody likes a slow website. Hosting your website ranges from $10 – $50 pm.

Hosting With WordPress Management – If you wish to add regular website backups, uptime monitoring and WordPress and plugins updates that cost ranges from $10 – $25. The most important part of this is keeping your WordPress plugins up-to-date or their can be security and performance issues.

6. The Optional Items

Registration & Setup With Google Services – Even though we are listing this under Optional Items it isn’t really. That is your correct setup and registration with all of the various Google Services. So many clients that come to us have not done anything with Google, another company did it for them but incorrectly (and often without their knowledge) or they did some of it themselves but incorrectly also. This can be a mess but it does need to be done correctly. Today all of Google’s services work around your Google+ account so that is always the starting point.

Add Video To Your Site – highly recommended to have some video on your site. Either an interview style or a slideshow style works very well.

Create A Podcast – If you’re in the right business and your marketplace could stretch beyond just local then there isn’t anything more powerful or cost-effective today. We can take you from start to finish with your own show in iTunes. If you can possibly do this….. DO IT!

Add eCommerce – adding ecommerce to your WordPress website is easy and quite inexpensive today. For websites that are really online stores, and that is their primary business, we do recommend that you look at our Shopify option, an ecommerce platform from the ground up.