On 6th October 2014, India’s eCommerce giant Flipkart announced the Big Billion Day sale following the festival of light, Diwali. The biggest sale in the country started at 8 AM.
However, it didn’t go as well as expected. Flipkart faced severe criticism from its customers and media as most functionalities went wrong. The server crashed and shopping carts showed glitches tending towards a disaster in the online shopping domain.
Flipkart not only lost its reputation, but it also lost customer’s trust!
A similar blunder occurred when the leading clothing brand Marks & Spencers’s redesigned website was not working with a ‘Bear with us’ sign. The customers completely boycotted the website until the old website was re-launched at the same time.
That’s a lot of effort going in vain.
Whether it is a big billion sale or hosting a redesigned website, each time a business faced huge setbacks with poor services it resulted in furious customers. Such disasters and blunders are the results of the wrong platform, wrong server, and wrong traffic management strategy. These are real-world examples of how businesses fail in maintaining their websites.
How much does it cost to maintain a website?
This question does not have a one-size-fits-all answer. The cost of your website maintenance depends on your business type, products & services, target audience, and choice of templates & designs.
Before discussing the cost, let’s have a brief overview of:
What is Website Maintenance?
Website maintenance is a good practice of checking websites for issues and keeping them updated & relevant.
According to Webstix, website maintenance is “Performing all the tasks necessary to keep a website up to date and in good, working order so that it works and shows up correctly with the latest web browsers and mobile devices.”
Website maintenance includes:
- Content changing & optimizing
- Redesigning banners & headers
- Upgrading software
- Checking error logs
- Cleaning old files
- Reporting website ranking
- Troubleshooting malfunctioning pages, etc.
The Website Maintenance Checklist
The website maintenance checklist includes the followings:
Analytics & Conversions
Search Engine Optimization
Content Grammar & Readability
Website Maintenance Strategy
Having a website maintenance strategy is like having a roof on your house. It empowers you to protect yourself against any unpredictable disasters. Therefore, a website maintenance plan is a hard-and-fast part of any business operation. Website maintenance plans include short-term and long-term plans that help to run your websites flawlessly. The short-term plans are routine check-ups and updates while long-term plans include design, software, and platform transformation.
How much does it cost to build a website?
Have you ever wondered how much does it cost to build a website? This is a need-oriented service which varies from business to business. Commonly, website development cost can range anywhere between $100 and $500. If you are a perfectionist and need a custom-built website, it can cost you around as high as $30,000, and more based on the local infrastructure you have procured to support it.
The primary tools you need to set up a website are:
Domain name (Name of the website)
Around 30% of website owners prefer Wordpress, open-source software. In Wordpress, you don’t need to pay for a domain name & web hosting. So, if you start with Wordpress, the initial website development cost is zero.
Website builder (Platform to build the website)
The market is full of free & premium website builders. Some of the free website builders are Weebly, Ucraft, Strikingly, XPRS, Jimdo, Google Sites, Wix, Wordpress, etc.
Web hosting (Storage space & access)
The web hosting can cost you from $5 to $10 monthly. However, you can go for free web hosting also if you have a small web development budget.
Website development costs are segregated based on size, utilities, infrastructure, and budget as mentioned below:
- Create a small website with a low budget
- Create a feature-rich & advanced website
- Build online stores
- Build custom-made websites
How much does it cost to maintain a website?
We can have a rough idea that the website maintenance cost revolves around the expenditure that is incurred while building and hosting the same. Let’s discuss how much does it cost to maintain a website by segregating the annual cost as per categories.
Registrations & Certificates (Annually: $10-$100)
If you want to be a website owner, the first and foremost requirements are registration & certificates. The domain name registration happens on an annual basis costing around $10. Along with domain name registration, you need to get an SSL Certificate (Secure Socket Layer) which ensures encrypted & secure communication between your website and internet. You can avail SSL certificate in both free and premium versions. The SSL certificate also enhances the result score of your website on a search engine like Google.
Software Plugins & Themes (Annually: $250 to $1000)
Your website development cost also depends on the kind of software plugins and themes you are using for the website. Most of the companies use free Wordpress software plugins & themes for website designing. However, sometimes these are designed by third-parties and you need to pay a yearly subscription fee. Besides, you can pay a ‘one-time’ subscription fee to build the website. In such payment structure, the first year plugins & theme payment gets included and after that, you need to pay the renewal bills sent from the third-party companies.
Hosting & Security (Annually: $150 to $500)
Website hosting & security are imperial parts of website development cost. So this is an impactful factor when we decide how much does it cost to maintain a website. Web hosting & security are fundamental parts of the to-do-list when you plan to own a website. Available in different packages, web hosting services come with its own offers. The less you pay, the more efforts you need to put. If you are ready to pay $5 monthly for hosting, you will desire to have advance security plugins & measures. It will cost you around $30 for such advance hosting & security features along with better support.
Content & Design Updates (Annually: $200 to $1000)
If the content is the king then how you nourish the king to stay powerful? Your web content is a major player that decides your brand image in the market. You cannot run your website with obsolete content. As a website owner, you need to keep update your location, hours, and services if they have changed. Along with content you also need to change the design and most of the companies charge such services on an hourly basis.
Updated content boosts your website ranking on Google.
Marketing Strategy & Analytics (Annually: More than $500)
The website development cost also includes the marketing strategy and analytics you adapt. Your website ranking is the epitome of your online brand performance. You can take the help of some marketing experts and use analytics software. Understanding and learning analytics software is always harder than taking the help of some marketing experts. Both of them may cost you around $500 on an annual basis.
Happy Websites are not impossible to achieve
The primary keys to happy websites are neither premium nor free. It’s your efforts that you strive to put keeping every aspect of your website up-to-date. If you are a smart website owner, it won’t cost you much to maintain the website depending on your choices. Smart decision making comes from smart market insight. Know your market and your target audience before taking a big leap.