Having your own website has become a very common thing in any kind of business. But one should be careful not to fall for overly expensive web development options, since building a website today can be really cost-effective. There are many factors that highly affect the cost of a website. For instance, you need to get a domain name, you need to set aside a budget for a web designer in case you want a very specific type of design, and you need monthly maintenance after your website goes live. While these are costs that come on top, the main cost typically comes down to building the website, and there are many ways to do so.
For example, if you don’t mind a bit of work, you can go with an open source framework, like WordPress, which may be better and cheaper to develop for a bespoke solution. Especially when a website requires too much customization or when a standard solution does not support the company’s requirements.
Regardless of what framework you choose, you should estimate all the associated costs before starting a website project. That is why we made a brief analysis of what can affect the cost of your website, presenting 3 things to save your budget when discovering, planning and designing a website.
1. Purpose and Target group
Everything starts with research, and a new website is no exception. The first thing is to analyze the market, your users, competitors, and business. Secondly, what is the purpose of your new website? Is it going to be a brochure type website, more complex community and publishing site or an e-commerce site? Define your objectives and focus on problems that the website will solve, after developing one. Will it help you to meet your expectations and your visitors’ needs?
Your research helps you to plan your website strategically and ensure that it’s aligned with both your potential customers’ needs and business objectives. Furthermore, you should also clarify what actions users need to take on the website. These actions are usually in line with your business objectives. So whether users find what they are looking for, the website meets its purpose.
Another thing to be aware of is the decision of frameworks, browsers, operating systems, and devices for which a website is going to be developed. For instance, optimizing a website for both Android and iOS is quite expensive. Be planning and clarifying your target group, you will have a much clearer picture of what your website needs to be able to do. With this, you can make a wireframe or otherwise visual prototype, similar to what YouTube has below!
When you are thinking of creating a new website or another digital solution for your business, it is important to know what to include in. After defining the purpose and type of the website, you should have a clear picture of what’s important to include in the first version of the website. Naturally, the website can be re-designed in future versions, but that’s pretty costly too. In fact, there are cases when clients were not satisfied with the developers’ work just because they found out that the website doesn’t really cover the functions or design they expected.
For example, besides different pages and original, valuable content of the website, a static page is a must! Be sure to have one, in order to get in touch with your potential customers. You should include: About us, Contact us, FAQ and Help and Conditions information. You can also add a call to action as a newsletter sign up, to inform visitors about business’ news.
3. Testing before launching
After planning, the next step in web development is designing. So before contacting web designers, it is a good idea to create a wireframe and prototype to establish the website’s basic structure. Afterward, front-end developers will use it to create a visual design.
Furthermore, a huge and important part of web development is quality assurance (QA) testing. It can also be called “troubleshooting”. The reason why it’s important is that sometimes, things can go wrong. Therefore, it’s better to find those issues before the website goes live to the public.
The tests should be real potential users. The site needs to be tested in all common browsers and devices to make sure that it looks and works as it should, across all of them. Also, all the links should be tested to make sure that they work correctly. Within testing, functionality, accessibility to users and the ability to adapt to responsive devices can be addressed and fixed before the website is launched.
The cost of a website rapidly changes depending on your needs. Here is a summary list of the factors that highly influence it:
- Type of website
- Basic technology
- Set up/Design/Development
According to webfx.com, you can have a brief look at how much the cost varies: