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How much does a website cost? (Guide in 2023)

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how much does it cost to build a website

So, how much does it cost to make a website? While you can get a basic website online for free, depending on the type of website you need, you may want to incorporate paid features or hire a web designer. Additional storage, apps that increase your capabilities and a customized domain name are all elements that can increase the cost.

When the internet became available to the general public in the early 1990s, no one could guess how much this service would impact our daily lives. At the time, going online was such a novel and costly notion - people didn’t have a complete understanding of what that would mean for us in the future.

Well, fast forward 25 years later and the secret’s out: an online presence is no longer an option, or even considered a luxury. Creating a website is an absolute necessity, and an incredibly affordable one at that.

In this article, we’ve broken down the primary elements of a website and some of the most popular types to give you a clearer picture of the final costs. Then when you’re ready to build your site, we recommend checking out our entire website checklist to help you customize it, from start to finish. You can also take a look at how long it takes to build a website to help you set your expectations from the start.

What are the primary elements of a website?

Whether you’re creating a blog, with a blog maker or AI website builder, or an online store, all websites have several main features: the website design and interface, web hosting, domain name, templates and the website builder. Since each of these components can independently contribute to the total website cost, it’s important to understand the specifics of each one.

primary elements of a website

Website design & interface

Arguably the most essential part of any website is design. A site’s visual content, including text, imagery and layout, are what visitors see and interact with when they first arrive at your homepage. Much like any first impression, a website’s design can have a huge impact on how visitors feel about your product or service. A successful interface will enable your visitors to fluidly navigate your site and provide them with an all-around positive user experience. Think carefully about your web design inspiration before planning your site and its eventual cost. You'll also want to eventually think in more detail about how your site will not only look but behave, as you consider both responsive vs adaptive websites.

The design you choose for your site is incredibly important to your branding, and increasing brand awareness. The elements you choose for your site, including your logo and other design features can have a huge impact on the branding of your website. Logos can be created for free, or sometimes for a cost, depending on if you use a logo maker or designer.

Web hosting

Web hosting allows your site to go live online and is a vital part of your website infrastructure. To be visible on the internet, websites need to be hosted on a server, which stores the information on your site so that it appears on visitors’ screen.You can either choose a website provider with built in hosting, like Wix, or acquire the two services separately. Web hosting can vary in cost, with website builders like Wix it's free, but if you go with a web hosting provider you'll need to pay. Generally shared hosting is a cheaper option than other types, say dedicated hosting. In recent years cloud hosting has developed as a viable, reliable and affordable hosting option for many website creators.

It's important that your site's web hosting is not only reliable but secure also. Cybersecurity is a real and growing threat to online businesses and sites on a large scale. Make sure the hosting you choose comes with advanced security protection.

When contemplating the cost of making a website you'll also want to consider the cost of an SSL/TLS certificate (public key certification). These certificates provide essential online encryption and authentication, ensuring that the data transmitted between the website and its users remains private and cannot be intercepted or tampered with. For anyone making a website obtaining an SSL/TLS certificate is essential for securing the website and building trust with visitors. When creating a secure website consider the following public key certification options;

Paid certificates: There are various types of SSL/TLS certificates available, ranging from basic domain validation (DV) certificates to more advanced organization validation (OV) and extended validation (EV) certificates. DV certificates are the most affordable option and are suitable for most small websites. The cost can range from around $10 to $100 per year, depending on the certificate provider and features included.

Free certificates: Some certificate authorities, such as Let's Encrypt, offer free SSL/TLS certificates. These certificates are suitable for most websites and provide the necessary encryption and authentication. However, they may have limitations, such as shorter validity periods (typically 90 days) and a more manual renewal process.

Hosting provider and website builder options: Some web hosting providers offer SSL/TLS certificates as part of their hosting packages. It's worth checking if your hosting provider includes a free SSL/TLS certificate or offers affordable options for obtaining one.

Looking for the highest levels of security? You might also want to consider an extended validation certificate.

