“Money alone sets all the world in motion.” – Publilius Syrus
The question foremost on people’s minds is; “how much is a website going to cost?” It is a logical question, as you want value for your money. We err on the side of caution as we can’t visualise and evaluate whether every cent we spend on something as impalpable as a website, is worth it.
It remains a challenge to pin down set costs for a professional website. You will most likely receive varying costs for designing your site when you ask for an estimate of cost from different web development agencies. Especially when starting with the search term Web Design Auckland. Making the decision on what you are prepared to pay even trickier.
So, how do you decide how much money you are prepared to pay? Here are some guidelines to help your business get a head start.
What should you pay for real value?
Answer: To determine what is of value to your business and to have in mind the outcomes expected of a particular project and its worth to your business.
Let’s explore what it all means; it might be as simple as keeping in touch with and updating your website CMS which includes Joomla, Wordpress, Drupal, etc.
Why does it matter that you keep your CMS version up to date at all times? How is it beneficial to your business? You need to consider what the cost is to your business if you neglect to update to the latest version.
To begin with, you put your security at risk. The main reason is to ensure that you have the most recent version as each update fixes the security flaws found in previous versions. You are vulnerable to being hacked if you are stuck with an older version. Not only will there be an extra cost to your business, but sensitive information such profiles and emails of clients could appear in the public domain, ruining the reputation of your business.
In the second place, an outdated site won’t be up to speed with new technology and advances in technology and will leave you lagging behind, giving your competitors an upper hand.
Lastly, if you are guilty of not bothering to update your website CMS, you won’t have the advantage of new and improved features so that your site maintains a good image. Not only will guests to your website appreciate the effort you put in to keep abreast with changes, but it also hinders damage to your brand.
It boils down the fact, that when you ascertain value; the great likelihood of the initial cost of getting your website designed is much less than the probable cost and instability you are making your business vulnerable to.
On the flip side, what is the value of a more highly successful marketing campaign or marketing strategy to your business?
An excellently, planned, intentioned and designed campaign can assist you in meeting your goals, in establishing a profile, rallying new prospective clients and displaying your brand. You can boost your sales immediately if you sell products online.
How can the owner of a business tell if they are receiving high value for their investment in the digital space?
Answer: The most likely response is; whether it was effective?
It might seem elementary, as too many times a customer is at a loss and wants to know how they can determine it.
As mentioned before, establishing if your investment in web development or digital marketing is of value, depends on what you want your outcomes to be.
For example; Would you like more sales leads? If that is the case, what numbers are you getting from your existing website and how many do you aim to get? Do you primarily want organic traffic? What are the advantages of increasing organic visitors? What length of time do you want visitors to remain on your site? Do you require them to return regularly or do you need them to visit once?
Upon the initial meeting with your agency, having a clear understanding as to what quantifiable outcomes are vital to you and your business.
Making sure that everyone is on the same page, implies that everyone who is part of the team, namely; web designers, strategists, digital marketers to the developers have a clear concept of the expected outcome of the project. It ensures that they develop an effective plan to get maximum from your investment.
Ensure that the project is set up correctly from the start, as it makes it easier to establish whether you are getting bang for your buck, as everything is tracked and benchmarked.
It is important to note that the likelihood of it being a sound investment if you put in the effort and created a business model and other requirements before your meeting with your agency. It eradicates unnecessary time and money spent when you leave your agency to formulate a business plan.
How do your expectations tie in with your budget?
Answer: This is the challenging part. Here is a preliminary guide. However, bear in mind that a reputable agency will give you an estimate of what they can realistically do, taking into account, your budget, at the start of the process.
Be cognisant of the fact that some agencies will quote an unrealistically low figure to get your commitment to choose them. Which inevitably results in them sending varying changes as the project progresses, which will cost you an arm and a leg, counting on the fact that you won’t abandon the project midway through.
For widely used projects worth $20K or more, allocate money in your budget to invest in having a scope done by your web development company.
The investment not only saves time but money in the long term. You are better able to make vital decisions in the initial stages before you are too far in the process of the build.
