How Much Should a Website Cost?

Digital Nest has been in the website design and marketing space for over 8 years and we get asked these questions daily “how much should website design cost? All I need is one of those $199 – $399 websites right?” This is a simple yet hard question to answer because without understanding the what goes into designing a $199 – $399 website vs. a $1000+ website, all you are comparing is the price. Example, say we are designing a 1 page website with 4 sections and customizing the website to make sure it has originality, looks great and flows & functions perfectly so it is easy to navigate for visitors. This is about a 20 – 40 hour project, depending on the complexity and customization. Now, you need a skilled designer to build the site, on the low side that designer will be earning $25 per hour plus there might be software costs as well. So you are looking at development costs between $500 – $1,000+ to have a proper website built. Then, you will need to make sure the on-page and off-page SEO is completed on the back end of the website, or the website will look good but be invisible online and not generate any business, which is not good, you want your website to help you grow. The SEO work can be another $150 – $350 on this example so the development cost would be between $650 – $1350. So, how is it possible for a website design company to offer a website like this for $199 – $399 because good website designers don’t exist for less than $25 per hour, average being $45-$65 per hour. Even in India, good designers are demanding $15+ per hour minimum. The answer is they have a template website design system that takes them a couple of hours to put together that lacks any of the good design qualities required to be successful online today, plus the SEO typically gets a D or F rating. Now, let’s go over the process in more detail which will help open your eyes and understand what you should pay for a website and expect if you want a successful website project.


There are several things that need to be examined in order to determine what your budget for your website should be considering your goals. So, you need to think about what your website absolutely needs, functionality etc. as this will help in determining a budget. Let’s dig in a little deeper as there are several factors that can change the cost of your website project. Example, do you have content or need professional content written for you, do you have images / videos or do you need them provided, how much custom design is needed like online booking systems, member login, calendar of events, shopping cart etc.

For 50% of our clients they are looking for a professional clean and functional and customized yet contemporary looking website that is 100% responsive to all devices so it looks perfect on desktops and all mobile devices. Plus, a easy to use CMS system with instructions allowing them to easily edit and update simple images and pictures. Also, built to be SEO Friendly so they can market the site and it is designed to rank well on search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. We have a variety of clients from start-ups, service companies and traditional brick and mortar “local businesses” looking for 5-15 page website that showcases their business with strong content explaining and showing exactly what they offer like products, services, service areas and even a little about their staff. And of course the essentials details about the company, lead contact forms, location map and clickable phone number. While the other 50% require a much more detail and extensive website with additional functionality that requires more resources and time to implement.

Questions to ask consider:

– Do you need a New Website or a Website redesign?
– Do you need Blog?
– Do you have content, about us, services etc. or do you need content written for your website? 
– Do you have graphics, pictures already or do you need us to provide images and custom designed graphics??
– Do you want the website to be SEO friendly so new clients can locate you online?
– Do you want a CMS Content Management System to easily change picture and content?
– Is this an E-Commerce website, how many items do you have, do you have pictures and details for all items?
– Do you need a shopping cart or payments to be processes?

– Do you want the website to be secured with an SSL certificate for both your visitors and the sites security?

– Do you need an online booking system / Do you need user login access / Do you need a membership sign-up etc?



What you commonly see today is website budgets being determined by the difficulty of development and the estimated number of hours required to design/redesign the website. The rates are commonly figured out depending on costs and overhead

For example – Big US Based web Design Companies with high overhead will charge between $70 – $275+ per hour. While offshore companies can charge anywhere from $10 – $60 per hour. Then You have you have Individuals / Freelancers that can charge between $20 – $100 per hour. Finally, you have small boutique agencies like ours that do the exact same quality of work as the Big Companies in the US charging between $40 – $150/hr.

Having been in the web design and online marketing business for over 10 years, we don’t recommend hiring a individual freelancer or an offshore team if you are serious about being successful online today, way too risky. 

Creating a strong and ultimately successful website takes a lot of work and more importantly experience and knowledge. Some things that must be considered when designing a website are will the website have strong SEO Roots, will the website be easy to market, will the user experience and design connect with your ideal audience, will your clients connect with the visual design psychologically etc. Without a team and extensive experience and expertise this is hard to find with freelancers and offshore companies. We say this because we redesign tons of these websites monthly. 

Below will give you a very general idea of what similar websites might cost you.







What additional costs are associated with designing and maintaining a website.

Domain name: $10-25 Annually (if you buy multiple years discounts are offered)

Reliable Hosting: $99 to $250+ Annually depending on your needs. 

SSL Certificate: $29 – $99+ Annually 

License or cost of plugins: $0 – $200+ Annually 

Maintenance/Upgrades: $0 – $1,000+ per year, depending your needs.

Stock art: Royalty-free stock art photos and graphics can have a 1 time cost ranging from $15 – $100+ each.

Online Marketing/Advertising and SEO: $100-$2,000+ per month

Most people that read this are serious, the next step is to give us a call at 888-987-8667 or fill out a Contact Us Form and we will call you. Our consultations and education is always free

CALL TODAY 888-987-8667 


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