Domain name

Just as you need an address to arrive at a physical location, you also need an address to arrive at a website. A web address is called a domain name, and a successful one will make your website easily identifiable, professional and stand out. Your domain name helps solidify your brand identity and provides visitors with a sense of reliability and dependability. You'll need to pay, usually, to use a domain name registrar and make it yours. This registration will also need to be renewed on a regular basis, usually annually. Need to check if your domain name choice is available? Domain name availability checkers tend to come with no cost. With WHOIS, as an example, you can also check name availability, plus who domain names are registered to.


If you're building a website, templates or themes are an important element of the process. They enable you to build a personal or professional site faster and without needing advanced web design input. Building a website with Wix? Choose from 800+ professionally designed website templates for pretty much any type of website.

Content management system (CMS)

A content management system, or CMS, is a software application or platform that allows you as a website owner or administrator to create, manage, and modify digital content on your site without extensive technical knowledge or coding skills. A CMS simplifies the process of website maintenance and publishing content from a database, in essence. It's relevant for all types of websites, but more so for blogs and other content heavy sites.

Website builder

Choose the right website builder and the other elements of your website creation, the domain, hosting, CMS, web design and templates, can be taken care of for you. With Wix, every website built includes access to hundreds of templates and reliable, secure web hosting. Connect to a premium account and you'll also have access to your own domain name. Essentially with a yearly website builder subscription, all of the main elements of a website are included within the price.

domain name cost

How much does a website actually cost?

There are a few main factors to consider when thinking of pricing.

First, consider whether you want to use a website builder like Wix that provides you with templates and intuitive tools to create your own site. Alternatively, you can always hire a web designer to create a website for you, which of course comes at an additional cost.

Also, what you ultimately pay for your website will vary depending on your specific site needs. With Wix, you can create and publish any basic site for free. However, there are additional costs to be aware of if you want to include additional features or upgrade to a Premium website. Static websites are also usually more cost effective over time compared to dynamic websites.

Therefore, we have created a breakdown based on different types of websites so you can easily discern what your website might cost if you create it yourself on Wix.

To better understand the information in the chart above, let’s break down the costs of some of the main types of websites:


So you’ve decided to create a blog and start sharing your experiences online. Whether you are creating a blog website or adding a blog to your existing site, you won’t need to break the bank. All in all, a blog website is one of the cheapest options out there. While creating a standard blog won’t cost you anything with Wix’s tools, what will cost money is a domain name as well as additional apps and storage to upload unlimited posts and images.

Cost of blog using a website builder: Free

Cost of web hosting: Free

Customized domain and advanced features per month: US$23-49

Hiring a web designer: $15-1,000+

eCommerce website

With close to 2 billion online shoppers out there, the world isn’t moving toward digital business models - it’s arrived. That’s why starting an online store is a great option for making money online.

To connect your own domain, accept payments online and grow your business, you’ll need to pay a small monthly fee. As mentioned above, this will cost you anywhere between $23.00 and $49.00 a month depending on how dynamic you want your site to be.

You might have also noticed that there is a very large price range to hire a designer for an eCommerce website. That’s because many eCommerce sites have many moving parts and can get a bit complicated. Having said that, a pre-made eCommerce website template will also help you navigate the labyrinth that is online stores so you can create your own.

Cost of blog using a website builder: Free

Cost of web hosting: Free

Customized domain and advanced features per month: US$34-64

Hiring a web designer: $25-5,000+

Event website

Whether you’re planning a wedding, hosting a webinar or anything in between, an event website can help you get organized. Event websites are unique because they are often short term in nature. This means that you may not be looking to put a lot of money into your site.

All in all, you should only have to pay $14/month to have your own domain. With a monthly payment option, you’ll only pay for the relevant time that you want your event site up and running. And if you want to include additional features, such as a bookings app ($17/month) to schedule appointments or sell tickets online, you’ll need to factor these into your final cost.

Cost of blog using a website builder: Free

Cost of web hosting: Free

Customized domain and advanced features per month: US$23-49

Hiring a web designer: $15-1,000+

Design portfolio

A portfolio website is essential for any creative professional to showcase their work, including graphic designers, UX designers and architects. Because portfolio websites mainly constitute images, videos and text, you’ll likely need a good amount of website storage. For example, an $18.00 per month plan gets you 10 GB of storage and enables you to keep an hour of video on your site.

