The one question on everyone’s minds when starting a small business is “how much will [insert item/service here] cost?” Unlike big businesses, small businesses have a smaller, stricter budget to follow. The trick is how to use this budget to make yourself known and the surefire way to do this is creating a website. Like everything else with your small business, websites come at a price, which varies depending on the type of website you want and what you want on it. Below are the answers to some common questions about website costs for small businesses and what to expect when it’s time to pay up.

How much should my small business website cost?

When it comes to building a small business website, you have different options available, all of which have different price points. If you’re technologically savvy and are familiar with coding, you can build the website yourself from scratch. If building from scratch isn’t for you, consider using a DIY website builder such as Weebly, which has a variety of templates available and allows you to build a workable website with clicks and drags. There’s also the route of hiring a professional. Which way you choose will be a determining factor in your online ranking success. For a DIY website, you can spend anywhere from $0 – $200 per year. If you hire a professional or company, a custom built website can cost anywhere from $100 – $10,000+,” depending on your specific technical needs.

What will I get for my money?

If you choose to build the website yourself or hire a professional website builder, here’s what you can expect your website to have with the budget you have. John Schneble the president of steelteal Marketing, calls this The Rule of Four:

  • Under $1,000: For this cost, you’ll normally have one person designing and developing the website. They’re often a simple micro-site or select few pages with basic contact information and details about a business’ products and services. You’ll receive the bare minimum in customization and input.
  • $1,000-$2,5000: More customization happens at this price point. You should [also] expect strategic insight, as well as some input on information architecture and basic search engine optimization and social media integrations.
  • $2,5000-$5,000: This is often the ideal range for most small business websites. At this price point, you should [expect] comprehensive, thoughtful input on the design and functionality (both of which should support your business goals, search optimization, content marketing guidance and social media integration).
  • Over $5,000: This price range is typically for larger websites and/or those with e-commerce functionality, both of which require a larger time investment from a design and development perspective.

What is the difference between one-time and monthly pricing?

When it comes to the price you have to pay the company/person designing your website, the two most common pricing plans are a one-time cost for the whole project and a monthly subscription cost. Which plan you go with depends on your current budget, what the company or person prefers, and what goes on the website.

A monthly subscription website package is typically all inclusive (design, development, hosting, security and regular updates) and you know what you’ll pay every month with no hidden costs ever.

While one-time pricing websites typically only cover the design and development fees. You’ll need to find and buy your own website hosting (usually at the recommendation of the design company), and maintenance, security and updates are all additional costs.

No matter which route you choose when creating your small business’s website, the ultimate goal is the same: to make your business well-known. Website creation is an excellent use of your budget and resources.

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