John had a retail store where he sell men and women shoes. He wanted to sell the shoes online and so, he contacted web developers locally. He got a few contact numbers of web developers from online directories and called one of them. As he had a tight budget, he was curious to know how much money he would have to invest in developing his business website.
Telephonic Conversation between John and Web Developer:
I need a business website for selling shoes online. How much does it cost?
What features would you need?
Company profile, products showcasing, and online payment option!
What technology would you like to go for?
What do you suggest?
PHP can be a good option for dynamic website.
Will I be able to manage my site on my own? I have no technical knowledge.
Yes. CMS websites are easy to manage.
How much would that cost?
Let me figure out the features and functionality of the website. I will send you an email with a detailed proposal.
John got an email from the developer in the next 2 hours. The cost of website development proposed by the developer was too high and out of John’s budget. He collected the contact numbers of a few web development companies and by end of the day; he had almost 20 proposals for developing the website for his business. He was confused as to which web development firm he should hire as there was a huge difference between the quotes offered by different service providers.
Anyone who is interested in building a website would have this question in their mind – How much does it cost?
A very basic and simple answer to this would be that the cost of PHP web development would vary as per the requirements.
If you are confused just like John, here are a few tips that can help you save money while developing a website.
One should do a little research for the ongoing market rates to build a PHP website. If you are developing your website for the first time, you may not know what features you would need. You can have a look at some of the competitor websites and jot down the features and functionality that you require.
Factors Affecting the Cost of PHP Website Development
There are several factors that affect the cost of the website development. Some of the common factors are your requirements, features and functionality, target audience, and many more.
- A website would obviously require many images and graphics. You can buy the images in the form of stock images or hire a designer to design the images from the scratch. Purchasing ready-made images is surely an easy and cost-effective method for website designing. It saves a lot of time too. When you opt for stock images, you’ll be able to cut down the costs of website development.
- Clients who want to manage their own content can look for a PHP-based Content Management System (CMS). Open source CMS solutions such as Drupal, WordPress, Magento, etc. are very easy to use and costs low too.
- Interface design, also called visual design, is all about the look-and-feel of your website. It includes your branding, images and photos, and web page layouts. Even if you make use of pre-made templates, you may need additional images and layouts to be redone. You would need to hire a professional graphics designer for the job. Today’s sophisticated visitors won’t even spend a few seconds on your website if they do not find the interface attractive. So, do not make the mistake of skimping interface design while developing a website.
- A ton of extra features can be added by web developers into your website. Your add-on could be blog addition, brand identity development, contact forms, newsletters, SEO, and many more. You may also require a documentation to explain how to manage the website content.
Don’t Forget the Maintenance Cost
Websites do not maintain themselves. Even the best websites need to be updated on a regular basis. Most of the businesses forget to budget the maintenance costs as they think that they would not require it at all or they can manage that on their own. A wise thing would be to keep some extra money for the maintenance costs and look for a maintenance contract. Maintenance contracts vary greatly and hence, choose the right firm to ensure that your website is up all the time. Some web development agencies offer free support and maintenance services for the first year. You should check the same and hire the right agency.
So, How Much does a Website Cost?
For a small business website, you may have to spend as little as $2,000 or as much as $20,000 or even more. Based on your strategic requirements, you can think of a budget and hire the right firm for web development.