Ah, the question everyone asks. How much does a website cost? When you look it up on Google, you’ll rarely find actual numbers. There’s a reason for that; the price varies greatly according to type of website you’re looking for and the features that you’ll need. Asking a designer or developer how much a website costs is like asking a car seller how much a car costs. The salesman will probably stare at you for a moment and politely answer: “Well, it depends on the car brand, the model, its color, the add-ons, and a lot of other factors…” That’s right, it’s impossible for us to say how much a website can cost without the details. But if I really, really had to answer, I would say this: anywhere between $1000 and $10 000 most of the time.
So what really affects the price?
Besides the designer/programmer’s hourly rate, the price of a website will usually vary according to how complicated it is to build and what features are going to be included. Before asking for a quote, you have to answer this question first:
What type of website do you need?
- A static HTML/CSS website?
- A website with a blog function (CMS) like WordPress?
- A portfolio site with a nice gallery?
- An eCommerce that processes payments?
- An online community site with a subscription feature?
- A business website?
- Or a combo of two or several of these options?
For a professional, it’s easier and quicker to make a simple site with a blog function than to develop a complex eCommerce that will process credit card orders. The complexity of the design also plays an important role. So, from 20 to 100 hours of work, not counting the time the designer/programmer will spend training, reading and reviewing the content with the client, the can price fluctuate a lot.
Other things you need to consider when preparing your budget are your domain name, your hosting plan and any other complementary service you would like to get with your website (i.e.: logo, newsletter, business card, updates, bilingual integration, SEO, database, etc.).
Know what you need and the designer or programmer you work with will be able to give you a price.
How about cheap websites?
We’ve all seen them, “designers” selling websites for $500 or less. Those freelancers are obviously inexperienced and ignorant of the most recent design and programming standards. Creating a website is so much more than just pasting images together with code; it’s a meticulous and orderly process that requires time, precision and knowledge of design and W3 Standards. Building a website without referring to the W3S can result in inconsistency among different browsers, bogus features and invalid markup. Before hiring anyone, you must make sure they will produce for you a valid website or else you could end up with a very bad surprise at the end of the road.
If you don’t believe me, I invite you to take a look at ads on Craigslist where many of those so-called “designers” offer their services for extremely low rates. What you get is what you pay for. These images speak for themselves:
Is that the type of website you want for your project or company? Unless you want a particularly repulsive website, you should stay away from those low-quality service providers that will waste your money and bring you shame.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Building a website is a big adventure and it’s alright for you to ask questions before initiating a new project. In fact, it’s encouraged. The designer/programmer you will hire will provide you gladly with all the details and information you need and want if you only ask for it. The more you know, the more you will also be able to understand the process. That means you will be able to communicate more accurately your needs and wishes to the professional you’ll hire, resulting in a better website.
If you are ready to start a new project but you’re not sure how much it will cost, contact us and we’ll gladly provide you with a competitive quote.