How Much Should a Website Design Cost?


A custom-designed website is a significant investment that delivers immense value for small businesses today. However, many business owners are still determining what to budget when planning a new website build or redesign.


Costs can range dramatically from $500 to $15,000+ depending on the size, complexity, and functionality required. With such a wide spectrum, setting realistic expectations is essential to affordably achieving your online goals.


While some fluctuation is normal based on project specifications, most small- to medium-sized business sites range from $2,000 to $10,000. The cost of corporate or enterprise-level sites rises to six figures.


Understanding typical cost ranges and scope considerations allows you to build your budget to meet business needs rather than choosing the cheapest bid.


An effectively executed website that connects you better with customers is worth the investment. We will explore exactly what impacts website design costs and tips to save money while still achieving core goals.


Understanding the Basics of Website Design

Before we delve into the cost of website design, it’s important to understand the basics of what goes into designing a website.

Website design involves combining creative and technical skills to create a visually appealing and functional website.


Some of the key elements of website design include:

Layout and Architecture

The site layout establishes how pages connect, content is organized, and visitors navigate the site.

A site map and wireframes for visualizing page structure are key deliverables. Allow $950+ for the layout direction of a small 10-page site.

Visual Design and Branding

Visual design defines the look and feels through color schemes, fonts, spacing, borders, sizes, imagery styles, custom graphics and animations, and more.


Logo creation starts at around $500. For a completely custom design, allow $904+.

Written Content

High-quality content is essential for keeping visitors engaged. Expect to pay a digital marketing company that offers different website design services and content writing services. Topic research and multiple revisions add cost.

Photography and Imagery

Stock photos generally require licensing fees of $5–25 per image. A 10-page informational site may easily require 10 photos and &29 in total licensing fees. Custom-branded photoshoots cost $500/hour per image.

Functionality and Features

Extra features like member login capabilities, e-commerce, interactive calculators, advanced filtering, or contact forms require custom programming.


Websites need to be able to adapt to different screen sizes these days, especially for mobile devices. Making a site “mobile responsive” means having layouts and styling that automatically adjust based on the device being used.


This usually involves things like flexible page elements and using media queries to apply different CSS rules. To make an existing site mobile-friendly, plan on budgeting at least $500 on top of whatever you spent on the original site design.


For a brand new professional-quality site with around 10 pages, including writing all the text, creating visuals, and setting up a basic content management system, expect to invest somewhere between $500 and $1500 or more.


The final cost can go up from there depending on factors like the number of pages, number of images/graphics, animations, advanced interactivity, membership areas, e-commerce features, etc. And don’t forget that once the initial site is built, you’ll have ongoing expenses for hosting, maintenance, content creation, and so on.

Factors Influencing Website Design Cost

When estimating budgets for a new website build, it is important to understand all the elements impacting overall project pricing.


The major website design cost factors include both one-time fixed fees and recurring ongoing expenses:

One-Time Fixed Fees

1. Design Complexity

The more advanced functionality and custom features your website requires, the more development time and expertise are needed, equating to higher base costs. Complex sites range from $15k–$350k+.


2. Number of Pages

Most quotes estimate pricing based on the number of separate page templates or content sections that must be designed. Additional pages mean more graphics, code, and editing are required.


3. Special Functionality

Incorporating popular features like booking systems, advanced blogs, portfolio filters, e-commerce stores, etc. involves specialized plugin costs and development to integrate with the site’s custom code.


4. Graphics and Media

Websites showcasing many high-resolution images, videos, animations, or illustrations demand expanded creative and production capacity, raising project prices.


5. Copywriting & Content

This professional copy development is typically an added expense if your business requires writing blog posts, product descriptions, or static page text.


6. Search Optimization

Basic SEO should be included, but additional link-building campaigns or specialized optimizations are optional.


Recurring Ongoing Expenses

1. Web Hosting Fees

Pricing generally ranges from around $2.47 per month for entry-level to around &4.56 for a mid-tier option. With shared hosting users share their web server with other websites. The number of other websites could range from a few hundred to thousands.


