The Detail of Basic Website Development Costs by 2 Common Methods

Most large businesses have equipped a website for the purpose of brand promotion. Should startups with a tight budget do it in such the way? Are website development costs a reason that makes them wonder, right?
By Linda Au | 10 min read
on August 9, 2019

We are living in the age of continuous technology development. “What strategies and methods do businesses need to exist and develop?” is a question that is asked by small and large businesses. As you all know, "website" is a popular answer which is an excellent product for each business. It benefits corporations around the world by bringing chances to sell everything for anyone, anywhere. If there isn't a website, a business will miss a lot of potential customer in the domestic and international market. Large businesses all have websites can build their reputation easier than others without a website. Small business shouldn't be too worried about website development costs. Don’t take it too seriously, let's analyze matter for everything to become simple.

Website building cost isn’t only money

"How much does a website cost? " is a very unspecific question? To answer that question you need to be more specific. Website cost depends on a lot of different elements. “What type of website do you want?”, “What do you use it for?”, “What is your budget?" and some questions like that. It's difficult to evaluate a website from its design and you must determine your resources to estimate costs for your website.

The cost of building your website comprises 4 resources:

  • Time
  • Technical knowledge
  • Design skills
  • Money

Most businesses lack one or more resources. Let’s spend a couple of seconds to consider which resource you have or not. You will use resources which you have and things you lack will be replaced by other ways. All these resources are important but money is the most flexible one. You will have time if you want or not. Knowledge and skill you can improve with an interest in coding and designing. But everyone has different budget so it must be spent reasonably. Which is worth your money but it makes outsiders feel a little wasted . Let's put aside your money and estimate website cost with resources you have by researching methods of building website.

Different methods of building website cause different costs

There are five main phases need to be handled when building, managing and operating a website:

  • Website setup
  • Learn how to use a website builder
  • Designing the layout
  • Content creation
  • Troubleshooting and ongoing maintenance

For each phase, you must examine that are you able to fulfill. An expert would be hired or rely on modern technology if you couldn't get the job done.

There are different levels of website building services that you can differentiate in below overviews:

Method  A – Custom Build Your Website From the Ground Up

A professional website or developer will create your website from start to finish without using website building software. Since the introduction of WordPress, this method is seldom used. Only enterprise companies build a website this way with very special needs but extremely rare.

Method B - Use a Website Building Software like WordPress

WordPress supplies everything to create a website but you must assemble them. You will do fine if you spend a lot of time to learn or you have expertise in this field. In order to save time, you can hire an expert put a WordPress website for you.

Method C - Drag & Drop Website Builders

Fully automated website building services such as Wix, Squarespace, and Weebly will handle all of the matters about technology and design for you. It's easy to use that no need any knowledge at all.
Drag & drop website builders don’t give you a team of designers and developer to build the website for you. You must still build your website by using their simple drag & drop tools. Their ready help your implementation conveniently. Technical aspects of managing and operating a website are automatic which is a key benefit.However, you won't have anything as you imagined. Because there is a limitation about options. But it still is plenteous and multiform for you to get 90 percent expectations. That is an exchange when building a website with technology knowledge.

Detail cost of two main options to create a website

Option 1: Cost of hiring a professional to help you build a website

When mentioning that you will hire a professional to build a website, WordPress is usually recommended for using. Because WordPress is the most popular website builder for developer and designers. There are about 26 percent website start from WordPress. "Why does it make up a quite high rate like it?" WordPress’s main advantage is its extreme flexibility. You can create any type of website with features that you desire as long as having knowledge about coding and design or hire professional do it as mentioned.

WordPress will not be recommended if you haven't had any website before or not having technical skill. Because WordPress has a much higher learning curve and setup costs than any fully managed, drag & drop website builder like Wix, Squarespace, and Weebly.

To cut a long story short, you only use WordPress when satisfying conditions:

  • First, this is not your first website and you have experiences managing websites.
  • Second, you have a very specific design or software needs.
  • Third, you have money and time to study building and managing a WordPress website.

Once again, you shouldn't use WordPress without time, money as well as patience to learn how to code and technical ins and outs of using WordPress effectively.

a. Cost of setting up a WordPress website

"Finding a hosting provider, learning how to use FTP, linking your website builder software with your hosting provider, connecting your domain name to your website" They sound weird if you haven't had any website before. These are costs of setting before building a website.

  • Website hosting (cost $5 – $350/month):

If someone enters your website address into a web browser, the browser will go to your host and get your website to display it to the visitor. There are several types of hosting such as:

Shared hosting costs $5 – $30

VPS hosting costs $50 – $250

Dedicated hosting starts in the thousands

  • Using FTP (cost $0 – $50/lesson):

Website files are everything you see in front of you such as website design, images, features, content as well as internal workings of a website, all of them are managed by FTP. The website hosting provider will instruct you how to connect FTP to you for file management. If you are a starter, you can learn through Youtube channel or pay for tutorials at Lynda.com (around $50) within 3 hours.

  • Installing Wordpress in a host and connecting your domain name (cost $0 – $180/hour):

Most hosting providers already have installed WordPress and they will instruct you how to connect your domain name to your website. It will take you a few minutes to an hour to figure things out if you haven't ever done it before.

b. Cost of learning to use WordPress (Cost $0 – $50/month)

There are a lot of online instructions but their qualities maybe not good. It takes several hours to understand the basics of WordPress even more. You should use paid tutorials with higher quality from Lynda.com. With $50/month price, it will help you save a lot of time.

c. Cost of designing a WordPress website (Cost $50 – $$$$)

Here is where you can spend less or more money on your website without an upper limit.

