Your website is one of the most crucial elements in establishing credibility, expertise and making a good first impression. Get it right and you’re a step ahead of your competition… get it wrong and you’re climbing an uphill battle to compete in your city and industry.
1. How Does Web Design into the Cost of Web Development
The amount of effort that goes into the web design when trying to figure the average cost of website design for small business plays a huge role in the final cost of the project. Anyone that has designed anything can tell you that a design typically doesn’t end you just run out of time. You have pre-designed templates, custom designed from scratch or super high-end web design tailored very specifically for the client. All 3 can and will produce beautiful websites yet all have a different approach.
Pre-designed WordPress theme: There are many very nice looking WordPress templates available and we can use them as a way to keep hours down. We will help you pick one out then implement the template. Even though the site would be using a template we can still make simple changes to the design to make sure that it matches your branding.
Custom Design: We will go through a number of steps to best understand your business, your goals and your general taste in design. Our web designs are very conversion oriented. We take great care to make sure that our designs are visually pleasing as well as well thought out to give us the best chance to gain more customers for our clients.
High-end Web Design: This approach will be similar to the above except we plan on spending more time on every last detail of the design. Custom icons, typography, and images are all scrutinized for web design perfection. Website design pricing will be largest on this option, of course.
2. How Does Interior Page Design Approach Affect Website Costs ?
There are two different kinds of interior pages that we typically come across in our web design projects. The first is content that is just nicely formatted and the second are interior pages that require a lot of design time. The difference between the two comes down to our time spent and affects our WordPress website design pricing.
Basic Interior Page Design: A page that just requires an image or two and some nicely formatted text requires significantly less time spent than the design and layout you may see on a home page of a website. These pages are fine for pages such as Testimonial or possibly Bio Pages.
Custom Designed Interior Pages: We would recommend having more of a budget for very important pages like your main services pages for instance. Although just a basic layout will still look great, with the additional budget for design time we can put in calls-to-action, parallax background, and interactive elements to make the page more visually interesting. This extra cost could be well worth it to increase the chances that your website visitors will convert.
3. Website Pricing Calculator
Below the calculator section you can read in-depth information regarding all aspects of a web design that have an affect on pricing.
3.1. Web Hosting Costs
We do not offer website hosting to our clients. Rather, we help create the relationship with a vendor and you. We feel it is important for you to have your own website host and think it is shifty for web design companies to charge for hosting. There are many different types of web hosting out there. At a minimum, a shared hosting account that plays well with WordPress is needed. You can move up from basic packages to better hosting to help with speed and bandwidth if you so choose. Our favorite affordable web host is WP Engine.
From $35 / month
3.2. Domain Name Prices
We suggest using a company like Godaddy to purchase your domain name. Even if you aren’t ready to build your website now you should be securing a domain name as soon as possible. It is a lot harder than you would think to get the domain name you desire. If SEO is important to you it may be in your best interest to buy a domain name that includes your primary keyword. Even if Google says that they do not want keyword stuffing domain names to work, if you look at a typical search result page you will see that the practice still does work.
From $15 / year
3.3. SSL Certificates
If you are going to be having an eCommerce enabled website and you want your customers to be checking out directly on your website then you will be needing an SSL certificate. This will make sure that the data being sent from the website to the web host will be encrypted making transactions secure.
Another reason you may want to consider getting an SSL certificate is for SEO purposes. Google is pushing very hard to make the web more secure and has even stated that they will be giving some preference to https enabled websites. You can read more about their stance on this here.
From $100 / Year
3.4. WordPress Themes
Even if we are doing a custom WordPress design a WordPress theme will be utilized. These themes generally cost around $60-$70 for a license. It is important that this theme is in your name to allow for future updates. If you move on to another developer this will make sure that you have the access you need to keep things updated.
As you may already know, there are TONS of free WordPress themes out there. Although there may be many that are coded well, in our experience it is best to pay for a premium theme like the top sellers on Themeforest.net. The theme authors that are making money from their themes tend to put a lot more care into their products, provide better support and are generally an all-around better product than the free themes out there.
