29 Mar Website design prices – Part One: What you should consider
For any business looking to build a new website – costs are often a factor that are difficult to properly understand. This is usually because the options available are vast and can be confusing, and it is not often clear why it can cost significantly more to use one method over another. There are also several other cost implications that are sometimes overlooked, such as third-party integrations and requirements that contribute towards achieving the desired result.
In this website design prices blog series, we aim to provide a guide on many of the common factors you should consider when starting a new website, and what the potential cost implications may be.
Website design prices overview
- Branding (If required)
- Doman name (p.a.)
- Hosting (p.a.)
- Business emails (p.m.)
- Transaction fees (eCommerce)
- General administration time
- What system or platform you choose to use?
- Cost of hiring professional expertise to plan, design & build the site
- How the size & required functionality of the site will affect time/cost to build
- If any premium plugins or integrations are needed
- If any custom coding or plugin creation is required
- Stock photos/videos
- Professional photography
- Professional videography
- Professional illustration
- Professional copywriting / content editing
- Social Media marketing
- PR & advertising
- Site maintenance & updates
- Any other third-party costs
Before you begin
Before looking into what’s involved in developing a new website for your business, the first thing that needs to be considered are both the company brand and the communication methods you will use to engage with your target audience. Knowing that you are confident in your brand, and you have done the necessary research and planning in moving your digital presence forward, should ensure a more successful outcome. This is true for both new businesses, and especially relevant for established businesses who should review their current brand to assess their business and communication strategy for the future.
If you have not already established a brand identity and communication plan, or have determined a new brand and strategy is needed, then budgeting for this is essential if you want to have any success, as launching a new website without this could result in failure. Paying for professional brand creation (or rebranding), and hiring a specialist marketing team, may cost a fair amount of money up front, but the long-term gains you should make as a result will outweigh the expense by a significant margin.
Another factor that can contribute to how much time and expense you will incur, is how much research and planning you make before you set to work on getting the website built. It can seem a daunting task, but you don’t need to understand the complex nature of how a website works, or visualise how you want it to look – you just need to work out exactly what features and functionality you believe is needed (and potential avenues of growth later on), list out options and questions that you want to find answers to, and be confident about your decisions – as this will set the foundations of how things will be built on later. If you provide a thorough brief to a website team, you will not only receive a more accurate quotation on timings and fees, but it will avoid any doubts and potential additional costs later on (as deciding that you need this, that and the other when the site is already being built, or after launch, will often cost more than if they were developed in the first place).
Choosing the right domain name
Unless you have already secured your desired domain name (usually one that accurately represents your brand and is easy to remember), you will need to register one for your website.
Domain names can be registered with any registrar, and usually cost between £20 – £60 annually. However, if you have not yet registered a domain name (or created a brand name for your business), it can sometimes take time to find a name you are happy with (as most of the good ones are often taken), and this may lead to factoring in a cost to purchase a ‘premium domain’ from someone who is selling the one you want at an inflated price.
Hosting your site the right way
Hosting for your website is something that needs a lot more consideration than you might think, as it can have a significant impact on both the performance of your website, and the level of security and support available to you.
It is important that you find a hosting provider and package that offers the best solution for your site. The most basic packages are provided on what’s called a ‘shared hosting platform’, which means your site would be on a server that is ‘shared’ with other websites – and whilst this is a cost-effective option for small independent sites, it may not be the best option for sites that require better performance, better security and provide better customer support options. At the other end of the scale, for very large (enterprise level) websites, is purchasing your own dedicated hosting server, or global network of servers, that can handle huge numbers of visitors and provide a top-tier level of support to ensure your site is running as efficiently as possible.
A good host will offer excellent customer support, have fast, secure and reliable servers, and offer a control panel that allows you (or your web team) easy access to set things up and make adjustments. One thing you should check is if they offer daily backups of your site – just in case anything happens and you can easily rewind to how things were the day before.
Website hosting can cost between £20 – £200 per month, depending on the level you need, so make sure you understand your needs before investing. If you are paying for your website to be built professionally, they should be able to recommend a suitable hosting solution.
Business email accounts
Whilst some hosting plans may include the option to create as many email accounts as you want, they are usually very limited in what they offer in terms of storage and security. You should always invest in a reliable email system that you can depend on, and not worry about exceeding your storage limits or finding out the emails you send are getting snagged by spam detectors.
Setting up professional business emails for your domain will require you pay monthly per user. And these costs vary depending on the level of storage, security and support you want. Costs are usually between £5 – £25 per user, per month, or more for enterprise level.
In part two of our website design prices blog series we discuss features and functionality.