‘How much does a website cost?’ might seem like a pretty standard question to ask a web designer. But it can be akin to asking about that proverbial length of string.

You see, there are so many different types of small business websites, with different features selling different products. And while you can get a website built for as little as $1,000 or for $10,000+, price alone doesn’t determine how effective your website will be.

So how much does a website cost in Australia? It really depends. Below, I’ve outlined what goes into a website as a bit of guidance so you know how much you might expect to pay.

Your website is an investment

Sure, price is important. None of us has endless amounts of money to play with.

But consider this: your office chair and Post It notes are a business expense (as much as I love those sticky squares on my office wall they don’t add clear value to what I do).

However, your website should be thought of as an investment. And like any investment, a purposefully designed website should pay for itself many times over in new clients and increased revenue.

What’s involved in creating a website?

A high-performing website doesn’t just happen. There are a lot of steps I complete before I even touch a single line of code.

An effective, beautiful website requires thought and planning. Think of it like trying to build a house: you wouldn’t expect your builder to start hammering away without a plan in front of them. And it’s the same with your website.

As part of my process, I spend a lot of time getting to know you, your business and your clients so I can create a website that will help you reach your goals. Then I create a plan for each page of your website so there is a clear flow from one to the next and strong CTAs so your visitors take action.

Only once you’re happy with the design, do I start to build your website. And this is when I make sure it’s responsive across different screen sizes, including desktop and mobile; loads quickly so visitors don’t get frustrated; and is optimised for SEO, which helps your website appear in the search results.

And once your website is built, I test and check each element to make sure it functions as it should.

How much does it cost to build a website?

As you can imagine, there is a big difference between a 5-page website for a service business and an ecommerce site with hundreds of products.

There is also a difference between skill levels for web developers. As you’d expect, someone starting out will charge less than someone with years of experience.

For a small business website, expect to pay from $3,000 – $8,000, depending on the number of pages and any integrations like a booking form.

So how much will it cost to build your website?

And this is where we get to the real question. Having an idea of what a website might cost is helpful. But what you really want to know is how much your website will cost.

As a web designer, I provide fixed price quotes for my website clients. This allows you to budget accurately and it means we both know upfront exactly what is and isn’t included. Before I can provide a quote, I need to ask a few questions so I can understand what you need and how I can best deliver what you’re after:

  • Will a simple informational website be enough for your business, or do you want added functionality?
  • What are your design requirements (i.e. website layout, colour scheme, logo, photography, graphics)?
  • What do you want to say on the website? Will you write this copy yourself, or would you like help with it?
  • What functionality will the website need? Do you need a booking form, a blog or the ability to sell online?
  • Are you prepared to update your site regularly or do you need ongoing support?

To avoid scope creep, and an ever-ballooning budget as the project goes on, it’s important to have these things figured out before you start.  A good web designer will sit down and help you decide these things before offering you a quote.

The alternative is to pay an hourly rate. While there are some web designers who work by the hour, this isn’t an ideal way to have your website developed. You likely don’t know how long it will take to build a website. And if those timelines blow out, you may have to pay much more than you expect.

What about other website costs?

There are other costs you should be aware of when launching or relaunching a website:

Domain name – this costs about $30 per year.

Website hosting – expect to pay around $200 per year, depending on your website.

While you might not need top-of-line web hosting, you don’t want to go for the cheapest either. Look for a host with minimal downtime, positive reviews and a customer service team that’s easy to get hold of. Here’s who I use and recommend.

Plugins – while there are many free plugins, some more advanced plugins have a one-off or annual fee to renew.

Website maintenance – you’ll need to keep your website updated and if you don’t want to do this you can pay for monthly or quarterly maintenance.

Branding – if your website is part of a bigger brand overhaul, you’ll be needing a logo, colour palette and graphics. Working with a talented graphic designer will start at $1,200 and will make sure you get a cohesive look that reflects your vision. Definitely not one to skimp on (Fiverr is not an option!).

Professional copywriting – if you’re not confident writing your web copy, or it’s taking too long to do, then you can outsource to a professional.

Looking for more info on what a website costs?

Are you planning to relaunch your website? Or just want to know what to expect? Let’s schedule a free 15-minute phone consultation to discuss your website vision.