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How Much Should a Website Really Cost?

by | Aug 11, 2015 | customer centric web design | 0 comments

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Want to know how much a website should cost, but can’t find a straight answer online?

Perhaps you need to optimise your site for mobile use with a responsive, customer-centric design to cover all bases. Maybe your company is undergoing a rebrand, or your current website just isn’t generating you enough leads and sales and you feel you’d benefit from a more inbound approach.

But wherever you look, you get a different answer – or only half an answer – about the price.

As a web designer myself, I can understand your frustrations, especially if you’re a small business with a tight budget and need to know exactly how much of an investment you’re going to make.

Which is why I’ve put together the following guide to give you a better idea of how much a website should really cost.

The average cost of a website

Let’s get right down to business, shall we?

A professional business website could cost you anything between £5k and £20k – I know, that’s a huge margin, and I’m going to explain why in a minute.

But first, I’d say the average you can expect to pay for a good website with a decent amount of features and functionality, is around £10k.

I’m going to break this down a bit more for you.

Determining your costs

The cost of a website will really come down to the size of the project, the technical specifications and features, and the amount of research and development it takes beforehand.

Most web design companies charge per day, and the average daily cost is around £450 – £500. So, if your website takes a month to complete, that’s easily £9,000 – £10,000.

Obviously, if the designer had a good head-start on the project, with most of the research already done for them – or if you had a small team working on the design – the cost would be less.

What else can affect cost?

There are so many factors that can affect the cost of your web design – for example, if you want a customer-centric design, there may be a lot of extra research on buyer personas.

Your website should not only be as customer-centric as possible, but also have clear flow paths that show potential customers where to go throughout their buyer’s journey, so that they can always find the right information, at the right time.

You may already have a good idea of what you want from your new site, but if one or two of your features are particularly tricky, or you decide you wanted extra features, this may mean the project runs over budget and becomes more expensive.

To give you the best idea of cost and time involved, I’d recommend sitting down with your designer and discussing all of the ideas you have, to first determine what is possible, and which features may cost you extra.

Ways to save on budget

Budget already getting out of hand? There are ways you can save your designer some time, (and you, money).

It’s a good idea to have as much of your research together for the designer as possible, so that less time goes into the research and development stage of the project.

Think of your website as a big jigsaw puzzle, with all your pieces having to fit together as smoothly as possible. You should at least have a good idea of the content your website will have, or even better, have it already written.

This is because it’s much more effective to design the website around your content, rather than having to squeeze your content around the website – occasionally, I’ve even had to rework previous designs because the client waited until afterwards to write their content, and it just didn’t work well.

Testing and optimising

Not all of my clients like to hear this part, but building a website is only half the battle – you have to keep testing and optimising in order to see which approach works best; this is called A/B testing.

Software such as Hubspot allows you to monitor and analyse the behaviour of your website visitors, so you can see how well they are responding to various elements and words or phrases on your website.

A/B testing and analysing is vitally important for inbound, and you need to make sure your CTAs, offers, and phrasing, are getting you the best results.

In most cases, doing this will cost you more time and money, but it will ensure you’re getting the most value out of your new web design.

Conclusion

There are so many different factors that can affect the cost of a website, and finding a straightforward cost online can be a real headache. Costs really come down to the size of the project, the technical specifications and features you want, and the amount of research and development the designer has to do beforehand.

A good idea is to sit down with your designer beforehand and discuss what you really want from the website, and which features are possible without costing you extra money. You can also save money by getting as much of your research together as possible (buyer personas, analytics, etc.) for the designer. You should have a clear idea of your content, or even have it written before the design gets underway.

Last but not least, it’s important to run A/B tests once your website is complete, to see what is working and what isn’t – this will help you get the most value out of your new website.

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