Prioritizing Functionality When Building A New Website
Would you be willing to pay $200 for your website? What about $400,000? Is cost more important to you than quality? Or are you willing to pay any price to establish your ideal online presence? These are all questions you should ask yourself when you are considering website design costs.
The old adage of “you get what you pay for” is thoroughly exemplified when it comes to website design costs. Think of website design as buying your dream home. You should ask yourself basically the same questions to understand exactly what you’re willing to pay for:
- What type of website do you want?
- Are you willing to buy your site “as is” and learn to DIY the rest later?
- What is your budget?
What type of website do you want?
Let’s start with the first question and continue the home-buying metaphor. When you buy a home, you’ll ask yourself if you want a cottage in the country or a condo in the city. Are you looking for cozy townhome or a stately manner? Obviously, you’re looking at a wide range of prices to get the physical structure you’re looking for.
When we look at it from a website design perspective, the cost of a simple site is going to be much less than that of a fully functional e-commerce site with a complete content package. In most cases, for a site that is truly personalized to your specifications, you’re going to want to use WordPress. The sheer number of customizable features gives you a range of elements that can make your site special.
Hosting costs, or the cost required to have a site on WordPress, ranges from $5 to $60 a month, dependent upon how many features you’re utilizing. Additionally, if you have the budget, but not the time, you can hire a pro to do initial setups for $50-$200.
Are you willing to buy your site “as is” and learn to DIY the rest later?
When you buy a home, you’re buying all of the work that comes along with it once the contract is signed. If the shower leaks or the driveway caves in, that’s something that you’re going to have to deal with. The same can be said for your website.
If you choose to DIY your site, you’re choosing to deal with all of the issues that come from that choice. Every website that has ever existed has had an issue, and likely, it’s had many issues. Working with a professional from the get-go can limit the amount of time that your website it non-functional. It can also save you money. It’s not unheard of for fixing pre-existing issues on the site to cost more than site building, especially if the problems require rebuilding anyways.
Additionally, choosing to DIY your site means that you’re making a major investment of time. If you’re already pressed for time, you may find it very difficult to get your site where you need it to be. You have to think about learning coding, graphic design, and possibly, creating SEO-enhanced content to get people to your site.
What is your budget?
This question is perhaps the one that businesses focus on too much. While budget is indeed important, it’s more important that your website does what you’re expecting it to do. A functional website is an investment. If done right, should work to increase your revenue. Why have a website if it’s not making a positive contribution to your company?
Before you consider budget, you should get your website requirements down to the bare minimum of what you need. Having that information prepared will help you approach website designers with a clear idea of a starting point. Once your budget increases, you can add on additional resources and features, like blog content or a marketing campaign.
Some Final Advice
In the industry, you’re going to find a spectrum of situations that might seem appropriate, but they could come back to bite you.
Freelancers might offer an entire website build for $400, whereas a full-fledged company offers the same for $4,000. That difference seems massive, but the proof is in the pudding. A freelancer might get the site up and running, but they’re unlikely to offer help desk hours or follow-up meetings. That means that running into issues later is going to require even more money, more time, and more resources.
On the other end of that, there are some companies that will try to sell you on packages and features that might not be appropriate for your site and budget. They may take a $4,000 build and try to sell it to you for $6,000. Going over budget now means that you’re going to have a hard time sustaining the cost of the site, leaving you in the lurch if something goes wrong.
That’s where NATIV3 comes in. We work with our clients to give them exactly what they need, when they need it, and within their price range. While it might require compromise in terms of features, we’re dedicated to putting out a great product and the support that you need to sustain that product.