Cost to Create a Website
The cost to create a website can vary based on many different elements and factors that can alter the price. Those factors consist of web design, domain cost, and web design. There is a general level of anxiety that comes from what to do first. I hope the following will help in simplifying the process.
Professional Web Design
Web design has changed drastically over the past three years. Web sites now consist of BIG photos, BIG images, and BIG words. A departure from the previous decade where websites had a conservative nature about them when compared to today as the idea before was less clutter would make sites easier to navigate. Putting on the search engine optimization (SEO) hat on that was backward in thinking a sites like Amazon and Wikipedia have always consisted of larger fonts, high emphasis on multimedia, and many links internal and external. These types of websites have always received extremely high rankings in search engines like Google and Bing. I bring this up because there are hundreds of websites created every day, but unless you have an enormous following through social media or a lot of friends no one will find you unless you are strong in SEO. Internet users today led by millennial users have a desire for quick reward and visuals, as time is a valuable commodity with so many things pulling for our attention. A website needs to capture quickly the visitors attention and lead them quickly to a call to action that can create additional interaction. I have experience creating professional looking websites in the private, public, and non-profit sectors.
Buy Domain Cost
The purchasing of a domain and annual registration fees causes confusion by those new to owning a website. Many times this gets confused with hosting a website, and I have run into questions about why do I have to pay a yearly fee for my website. First off you need to understand the difference between owning a website domain name and hosting a website.
A domain name is an address a web user will go to access your website. Just like a physical address like 236 Eastman St. You can then use the following steps to find out your domain name eligibility, purchase and then register.
Step 1: You have first to check if the domain name is available you can do this by using a site like Register.com or by searching “domain name availability” in your search engine of choice. You will have several different options of choice on the first page of the search. You can also first search for a web host (see “Web Hosting” below)
Step 2: Once you find out the availability of a website you can then buy the domain name. If you purchase through a web host, you can receive a discount. However, it is important to note that many web hose limit how long you can register a website. There is an accepted theory that web domains with shorter registrations impact your websites ranking in search engines. My advice is not to use the web host for domain registration.
Step 3: Now you have a registered domain and if you then decide if would like a web-hosting package. If you have purchased the domain name separately from your web host, you can then begin a search for a web host.
Once you have an address, you need a place for that address to live, and that is where a web host comes into play. You can then use the following steps to select a web host.
Step 1: Do your research! I cannot empathize enough the importance of studying the decision of which web host to choose. Web hosts vary in price based on how much space and speed your site needs. There is also now the inclusion of web development platforms in the marketplace. You may have seen commercials for these types of platforms; one example would be Squarespace. Web development platforms promise the ability to create own your website at a reasonable price. I have thoughts on these types of web host under “Investment of Experience and Time.”
Step 2: After choosing your web host. You now much decide on which package and tempting as it may be to go with the lowest price make sure you understand what each package has to offer. If you are looking to create a simple personal site with your contact information and accomplishments that consist of 3-5 pages, you will not need anything expensive. If you are planning on selling products and will need at minimum 10-15 pages, a shopping cart, a large amount of space to hold product images, and a robust database then you will need one of the more expensive. The reason is if say you cut corners with one of the smaller packages, and your online store becomes successful you are risking the website becoming extremely slow of crashing. The causes of a website crash are too much traffic, running out of hard drive space due to the many image files needed to run a web store. Please make sure you are picking the correct package and this is where I have experience helping businesses and can help you.
Step 3: If you registered the domain name with a different company other than the web host once you complete the web host order you must retrieve the domain name servers (DNS). Domain name servers are the Internet’s equivalent of a phone book. They maintain a directory of domain names and translate them to Internet Protocol (IP) addresses. If you are on a computer right now, your machine has accessed my website based on IP address. Each server has an IP address and DNS. You must apply the server’s DNS addresses to your domain names servers. In the event, you need to change domain names this can be done very easily by removing the DNS from your current domain and then applying to your new domain without having to make any changes to the server.
Investment of Experience and Time
You cannot place a price tag on the experience. What I bring to a project is something you cannot get from web development platforms like Wix, Weebly, or the previously mentioned Squarespace. If you are looking for something quick, inexpensive, and cookie-cutter than these sites are for you. The most you usually can expect to spend when you include yearly domain registration is a little under $150 per year. Of course, this expense is very appealing. But, remember when you run a business what differentiates you from your future and a current competitor is paramount. Remember you have to invest time in website maintenance, search engine optimization, and website optimization, time taking away from your primary goal of finding customers. When you work with me, I find out your personal goals and then create a website that speaks to your business. I have a minimum, one-month engagement period and roughly a monthly rate of $10,000–$15,000+ depending on your project. If you are still trying to figure out what is your brand identity I can help you there as well. Don’t be afraid to contact me even if your business is at the idea stage.