This is usually the first question I get asked by most prospective customers looking to have a new busines website created for their enterprise. When I reply with Pixelfire’s website design cost is $2500 people are usually surprised that building a website can cost so much.
The likes of Wix, Weebly and other quick website builders have given many people the misconception a website can be created in minutes. It is true - picking a pretty template takes minutes. Building a website for a business takes many hours especially if you want your business website found online.
So what goes into creating a website?
To create a successful website for your business we need to understand what you are trying to sell and who you are trying to sell to. Knowing these factors affects the design, content, structure and functionality of a website.
Website Planning - When it comes to planning a website we need to work out a sitemap. A sitemap lets us see the entire structure of a sites pages at a glance. In addition to this we also need to decide on the websites functionality. Will we be selling products online, take bookings or just want visitors to call etc.
Website Design - Once the website planning is complete we will have a better idea on how to design your website because we have a goal in mind. A website can be ‘designed’ to funnel visitors to take a specific action. For example, if we want people to call you we can design the site with this ‘call to action’ in mind and make a feature of it with a CALL NOW! button
This is where many theme’s or templates don’t deliver because they are generic and the design cannot account for how you want to funnel visitors on your site.
SEO - Search Engine Optimisation is probably one of the most important factors you need to get right on your site. This involves researching the keyword phrases people use to find the service and products you provide. Once we have those keyword phrases we then need to write your Home, About & Service pages ensuring they have the correct keyword density for your website subject matter.
Other SEO work would involve submitting your site to Google, blogging, & acquiring backlinks from other sites pointing to your site.
Website Development - Web development means building the custom design into a working template for the CMS (Content Management System) your site will operate on. I get people coming to me saying they want WordPress but they don’t know what they're asking for or if it’s even applicable.
WordPress - is good for small business websites where the site owner wants to write frequent blogs or may want to sell a few items in the future. WordPress does have many more plugins than Joomla but I find it quite slow from my own personal experience with it.
Joomla - is a robust CMS ideal for medium to large business set ups and feels much quicker than WordPress. There are also many extensions for Joomla that extend the CMS functionality to requirements.
OpenCart - For ecommerce website design I like to use OpenCart because the whole CMS has been designed specifically with this task in mind. Yes - it is possible to add WooCommerce to WordPress but I have found this plugin slow going and bit clunky.
Website Launch - Once you site has been tested it’s time to launch your new site. Part of the launch process involves submitting your site page URL’s to Google. Simply submitting your site to Google doesn’t guarantee you on page one. That can take months and for that you need to engage in online website marketing strategies such as Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Blogging, Backlinking etc..
You can see there are quite a few processes in preparing, building and maintaining a website. Those processes also take time to do properly.
So next time a web designer tells you I can build you a site for $500 think twice! A $500 website gets you a pretty picture at best and you'll be $500 lighter for it.