Well, what kind of website do you want?
That question leads us down the rabbit hole of design, desires, and dreams.
Here’s the thing:
You’re asking the wrong question.
You Need a Budget
The real question should be one of budget:
- How much can you afford to spend on a website?
- How much do you want to spend on a website?
- What are your priorities?
I can hear you now: “Yeah, but what do people usually spend?”
Ok. I gotcha.
I can tell you that I’ve designed and produced a website for as little as $250 and as much as $8,000. Typically, I see a website go from “glimmer of your eye” to “go live” for around $2,500.
That said, it really depends on what kind of website you are looking to get going.
Are we talking about a simple site with a few pages and a contact form? Are we talking about a blog? eCommerce? Are we talking about a complex site with forms, membership, blogs, multiple authors, social integrations, SEO to the max, daily site updates/changes, multiple end users having access, and a kitchen sink kind of website?
Websites come in many, many different flavors and each flavor has a different cost.
But wait! There’s more!
Is the website *done* when it launches? Is it ever?
I suggest to you that it is not.
When you decide on a budget for a new website (or redesign), there are two things you need to work out:
- Initial investment – this gets your project off the ground
- Maintenance cost – this is a ongoing allotment that goes into maintaining your website
Maintenance?! Can’t I just call it done and that be that?
Sure, you could just let it fly and never touch it again. It’s your website, and you can do that.
“Danger Will Robinson”
Without updates and proper backups, you are more vulnerable to being hacked and losing your investment or worse, customers!
Additionally, your website will get stale and irrelevant faster than you tend to sneeze after sniffing some pepper.
So, please factor maintenance into the cost of your site. Depending on your site’s flavor, this could be $8-50/month (or more).
You’ll need to budget in the cost associated with domain registration, web hosting, and SSL certification. The costs here can range from $30-200/year depending on server/bandwidth and security needs.
Advertising your website is the final budget area to keep in mind. I should mention that this is one area where I do not work in. I can help make sure your site is up to SEO specs, and give you tips on getting good PR for your site. I cannot manage paid advertising spots for your website.
The Real Answer You’re Looking For
Answer all those budget questions, but stay flexible. Map out the site you are looking to build – you can do this on your own or I’m happy to consult with you on this. Once you have this map, we’ll both have a better idea of what flavor your website is. Then, we can set the budget and get to work.
Don’t worry over much about budgeting maintenance until closer to launch. It is then, we’ll have a better idea of what maintenance will be needed/recommended.
Building websites is a process, and I’m just as mindful of budgets and money as y’all are.