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How much does a website cost in 2019? The definitive guide

Elena Alston
by Elena Alston
Published on 9 May, 2018

Banner with the words how much does a website cost in 2019 and a rocket flying out of a desktop screen

This blog post was originally written in May 2018. We updated it for content and formatting in March of 2019 to ensure that we were providing you with accurate information regarding the costs of a building a website for your small business.

You’ve just launched your business. Among the new concerns that come with a new venture, you may be wondering:

Should I get a website for my business?

Or, perhaps you already have a website for your business, but are worried that it’s a bit outdated. Maybe you’re considering new options to get better results when it comes to attracting customers.

Either way, if you’re looking to price out building a website for your small business, we’ll lay out everything you need know about the cost of building a website for a small business in this guide

Part of what makes compiling a list like this is that there are quite a few options available to you. That’s why we’ve compiled a comprehensive breakdown of the different approaches and their (respective) costs.

No matter your price range, if want to know the average cost of a website in 2019, you’ve come to the right place.

Table of contents:

    1. How much does it cost to build a website?
    2. DIY: Building your own website
    3. Custom made website solutions
    4. A breakdown of other costs
    5. Website design and hosting for small businesses from UENI

How much does it cost to build a website?

It might be better to think of this question like this: “How much should a website cost ?”

Assuming you don’t build yours yourself, the average cost of a website for a small business, according to web developers, is between £2,000 to £8,000.

Keep in mind this is just an estimate for a simple website with very limited functionality. Moreover, this is roughly the cost of just building the website – it doesn’t account for the cost of maintenance or any other subscription fees you’ll be paying for, like hosting.

One reason it’s difficult to specify the cost of a website is that there are so many different types to choose from: you’ve got basic one-page websites, E-Commerce focused businesses, database-driven sites, and so on.

We’ll take a look at all the website features that matter for small local businesses, so you can approximate what you’d spend to have a bespoke website built for you.

infographics detailing the cost for a website

Building your own website (DIY)

Building your own website is a good way to cut down on costs.

With all the different web-building platforms available today, you don’t need to be particularly tech-savvy to build a website all on your own. You don’t have to code, or manage hosting, or even know what a responsive web design is.

Just follow these steps:

  • Step 1: Choose your website builder – Wix and Weebly are popular and it’s free to get started.
  • Step 2: Choose your domain (though to get a custom domain, you’ll need to pay for a subscription)
  • Step 3: Pick a template that you like from the available options
  • Step 4: Select images, customise the layout, and add the content (writing the descriptions of your services, your contact information, etc.)

This process is technically free. But, a lthough you’ll get your website, you won’t necessarily get the maintenance your website will need to perform in the long-term .

Also, be aware: just because you have a website, doesn’t mean your customers can see you!

To get your business in front of customers, you need to plant more than just one seed. Your website is where it starts, but you should also create profiles for your business on social media (such as Facebook), search engines (such as Google and Google Maps), and on directories. Each of these gives your business more credibility and visibility, meaning it’s easy for customers to find you and to believe you’re a legitimate business.

Website Builders

Wix

Wix is one of the most popular drag-and-drop website builders out there, and for good reason: their editor is easy to use and very powerful. The problem with Wix however, is that just building an attractive website isn’t enough to start attracting customers. You need to incorporate strategies such as SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) to ensure the right keywords, the correct sizing of images, and other technical aspects of your website are all in place to ensure it ranks on the first page of Google and other search engines. And how Google evaluates websites to select which ones appear in the first page of results is always changing, so regular updates are a must.

For a fully-functional business website, Wix’s prices range from £6 per month and upward , just for the creation of the page.

WordPress

Although the basic WordPress package is also free, it will demand more technical know-how than Wix when it comes to really getting the most out of your website. Plus, you’ll have to pay for the web-hosting yourself, which can cost up to £2,500 a month, depending on your business’s needs. WordPress offers business owners a short-term solution , but it’s not a good option for businesses without a large budget to spend on developing and managing their website.

