How Much Does It Cost?

How Much Does Website Design, Creation or Redesign Cost?

Many factors determine costs of design-creation or updating:

  • Whether using a quality well-coded Template
  • the extent of customization (whether template, from scratch, functionality)
  • Whether building a new website as custom or semi-custom, or
  • Redesigning an existing complex, custom or relatively simple site,
  • The type of software/platform to be used,
  • Whether some of the old code or sections can be retained,
  • The budget and resources available to upkeep and promote it.

These are only SOME of the factors to be considered for a decision.

We often find that a client can save money and time by customizing a quality template to the look and content they want. Or we can clean and simplify the code to save time and money on design and updates. We will explain "direct costs" and the costs of different choices, but we want to make four major "cost" points very clear:

  • Basic direct costs are usually less than long-term costs and impacts of a badly-designed costly-to-maintain site and wasted years trying to make it work and adjust it. The business impact is huge: It gives the wrong message or fails to communicating with customers while damaging company morale, taking time from other work. It may even confuse, mislead or impede a better marketing strategy.
  • There's a lot to know relating to indirect costs about design priorities, possible pitfalls-risks/vulnerabilities, compatibility, transportability, hosting and server issues, limits and problems with CMS-site generators (especially images), image management, code maintenance, monitoring, etc.---which all bear on total costs and impact on the business (including frustration, damaged attitudes and morale when a project fails to meet potential because it was not planned and managed correctly).
  • Intelligent management looks at "Life-Cycle" cost to balance direct front-end costs with long-term costs and impacts: maintenance costs, usability, ease of repair, flexibility, effectiveness and impact on the business and staff/management), time requirements, and other factors which add up to way more cost or value impact than first costs.
  • Long-term Promotion and selling effectiveness are the most important costly functions integral to design that may be overlooked, due to "average" designers. Ask yourself why NOT ONE web design company besides BG Design cautions the crucial design choices from careful planning of promotion based on time restraints, skills, resources and budget of the company in choosing to emphasize paid or organic or other promotion; The answer is ... they never even thought about it! (Do you want that kind of ineptitude guiding your web presence?) Without correct promotion, a site is usually a waste of time and money (there are exceptions, when it is an adjunct to sales agents, etc.).

Novices in business seldom think about any of this, to their later surprise (IF they ever understand some of it). Their thinking is "2-dimensional". They listen to bad advice. They don't see the big picture They get beaten by smarter competitors.

We cover these important issues in depth in our articles.

Don't be fooled. There is NO Free Lunch. Anything cheap is cheap for a reason. Big companies pay WAY MORE to get the kind of work we do done, even more exhaustively, and their sites cost tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars or more---for good reasons.

Basically you get what you pay for, pretty much. You can get a quick cheap and dirty site to get started, and to draft and play at it for a while, but eventually you need a professional business website. You should at least know the differences.

Although we believe her estimates are about 30% low in some cases, we suggest you view an independent authority's estimates of what web design costs were recently, at Read the mid and lower part carefully and note her more complete website estimates.

Keep in mind we disagree with this expert as to desirability of certain suggestions, such as Flash, and find her estimates on handling images and graphics work to be a bit low. She is correct that CMS sites just often don't cut it in the mid to long run, and transition from them becomes an expensive nightmare. Use them as little as possible and for separate special purposes. We can provide editable areas on pages.

Life Cycle Costing, Impact and Opportunity to Beat "Seat of the Pants" Competitors (most):

In sum, we urge you to look at Life-Cycle and "Impact" costs, and whether the time and effort over 2 or 3 years will be wasted (even if direct costs were cheap) and have a negative impact and risks, or whether it will help the business improve and sell at the lowest cost over 3 to 6 years.

Capable, educated management will not only think about all these factors, they will utilize the site design process to refine or review part of their all-important marketing strategy. (Real companies have formal strategies based on competition research, SWOT and resources evaluation and product line breadth and positioning. If those are not familiar to you, you should study those crucial points required for success. See Business Sense, D. Thomas)

If the research, planning, and design process not only helps hone the strategy and positioning, and ends up not being inadequate for the job--- a company can come out FAR AHEAD of it's "shoot from the hip", "seat of the pants", "what's the latest fad that's cheap" competitors.

So, understand that slightly higher front-end direct costs and planning can make a HUGE difference in the business and sales: A few hundred dollars more and a little more planning can make tens of thousands of dollars difference in outcome and impact over the 4 to 6 years prime life of a design and code.

If you are seeking a nice new reliable, maintainable, portable, website and have none at present, show us what you like that you see, or something you tried previously, for ideas.

There is No setup fee and NO charge for an estimate on a substantially new site (unless you want tentative designs-at hourly rate). It is a FREE estimate for new sites.

General Cost Ranges for types of work. (Actual work may vary depending on requirements):

Existing sites:

We can manually move/copy your current content into the new mobile responsive template custom tailored to your business look and feel or you may decide to create new content and add new images for a brand new professional image and change of business direction. This is up to you and your business needs.

New Sites:

  • New small Simple HTML Mobile Responsive Website 4-7 pages and 1 form, based on simple Template (for mobile responsive sites, simple is a relative term as even the most simple of these are quite complicated).
  • About $1200 - $1800 (depends on number of images, menu style, 1 main slideshow, added features, how much customization).
  • New Small to Medium-Complexity Site about 7-12 pages, 1 form, a few custom image banners/slideshow images, based on simple to moderate template, customized.
  • About $1800 - $2800.
  • New Medium to large-Complexity Site about 12-18 pages, 2 forms, moderate image installs, simple shopping cart pages (not cart scripts) based on medium complexity template, moderately customized.
  • About $2800 - $3800+. Top end depends on how complex the site and the number of special features added.
  • New fairly complex, moderately large about 16-30 pages, with shopping cart, payment gateway setup, more than 10 images in the main site plus those for about 12-24 products, complex menu system - depends on degree of customization and whether the shopping cart and information pages are separated or incorporated inside the shopping cart.
  • About $3800 - $7800.
  • Note: In the above, you provide appropriate images or add some time for our finding and adapting images. You may use stock photos or have us provide them for about $5 per each for simple images and up to $13 per image for high impact banner images.
  • Generally
  • Pay for hours worked. Estimates give range that work falls within 95% of the time, with points to decide how to continue.