We speak to business owners on a daily basis who just want to get straight to the point by asking “what is the cost of website design?”.
In this blog, we will break down what the price for website design is and what you should expect for the budget that’s probably already in your mind.
We won’t pull any punches, we’ll give you exactly what to expect for what you want to pay and the effect (or not) that this will have on your business.
Now, don’t get us wrong, we understand that people and businesses all have different budgets, based on their business and their lives. But, we believe that investing in a website should be a serious investment and not one to do half-cocked! There’s also lots of variables to consider (e.g. number of pages), but we’ll generalise this to a typical, 4-5, what’s-called a ‘brochure’ website which is for a service-based business such as an electrician or a plumber.
So, let’s get straight to it – let’s answer the burning question of the cost of website design.
“I want to spend less than £200, what can you do for me?”
If you want a 4-5 page website, £200 isn’t going to get you far. Remember, you are not only paying for the solution, but the web designer’s time, experience and knowledge that they can bring to your project. £200, for a full-time web designer or company, isn’t worth their time. Now, if this is budget is taken to a freelancer who may do web design on the side, then it could be good for them, but it may take longer if they have a full-time job!
A competent website designer needs to come up with a design for the website, build the backend, optimise it to make it responsive across all devices and make it a secure website. It’s highly unlikely that anyone would be able to be profitable for £200 or less, as web designers also have to bear costs for the services they provide, such as software and other standard business costs such as buying paper!
So, to cut a long story short, yes – people will probably make a website for £200, but don’t expect a functional, working website with a great design that works correctly. This could do your business more damage than good.
“I’ve got a budget of £500 for a website, can you make a website for me?”
This is the absolute minimum that we will do any work for, but even then, it’s not worth a lot of web designer’s time. Web designers want to be proud of their work, and let’s be honest – a customer paying you handsomely motivates you to do a great job. A budget of £500 or less doesn’t allow a lot of web designers to allocate the time to your project, the effort to your project and making sure that they can undertake their processes and testing to provide a great website.
Now, that being said, if you’re a small business that needs a very simple website, it is possible. We’d recommend that, if this really is your maximum budget, writing content for your website before you start to look for a website designer, as they will be more likely to take on the project if what you want to say about your business and services is there and ready to go.
If you’re not much of a writer, you can always look for copywriting services on sites like Fiverr or UpWork for relatively cheap, so you could provide them with notes on your services and they will transform it in to high-quality content that you can use on your website.
This is a better budget than £500, but again, web designers need to be profitable for their time and unless it’s a really small project, it may not be worth their time to do it. If it is, then great, hopefully they can provide you with a website you like, but most clients we speak to have done this in the past and then ended up spending more money to put it right, make it work and actually get what they want. Like the old saying goes: ‘if you think it’s expensive to hire a professional, then wait until you hire an amateur’.
“I’m happy to invest £1k in a website, what would I get for that?”
Much better! Now we’re entering the realm of what people typically spend on a basic website. Remember, it’s not just the website design that you see, but the building of the back-end (the foundations), any SEO work, training you need, SEO work, any further coding etc. that makes a great website. A great web designer, with a healthy budget, can free them up and allow them to get more creative and make a better-performing website for you, that you will be happier with. They will also be able to give you more ideas for your website, both in terms of design and content, that you may not have even thought of. Typically, our clients can spend anywhere between £1k – £5k on a brochure website with us, depending on the other features they’d like to invest in for the longevity and improvement of their online presence. It pretty much goes for anything in life – the more you spend, arguably, the better the results should be. Think of buying a car – £2k will get you a little runaround, whereas £20k will probably get you a much nicer car that you really love and you are happy to drive around and show to other people. It’s exactly the same with a website, as it represents you and your business. Having a great website shows that your business can be trusted and this should ultimately lead to more conversions or leads for your business.
So, in a nutshell, yes – £1k is a much better budget and will get you a better website. Maybe you could speak with your web designer to negotiate better payment terms, to help with cash flow.
We typically invoice 50% as a deposit to start the project, followed by the other 50% within 28 days. This means it’s a shorter-term hit on your business finances, but you’re still getting a great service and solution and you can focus on generating more revenue from your business to pay for it!
