Cost of site development

Cost of creating a website is a relevant issue, because in time of online technologies, websites are the main sources of obtaining various information. Cost is largely determined by the quality of design and functionality, which depends on what kind of site you want to create. Let’s try to make aggregated calculations to understand what you need to be prepared for.

Where to begin?

To spend money rationally, consider a number of factors that will affect the final amount.

Functionality depends on goals and potential audience of site. But it should be borne in mind that even in narrow topics there can be complex implementation mechanisms. For example, if we are talking about a photographer’s portfolio, then image can be simply inserted into the HTML code, or you can create a beautiful animation, a complex behavior algorithm (flipping, hovering, shifting, etc. when hovering/scrolling pages, etc.).

Therefore, the answer to the question “how much will it cost to create a website” is very difficult. Somewhere you can get by with ready-made solutions or create the page yourself for free, and somewhere you will have to invest substantial funds.

In general, if you need to create a site, you have three options:

Option #1: Do it yourself. Content management systems (CMS) or online builders (cloud site creation services) can help you with this. The option can be completely free, but will require a minimum of special knowledge, development experience and, of course, time to master the programs.

Option #2: Buy ready. It’s quick and easy, but there are pitfalls and you need to be very careful. We will consider why below.

Option #3: Order “turnkey” from professional developers. This option will be more expensive, but offset by a number of advantages.

Now some details below.


Option #1: Build a website yourself

The option seems to be the simplest and most affordable, but it requires a lot of time, although undoubtedly it can be an exciting journey, where you will gain new knowledge and satisfaction, and, of course, you can save money! Especially since you have assistants.

  1. First, these are classic CMS systems installed on your server. Many developers offer to download and use CMS for free, these are CMS such as WordPress or uKit. They will help you step by step to create a website with your own hands.
  2. The second option is online site builders, when all resources are managed by the provider, and you assemble your site the way you like, even without special knowledge. You don’t need to install anything; all the necessary resources are managed by the service provider.


  • You can make the site the way you see it, starting with the basic functionality and further growing your project, supplementing it with the necessary options.
  • You will immerse yourself in the development process, discover a lot of new things.
  • The cheapest variant – many tasks have free options that will save you money.


  • You are spending your most valuable resource – time, and time is money, so it’s up to you to decide how you use it. There is an opinion that by choosing the option of creating a site on your own, you can save a lot, and this is true on the one hand. On the other hand, you need to calculate the lost value of spending money on something you don’t do best. But again, this is a new experience, so it’s up to you!
  • The end result is not always top-notch considering you is a beginner.


  • If you make the site entirely yourself, using free tools, CMS, etc., then the final product will cost you shareware. When picking a CMS, the cost of the site will directly depend on the combination: the cost of the CMS itself + template / theme + necessary plugins / add-ons. In some cases, this combination can be absolutely free, in others – up to $80.
  • Online builders mostly work on a subscription model (you pay while you use the service). Free plans exist, but their functionality is severely limited. Paid plans range from $2 to $25 per month, and that already includes hosting, security, load balancing, and other technical issues.

Option #2: Buy a ready-made site

You found the right site, you liked it and you buy it, what could be easier? But when buying a ready-made site, difficulties can also arise. It would seem that you are buying an already existing site, which is quite successful and profitable, but everything has pitfalls and positive aspects.


  • You can evaluate the features (interface, security and relevance, set of plug-ins and so on), as well as calculate its payback and possible costs.
  • For the purchase of ready-made sites, there are special trading platforms or auctions that can take on the role of a guarantor of the transaction.


  • You may encounter a dishonest seller who cuts costs too much, and all shortcomings will be revealed after the purchase.
  • Even if the site is of high quality, its functionality may seem inconvenient to you, i.e. purely a human factor.


  • If the site is without content and audience, then the estimate will be determined based on the actual costs incurred by the developer. Prices from 50-100 dollars and above.
  • If we talk about a working site, and not about a “blank”, then the lots can already cost thousands and tens of thousands of dollars. To understand the possible prices, the standard is a return on investment of 10 months (that is, if the site brings about $500 / month, then its cost can be from $5000 and more).

Option #3: Order a turnkey website

Paying for the services of specialists, you get exactly what you need, the main thing is to trust reliable performers who will suit you with their prices and quality of work.


  • Professionally executed site, in the shortest possible time.
  • You don’t need to dive into technical details and do something yourself, but it is important to clearly and distinctly formulate the terms of reference.


  • Price is not cheap.
  • Likelihood of hiring non-professionals.


  • Cost can be quite high if you take into account the full range of additional services, such as SEO promotion, custom design development, etc.
  • But there are more budget options, as the market for website development services is saturated and you have a choice. Sometimes the cost of turnkey website can start from $100.


Having briefly reviewed the information, we see that there are various options for creating a website – from almost free to quite expensive, after all, everyone has their own goals and objectives, their own vision of the final product and an acceptable development budget.

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