How Much Does It Cost to Build A Modern Website?

How Much Does It Cost to Build A Modern Website?

A modern website promotes you 24/7. None of your employees will ever be able to do that.

Plus, you don’t have to make PF contributions, allow paid leaves, or provide insurance for your website. No overhead expenses either. And of course, no fuss about working this way or that. A truly obedient, ongoing, and overachieving asset for your organization.

When you are creating a website for your business, you are hiring a salesman, a customer service executive, and a marketer, all rolled into one.

Now, when a website is saving you so much money, it is only logical that it would require suitable pay. And you should be happy to pay for the exceptional, round-the-clock services.

But how much should you pay? How much does it cost to get a modern website up and running?

Keep reading to find out.

Understanding What’s A Modern Website

When you ask, “how much does it cost to build a website?”you’d get nothing more than estimates. The cost could be under $200, around $2,000, or even over $20,000. That’s because different websites have different costs.

But here, we aren’t talking about any website. We are talking specifically about a *modern* website.

Whether you need a small business website, an online store, or a personal portfolio site, if you want it to fall into the ‘Modern’ category, it should have the following features –

  1. Focus On Visuals – Images, Graphics, Gifs, Videos
  2. Search Engine Optimized
  3. Responsive Design
  4. Flexible and Dynamic
  5. User-friendly Navigation
  6. Quick Load Times
  7. Clean Backend Coding

Now, coming to the real question…

Building A Modern Website – How Much Does It Really Cost?

Well, it depends.

On what?

On who does the website building. If you decide to make your own website, it would cost just the bare minimum plus the value of your efforts. Imagine if you were to make your own lunch. You’d have to pay only for the ingredients, right?

If you hire freelance web developers, they will charge you for their efforts too. Like your house help would charge you for cooking your meals for you. But they also bring to the table more expertise and experience.

You could also hire a website design agency. They would offer end-to-end solutions, better support, long-term aid, and even extend website maintenance and update services in the future. And because they’d be offering so much, they’d cost more too. That’s exactly like when you get a customized, subscription-based meal box.

Of course, you can also hire your own web development team as well. But be told that the fixed and variable cost of an in-house website development team and the time and effort required to build that team would be much more. Think about the expenses like this: you’d be setting up a restaurant in your house to get your meal made. Not too smart, is it?

Now, let’s move on to the costs you’d incur to get your modern website made.

Fixed Costs

No matter who you hire or what tool you use for website building, some costs will remain constant. These include the following –

Domain name

A domain name is the web address of your website. New domains cost $10 to $12 per year. But if you need a single, popular word as your domain, you might have to shell out more. Domains names like hotel.com and insurance.com were sold for millions of dollars. Unless you want something like that, you will get a domain name without breaking the bank. The cost of a domain name also varies depending on your top-level domain (.net, .edu, .com, or other country-based options) and the domain registrar you choose.

When you register a domain name, your information gets published on the ICANN WHOIS directory. If domain name owners do something illegal, the directory helps find the wrongdoers. But if you aren’t comfortable sharing your details, you can get domain privacy for $10 to $40 more each year. With domain privacy, your registrar forwards their details for publication instead of yours.

Web Hosting

To park your site on a web server, you need a hosting service provider to provide you with space. That’s called web hosting. Either you can get hosting space on private servers (called dedicated hosting, ideal for simpler, low traffic sites) or go for shared servers (called shared hosting, ideal for high traffic websites).

Shared hosting costs $2.49 – $15/month, and dedicated hosting costs go up to $80 – $730/month. Other options include VPS (virtual private server) hosting, which costs $17.99 to $84.99 per month. Under VPS, you use a shared server, but it looks like you are using a private server.

SSL Certificate

SSL certificates (secure socket layer) show Google and your website’s end users that your website is secured and encrypted. This instills trust. SSL certificates are often offered for no extra cost with web hosting. You can get free SSL certificates as well as paid options starting at $7/month.

The level of security or support you need decides the type of certificate you’d need, and thus, its cost.

Themes and Templates

There are a lot of themes and templates available in the market. No matter which platform you choose for website building, themes and templates are required to build a website. You can go for free themes (if you don’t mind simple, no-fuss, and already used on the web options). Or you can go for paid themes that cost from $20 to $200 for a little uniqueness and more variety.

The cost is a one-time fee for using the theme/template or getting it developed.

For bespoke themes and templates, you can get them custom-developed for your website. This would cost as much as the features and functionality that you want in your theme or template.

eCommerce of Blogging Functionality

If you wish to sell products online or run a blog, you’ll need eCommerce and blogging functionalities. From specific pages like the blog page, cart page, use login page, to the ability to share the blogs on social media, leave comments, accept multiple payment options, delivery and inventory management, and more, you’d need specific features.

Either these features can be added using free or paid plugins. Or you can get the required features custom-made for your website. The cost would range from anywhere between zero to $24,000 per month.

