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posted on July 8th, 2011

How Much Should My Website Design Cost?

Website design and development as a service stream has grown exponentially in the last 5 years. With more and more service providers jumping on the bandwagon and the Internet opening up the International boundaries, a lot of design variety and skill diversity is available.

However, this variety of service offering also creates confusion in the minds of buyers. With pricing all over the place, most of the web design service buyers ponder over the reasonable cost of web design and development. You can find web designers and web design firms who would be willing to do a website design for $600 while at the same time some others don’t even touch a project for less than $10,000, and even more web designers fall in between these price ranges. So what is the right price for a website design or redesign?

The answer is that there is no one right price for your website needs. Just like buying a car or an SUV, this too depends on a multitude of factors.

Inherent Value of a Professional Offering

From free and cheap templates to dirt cheap web designers, there are tons of options for you to save money. However, cheap quality reflects itself negatively, and has the potential of hindering website visitor conversions. The question you end up asking yourself is – “Did I save anything?” On the other hand, if all your marketing budget is spent on just a website design and you have nothing left to market your impeccable website, did you even then made a wise decision?

You need a professionally created website that “talks” to your visitors and does a perfect job at showing them how trustworthy you and your business are. More important however is that you need a website that is “results-oriented” and converts your visitors into customers.

How to Know the Price to Value Ratio

The price to value depends on factors which encompass design and functionality (programming) both. You have to know what goes into developing a basic website framework and how much effort is needed to add bells and whistles to the basic core. For example, Cynexis web design prices start as low as $950 for a custom designed website that has 5 webpages including a home page, contact page, product/service page, About page and one other page like FAQs or Resources etc.

Functionality Dictates the Time and Cost

Many customers require a content management system to enable them to easily add content to the site and update the existing content. This moves the investment to $1,699 for the same site mentioned above + CMS. Many individuals and businesses however require much more than a basic 5 page website and may include requirements like Flash slideshows, editable jQuery, Contact Us forms, Blog, Forum, Sitemap, Virtual Tours, Photo and Video Galleries etc. Your web design company needs to design and develop this functionality and you will be paying for their time and expertise.

Some people think of $2000 as a lot of money for getting just a website. This notion is both right and wrong. While a person who is looking forward to a blog as a hobby or as a source of some extra income, might find it too high. On the other end of the spectrum, for a typical company, this couple of thousand is virtually nothing.

For most businesses, even if the website increases the sales by a paltry 5-7%, the investment of a couple of thousand dollars pays for itself quickly. After that, it is all profit.

Scope of Design and Development Work

Web design firms usually offer website design and programming services. Some of the better integrated marketing firms, like Cynexis, offer much more than just design and include services like copywriting, marketing strategy development, search engine optimization, web video development and even mobile website design. The larger your project scope, the higher the cost will be. Web development costs include scope parameters such as:

  • The number of pages to be designed.

  • Programming required

  • Content authoring and image usage.

  • Web hosting and domain name purchase.

  • Video development and video hosting

  • Logo design or redesign

Expertise and Experience

Like other disciplines, an experienced web designer is always the best choice as compared to a rookie. While experienced web design firms with cross-discipline experience will always charge more, they also stand a better chance of delivering superior results. We are not only referring to the look and feel, but more specifically, taking time to understand the type of industry and market your business is in, your position relative to your competition, and also mapping out the most effective way to clearly project your company’s value to its audience on the site.

Standards, QA and Attention to Details

Great web designers have standard processes, frameworks, quality assurance methods, project management tools (which they use proactively) and a habit of experimenting for the sake of improvement. Cross browser testing, broken link checks, better cut images, cleaner Javascript code, that loads quickly, are some benefits that make or break a website. Extra dollars are worth investing, if your web designer has systems in place which they use to produce happy clients.

In a nutshell, the decision to hire a web design company should never be price focused, but return on investment focused. You get what you pay for, and if you decide to go with a company who understands this, and if they have the ability to deliver and show you a successful track record, you will never regret your decision.

 

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