In a previous article, we told you everything you need to know to build your business website from scratch. If you haven’t created one yet, but finally are convinced that a business website is essential, it’s time to invest some money in one of the most powerful marketing and sales tools for small businesses. In this guide, you will learn how much it costs to build a business website and what’s the best way to do it.
Why should you invest in your business website?
When you invest in your business website, you attract new customers, generate revenue and create a brand name. These and other advantages are obvious to many entrepreneurs. In fact, in a survey conducted among small business owners, 83% said that their websites gave them a competitive advantage over those companies without a website.
These are other benefits of having a business website:
- It generates credibility. According to research, 84% of customers believe that small businesses with websites are more reliable than those with no online presence. A business website legitimizes your business and increases its credibility.
- It improves your customer service. A website allows you to instantly process opinions, information requests, and complaints from customers, and to give them a response or timely solution.
- It promotes your business. Build your digital marketing strategy around your website to promote your company. Posts on your blog can attract more visitors to your site. If you also take advantage of the power of the video, your messages will spread more efficiently than with text alone.
- It increases your reputation. Your website can become an authority within your industry. The company’s blog is the best tool to achieve this, spreading your knowledge and teaching readers how to be an expert. Online seminars, known as webinars, and podcasts, can also serve this purpose.
Despite their advantages, many small businesses are still not convinced to invest in a website, partly because of the high cost. This is shown in a survey conducted among small businesses. Paradoxically, the same study points out that despite the perception that building a website is expensive, most small businesses manage to invest only $500 or less building it.
How much does it really cost to create your business website?
The cost of building your company’s website will depend on how it is configured (the more elaborate it is, the more you have to invest) and who builds it. Basically, you have three options to build your business website:
- Use a “do-it-yourself” platform, such as WordPress or Weebly, where building a website can cost between $50 and $250. Find here a list with the best website builders for small business.
- Hire a professional designer, who usually will be an independent worker. These experts charge between $500 and $1,000, or more if they have to design the whole site from scratch.
- If you have the budget to develop a professional-looking business website with many features, you can use a web design agency: you will have to invest between $10,000 and $50,000.
As a small business owner, spend up to $50,000 is probably out of question. Therefore we are going to explore the first two options: to use a DIY platform and to hire an independent designer.
Option 1. Create your business website yourself
- The name of your site will look like this: www.mybusiness.com. Registering the domain of your company can cost you between $10 or $12 annually. You can register it in sites like Namecheap or GoDaddy.
- This service allows you to store the website. Costs range from $100 per year on platforms such as Bluehost or HostGator, but the price can increase if you require more storage space.
- The template will vary according to the design and structure of the site. You can choose from hundreds of options, many of them free. A premium template, of higher quality, costs between $100 and $150 on platforms like StudioPress.
Even if you spend less money, building your own site will take a lot of time. However, it is still possible to create a good-quality website this way; many like you have done it before.
Option 2. Hire a professional designer
If you have enough budget, don’t have the time, or if you want your business website to be unique and stand out from the crowd, we recommend you to hire a designer to build it for you. In places like Upwork, independent designers charge from $40 an hour for their services. Thus, you would have to invest between $500 and $1,000 for the whole project, depending on the time it takes to complete. If you need advanced features, such as an online store, the cost will be higher. These are other factors that you must take into account when studying your budget:
- Number of pages. The more pages your site needs, the more money you should invest.
- Custom template design. The theme or template must be customized to match the corporate image of your business.
- Images and graphics. Sophisticated images and graphics can give your business website a unique look, but add an additional cost to your budget.
- Number of revisions. For most websites, it is enough to revise the design once or twice before moving into the construction phase.
And always consider these extra investments
In order for your business website, you must consider other elements, such as content and marketing strategies to promote it. This, of course, generates additional costs:
- The site will be more attractive if you include texts and quality images. A freelance writer charges between $50 and $200 per hour. As for the images, sites like BigStockPhoto and iStockPhoto have high-quality photos, and you can buy all the images you need from $50.
- In WordPress, there are basic plugins for search engine optimization, but you may need to hire someone to help you with the most technical aspects. An expert will charge you between $100 and $200 per hour.
- You must include in your website budget the annual fees of the domain and hosting; software updates; security measures, such as backup copies and SLL certificates (to create a secure link between your site and browsers used by visitors), and digital marketing, among others.
Keep reading here if you are looking for more smart ways to invest in technology for your business.