How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Website?

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Your website might be your organization’s most important investment. Websites serve as the face of your brand and organize information and products to meet the needs of customers. On top of doing regular maintenance, creating fresh content and making ongoing optimizations, marketers need to determine when it’s time to consider a website rebuild or start fresh.

The cost to develop a website vs. investing in a website refresh is a key short-term and long-term business decision.

Here’s what to know …

Website Building Costs Vary Widely

The average cost to build a new website from scratch varies from $12,000 to $150,000. That’s a huge range, but it reflects the vastly different needs of small businesses, growing ecommerce brands and enterprise-scale organizations.

Perhaps the most significant cost associated with a new site is who builds it. Working with an experienced web design and development company ensures a high-quality site with the features you need on a reliable platform. It also means you’ll get your money’s worth.

Like any product, there’s a wide range of website offerings to choose from. The total cost varies based on several factors, including:

Software – DIY website builders like Squarespace and Wix offer a DIY website solution but lack the custom website features that larger organizations are looking for. Depending on your industry or market, expect to pay anywhere between $150 to $1,500 per month for a platform subscription and various plugin or application fees (see below).

Domain registration – Plan on renewing your domain registration as a part of your website project – your domain will cost $20-50 per year. Nothing to sweat here!

Hosting – Where is your site going to live? Webhosting usually costs $5-100 a month, although some services are considerably more expensive. In most cases, inexpensive plans cover up to 15,000 site sessions per month, and you won’t be paying big bucks until you’re over 250,000 sessions per month.

Plugins – Also known as apps or add-ons, plugins are pre-packed bits of code that provide essential functions as a part of your website, such as inventory management or SEO. These typically cost between $5-50 per month, although many have dynamic pricing structures based on site traffic or conversions.

Other fees – If your business is an ecommerce or service-based brand that uses its website to accept online payments, you’re probably familiar with transaction fees. These fees are usually just a few cents per transaction, but they’re additional costs on top of credit card processing fees. Make sure you crunch the numbers to see which platforms offer the most competitive rates and fee structures.

Related: Why Website Development and SEO Go Hand-in-Hand

Why Do Websites Cost So Much?

Even if a strong and reliable digital presence is crucial for your business, money is still money. Website building costs often consume a fair-sized chunk of your marketing budget, and those funds could be used to support other projects. Building an effective, durable website that delivers real value requires real investment, just like any part of your business. Cost vary based on features, existing content optimizations, site size, new content, and many other variables.

What About a Website Rebuild or a Website Refresh?

In some cases, a website refresh or rebuild may serve as a more cost-effective way to address short-term needs until the organization is ready to go big with brand new site.

There are some subtle but important differences between a website rebuild and refresh worth noting …

A website refresh will focus on the aesthetic elements of a site, giving brands the opportunity to improve the look and feel of their website. This is an excellent option after a comprehensive rebranding or to support a new product campaign.

After a website refresh, your site will look different and perhaps have new, updated copy, but it will do the exact same thing it has always done.

A website rebuild will focus on the bones of your site. This may include changing underlying site structures, recategorizing a substantial number of pages, and adjusting the functionality of core pages. Rebuilds address how websites function. In most cases, rebuilds will retain the same website platform (WordPress, etc.), though they may involve replatforming or migrating a website, as well.

Technical SEO is the most common reason to rebuild rather than refresh, but there are other factors, too, like growth. Brands often rebuild their sites to improve SEO performance in new markets or to expand their existing product or service offerings.

How Much Does It Cost to Rebuild a Website? Or Refresh?

Website rebuild costs vary by the size of the site, the desired functionality, the timeline and more. We provide detailed, upfront estimates for every website rebuild project so our clients know exactly what they’re getting, who they’ll work with and what the deliverable will be.

Website refreshes are less expensive and typically deploy faster than a rebuild. You’ll also get a personalized estimate and exceptional customer support throughout the refresh process.

Not sure which is the right direction for your organization? We can help! Let Oneupweb evaluate your current site, needs and where your company is headed, and we’ll prepare a detailed road map to get where you want to go.

Website Return on Investment

Website ROI statistics can be challenging to unpack because different organizations, industries and consumers use websites differently. An ecommerce company can measure a new website’s return on investment by tracking sales increases, average revenue per transaction or other key performance indicators. For service brands, tracking the value of form submissions or site traffic gets slightly fuzzy.

These digital marketing ROI benchmarks may help you gauge success:

  • An ROI of 5:1 is considered rock solid in digital marketing. That’s $5 in revenue for every $1 spent on marketing.
  • Websites built with sound SEO best practices typically offer an ROI of 22:1.
  • Bounce rate increases by 32% when page load speed goes from one to three seconds – fast websites are worth every penny!

5 Questions to Ask Your Team Before Building a New Website

Not sure if you’re ready to make the switch? Even if clients are dead set on a new website, we often start the process by posing a few important questions for their team to consider.

  1. What problems or limitations on my current site will the new website need to solve?
  2. How would a successful new website impact business in the next 1-3 years?
  3. What marketing or operational projects are we sacrificing to build the new website?
  4. How will the new website inform or reinforce our brand as a whole?
  5. Do we have the resources in-house to maximize the value of the new site in the future or will we need monthly/quarterly help?

Our digital strategists can facilitate that discussion and help you make the right decision – even if that means holding off on a website until your organization is ready.

Let’s Build Something Together

One of the most important decisions of any project is who you’ll work with. For nearly 30 years, Oneupweb has helped organizations of all sizes in dozens of industries grow their digital footprint effectively. We bring a fully integrated team of developers, designers, SEOs and media production experts to the project, plus the post-launch materials that position your team to keep the momentum going. Ready to get started? Get in touch or call 231-922-9977 today!

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