How Much Should You Spend On a New Website? - A Guide to Wise Web Spending

March 14, 2024
Daniel Burt
Web Development Company UK - Web Choice

Virtually every business in 2024 can benefit from some form of online presence, but one of the most frequently asked questions that Web Companies encounter is; "How much cash should I spend on a new website?"

Whilst there’s no exact figure we can give that will answer that question once and for all, in this blog we’ll help you make the most of the budget you have to spend, and give you some key advice about which areas of web marketing you should focus on.

An Overview of Website Development Costs

There are five main areas to focus on, and answering some of these initial questions will really help you manage your spending from an early stage:

The Platform

The cost of building a website is somewhat dictated by the platform that is chosen to build it on. Wordpress, for example, is easy and relatively quick to develop, but it does have fairly drastic limitations, so it therefore wouldn’t be suitable for a large e-commerce site that has bespoke features.

The Design

The type of business you run will likely influence the design of your site. If, for example, you are an electrician, you can likely choose an ‘off-the-shelf’ template-style portfolio website and then just change the images, copy, and details to suit your needs. This will hugely cut down on your costs. But if you’ve got a prestige brand and/or offer a high-value service, it’s more likely that you’ll need to design the look and layout of your site from scratch, which will, of course, be much more expensive.

The Tech

The more features and functionalities your sire requires, the higher the cost for its development. If you need portals, blogs, apps, etc., development will be much more expensive and take longer.

The Development

Hiring a specialist web development company to build you a site will cost considerably more than using a DIY platform such as Squarespace, but that extra cost will grant you significant benefits.

The Maintenance

Depending on the size and nature of your site, there will likely be costs associated with maintaining and updating it. There are different models for these costs and some web development companies offer packages that have all-inclusive update and maintenance support.

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Getting Into The Detail of Web Development Costs

Here are some price estimates of the major types of websites built by web development companies (these costs are very rough estimates, the exact spec of each job will alter costs significantly):

  • Basic Info-based Website: £750 - £2500+
  • Small-scale Business Website: £5,000 - £10,000+
  • Medium-sized E-commerce Website: £10,000 - £30,000+
  • Extensive Corporate Website: £25,000 - £100,000+
  • Bespoke Web App £50,000+

Before You Start To Build Your Website

Now that you’ve got a basic idea of costs, here’s a list of the key considerations you should begin to think about before you hire a web developer to build your site. Some of these points will impact price, and you can help steer your decision-making at this early stage:

The User Experience: Always aim to design a site that offers the best possible user experience. This will take time and cost more, but it’s money well spent and can help to distinguish your site from competitors.

Search Engine Optimisation: (SEO): Optimising your site for the major search engines can really help to get it seen by new customers. Set yourself a budget and devise an SEO plan that can be scaled.

Mobile Friendly: A mobile-friendly site is essential. More and more people access the internet from a smartphone and so your site should perform well on all mobile devices.

Security + Compliance: Your website should be safe to use. GDPR compliance governs the use and storage of user data, so familiarise yourself with the implications of GDPR for your site.

The Future:Your website should be able to adapt and grow as your needs change. If you anticipate a significant change in your needs, choose a platform that can offer a high degree of scalability.

Never go for the cheapest quote purely on the basis of cost alone. Factor in the above considerations and ensure that your website is ‘best in class’. Give your customers a reason to use your site rather than a competitor.

Web Costings FAQs

Can I spend virtually no money & still get a decent website ?

There are some free services that advertise ‘free sites’, but they will be severely limited in terms of what you can do with them. You’ll be locked into their platform and will have to pay recurrent fees for hosting, etc. If you need a professional site that looks good, you’ll need to hire a web development company.

Should I choose a web design freelancer, or a fully-fledged web development company?

Hiring a freelancer can be cheaper than a full-service web development agency, and this might be a viable option if you have a small portfolio site. However, a full-service web development agency will be able to offer many more services including branding, marketing, and advanced web functionality.

How long does it take to build the average website?

The timescale for building a site will vary significantly depending on the brief. If you have a medium-sized e-commerce site then it will likely take 3-4 months to complete, whereas a portfolio site might only take a couple of weeks.

How about maintenance and updates in the future?

With a web design agency you’ll likely be offered a package that includes future updates and maintenance. This is one area where it also pays to choose a web design company rather than an individual freelancer as they can be more unreliable over time.

Should I build a site myself using a beginner-friendly web builder platform?

Website builders, such as Duda, Squarespace, and WordPress, offer the ability for someone with limited web experience to actually build a site themselves. While they can be suitable for hobbyists and very small portfolio sites, they are generally not recommended as they tend to result in generic looking template sites that are off-putting to clients. They also have limited technical capabilities.

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