The results of the scope, depending on the spectrum of the project, could be an outline of the steps of implementing technical specifications. Or it could be a document with fewer details that is, in effect, a Statement of Work, which describes the choice of software used, it’s functionality for various parts of the site and so forth.
It takes time and effort to conduct some research in finding the best solution and to give the exact price. If you want something that stands out in your sector, be willing to pay upfront, so that you save cost later in the process.
Estimate NZD $1,000 – $3,000
This budget is suitable for a basic website. It will most likely act as an online brochure. A basic website might be developed in WordPress or Squarespace using a template or theme.
It is vital to note that when you have a small budget, your website developer will expect you to be cooperative and positive, and to be well prepared with your content. You need to be able to make on the spot decisions and to adhere to it, have clarity about outcomes and to be realistic about timeframes. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for people with small budgets to take up additional time due to lack of organisation. It might not be accounted for when the quote was given. Therefore, the web company becomes less engaged and co-operative as would be expected.
Estimate NZD $3,000 – $7,000
Most of the small business sites fall into this category, providing the site does not have plenty of sophisticated functionality. The site might incorporate a contact form, social media feeds, a blog and pages about your services, business and staff.
The top end of this category might include e-commerce functionality, using something like Shopify or WordPress WooCommerce.
From a design viewpoint, these sites are more likely to start from a theme base or template site, however with some added customisation than in lower category.
Estimate NZD $7,000 – $12,000
With this type of budget, you can build a custom site. It won’t have a broad range of features and functionality. Contrary to what you may think, opting for a template site which costs a bit less will be more value for money than a custom designed site in this category.
You have to ask yourself whether you would like your site to stand apart from others, designed to enhance your brand. Or, would you rather have a few more features and opt to have a template that is not distinct from other variations in the market.
Estimate NZD $12,000 – $20,000
In this price range, there is leeway to incorporate much more functionality, which compromises of complex forms for various types of organisations, namely; member subscriptions with renewal reminders as well as a database attached.
In addition to the features mentioned, it will probably include a news or blog section, as well as, searchable content, custom designs for mobile and the web, and social media integration. Some serious SEO work would be undertaken, optimising your pages as the site is being built, a term such as web design auckland could be worked in.
Estimate NZD $20,000 – $30,000
At this estimated expenditure specific functionality needs to be entirely customised or built to your needs and frequently to merge with your existing systems.
Design, in great likelihood, is tailored for the web and mobile, as well as other functionality attached, like e-mail marketing integration and events calendar.
Estimate NZD $30,000 +
Over and above, this range also includes, an entire tailored design and build, with multi-lingual and international content, occasionally numerous sites on one installation, ecommerce website functionality, other systems integration and complex forms.
The sight might incorporate other possible functionality which includes login areas for members, member editable areas and profiles, distributors with a database of resources, message boards and forums; integrated news feeds from other sources through RSS integrations with retail POS systems, marketing automation and so forth.
Guideline: Unique equates to more dollars
Based on experience, the more distinctive and intricate you would like the site to be the more money you need to fork out. Hence, it takes longer to build.
With technological advancements, the web templates accessible develop into bigger, appealing and more professional looking sites at a more reasonable investment compared to two or three years ago.
Depending on what you are looking for, whether it be a professional looking web presence that permits you to add content without much effort and manage the site, it is doable for less than $10,000 and possibly less than $5000.
It is important to note that if you choose to go with the lowest offer, and the company is based abroad, it will require more of your time to wade through everything and think of appropriate questions and answers than you would with a local company, whereby the initial cost is more.
For information on how you can get value for your money, give us a call or drop us a line.
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Hart Design - Crafting Digital Experiences That Excite & Inspire
Hart Design is a creative studio, based in Auckland. We specialise in digital marketing, brand strategy and web development. Hart Design provides a wealth of skills and experience in marketing strategy and graphic design,delivering a unique service to businesses looking to grow. We create visually impactful, functional, and thoughtful websites, inbound marketing campaigns and print materials that support your brand and engage your users.