The Cost of A Small Business Website

When you have finished reading this you will know how much you can expect to pay for having your small business website built. It can be hard for business owners to obtain an accurate quote to have a website created, particularly since very few firms post their rates online. Why? Because the website creation cost depends on the project, what you want, and need.

Web design and development firms also want to have a 1-on-1 with potential clients so that they can show their value and build their reputation, even if they are more expensive. Here you will learn about how much you can expect that companies will charge for their services. This includes build, maintenance, marketing, and site traffic. We’ll run through:

  • How much does it cost to create a website in 2020?
  • How much does it cost annually to run a website?
  • How much does a domain name and web hosting cost?
  • What are the costs to design a new website from scratch for your business?
  • What does it cost to redesign an existing website?
  • How much does website maintenance cost?
  • how much does an ecommerce website cost?

Read further for some ballpark cost estimates on website design, maintenance, web hosting, website re-designing, online marketing services and more.

Small Business Website:

This is for a basic informational website with very little customization needed. Usually less than 20 pages, with a couple of stock photos, and no unique functionality. Upfront rates: $2,000 to $8,000.

Medium-Sized Business Website:

Mostly for commercial websites with no more than 75 pages, content management system (CMS) enabled, custom design layouts and imagery, and some unique functionality set up by developers. Upfront rates: $10,000 to $25,000.

Ecommerce Website:

A website where customers can browse and purchase products; integration of a payment gateway is necessary, as is imagery, copy-writing, a CMS, and beta testing. Upfront cost: $5,000 to $40,000 (determined by the amount of products featured, and their intricacy).

Large Business Website:

A large scale website with several hundred pages, custom design layouts and imagery, a content management system, unique functionality, and supplementary features (such as personalized development, blog integration, multimedia creation, and more). Upfront cost: $25,000 to $40,000.

Now that you understand the concept of costs to develop a website for your business, let’s look at the monthly or annual fees you can expect to pay, and what those costs cover. Several costs that come with running a website are necessary. Here are some of the unavoidable expenses you can expect to pay when having a new website developed.

  1. Domain name

Why you need it: The URL (a.k.a. domain name), is what people type in their browser to get to your website. Without one, the only way to visit your site would be to type in its IP address. What it’ll cost: Usually between $10 and $20. Free domains, if you find one, are typically not recommended. For a customized domain extension (such as, you can expect to pay premium rates as high as $200 and $300 per year, depending on your choice.


Why you need it: SSL (secure socket layer) certificates encrypt sensitive data like credit card numbers and personal information. An SSL certificate is a must if you run an ecommerce website as it secures and protects your customers sensitive data and personal information from being intercepted.

What it’ll cost: SSL certificates are issued by certification authorities (CA’s) and range from $10 a month to as high as $1000 a month. A couple of platforms, such as Shopify, include a free SSL certificate. How often you’ll pay for it: Annually, unless you prepay for multiple years in advance.


So how much does website hosting cost? Purchasing a domain name is like acquiring land: you’ll have an address, but you’ll need something there to contain all your content. In this example, web hosting is your land, and web content is your “stuff”.

What it’ll cost: Most web hosting companies offer shared hosting plans and tiered plans that range from around $10 a month to as high as $99 a month for managed hosting. Whether you choose shared web hosting service or dedicated hosting, the more traffic and features your website has, the higher your price will be.


A CMS, or content management system, is required. It is what you use to display text, pictures, videos, articles, etc., on your website. A CMS will save you time, standardize your website, and make your website much more efficient with a faster loading time.

What it’ll cost: Depending on the CMS you choose, you could be looking at thousands of dollars for a customized one, or pay nothing using popular ones like WordPressHow often you’ll pay for it: Enterprise CMS systems that charge fees are usually billed annually. WordPress is free of charge.


To make your website aesthetically pleasing, you’ll need to have it designed professionally.

