How Much Does a Website cost? - Good Question. Below, the owner of a CT Web design company answers the question asked most often:

So first, let's set up some ground rules. To start with, there are really two types of Website builders and customers. There are those who need and produce 1) commodity Websites, and those who need 2) the Website to produce actual leads, a return on the investment, and a relationship with someone who can get them down the road. There is a distinct difference between amateur websites built by "Fred in the Shed", and the work of a professional development team. If you don't see the value in hiring a firm, then you can stop now. GoDaddy is the place for you.

There’s a relationship between a Web Designer and a client that develops whereby each of the parties learns what is important to each other, what the specific goals of the project are, and what are the realistic expectations once the site launches. How will the site be marketed? What can you expect in terms of market penetration? Who is handling the ongoing blogging and social media? What does success look like?

If you are looking for a commodity Website from a design template, or a quick do it yourself scenario, then you can expect to pay under a thousand dollars, and you should be pretty happy. There's not a lot to it, and if you don't need ongoing support or help, soemthing like this might be right for you. For everyone else, you are probably still wondering How Much Does a Website Cost?

There are a lot of variables here. Who is hosting the site? Who is writing the content? etc., etc.,. Let's table these for a while and focus on just the site development.

The beginner Website. Somewhere between $1,200.00 and $2,500.00
Although you can spend more or less, I don't recommend it. First, there is a definite correlation between the quality of work and a decreasing price.  Anyone who charges more may have there own best interest at heart. What can you expect from a beginner Website? Typically, 5 to 7 pages; a brochure site with limited functionality where prospects and customers can review your products and services. These days, most web developers will install Google Analytics at no charge and show you how to read them. 

The Custom Website. Somewhere between $2,500.00 and $10,000.00 
At this price point, you will end up with a Website that is custom-tailored to meet your marketing needs as well as landing pages, downloads, and client interactvity. Custom art design and mid-level functionality will be included. In additon, many of these sites include a CMS (Content Management System) that will allow you maintain your own content and messaging. Typically, at this price point, your developer will also include some basic Search Engine Optimization, and make sure that your Website shows up on different devices such as smartphones and tablets.

Custom Business Solutions. Somewhere between $10,000.00 and $100,000.00 +
These highly complex websites include custom functionality that you are not going to find out of the box. Web application development for custom solutions is daunting for most Web developers, so there are a limited number of companies that can perform well in this arena. Typically, to get started, there is a specifications phase that outlines how the system will work, and what it will look like. This way, everyone is on the same page before programming begins. If your developer shys away from or doesn't offer a specifications phase, run. These types of applications such as e-commerce, membership sites, client portals, and other custom applications can be complex, and require an extreme investment in research, development and implementation so the entire Website experince is seamless. A word of caution: MAKE SURE that your developer of choice can demostrate success with similar projects. Otherwise, it may be time to look for another service provider.

And remember the things I told you we would table? Well here's a list that can add cost/time to your project.

The Client - Sorry, but it's time to look in the mirror. Are you picky? Disorganized? Need constant reassurance? Slow to pay? A good Web developer knows how to spot these traits, and will build something into the cost of the project to protect themselves.

Technical Details -  Who is hosting the site and email? Is it some 3rd party hosting company with tech support in a non english speaking country? Is the developer goign to wait on hold for hours? Who is going to pay for the developers time?

Marketing - How much help will you need? Do you need Search Engine Optimization? One time? Ongoing? What about landing pages, offers, video, and full inbound platforms such as Hubspot or Optify?

Although there are a lot of unkowns with each specifc project, and everyones goals are slightly different, working with a firm that can help strategize and then implement exactly what you need. This goes a long way to ensuring success for your Web design project.

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