2. Domain Registration

Owning your custom domain name requires about a $15 annual renewal fee to maintain rights and point to server space.


3. Software Licenses

Many advanced site functionalities use monthly or annual software subscriptions, adding to long-term overhead expenses.


4. Maintenance & Support

Web developers provide ongoing maintenance packages to edit content, check performance, and troubleshoot issues for a monthly or hourly rate to keep your site optimized.


5. Content Creation

Regular blog articles, videos, graphics, or other new content is an impactful but optional recurring cost for site updates.


Carefully evaluating must-have features, future content plans, and long-term goals allows you to set a website design budget aligned with business needs rather than just choosing the cheapest build quote


A strategically executed website is a valuable investment that pays dividends for years to come.

How much does a website builder cost?

The costs may vary for every website, which can range from $0 to more than $500 per month, with annual maintenance costs of $0 to $5400 per year.


How much you pay for your business as a website builder will depend on many factors, including your functional needs.


Website Builder Cost
Wix $23 – $500+ / month
WordPress $7 – $59 / month
Squarespace $16 – $54 / month
GoDaddy $6.99 – $14.99 / month
Weebly $0 – $26 / month
Jimdo $0 – $39 / month

Source: WebFX


You can check out what factors make up website builder costs:


Price Factor Cost
Website builders subscription $0 – $500 / month
Plugins or apps $0–$200, one-time or recurring
Themes $100-$200/ theme
Hosting $24–$10,000 per year
SSL certificate $0 – $1,500 / year
Marketing (SEO, PPC, etc.) $50 – $10,000 / month

Source: WebFX

Average Cost of Website Design

The cost of website design can vary widely depending on the factors mentioned above.

Website design services range from $600 to $1200+. But most small to medium sites cost between $950 to &4800 in total one-time fees.


However, to give you a rough idea, here is a breakdown of the average cost of website design based on different types of websites:


  • Basic Website: A basic website with a simple design and a few pages can cost anywhere from $500 to $1200.
  • Small Business Website: A small business website with more pages and features, such as a blog and contact form, can cost between $950 and $1800.
  • E-commerce Website: An e-commerce website with online shopping functionality can cost between $1800 and $4800 or more, depending on the number of products and customization required.
  • Custom Website: A custom website with a unique design and features can cost upwards of $2400 to &7200 depending on the complexity of the design.


It’s important to note that these are just rough estimates, and the actual cost can vary based on your specific requirements and the designer you choose to work with.

What Impacts Costs Within These Ranges

Many diverse factors influence website build pricing, driving costs as high as $7200+ or keeping budgets as low as $500, depending on a company’s needs.


  • Design Complexity

A basic brochure-style website with text and image content is much less expensive compared to an advanced platform with dynamic interactive features. Complex sites require more design expertise and development time, equating to higher overall costs.

  • Number of Pages

Most website projects quote pricing based on a page number range. A 50-page site costs more than a 10-page site at the same complexity level.

  • Special Functionality

Adding custom features like a booking tool, dynamic menus, portfolio filters, live chat, user logins, an online store, etc. also raises the budget to build specialized code and interfaces.

  • Graphics and Media

Websites featuring numerous high-quality images, videos, animations, and illustrations have expanded production efforts and pricing.

  • Content Development

This writing and editing is typically an additional fee if your business requires copywriting for blog posts, product descriptions, or static page text.

  • SEO Optimization

While basic on-site SEO should be included, specialized optimization and link-building campaigns are added-cost options.


Let’s break down what impacts website design budgets within common ranges.

Entry-Level Websites: $600-$1600

First-time business owners or smaller organizations with a basic web presence need to pay on the lower end of the spectrum for 5- to 10-page websites with:


  • Text/Image Content: The budget pays for page layouts and editing existing materials.
  • Basic Contact Form: Simpler programming needs.
  • Minimalist Design: More affordable styling requires fewer mockup rounds.
  • No Media: Saves creative and production time versus rich graphics and video.
  • Limited Device Optimization: Adapting styles across device screens incurs increased programming time.