If your website does start to perform well, you can/should be able to go back to your web designer to ask them what they can do next to improve the website – maybe you could invest in regular blog content, some speed optimisation or maybe some more SEO work?
“I’m serious about my online presence and I’d like to spend around £2500 on it.”
Oof, welcome to Reason8! £2.5k is a great budget for a website as this would not only cover the build and design of the website, but also opens the door to a whole realm of extra features that could improve your website. From caching policies, hotjar installation, further SEO work or code minification, you could really have an outstanding website that’s jam-packed full of information, made to convert and basically puts your lead generation on auto-pilot.
Again, as the old saying goes: ‘the more you put in, the more you get out of it’. This resonates with website design too, as if a customer visits your website and sees a show-stopping, fast, easy-to-use website, they’ll be more inclined to contact you about your services or product. You may even see a faster return on investment as you’ll turbo-charge your lead generation and show people you’re serious about your services and solving their problems.
A higher budget also allows a website designer to allocate more time to your project, perfecting everything along the way and trying new things out. It’s important to note, though, that we at Reason8 take the same approach (as much as possible) to all of our projects.
So, you have to be careful. Web designers, with this budget, will swarm around you and jump on you. We’re not speaking about everyone here, but there are lots of vultures who will take the money and provide a bang-average job, so you need to do your due diligence and really speak to them to find out more about them and their ideas. If you have an existing website and you’d like it re-designed, you could even request a website audit from each company to see what they could improve and to bring their ideas to the table. Go with your gut feeling on that – if something doesn’t feel right or it’s too good to be true, it probably is. The thing is, in web design, no-one can ever guarantee that it will give you results, i.e. make you more money or generate more customers – all it does is increase the likelihood, just like any other marketing you might try out.
Here is an example of a website we made with a budget similar to the above. Take a look at our case study here.
“My business is booming and I’ve got at least £5k to spend on a new website, so I want the best website possible.”
Any web designer should provide you with the absolute best solution and service they can, regardless of your spend. £5k is a great budget, however, you may be throwing a lot of it down the drain. Now, if you’re working with an award-winning web design agency that’s got over 40 staff and a massive office in London, then this is probably the minimum you will spend on a website with them. You’re not only paying for a website but their overheads, so you may get a fantastic website from them. However, the words ‘fantastic’, ‘show-stopping’, ‘the best’, are defined by you as you are the client. What a web designer thinks will work well, you may not agree with, however if they can justify why they’ve done it, you should take that on board.
We are talking about a simple 4-5 page brochure website, which typically consists of:
✓ A homepage
✓ About Us page
✓ Services page
✓ Contact page
✓ Another page such as areas we cover, reviews etc.
If you’re spending £5k or more on a website that contains this, that’s £1k+ per page. That’s not really necessary (however, if you’d like to spend that with us, we won’t stop you!). For this budget, you can definitely expect full SEO optimisation and submission to search engines, performance upgrades and more. What we would recommend, though, if this is definitely what you’d like to spend, is to make your website deeper.
What does that mean?
Well, put it this way – if all of your services are crammed on to one service page, it can do two things:
- Be bad for your SEO, as the page isn’t targeted or tailor-made for that actual service;
- Dis-engage people – if the service they are looking for is at the bottom of the page, they need to scroll through every single one until they find what they want.
Now, with a higher budget, a web designer can:
- Make individual, SEO-optimised pages for each service you offer;
- Engage people and make each page more niche, for example, you could have a contact form at the bottom of each page that asks questions based on that service, which is then more likely to convert a visitor in to a lead.
So, we hope this blog cleared this up for you and answered the question “what is the cost of website design?”, in terms of what you should be looking to spend on a website for your business and how it should give you great value for your investment.
If you are looking for a brand new website for your business, you’d like your existing site re-designed and re-built, OR you’d just like some free advice for your website to improve it yourself, please feel free to get in touch. Websites are our thing, and we love to talk about it. You can even take a look at our web design portfolio here, to see examples of our previous work along with our client reviews (which are ALL 5 stars!).