Squarespace

You need to enrol in a paid subscription to use and access Squarespace, but you do get a free trial for 14 days. That said, their templates are stunning, and their editor allows you quite a bit of freedom.

The Costs of operating your website on SquareSpace range from £10 to 40 a month, depending on the features you choose (if you need an online store or a professional email account, for example).

Many SquareSpace users tout the nice-looking templates available on SquareSpace. Indeed, the options available on SquareSpace are aesthetically focused and they do look very slick and appealing. But once you begin to customise the template of your choice, you may run into problems. You really need a professional to ensure the layout is optimised for all devices (mobile phones as well as computers) and that it’s easy to navigate.

Shopify

Shopify is one of the most popular e-commerce website builders out there thanks to the ease with which small business owners can set up an “online shop” for somewhere between £30 to £300 a month. If you’re looking to sell and ship products online, this is definitely a good option with reasonable costs.

Sitebuilder.com

Like Squarespace, Sitebuilder has loads of quality templates to access and interesting e-commerce features, but again, you have to pay for anything between £30 to £300 a month. Again, the same issues apply: a lack of the “whole-package” should be a turnoff for small business owners.

Custom-made website solutions

Now that you know more about the different options available to build your own website, let’s take a look at the various custom-made website solutions that exist for professionals.

Like with every purchase, you need to be clear about your needs before making a final decision. Make sure you keep an eye on these three things before moving ahead with a website for your business:

    • The type of content you’re planning to publish

Are you looking to only list your services and prices, to regularly publish blog articles, tutorials or contests, or to share media content such as pictures, videos or slide desk?

    • The overall layout of your website

How much content will be hosted on your website, and how will you structure it to be as clear as possible?

    • The role you’re willing to play

Are you planning to get involved during the conception phase or would you rather have someone else help you with it?

Once you’ve answered these questions, it’ll be easier to decide which website solution is best suited to your professional activity. Here’s a few examples to help you make a decision.

Basic Websites

Basic websites are one-page landing sites that serve a couple of primary functions for the benefit of the user. They’re useful for small businesses who just want to display the essential info about their business, such as ‘About Us’ descriptions, contact info, opening hours and Google Maps locations.

Again, you can build your own, pay a freelancer to design and create one for you, or even hire an agency to do the heavy lifting, but even a basic website won’t come cheap. Even though you’re going for the basic features, you can expect to pay anything between £200-700 . These basic websites give a stripped back presence but they do exactly what they say on the tin. And a good, solid website – even if it’s basic – is far more beneficial than no website at all. Besides, if you’ve no need to update your content regularly, they’re ideal.

Small Business Websites

Specially designated websites for small businesses are more advanced than your basic pages. They are informational websites with employee bios, downloadable content and store locators. They generally consist of a few pages and are feature-rich, integrating factors like Social Media, Google Maps, Google Analytics, so these websites should be more mobile responsive than basic sites.

These can be done by freelance web developers or actual website builders. Although perching on the more expensive spectrum, hiring a freelance developer to build your website for you does offer many benefits, like you being able to have a say on the creation and visual image of your brand.

If you include all the relevant costs, you can be looking at anything between £1,000-£2,000 , but more if you hire a developer to do the job for you.

E-commerce Websites

Besides incorporating all the features of a small business website, E-commerce websites are all about the shopping features for customers. This means integrating an order management system, shopping basket features, a login functionality, delivery tracking systems and possibly live chat features for the customer support to assist buyers.

Obviously, this is a much higher scale of website functionality, so will probably be looking at £3,000-£5,000 and that’s being quite generous. Plus, providing something called a SSL certificate will add security to your site and reassure customers that their credit card information remains safe when they make purchases. This can cost anywhere between £15-£250 a year.

Bespoke Websites

A bespoke website is one that is completely built from scratch to tailor to a company’s individual needs – they are not created using or inspired by standard templates. Bespoke websites require complex functionality and although they are better designed for larger companies, anyone that requires this advanced functionality can get a bespoke website designed to match their specialised needs.