Mid-Range Websites: $950-$1800

This wide bracket encompasses most small to midsize business websites with more advanced requirements, like


  • Custom Design Elements: Original icons, animations, and illustrations raise creativity costs.
  • Robust Blogs and News: Programming multi-level content management and keyword tagging tools add development complexity.
  • Portfolio Galleries: Filtering functions, light boxes, and slideshows involve coding efforts.
  • Interactive Features: Custom calculators, live chat integrations, or embedded apps increase specialized labor.
  • Initial SEO Setup: Integrating metadata, tags, and alt text throughout raises content costs slightly

High-End Websites: $1800-$4800+

Enterprise-level sites supporting companies with bigger budgets demand cutting-edge functionality like:


  • Video Integration: Professionally produced video clips add substantial creative and licensing expenses.
  • Animation: Motion graphics with parallax scrolling and cinemagraphs require experienced design talent.
  • Augmented/Virtual Reality: Immersive user experiences are supported through 3D modeling and AI applications.
  • IoT Connectivity: Connecting websites to smart devices and physical hardware involves considerable backend development.
  • Big Data Applications: Custom dashboards to monitor high-traffic volumes and interactions need complex programming.
  • High Traffic Capacity: Performance testing and cloud infrastructure to support millions of visitors raise hosting costs.

Saving Money on Website Design

Now that we’ve covered major factors influencing cost, here are some tips to save money on your website project:


  • Reuse existing copy and assets rather than develop new ones.
  • Choose a simplified design layout with minimal imagery.
  • Limit custom modules and opt for integrated plugins/apps instead.
  • Select a lower-cost monthly hosting plan to start.
  • Focus optimization on critical target keywords, not broad SEO.
  • Install Google Analytics yourself rather than paying a web developer.


Small sacrifices allow you to design an attractive, user-friendly site that fits your budget. However, don’t sacrifice core performance.

Increased Value of Specialized Sites

The perceived higher investment in advanced functionality yields exponential value over time by:


  • Increasing lead capture and sales productivity.
  • Providing predictive analytics and data to optimize operations.
  • Delivering a premium user experience to build loyalty.
  • Enhancing brand prestige and credibility.
  • Future-proofing scalability to add capabilities easily later.


Well-executed specialized sites showcase thought leadership and directly impact revenue, making the investment well worth it.

Tips for Hiring a Website Designer

When hiring a website designer, it’s important to consider the following tips to ensure you get the best value for your money:


  • Check Their Portfolio: Look at the designer’s portfolio to see examples of their previous work and ensure it aligns with your vision.
  • Ask for References: Ask for references from past clients to get an idea of the designer’s reputation and work ethic.
  • Communicate Clearly: Communicate your requirements and expectations to avoid misunderstandings and ensure the final product meets your needs.
  • Consider Long-Term Costs: Factor in long-term costs such as maintenance and updates when budgeting for your website design.

Conclusion: Planning Your Budget

Evaluating these numerous scope considerations may seem difficult when budgeting website costs. However, understanding your key goals, target features, maintenance abilities, and growth runway simplifies setting an optimal budget.


Use the typical small business site cost range of $500-$1,500 as an approximate baseline. Determine the must-have features and functionality needed now versus later stages. Prioritize design elements and copy assets already existing to maximize initial build efficiency.


The most expensive website is not necessarily the best. And the cheapest website is rarely adequate.


Mridula Singh

Mridula is a seasoned content writer whose passion for words is matched only by her talent for creating compelling narratives. With a proven track record of delivering impactful content across diverse platforms, she has firmly established herself as an expert in her field. She excels in crafting web content that not only informs but also inspires. Her digital content strategies are tailored to optimize online presence, engagement, and conversion rates. She has a portfolio that includes articles, blog posts, e-books, and more, all characterized by her distinctive style and commitment to excellence.