Costs

When you are first thinking about a website or are considering a re-vamp of an existing website, you would like an estimated figure for the costs that might be involved.

What do you want the website to do?

For a website, you need to consider what you want the website to do and what information – text, images, databases, computer skills etc. that you have available already to bring to the process of putting it all together.

What makes a website cheaper?

Having a clear idea of what you want your website to do now and in the future.

Allowing good time for the design and development process.

A clear structure

Having a clear structure of the way the website will be put together. What the different sections might be, what information is to be included in each section. This is true even if there are only two or three sections. This is often referred to as the website ‘architecture’.

Text and words ready

Having the text for each section and each page clearly set out – even if it will later change. Writing for a website is different for writing in a brochure – people read things very differently on a website. But having it written down gives the web-developer a better means of picturing the whole structure while creating design ideas.

Pictures

Having images ready in a digital format – not necessarily the final images but at least versions that show what will be there. You might take your own product photos for now but have booked a professional photographer for the final versions.

Before taking final pictures for your website whether taking the pictures yourself or using a photographer to take pictures for you, you will save a lot of time, and potentially save a lot of money, if you get the photographer to talk directly with your chosen web-developer first. It isn’t just about the content of the shots, it’s how they are going to be used on the website that can dictate the backgrounds, colours, sizes, framing etc.

OK – so what’s the bottom line?

Basic Website Components and Costs

On average, the following figures can be applied to estimating the cost of a small business website :

  • Domain Name – €10 to €30/year
  • Hosting –€10 to €100 a year (depending on traffic and hosting services)
  • Web Planning, Design and Development Time – 60 hours and up
  • Continued Website Maintenance – €500 a year and up (depending on number/type of updates required)
  • Marketing Your Website Online (SEO) – €750 a month and up

Webspace or hosting?

You will need some webspace to ‘host’ your website pages. You will want email addresses that tie in with the web address. You will want a domain name or ‘web address’ for your website.

Allow between 80€ and 120€ per year for that. You can get it more cheaply but a cheap price means a cheap service. Paying a good price means a good service: unlimited downloads for your visitors – the website doesn’t disappear half way through the month, your domain name is automatically renewed having been registered in your name not the name of the cheap hosting provider.

Design

The design process is at the heart of the whole thing of course. A good web-developer will look at your needs, look at your content (text, images etc), consider your potential audience. Only then should there be any design work. This is in fact the part that (should) take the most time if it’s done properly.

You can help your web-developer by looking at sites on the web and make a note of those that you like and those that you don’t like. Cut and paste the website’s address from the address bar of your browser – paste it into a text editor or into Word and add some notes about why you like it or why you don’t like it.

Once that part is done well, then putting it all together takes relatively little time.

A simple brochure website, with all the content prepared beforehand should cost between €400 and €600 plus costs.

What really adds to the time is messing about with images and getting them right for a webpage. So if there are a lot of images not taken by a professional photographer, expect this to be more.

More complex websites can cost anything from €1,000 to much more. It all depends on what you want.

Maintenance

Can you update it yourself or would you prefer a maintenance contract? You should think hard about this as while it might appear cheaper to maintain your site in house unless you have the necessary staff with the necessary skills to professionally maintain your site you could end up with an out of date presence or worse loose the site completely. Plan to spend €500 a year and up (depending on number/type of updates required).

Please review our Before you begin document which explains about Web site preparation.