App and Plugins

Depending on what kind of website you are developing, you’d need some specific features. Like an online booking widget, a contact form, a chatbot, or something else. These features can be added using apps or plugins. Like everything else, free and paid options are available. You can also get custom plugins developed for your website.

Most websites don’t require too many of these additions or integrations. (it is not recommended either as it slows down the site.) Thus, the cost under this head remains under $100 per month.

SEO

All the money you’d spend on getting your website developed will go waste if your website doesn’t rank in SERPs. Your audience won’t find the site, and your investment in building a modern website would go waste.

Doing on-page and off-page optimizations on your own would be free. But if you hire experts, you’d have to compensate them for their services.

The cost varies depending on multiple factors, including your location, the scope of your website, the competition in your niche, and the level of expertise you require. But be prepared to shell out around $90 for search engine optimization.

Website Content

You cannot publish a website without content. It would be like publishing a book with only images and no words. Depending on how much content you need, the niche in which your website operates, your location, the required writing style, etc., the cost can go up to $5000. Having the content on your website updated or changed would require separate payments.

But if you can write your content, the cost of website content would come down to $0.

Website Builders vs. Website Designer

Now that you know the costs of different components of a modern website, it is time to discuss the final peg.

If you choose a website builder, you’d have to pay a monthly fee ($6 to $50). This includes hosting and an SSL certificate. With free website builders or free plans on any website builder, you can save even more. While you cannot actually build a website for free. The costs would be minimal, though. Thus, with website builders, you can build a website for $10 – $111 per month.

If you hire a freelance website designer to make a website for you, they’d charge between $60 to $80 per hour. The time taken would depend on the complexity of your website.

Web development agencies would charge at least $5,000 upfront payment, plus more charges and costs, taking the total cost to around $10,000. Some web development companies also offer SEO and content creation, and marketing services. This makes life simple for you.

Building A Modern Website Will Cost …

… as much or as little you want. Using a website builder is the cheapest option but requires effort on your part. Web development agencies offer complete solutions, higher expertise, and better web building. But that would set you back by $10,000. There would also be recurring costs of maintenance around $500 to $1000 per year.

Freelancers stand somewhere in the middle of this spectrum, both in terms of cost and quality of results.

Depending on your needs and the depth of your pockets, you can select any of these methods to build a modern website.

Read Other Articles About Building Websites

Misconceptions About Web Hosting That Need To Be Dispelled

In times gone by, the world of web hosting was one that was regarded as being mysterious and difficult to navigate, unless you had been provided with the necessary training. This has led to many people, especially those who are not particularly tech-savvy, to be somewhat sceptical of the importance of enlisting the help of a high-quality hosting provider. Unfortunately, it is this line of thinking which often leads to sub-par websites that, in turn, can irreparably damage a company’s reputation and branding.

In case you did not already know, we are catalyst2; formed in 2000, we have spent the last twenty-one years forging our path towards becoming one of the country’s most notorious and efficient web hosting businesses. The exposure that we have had within this rather niche industry has meant that we have the knowledge necessary to dispel the most popular misconceptions surrounding web hosting. If you would like to be privy to this, we suggest that you take a closer look at the list below.

‘All Firms Offering Web Hosting Are The Same’

If you believe that each-and-every one of the web hosting providers that you come across during your research have the same credentials, and are therefore capable of providing the same quality of service, we are here to inform you that you are sorely mistaken. This is a field that is incredibly saturated, yet each firm is entirely different in their approach to the services that they provide. If you are considering investing in this type of option, there are certain things that you need to look out for. These features can indicate whether or not they will be a good fit for your particular firm.

First-and-foremost, you should check to see if they actively publicise their server reliability and uptime. This, for those of you that weren’t aware, relates to the amount of time that their servers have remained active, without any faults or maintenance causing websites to be taken offline. If the percentage is languishing particularly low, you should take this to be a red flag, as it demonstrates that they are incapable of guaranteeing first-class performance levels regularly. As a point of reference, over the past fourteen years, catalyst2 has recorded a 99.997% uptime – this is nothing short of incredible.

A tell-tale sign of a company that takes its web hosting duties serious is the size of its catalogue of services. If you find a single available option, this indicates that they are either trying to specialise in a single area, or they simply lack the equipment and techniques necessary to evolve and grow. However, if you are presented with a vast array of services and packages, you can expect to be able to deal with total professionals that take their work incredibly seriously. Should you discover that you have the choice between, for instance, VPS servers and dedicated servers, as well as management contracts, you can be rest assured that you won’t be left with a feeling of disappointment.

‘VPS Servers Are No Different To Cloud Servers’

Those of you that have ventured into hosting in the past will be well-aware of the differences between cloud hosting, and that which involves virtual private servers. Unfortunately, the uninitiated amongst you may have heard rumours circulating which profess that these services are one and the same. Whilst there are certainly some similarities between the two, there are also numerous differences which allow them to stand apart as separate entities. Depending on the situation that you find yourself in, you may opt to go down one course of action or another.

