If you ask ten different agencies for a quote for a new website, you’ll get ten different prices. I’ve seen websites offering web design services for as low as $199 and I know agencies that won’t take a project for less than $15,000. When you’re in the market for a new website and have never done one before or investigated pricing, how do you know which one is any good? And why are so many so expensive and some so cheap? This makes finding affordable web design services for the average small business owner very difficult.
Is it a misnomer? Do affordable web design services exist? Why is it so hard to find?
The tricky part in the equation is that affordable is an extremely subjective word. What does affordable mean? The actual definition is inexpensive; reasonably priced. However, what’s reasonably priced for one person may be crazy expensive for another. That’s why we frequently see news stories of celebrities going on shopping sprees spending thousands of dollars on ridiculous items and think that’s crazy, but to the super rich person, that probably seemed like a reasonable amount to spend.
If you’ve never hired a web design company, there’s a good chance that you won’t even know where to start when it comes to price. (I feel like that every time I consider a home improvement project.)
The trick here isn’t to find the cheapest company, because in most cases you won’t be happy with their service. The trick is to find a company offering the most value for the cost. What comes with the price? If someone is offering a website for $199, something’s gotta give. What aren’t they giving you? What corners are they cutting? What kind of quality are you going to receive for $199?
Tips for finding affordable web design services
I get a lot of inquiries that start with, “I need a new website, how much does that cost?” To this question, I unfortunately don’t have an answer. Building a website is like building a house. How much does a new house cost? It depends on many things, such as the size of the house, the location, and what kind of features the house has. Web design is not a one size fits all project.
Where to start
DO: Start by looking at websites you like in your industry that are comparable to your business in a few ways, such as size and services. Find out who made those websites and check out those companies. If you like the website they made for another company in your industry, they might do good work for you too.
DON’T: Find the biggest company offering something similar and set that as a model for your website. If your budget is $4,000, your website isn’t going to be “just like Amazon.com.” Using websites for companies that likely have an entire department dedicated to running their website doesn’t give you a realistic idea for what your small business might need.
DO: Ask about options that might reduce your cost. We do a lot of custom website design for our clients, but we actually offer some options for inexpensive websites that start with a template instead of a custom design, with some minor customizations and your content. This gives you the option for a nice looking site that comes together quickly and is super affordable.
DON’T: Seek out overseas people in developing countries just to find a bargain. That’s not to say that there aren’t some great overseas developers, but in exchange for that low rate, you will have to deal with language barriers, cultural differences, and time zone barriers with no real recourse if things go poorly.
DO: Ask about payment options or plans that might make a bigger expense more affordable. A $7,000 investment for your website may be out of the realm of possibility for you to start with, but paying $700 a month for ten months might be something you can manage. Lots of agencies will offer you a variety of options for paying for your site to make it more affordable for you.
DON’T: Choose the cheapest company because they’re the cheapest. Consider many factors such as their experience, their communication style, and their portfolio.
DO: Ask people you know who have websites where they got theirs and if they were happy. There is no better referral than from someone who has already been through the process and had a great experience.
DON’T: Limit yourself to only looking at local companies. Digital services can be offered by many companies across the country and world, and with the availability of many types of communication, there’s no need to be physically in the same room to get a great result.
Navigating the maze to find affordable web design services can be challenging. There are millions of options to sort through, but if you consider these factors, you can find some great options for your new website project.
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