No matter what industry you’re in, every small business needs a website. A website helps new customers find and engage with your business so you can make more money.
One of the biggest questions a business owner has about building their website is what it should cost. Without context, deciding on a small website solution can be difficult. This guide will cut through the noise to let you know what the cost of your website should be.
There are three main categories for expenses when building a small business website:
Design & build – $0 – $10,000+
The cost of designing and building your website can vary wildly based on your needs and willingness to DIY. There are platforms that allow you to build a free website like Wix or Weebly. These platforms give you a chance to build a free website but there are some drawbacks. First, you’ll be stuck with a domain name that will include “.wixsite” or “.weebly”. You’ll also be stuck with ads and limited customization features. Also, the $0 price tag doesn’t take into account the cost of your time spent building a website on an unfamiliar platform.
On the other end of the spectrum are completely customized websites, built from scratch, that take months and months to design and develop. These websites cost thousands and thousands of dollars, but they include every feature your small business website needs (and some you’ll probably never use).
Now let’s find the happy medium. At Vaughn Austin Creative, we build websites that are responsive, user-friendly, and, most importantly, affordable on a small business budget. We use the WordPress platform to build websites for several reasons. First, it’s highly customizable so you get a beautiful website with the features you need. Second, it’s the most-used platform for website building so security and features are constantly being updated. Last, it’s user-friendly on the front and the back end which means your customers will be happy and you’ll be able to make necessary changes on your own.
Domain name & hosting – Depends on the cost of your domain, but we use GoDaddy & WP Engine for around $15 per month
Building a website also involves choosing and purchasing your domain name, or URL, and finding a platform to host it so users can access it, too. Domain names vary widely in price depending on how many people also want the domain name. URLs like “marketing.com” cost A LOT more than domains like “Vaughn-austin.com” since the latter is much more specific to our business than other marketing firms.
Hosting also varies widely depending on the platform you use. We use WP Engine, which is a WordPress-specific hosting company, that includes website backups with hosting packages, so your website is safe if anything goes wrong. Sometimes small businesses can try to save money by going with a smaller, cheaper hosting platform but keep in mind that these companies can be difficult to contact for support and might not have the features of a more reputable hosting company.
Content, upkeep & ongoing costs – $0 – $10,000+ per month
Once your website is built and live, many small businesses believe they’re done. But a stagnant website that isn’t being updated with new content will only take you so far. Having a content marketing plan to continuously publish content will help you boost your Google page ranking to capture more web traffic.
Keeping your website updated to reflect new promotions, events, deals and products is also necessary If you want to get the most out of your website visitors. While you can certainly do this updating yourself, having help to make design and content changes can give you peace of mind that you won’t accidentally break your website.
Unlike some marketing firms that don’t give any control to small business owners, we can work with you to find a website maintenance plan that works for your needs. Whether you want to fully take the reins or let us handle it all, we offer affordable website maintenance and content marketing plans for small businesses in any industry.
The bottom line: what should a small business website cost? Unfortunately, there’s not one right answer. But if you are looking for a 5-10-page website, and you don’t need a ton of custom features, we don’t think you should spend more than $500 – $1,500 for the initial website design and build. This is just a rough guideline, but most of our web design projects fall into this price range. If that sounds good, or you have more questions about our pricing, get in touch today for a free consultation about the cost of your small business website.