One of the hardest questions you will ask yourself when you hire a team to build your website is, “how much should I actually pay for a website?”
Your website is an incredibly valuable part of your business so you want to be sure to get your new site build right.
You get what you pay for
But at the same time, you probably have a budget (or maybe that’s why you’re here), a timeline, and want to get as much bang for your buck as you can.
How much does a website cost
There’s a lot of complexity when it comes to creating a website (we’ll talk about this in a minute), and all those factors are taken into account when deciding upon how much partners should charge.
Let’s mull over the figures for a second, and then talk about why there is so much variance
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Experience and skills come at a cost, but when created well will always provide more value than the total cost of the project.
After all, a website is an investment in your business’s future.
By that logic, spending more can seem lucrative but your actual budget is going to be the biggest guiding factor.
Note that we’re talking about the up front cost of outsourcing a website here. This doesn’t include month-to-month costs like hosting, CMS, uptime monitoring, or long-term support and maintenance
Lots of the variety shown in the table above can be attributed to differences in skills or services offered.
There’s a few key things to note…
The key differences
Your requirements can completely change the scope of a a project and that means that the best partner to help you could entirely change too.
Having a good understanding of your needs will help you to pick the best team to support you.
Freelancer or Agency
When deciding on whether you should hire a freelancer or an agency for your project, it’s important to know where their strengths and weaknesses lie.
Tend to focus only on one or two specific skills
Typically focus on smaller scope projects
Often cover lots of skillsets
Can handle much larger scope projects
But are often more expensive.
But, agencies and freelancers can also have a lot of variation between each teams workflow too.
As always, it’s important to find what works for you.
Custom Builds or Templates
If you’re looking to find a partner to build a marketing website, docs site, or eCommerce store then one of biggest things to consider is how customised you’d like your site to be.
Great for getting started quickly
Much more flexible
Ability to future-proof
Again, there can be some overlap depending on the quality of the team you’re working with to build your site so make sure you strongly consider what you need and how you want to do it.
Design, Development, and more
Sometimes when you’re looking for external help you’re looking for a single skill that your team doesn’t have. Other times, you’re looking for a complete solution to be built.
Many different freelancers and agencies are built around providing a very specific set of services to help fill gaps that your team might have.
Other teams might be full-service solutions that focus on providing everything you need around creating a specific type of website.
Your needs will depend on your project so it’s always good to do your research.
Why should I pay more?
There are a lot of things to take into consideration when hiring an external team to build or update your site, and each team will have different talents and specialisms so it’s important to do your research.
Typically, pricing will depend on how experienced a team is, how specialised your solution needs to be, and the quality of the final result.
If you’re hiring an external team to build your website it is probably because you don’t have the resources to do it yourself.
You could build a website yourself if you really wanted. Webflow, Wix, Wordpress and Squarespace offer the ability to design and build websites without hiring anyone if you wanted.
What you’re paying for, however, is the experience that someone (or many people) with years of experience can provide.
Experts can help you understand what works, what doesn’t, and what’s the best way to approach ideas.
With experience also comes better quality. Specialists in a platform, tools or skillset learn better ways to enhance their services.
Agencies and freelancers are building websites all the time, and are regularly challenging their own approaches with different clients. That can give them a variety
That means a greater understanding of user experience, better UI designs, and improved code that’s easier to maintain long term, and much more.
Services & Solutions
One of the biggest differences between teams is the variety of services and solutions they offer. Some are highly focused one one specific skill, others focus on a specific outcome, while others are all-rounders.
Your needs will obviously vary depending on the kind of project you’re enquiring about and the value you’ll attribute to that project. Whether you need a skill like UX design, a solution like a headless marketing website, or a more general all round support will change how businesses might charge for their support.
What do you need?
Possibly the biggest consideration before hiring an external team is ensuring that they can actually deliver what you’re looking for.
Pricing here will typically be tied what output it is you’re looking for, with more challenging projects often costing more, but are also more likely to provide better results.
How many pages are you after? The difference between creating a 10 page website and 1000 page website is obviously going to be substantially different.
The more pages you create, the more time you’ll have to put in to build them.
Highly skilled teams will be building systems that allow you to create and maintain thousands of pages easily.
Not all websites are made from landing pages, and as the needs of your site start to increase so does the complexity. Whether you’re going multi-language, adding a checkout or going all out and building a custom SaaS interface, you’re going to be adding complexity to your site.
Complex functionality makes sites harder to create and harder to maintain, but they can also make you stand out by providing better experiences for your team or customers so the trade-off is often worth it.
Talented teams will make complex functionality in a way that’s as simple as possible, making complex functionality feel simple.
One of the biggest things that can make your website stand our is the care and attention you put into it.
High quality websites are something that’s felt by customers, providing a better experience that helps to ensure repeat visitors, and can even generate virality or awards helping you gain even more traffic.
Expert teams can help with their vast knowledge and completed projects allowing you to bring onboard skills that your internal team doesn’t have, providing you with a much higher quality solution than you could deliver on your own.
Need help deciding?
Let us help you
Websites can start pretty cheap, and get very expensive
And there’s a good reason for that. If you’re spending money on a website and especially if you’re hiring somebody else to help you with that, you’re almost certainly looking at a business use case.
And as a business, your website is going to be making you money (if it’s not, why have it?). But the size and reach of your business impacts how much money your website can make. And if your website is likely to make a lot of money, you’re probably going to want to spend a good amount of money to make sure that you’re getting your website right.
Agencies have higher costs than freelancers
Which seems like an obvious thing to state, but it’s true. Freelancers only have to worry about themselves but agencies have teams to support and business expenses to account for which can be clearly seen when comparing agencies lowest pricing to freelancers lowest pricing clearly shows the difference.
But it’s also interesting to note that while freelancers do tend to be cheaper than agencies, the gap does narrow pretty quickly as solutions get more complicated, because the value of the solution is high regardless of who’s creating it.
There’s no upper cap
Every single price listed is only a starting price.
I’ve seen small, custom Webflow sites created by freelancers sell for $25,000+ because they provide huge value to the business, so even though the starting price is $3,000 for that bracket there is a huge amount of possible variation, even within one designated group.
So it’s important to keep in mind that this is a guide, not a rule for how all freelancers and agencies price their work.
The main takeaway is that website prices can vary wildly. Small projects can be priced fairly low but depending on complexity the price can grow exponentially.
If large, complex websites are out of your budget it’s important to remember that, depending on your business needs, you might not need to spend that much.
Websites are an investment, so it’s important to find a balance between what you can afford, and where you’re hoping to be.
And always do your research to make sure you’re getting exactly what you need.
And if you need help finding the right solution get in touch.