  • Pre-made templates designs (cost $35 – $200/template)

These are a lot of ready-made design options for you to choose from. Unless you know how to modify codes, it will be difficult to customize designs. However, you are happy with them, you will receive a good deal of choices. Basic paid templates cost around $35 to $50 and the price fluctuates from $80 to $200.

  • Custom built website using pre-made templates (cost $300 – $1,000/template customization)

This option is pre-made templates are customized uniquely as you like from early template by a designer. You must pay between $300 and $1,000 for template customization. The cost varies depending on how much work you want to be done.

  • Custom website design (cost $5,000 – $10,000+/developer)

This option for who want difference. You can have any imaged website design idea. A custom WordPress design has the lowest price is $5,000 when you hire a developer from an emerging country such as India or Eastern Europe. Developer from a developed country will be paid a higher price from  $10,000 and can go all the way up to well over $30,000.

d. Cost of creating content for your WordPress website (Cost $500 – $5,000/project)

Designing creates an overall framework for your website with things such as: where the menu bar is located and how it works, where the logo is to be situated, how the slideshow works at the top of your home page, how your sidebar looks like and functions, how your information is to be presented throughout your website, etc. Nevertheless, your website should be enriched with content.

All parts of the content include background design for your pages, uploading header images, creating custom graphics for your content area, inserting text to describe items, inserting your logo to brand your business, etc. They are added for visitors to comprehend your business, what you buy, the knowledge you share on the blog.

Unless you have money as well as time to spend on a custom website or creating the content for your website, you can buy a pre-made template at $35 – $200. After that, you can hire a designer to create content for your website.

Content creation is charged by the hour ( about $50-$80 per hour) or by the project (about $250 – $500 minimum charge per project).

e. Cost of troubleshooting & maintaining your WordPress website (Cost $500 – $1,000/year)

In operation, problems go beyond the initial website setup. That is why you need a person who fixes it for you. All website builders have software updates, browser compatibility updates, platform updates, security patches and much more.  The owner of the website must implement and manage these requirements. When using WordPress, you have to handle all the technical issues yourself. When an update occurs and a plugin that you are using becomes incompatible with other plugins that you are using, or conflicts with the website builder. You have to create a plugin to fix everything by yourself or ask a developer for help.

A good developer costs between $80 and $180 per hour or better one with a premium price. If you can find a developer that you count on, your money will be worth. Depending on the complexity of your website that maintenance cost will fluctuate and it is difficult to determine the cost.

Concern isn’t not only cost of paying for someone to fix your website but also looking for a trustworthy developer

Option 2: Cost of building a website if using fully managed, drag & drop website builder

When mentioning a matter that you want to drive down the cost of building a website as well as require less time or you don't have technical or design expertise, drag & drop website builders (Wix, Squarespace or Weebly) are recommended for use. They are drag & drop website builders that make website building as easy as it can possibly be without setup or coding.

To cut a long story short, you only use WordPress when satisfying conditions:

  • First, this is your first website.
  • Second, don’t need any custom design or specific software and tools on your website.
  • Third, you have limited time to learn how to code and limited money to invest in your website.

Once again, Wix, Squarespace, and Weebly are some of the most popular and reliable drag & drop website builders in the market today that should use when you want control over your website without paying a designer or developer to make changes.

a. Cost of setting up a website using a drag & drop builder (Cost $0)

You don't need to invest time or money for setting up a website with either Wix, Squarespace, Weebly or any the same things. You don’t have to worry about hosting, setting up FTP, installing the website builder software or linking your domain name. These setup works are completed by the website builder. Your task is signing up for an account with your email address and you can start building your website right away that help you save your time.

Free plans limit some features but you can try before committing to any paid plans. Both Wix and Weebly have no time limit to using their free plan. Squarespace limits free trial period within 14 days.

b. Cost of learning to use a website using a drag & drop builder (Cost $0)

You just spend some minutes to get a good idea easily on how to use the drag and drop builder. You have not to learn any lessons.

c. Cost of designing a website using a drag & drop builder (Cost $0)

Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, and other fully hosted website builders supply a broad range of design templates for free. Most of them are as good as paid WordPress templates. But you can't access to the codes of the template to make custom modifications exception with Weebly.

d. Cost of building content for a website using drag & drop builder (Cost $500 – $2,000/project)

Drag & drop website builders are designed for DIYers. But you don't want to create graphics, branding and page content by yourself, you can hire a designer at a few hundred to low thousand dollars price. Designer for a drag & drop website builder is hired with cheaper price than for WordPress.

A graphic designer can become website designers easily due to drag & drop builders. So that there are a lot of talented designers for you to choose with cheap price.

e. Cost of troubleshooting and maintaining for a website using drag & drop builder (Cost $0)

Your technical issues are handled by fully-hosted website builders. So you don't worry about issues because of managed website builders for people without technical knowledge or who are new to building websites. It removes a lot of complication for your focus on building your website.

The shortcut for you to develop fast and avoid mistake when building a website

In a sound financial condition, you should pay a professional to build your website. It’ll save you tons of time, money and other opportunity costs and quality of the website will be better.

You must take a long look at people who are called professionals before hiring them. Otherwise, you won't understand they are supporting or destroying your website in the future.

There is a lot of shoddy coding out there that can result in security risks, software incompatibilities, and site instability. You have to use premium digital components with a prestige brand or fix breaking things constantly and you even rebuild your entire site.

Conclusion

Cost of building a website not only is money but also others such as time, technical knowledge, design skill. Let's make good use of your resources and hire an expert to fulfill things that you can't make. There are many ways to build a website and you ought to find the best way to match your business. Consider carefully before deciding to choose any methods or it will be counterproductive. For all practical purposes, there are still many businesses without the website. This has meant that you are introducing your weak business and you aren’t serious about your job. Keep things professional by your website!

This article is also credited to Connie and Vitaly K.

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