Generally, bespoke websites cater to mobile design in a way others simply can’t: their desktop and mobile versions may vary completely when it comes to style and design to favour user-friendly interaction. Because such large companies are in need of bespoke websites, including banking websites and health websites, prices can range anywhere from £3,000-£10,000 .

Database-driven Websites

Although technically part of the bespoke website category, database-driven websites are dynamic and update content on an automatic basis as customers interact with it – complicated stuff. All this stores information securely in one place so this fancy programming clearly will use far more setup and maintenance expertise than other websites, meaning the price will be higher, just like bespoke websites which have similar functions. And like bespoke websites, prices range from £3,000-£10,000, depending on the level of advance required.

Choosing your website solution is an important decision. That’s often the first glimpse users will get from your business, so you want to make sure to choose well for your investment to pay off.

A breakdown of other costs

Within each established cost that we have provided, there are specific costs you should know about before agreeing to pay the total, just so you can be aware of what it is exactly you’re paying for.

1. Design

Template customization is one of the most important parts of your website, as this is the first thing customers will see when landing on your page. It’s a company’s opportunity to display their brand and as such, you should have a large say over your preferred web design. You’re looking at £200 to £5,000 depending on who you’re hiring and what type of website you’re going for.

2. Setting up Costs

This price includes that of the package without including long-term costs like hosting and updating copy. This can range from £200 to £500.

3. Hosting

Web hosting basically allows websites on the internet – All websites need to be hosted on web servers, and this basically means renting space on the internet. Although there are different types of hosting, most prices range from £3 to £200.

4. Written content created by professional copywriters

Second to visual design, copy is another extremely significant factor in website creation. You can of course, create the written content yourself, but professional copywriters are highly trained in what they do and address the audience in an appealing way. Whether you go with a freelancer or an agency, hiring a professional writer is a sure way to ensure your website’s content is high quality.

Updating regular content helps your website appear more often on google searches and you may need to update content for other reasons, like new services, products or special offers you’re providing as a business. Costs vary, but you can expect to pay between £10 to £60 a month.

5. SEO

SEO is the practice of ensuring websites are optimised to rank as highly as possible on search engines, so that when a business’s potential customers search for their relevant service, the business website appears in the first few results, especially for local searchers. Some web design companies might offer this service as part of their package, but otherwise, you might have to pay for a freelancer. SEO costs can vary from £100 to £1500 a month.

6. Images and visuals

You can buy images from a professional photographer, supply them yourself or buy them from stock websites. Costs range from £15 to £100.

7. Domain Name

Your domain name is another signposting factor towards the nature of your business and can determine exactly what your services involve before a customer lands on your page. Domain names are also extremely important and can cost anywhere between £5 a month to £100 per year.

As you can see, there are a few additional costs to take into accounts when purchasing a professional. Depending on which website builders you choose, these can be included in the initial price or come as extra. Here’s a breakdown of the costs to help you visualise it better.

infographics detailing all the extra costs associated with web design

Website design and hosting for small businesses from UENI

At UENI, we offer an alternative website building service. While the others mentioned are DIY products, we provide a DIFM, or Do It For Me, approach to a business website.

We offer small businesses the chance to get online at a fair price, because we believe that business owners who are too busy to build their own websites or afford to pay the cost of proper business-focused web development. UENI-built websites are secure, search-engine optimized, can feature a custom domain name and fully responsive design. We’ll even create a website for your business at no cost.

Here’s the deal: if you’re a small business owner, you need a website.

But at UENI, our philosophy is that it doesn’t need to be costly or complicated to build a website for your small business. We know running a business is hard enough – getting online should be easy.

Elena Alston
Elena Alston
Elena Alston is a content writer based in London. Both her fiction and non-fiction has featured in IMIS, the Drabble, the Daily News Service and the Prisma.

2 responses to “How much does a website cost in 2019? The definitive guide”

  1. Avatar duplade says:

    Thanks for sharing, I’m a web designer in London and i’ll link this to my website it’s very helpful to everyone before they decide!
    Regards,
    Levi

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