Updated: Jun 9
When the internet became available to the public in the early 1990s, no one could guess how much this service would affect our daily lives. At the time, going online was a new and expensive thought - people did not have a complete understanding of what it would mean for us in the future. Well, fast forward 25 years later and the secret is out: an online presence is no longer an option, or even considered a luxury. Creating a website is an absolute necessity, and an incredibly affordable one. So, how much does it cost to build a website? Although you can get a basic website for free online, depending on the type of website you need, you may want to include paid features or hire a web designer. Extra storage space, apps that increase your capabilities and a custom domain name are all elements that can increase costs. In this article, we have broken down the main elements of a website and some of the most popular types to give you a clearer picture of the final costs. When you are ready to build your website, we recommend that you check out our entire checklist to help you customize it, from start to finish.
The primary elements of a website
Whether you are creating a blog or an online store, all websites have three main features: website design and interface, web hosting and a domain name. Since each of these components can independently contribute to the total website cost, it is important to understand the details of each one.
Website design & interface
Arguably the most essential part of any website is design. A site’s visual content, including text, imagery and layout, are what visitors see and interact with when they first arrive at your homepage. Much like any first impression, a website’s design can have a huge impact on how visitors feel about your product or service. A successful interface will enable your visitors to fluidly navigate your site and provide them with an all-around positive user experience.
Web hosting allows your site to go live online. To be visible on the internet, websites need to be hosted on a server, which stores the information on your site so that it appears on visitors’ screen. You can either choose a website provider with built in hosting, like Wix, or acquire the two services separately.
Just as you need an address to arrive at a physical location, you also need an address to arrive at a website. A web address is called a domain name, and a successful one will make your website easily identifiable, professional and stand out. Your domain name helps solidify your brand identity and provides visitors with a sense of reliability and dependability.
How much does a website really cost?
There are a few key factors to consider when considering pricing. First consider whether you want to use a website builder like Wix that gives you templates and intuitive tools to create your own website. Alternatively, you can always hire a web designer to create a website for you, which of course comes at an additional cost. What you ultimately pay for your site will also vary depending on your specific needs. With Wix you can create and publish all the basic websites for free. However, there are additional costs to be aware of if you want to include additional features or upgrade to a Premium website. Therefore, we have created an overview based on different types of websites so that you can easily see what your website can cost if you create it yourself on Wix.
To better understand the information in the chart above, let's break down the cost of some of the main types of sites:
So you’ve decided to create a blog and start sharing your experiences online. Whether you are creating a blog website or adding a blog to your existing site, you won’t need to break the bank. All in all, a blog website is one of the cheapest options out there. While a standard blog won’t cost you anything with Wix’s tools, what will cost money is a domain name as well as additional apps and storage to upload unlimited posts and images.
With close to 2 billion online shoppers out there, the world isn’t moving toward digital business models - it’s arrived. That’s why starting an online store is a great option for making money online.
To connect your own domain, accept payments online and grow your business, you’ll need to pay a small monthly fee. As mentioned above, this will cost you anywhere between $23.00 and $49.00 a month depending on how dynamic you want your site to be.
You might have also noticed that there is a very large price range to hire a designer for an eCommerce website. That’s because many eCommerce sites have many moving parts and can get a bit complicated. Having said that, a pre-made eCommerce website template will also help you navigate the labyrinth that is online stores so you can create your own.
Whether you’re planning a wedding, hosting a webinar or anything in between, an event website can help you get organized. Event websites are unique because they are often short term in nature. This means that you may not be looking to put a lot of money into your site.
All in all, you should only have to pay $14/month to have your own domain. With a monthly payment option, you’ll only pay for the relevant time that you want your event site up and running. And if you want to include additional features, such as a bookings app ($17/month) to schedule appointments or sell tickets online, you’ll need to factor these into your final cost.
A portfolio website is essential for any creative professional to showcase their work, including graphic designers, UX designers and architects. Because portfolio websites mainly constitute images, videos and text, you’ll likely need a good amount of website storage. For example, an $18.00 per month plan gets you 10 GB of storage and enables you to keep an hour of video on your site.
Additional website costs
Once you’ve designed your site, you may want to incorporate additional features to enhance the experience. Here are some additional website costs to consider.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of incorporating relevant keywords, content and structure onto your website to increase its ranking on search engines, like Google. It’s the best way to bring in organic traffic and compete with similar websites on the search engine results page (SERP).
To get started, check out Wix SEO for free to get ideas on how you can best navigate the SEO landscape. However, it’s good practice to take advantage of an SEO tool to pinpoint keywords you can strategically incorporate into your content. Google Adwords Keyword Planner and Answer the Public are free options you can try. However, if you really want to invest in your SEO strategy, it’s worth purchasing an advanced SEO tool, such as Ahrefs ($99-999/month) or SEMRush ($119.95-$449.95/month).
Website analytics are the best way to measure your site’s performance. They allow you to assess important statistics such as website traffic, bounce rate, clicks and page duration so you can determine your site's success. In turn, knowing this information can help you make better business decisions. With Wix, you get a free, user-friendly analytics interface built in free for your first year of use. However, there are a variety of other programs on the market - perhaps the best known analytics software for business being Google Analytics (GA). While GA does offer a free version, you’ll need to purchase GA 360 to utilize the more advanced features, which runs at $150,000/year.
Additional website features and apps
Creativity and a solid user experience are the crux of any good website. Another way you can enhance these elements is by incorporating apps into your design. They allow you to integrate additional features that may be beneficial for business or your overall aesthetic. Two examples include forum apps to share information and communicate with site visitors and apps to create coupons and build sales leads. While some apps are free, others are not and you’ll need to decide which ones make the most sense for your site.
Should you hire a web designer to build a website?
Now that you know how much it costs to make a Wix website, you still have a tough decision to make. Should you hire someone to create your site for you or should you do it yourself?
This ultimately depends on your budget and free time. If you’re on a budget, DIYing a site is certainly a good option. There are tons of available designer-made website templates out there that can help you create a professional site, with little effort. However, keep in mind that tweaking your site to look exactly the way you want it could take some time, so make sure that you have the free time to take that task on.
On the other hand, you can always hire a web designer to build you a professional website. The price can vary dramatically depending on the complexity of your site, but this ensures that your site will:
Be completed in a designated amount of time
Contain the most up to date trends and features
Provide a flawless user experience
Fit your vision
This is a great option for someone who may not have the time to create their own site and has the financial backing to outsource the project.