Full Redesign or New Design

Why you need it: If you’re launching a new website, or your existing one needs a makeover, you’ll need to spend some money to have a website builder design (or redesign) it and tested. What it’ll cost: The costs to redesign a site range from approximately $1,000 to $20,000. Your site should be reviewed every year or two and compared to other existing sites to benchmark how your site appears and how its ease of use is. The current trend is “don’t make me think”.

Why you need it: Some content management systems provide themes that allow you to change the look and format of your website instantaneously. Be sure to differentiate your site so you are unique and fresh.

What it’ll cost: Most public themes are free. Premium WordPress themes can cost between $10 and $100, depending on its features. You’ll get varied rates to have an exclusive license to the theme, or to have it personally customized.

Responsive Web Design (RWD)

Why you need it: In 2015, Google began favoring websites that were mobile friendly by ranking them higher than websites that weren’t designed responsively. Responsive websites can detect which platform the website is being used on, and can tailor the layout for screen size purposes.

What it’ll cost: Most websites designed today are already responsive. Upgrading an older theme or website, however, could cost you as much as $2,000 to do. How often you’ll pay: Getting your website to be response is a one-time task.


Now that you have a basic understanding of the costs to run a basic website, let’s analyze some of the features that are worth paying extra for. The main goal is increasing customers’ traffic to your site and keeping them. The main purpose of these features is to have your website rank high on Google, Yahoo, Bing, and newcomer DuckDuckGo.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is no longer optional. In fact, it is mandatory, especially if you’re running a commercial website. SEO is a series of tasks that determine where your website ranks on search engines for a particular keyword. The idea is that your website should be the one people see high above others.

How much you’ll pay: SEO costs vary per agency, but it is one of the more pricier expenses of anything related running a website. You can expect to pay an upfront cost (likely between $3,000 and $9,000), in addition to a monthly maintenance fee (approximately $200 to $500 per month, on average).

The bigger your company, the higher you can expect costs to be. You should set aside a budget to pay for a company with a proven track record. It’s better to pay a competent but expensive company for their optimization skills than to pay a cheaper but ineffective business making empty promises. Additionally, employees who wear different hats within the organization can write SEO copy in a standard format and will save you money since you are not paying outside companies.

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising

You’ll find PPC ads on the sidebar of Google search engine result pages. The top few are paid for ads, but the rest show up as a result of your search term. Paid ads are targeted to specific groups, and they are effective in helping businesses get increased traffic.

Pay-per-click ads are an effective and fast solution to get traffic non-organically. You pay for every ad clicked. The costs per click can range from $0.20 to $5 depending on the competition. You must compete with other companies for the search results space. The costs depend on how much competition you have in the area you are targeting.


Content to be written for web pages requires copywriting. Strong copywriting is a call to action, and should encourage potential clients to see your company as a leader. Poor copywriting involves duplicate content, poor writing, misspellings, and should be avoided at all costs. If you outsource copywriting services on an individual basis, freelancers generally charge per word or project.

Some freelancers and agencies offer packages that provide you with all the content you require at a cheaper rate. Updating content for new product and services will cost you as well. Since search engines favor websites that contain updated content on a consistent basis. Most larger companies will have in-house copywriters, which allows for standardized copy and content.

Content Marketing

Customers favor businesses that produce relatable and appropriate content. Customer trust is established with information that people can depend on. Such content can be delivered through blogs, videos, social media, imagery, charts, demonstrations, infographics.

Every form of content marketing differs. Product demonstration or informational videos and be easily done and linked to You Tube for very little money, especially when using current employees. It just takes a high-resolution video camera and a tripod! Cameras start at $50.

Social Media

Social media is a great platform for you to creatively promote your business, without selling to anyone. Most companies will use LinkedIn, and also Twitter and Facebook to a lesser extent. You can use LinkedIn for promotional videos, upcoming trade shows, and new hire announcements, showing growth in your company.

Additionally, social media is a platform where customers can interact directly and publicly to a business with questions and concerns. A dedicated associate should be in charge of social media, ensuring quick responses to customers.

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