In the case of virtual private servers, you are effectively sharing a single piece of hardware with various other websites. However, there is software installed which keeps these segregated – the benefit of this is that you are able to subsequently use bespoke programmes on your site, without having to worry about the effect that it will have on other users. Most people regard this to be a cost-effective alternative to a dedicated server, as you are able to split the maintenance costs.

As you may have already deduced, the cloud hosting option revolves around a service which is totally based online. Over the past few years, cloud-based services have seen their popularity soar, and it is not difficult to see why. These are often regarded to be of the highest quality in terms of reliability, simply due to the fact that they do not rely on a single piece of hardware. Being spread across numerous units means that downtime will be a thing of the past, were you to decide to utilise this particular service. Hopefully, you can see that though these services display some of the same traits, there are huge contrasts. Before you make a firm commitment in one direction or another, we suggest that you delve a little deeper beneath the service, and complete an in-depth comparison. – Read more

6 Reasons Your Auto Repair Business Needs a Website

Local garages and other vehicle repair companies face increasingly challenging competition from expanding national franchises and the new breed of mobile services. One of the chief reasons these competitors are making headway in the market is because they are online. With the internet now being the first place customers look to find garage services, it is those with a website that are reaping the benefits. Here, we’ll explain why your auto repair business needs a website.   

1. The internet is the customer’s first port of call

Today, anyone needing a vehicle repair, MOT or service will begin their search online. Few people use directories anymore and no-one is going to dig the local newspaper out of the recycling when they have a smartphone at their fingertips. If you don’t have a website so these customers can find you, the chances of getting new business are limited.

Yes, you can always register with an online directory, like Yell, but these provide only limited information, such as contact details and opening hours. What most people want from such directory listings is a link to your website. If it merely gives a phone number, a customer will probably look elsewhere.    

2. A website is a service in itself

People choose a garage because it offers great service. In today’s market, great service goes beyond the expertise you provide in fixing or servicing their car; it begins with your website. The modern customer wants speed and convenience in the way they deal with auto repair businesses. This means everything they need from you should be available directly from your website.

That’s not simply information about the services you offer, your opening times and how to get in touch; today, they want to be able to book a repair, MOT or service directly from your site and pay for it online when it’s finished. They also want the ability to use website tools, such as those that help them find the right tyres or other parts. Additionally, they also want your website to provide services, such as sending automated reminders when an MOT or service is due or providing useful maintenance information, like legal tyre tread depths.

Increasingly, customers want fixed prices and the ability to book and pay for things in advance. Although this obviously can’t be done when the repair needs to be investigated first, there are many instances where it can, such as replacing a bulb, fitting a new tyre, carrying out a service or MOT. If you are going to compete with national franchises and mobile repair companies, you need to offer the price transparency and booking convenience that many of their sites already do.  

Is it worth investing in a website? There are three solid reasons why having a website makes it worthwhile. First and foremost, providing the online services customers want will attract more new business. Secondly, by letting your website take care of bookings, sales and payments automatically, it can save you hours of work and enable you to carry out more repairs. Finally, a survey by business research giant, Gartner, has shown that 82% of consumers will pay more for great customer experience. A modern website provides those experiences and, as a result, you won’t need to undercut prices to keep customers happy.

3. Boost customers by building your reputation

Customers increasingly rely on the recommendations of others before choosing to use the services of any business. They’ll ask for recommendations on Facebook, visit review sites like Trustpilot and look for star ratings on social media, Google and listings sites. In addition, they’ll also look at testimonials on your website.

Obviously, plenty of good reviews will help you gain new customers and lots of bad ones will drive customers away. Not having any reviews, however, leaves potential customers completely in the dark. Some will not use you, simply because of a lack of reviews, while others will find it suspicious in the modern day that a business doesn’t ask for reviews.

A website is the starting point for using reviews to help you generate a better reputation and grow your customer base. Firstly, once you have a website, you can register for a free Google My Business account which enables customers to leave feedback and lets other users read those reviews on Google itself. In addition, if you have registered with review sites, like Trustpilot, you will be able to display the ratings on your website for all visitors to see, like this:

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And if a customer wants to read the reviews, they just have to click to see them. Social proof like this is very helpful in giving new customers the confidence to book their car in with you for the first time. 

4. Get found by more customers

In the section above, we mentioned Google My Business as a place where you can get reviews. It is, however, useful for several other reasons. When you create a free Google My Business account, your company will be listed in the Google business directory. When someone local searches for an auto repair company, your business has a good chance of appearing in the results. You may even get a place marker showing your location on Google Maps which are often used by people to find urgent repairs nearby.

What’s more, if someone makes a specific search for your company, your business details, images, opening times and customer reviews will be displayed on the right side of – Read more

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