3.5. Premium WordPress Plugins
Most WordPress plugins that we use to build a website are free or we have a developers license for them. Some additional plugins may be needed if very specific functionality is needed. A few examples would be a customized calendar plugin or a plugin that ties into the FedEx shipping database for real-time shipping quotes.
Again – Buying plugins that have a large user base at a premium generally result in a better product. We will never buy a plugin before checking with our clients. These plugins are also best to have in our client’s name for future use
Around $20 each
3.6. Website Security and Backups
If desired we will also help set up a web security and backup system/relationship with a company like Vaultpress (hard cost not included and to be handled directly with the vendor). This will keep your website backed up on a daily basis and also monitor for suspicious code and vulnerabilities. We strongly recommend doing this as WordPress websites can be a target for hackers. VaultPress currently offers two plans: Basic and Premium. We would recommend the Premium plan, which is what we have as it offers the most comprehensive backup, security and support.
From $10 / Month
3.7. Ongoing Maintanenece
After a project is complete you may want to hire us for additional work, additions or maintenance. Our hourly rate is a very competitive $50/hr. All of our team members run a timer and we do not round our time. We will always provide a rough estimate for how long your tasks may take so there will be no surprises.
$ 50 per Hour
3.8. How much does it cost to build a website for a small business ?
A small business website will cost you around $2,000 to $5,000 depending on the project requirements. This is a safe range for a typical 5 to 20 page website with mostly text and image-based content (little special functionality).
3.9. How much does a high-end website cost?
Typically starts at $10,000.
Pricing varies depending on specs. As most factors relating to the cost of a web design project are based around labor and time spent, pricing can skyrocket quickly. The more time and detail that goes into a project and the more details the more money you should plan on spending.
4. The 6 Stages Of A Web Design Project
4.1. The Proposal
Every web design project boils down to what you want to achieve with your site. If it’s just a brochure website where you’re just showcasing products or services then it doesn’t need to be a big or arduous process. Whereas, if your website is part of your key service offering and it’s a platform you’re building online, then it can be a very big project, so it does really depend on what you’re trying to achieve.
The biggest key to a successful web design is to ensure that you have a detailed spec and a really good brief so that any web agency you work with will understand exactly what it is you want. To make sure your project is completed as quickly as possible, you should communicate clearly what the key performance indicators are so that your web agency can direct their resources towards the most important parts of the project.
4.2. Wireframe & Site Structure
Wireframes help you to understand the content that will be on that page, the structure, the user flow and how the site is going to work without any of the glossy finishes of a design.
4.3. Look & Feel
This is personal to a business or a brand and that’s why it’s important that any web agency you work with really understands your brand values. Without appreciating these core tenets of your business, the agency may get the design all wrong or you may end up spending a lot of money on exploratory avenues that have nothing to do with what you initially wanted to achieve.
There aren’t any strict rules as to how a website should look and feel, but ensuring a great user experience and a design that is true to your brand guidelines are two important jumping off points.
The development stage involves your web agency taking a design and getting it to work. There are two types of developers: Front-end developers and Back-end developers.
Front-end developers deal with what the user will see, whilst Back-end developers are responsible for solving any and all issues behind the scene, working on your servers and the various plugins and platforms that you are using.
There are three types of testing:
The first is on-page testing, which checks whether a feature that has been specced, designed and developed actually works.
The second is user accessibility testing, which involves making sure everything that needs to be is accessible to the user and works perfectly.
The final type of testing is improving. This is an ongoing test involving you’re yourself and the web agency that asks if something can be done in a better way: Can a certain element be moved to make it work more effectively, encourage more engagement and help people better understand what they are doing?
The final stage is launching your website. It’s really important to make sure that you’ve achieved all the goals laid out in your specification, but it is also important to not be over precious about it being 100% perfect. Your website will never be perfect and will always have room to improve as technology marches forward. If you withhold on launching your site for too long, then you could end up doing serious damage to your brand.