How much does a small business website cost?

A business owner asked three website development companies to submit a proposal to design her company website. She supplied the developers with the same “requirements document” that listed the website’s goals and functions. A week later each of the three web developers came back to the client with their estimates.

The first one had priced the project at $3,000, the second had priced it at $12,000 and the final web developer estimated the project at $32,000.

If you’re waiting for the punch line… well, there isn’t one.  That’s because the joke is on the client who now needs to figure out why these estimates are so wildly different and which one represents the most realistic and reasonable budget for her needs.


Believe it or not, we often hear stories like this.  One business owner actually sent us four proposals she had received and asked us to explain the differences in pricing. Unfortunately, most business owners have no way of knowing which bids are unrealistically low, which are outrageously inflated and which are in the right ballpark.

Please note: When we say “small business website” we are talking about an informational website consisting of approximately 10 to 20 pages with some basic content management and social media widgets.

Basic Website Components and Costs

On average, the following figures can be applied to estimating the cost of a small business website:

  • Domain Name – $10/year
  • Hosting – $10 to $100 a year (depending on traffic and hosting services)
  • Web Planning, Design and Development Time – 60 hours and up
  • Continued Website Maintenance – $500 a year and up (depending on number/type of updates required)
  • Marketing Your Website Online – $300 a month and up

Important Factors that Contribute to Website Cost

When preparing to budget web design costs, be sure to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is this a brand new site or a redesign of an existing site?
  • How prepared are you to ask for bids? Have you prepared a detailed requirements document?
  • Do you need a blog or a content management system (CMS)?
  • Have graphics already been created for the site?
  • Do you want the site to automatically resize for mobile and tablets?
  • Do you need multimedia elements (Flash, video, etc.) on the site?
  • How much content do you currently have and how much will need to be created?
  • Do you need other special features such as social media channels, SEO (search engine optimization) or ecommerce?
  • Who is going to maintain the site after it has been launched?

Below we go into these items in greater detail and provide an estimate of how much you should budget for each. The prices listed are estimates based on our 16 years of experience designing and building business websites. Prices will vary depending on your specific requirements. Be sure to contact us for an estimate.

New Sites Often Cost More Than Redesigns

Remember, when you’re starting a new website from scratch, so is the web designer. With no existing elements to work from, the designer can’t look at an existing site and study your current online brand nor can the design team examine the features and functionality that will be carried over to the new website and improved upon.

Discovery and Documentation

For the best outcome, all new websites projects should begin with a required “discovery and documentation” process.  This process helps define three important elements:

  1. Online brand
  2. Website structure
  3. Website functionality

We think this process is critical because it helps set expectations on all sides and reduces potential frustrations. Simple business websites — those in which the client has a solid idea of what he or she wants — can get by on a minimal amount of discovery and documentation, amounting to perhaps one day’s worth of effort.  BUT… more complex websites may require weeks of meetings plus the creation of many detailed documents to fully define the project.

The full list price at WebMob IT:

1.Web design & development

This process includes creating 6 pages of your own choice. Typically are Home, About Us, Contact, Testimonial, Gallery, Menu and Portfolio. These pages are all Mobile responsive and have an eye catching looks. We offer this service for only 300$.

2. Mobile App

If your website has an E commerce store, Restaurant Ordering System or Booking functions, and want to have a Mobile app, so you can receive Orders immediately on your phone, we can create that app for you with additional $200.

3. Logo design for online branding

We know branding identities are important for your business. At WebMobIT, we will help you create Logos and other branding identity like Facebook banner, etc for only 100$.

4. Add-on functionality

E-commerce functionality – This function allows you to sell your products. It includes Shopping cart, Product description and Review, Payment integration,… Additional $300 will be added, or up depending on your requirements.

Restaurant Ordering System – This system lets your customer orders through your website. You will be notified by Email or SMS when orders come. You also be able to process or reject the order. Add up to $300 for this functionality.

Booking system – If you are a Clinic or a Restaurant and want people to RSVP a spot, this functionality should be in your choice. This integrates a Calendar and other features that helps your customers book a spot in your business. You are notified by Email or SMS when having a booking. This cost you $300 more.

Social media integration – We will set up your Social Media to help your business take advantage of these Channels. For example. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest,… Add up 50$ for this service.

Email Marketing Campaigns: Clients that want to gather emails and send out branded email blasts for announcements or newsletters require an email management tool. We can integrate third-party tools such as Graphicmail, Mailchimp or Constant Contact along with an email blast template design. We can even manage your email blasts. 200$ and up

Virtual tour – Help your customers view your place without come to your place. 50$ and up

5. Content creation

“Content is King” in today SEO. If your content is useful and engaged to people, the website will be ranked higher on Search Engine like Google, Bing, etc. At WebMobIT, we create relevant content for you. 15$ for a 700 words articles, 30$ for a 2000 words article

6. Online marketing (SEO)

All your pages are on-paged optimized and they are free. However, we also offer off-page SEO, which means we will creating your contents and help posted on Social Media platform and relevant Forums. Usually, it will cost you $300/month or more depend on Keywords.

7. Hosting & Domain

The cost for domain is roughly 15$/year and for Hosting is around 100$/year. However, you will get free Domain and Hosting for 1 year when using our Web Design Service.

So How Much Does a Small Business Website Cost?

The majority small business websites that we design, develop and launch range from $1,000 to $10,000. Using the a la carte estimates above you can see how quickly elements and functionality add up. Another way to break the budget down is to assume:

  • 15% Planning
  • 25% Interface design
  • 40% Programming
  • 20% Project Management

And Don’t Forget the Maintenance Cost

Websites don’t just maintain themselves. The best websites change all the time as their strategy is tweaked and updated. Maintenance is something that most businesses forget to budget, often because they think that they can do it themselves. But the first time you delete your entire home page by mistake and lose eight hours of sales while you’re trying to get it back up and running, you’ll wish you’d spent the extra money on a maintenance contract. Make sure your web developer offers post-launch maintenance; many don’t because they can’t be bothered with clients calling with small requests.

Maintenance contracts vary greatly depending upon what you expect from the firm. You should budget a minimum of $250 per month to have a designer/developer on call if you have a problem that you can’t fix. And if you expect them to do additional work such as creating new images, adding new content, maintaining social media or newsletters, etc., expect the price to go up.  WebMobIT offers several customized, full-service maintenance plans.

A Final Note

If your website will be a significant part of your business DON’T SKIMP on design and development. If you would expect to pay $100,000 for a brick and mortar retail shop (inventory, interior design, furniture, rent, utilities, staff, equipment, insurance, etc.), then don’t balk at paying reasonable rates for the creation of your online business.

So, how much does a website cost?

For a small business website you can spend as little as $1000 or as much as $10,000 or more.  Your budget should be based on the strategic needs of your business.

If you’ve read this far, you must be serious about your web business. Take the next step by clicking the button below to fill out our short inquiry form. We will get back to you ASAP with a recommendation. No obligation – you can also call us at 0405133493 because we love to chat.


1 Comment
  1. Reply
    tuantai0304 2nd March 2017 at 11:47 pm

    hi, I m using WordPress with WYSIWYG editors

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