Cost of blog using a website builder: Free

Cost of web hosting: Free

Customized domain and advanced features per month: US$23-49

Hiring a web designer: $15-1,000+

What are additional website costs?

Once you’ve designed your site, you may want to incorporate additional features to enhance the experience. Here are some additional website costs to consider.

SEO tools

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of incorporating relevant keywords, content and structure onto your website to increase its ranking on search engines, like Google. It’s the best way to bring in organic traffic and compete with similar websites on the search engine results page (SERP).

To get started, check out Wix SEO for free to get ideas on how you can best navigate the SEO landscape. However, it’s good practice to take advantage of an SEO tool to pinpoint keywords you can strategically incorporate into your content. Google Adwords Keyword Planner and Answer the Public are free options you can try. However, if you really want to invest in your SEO strategy, it’s worth purchasing an advanced SEO tool, such as Ahrefs ($99-$999/month) or SEMRush ($119.95-$449.95/month).

website analytics - how much does a website cost

Analytics tools

Website analytics are the best way to measure your site’s performance. They allow you to assess important statistics such as website traffic, bounce rate, clicks and page duration so you can determine your site's success. In turn, knowing this information can help you make better business decisions. With Wix, you get a free, user-friendly analytics interface built in free for your first year of use. However, there are a variety of other programs on the market - perhaps the best known analytics software for business being Google Analytics (GA). While GA does offer a free version, you’ll need to purchase GA 360 to utilize the more advanced features, which runs at $150,000/year.

Additional website features and apps

Creativity and a solid user experience are the crux of any good website. Another way you can enhance these elements is by incorporating apps into your design. They allow you to integrate additional features that may be beneficial for business or your overall aesthetic. Two examples include forum apps to share information and communicate with site visitors and apps to create coupons and build sales leads. While some apps are free, others are not and you’ll need to decide which ones make the most sense for your site.

Should you hire a web designer to build a website?

Now that you know how much it costs to make a website, you still have a tough decision to make. Should you hire someone to create your site for you or should you do it yourself?

This ultimately depends on your budget and free time. If you’re on a budget, DIYing a site is certainly a good option. There are tons of available designer-made website templates out there that can help you create a professional site, with little effort. Plus, using a WYSIWYG software like the Wix Editor reveals real-time design changes and edits to the user interface.

However, keep in mind that tweaking your site to look exactly the way you want it could take some time, so make sure that you have the free time to take that task on.

You can always hire a web designer to build you a professional website. The price can vary dramatically depending on the complexity of your site, but this ensures that your site will:

  • Be completed in a designated amount of time

  • Contain the most up to date trends and features

  • Provide a flawless user experience

  • Fit your vision

This is a great option for someone who may not have the time to create their own site and has the financial backing to outsource the project.

Once you've built your site, you can think about how to monetize your website and get it working to promote your business.

Should you hire a web developer to build your website?

Hiring a web developer to create your website can be a good option, especially if you don't have time to build the website yourself and if your site requires advanced functionality. A professional web developer can bring expertise, creativity, and technical proficiency to ensure your website meets your specific requirements and delivers a high-quality user experience. The growing number of open source website building platforms, like Wix Headless, makes this a viable option for some businesses.

The cost of hiring a web developer can vary significantly based on several factors, including the complexity and scope of your website. Basic websites with a few pages and simple functionality will generally cost less than complex websites with advanced features, e-Commerce capabilities (payment gateways, shopping car functionality), custom designs, or integration with databases or third-party systems. Customized website designs also often require more time and effort from the web developer, which can impact the cost.

The experience level and geographic location of the web developer can affect the cost. Developers with more experience and expertise generally charge higher rates.

If you require additional services like content creation, search engine optimization (SEO), marketing, advertising and copywriting services, as well as ongoing website maintenance, and updates this may mean additional costs. Discuss these requirements with the developer before they start creating your site to determine if they are included in the initial cost or require separate arrangements.

As a very rough guideline, basic websites built by freelance web developers can start from a few hundred dollars and increase with complexity and customization requirements.

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