Maybe you’re launching a new business and need a website? Or perhaps you’re looking to take your existing business online.
Whatever situation you find yourself in, getting your first business website can feel confusing.
What features will you need? What about a domain name and web hosting? And, of course, the most important question of all for any business: how much does it cost to build a website?
In this guide we’ll provide you with an overview of the most important considerations when it comes to getting your business online. We’ll also offer a rough idea of how much you should be paying for your website, so you don’t get ripped off.
Let’s get started.
Please note, prices listed in this article were correct at time of publication. Prices are subject to change, and in some cases may be approximate. Please check relevant product pages for current GoDaddy prices.
- Cost of creating a basic website
- Cost of creating a hospitality sector website
- Cost of creating a small to medium ecommerce website
- Cost of creating a large-scale ecommerce website
- Cost of creating a large, bespoke website
- Creating a website with a Website Builder vs using web designer
- The features your website will need
- What you want your website to look like
- What skills you’ll need to create and manage your website
- What your budget for creating a website is
You can expect to pay from around £100 per year for a simple website, with website prices going up to £10,000 and beyond for a very large, complex website.
Read on to learn what you’ll need for your website and how much you should expect to pay. (Please see the note at the end of the “How much does a UK website cost?” section for more information on how prices in this article are calculated.)
Every website is formed of five basic building blocks. The table below provides a rough guide to these tools and their pricing. More detail follows.
|Website feature||Cost upfront|
|SEO and marketing||£0-£500|
You’ll have typed countless domain names before, even if you don’t know what they are. Maybe you’ve called them “website addresses” or similar.
BBC.co.uk is a domain name, for example. So are Service.gov.uk and Netflix.com.
Choosing the right domain name is vital — it is the cornerstone of your business’s online identity.
But you can expect to pay around £0-£30 a year for your domain. Though there are special offers that can bring the cost down, and some domain extensions can cost much more than that a year (check out this post on premium domains).
A website consists of various computer files and all those files need to be stored somewhere — that place is a web server.
A web server is essentially a computer that is always connected to the internet and always switched on.
Now, you could build your own web server for your website, but that is too expensive for many businesses.
That’s why web hosting exists. Essentially, web hosting involves paying a company, such as GoDaddy, to host your website on your behalf.
The cost of web hosting varies greatly — currently at GoDaddy the costs are between £3.99 and £42.99 a month (excluding dedicated servers), although there are special offers that can make set up costs for your website lower.
Web hosting prices vary so much because of the different types of packages on offer, and the package you need will depend on your business requirements. We’ll talk about that later.
If you want to learn more about web hosting, you can check out this guide.
Content includes the words, pictures, videos, infographics and anything else you would like to feature on your website.
Exactly what content you need will depend on the kind of business you’re running and the functionality you want for your website.
For simple websites, it’s likely you’ll be able to create all the content yourself.
But for more complex websites, you may need to hire someone to write copy for your website, and maybe even create images and video.
It’s a good idea to plan what content you need for your website before you decide what kind of website you’ll be creating, as knowing what you need on your website will help you understand the best option for you.
With hacking on the rise, you need to keep your website as secure as possible. You’ll almost certainly want to use an SSL certificate on your website and may want to invest in additional website security software, as this will help you protect your website.
There may be some upfront costs relating to search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing when setting up your website, particularly if you use a web designer.
|Cost of creating a basic website|
|Feature||With a web designer||With GoDaddy’s Website Builder (Basic)|
|Website Builder annual cost||N/A||£119.88/year (but look out for sales)
|Domain name||£15/year||£15/year (free for first year)|
|Cost in first year||£5,115-£10,165
|Ongoing annual cost||£615-£1,165
Some businesses don’t need a website with hundreds of pages. Sometimes a few core pages will do:
- Details of your services
- Your startup story
- Quotes from your happy customers
- Your contact details
You might want a few added extras, such as a blog or links to your social media accounts, but nothing too fancy.
This kind of website tends to be suitable for tradesmen, freelancers and other kinds of businesspeople who will be generating leads from their site but not looking to attract customers through the door.
|Cost of creating a hospitality sector website|
|Feature||With a web designer||With GoDaddy’s Website Builder (Premium)|
|Website Builder annual cost||N/A||£203.88|
|Domain name||£15/year||£15/year (free for first year)|
|Cost in first year||£5,115-£10,115||£203.88|
|Ongoing annual cost||£1,115||£218.88|
If you’re running a cafe, restaurant, bar, or similar business you’ll have a couple of main priorities. The first is to let people know what you serve, and the second is to let them know where you serve it.
Clearly, including things such as a menu page, photos, comments and reviews, a map and directions, as well as a way to contact and perhaps even book with you will be your highest priority.
You may also want a blog or news section to keep your customers updated about events and special offers.
|Cost of creating a small to medium ecommerce website|
|Feature||With a web designer||With GoDaddy’s Online Store|
|Online Store annual cost||N/A||£239.88|
|Domain name||£15/year||£15/year (first year free)|
|Cost in first year||£5,305-£10,305||£239.88|
|Ongoing annual cost||£2,305+||£254.88|
Maybe you have an existing real-world business that sells products and you’re looking to branch out online. Or perhaps you’re setting up a dedicated ecommerce business.
Either way, it’s clear that the main focus of your website will be on the products you sell. You’ll also need supporting content, such as contact details, a returns policy, a blog, support pages and anything else that fits with your business.
And if you’re also running a real-world business, you’ll want to include a map and directions too.
|Cost of creating a large ecommerce website|
|Feature||With a web designer|
|Cost in first year||£7,700-£20,700|
|Ongoing annual cost||£4,200+|
If you’re planning on selling thousands upon thousands of products (GoDaddy allows up to 5,000 products), or you have other complex requirements, then you’ll need a more powerful website.
As you’ve might have guessed, this will cost you more.
For a large ecommerce website, you’ll likely have to employ a specialist web designer and the cost will reflect that.
|Cost of a large, bespoke website|
|Feature||With a web designer|
|Cost in first year||£11,185+/year|
|Ongoing annual cost||£11,185+/year|
If you’ve got big plans, you’ll need a big website and the cost will reflect that.
You’ll certainly have to hire a web designer, and you may end up employing one (or more) on a full-time basis.
Notes on pricing: Web designer costs are approximate (don’t forget to shop around!). Web hosting, SSL and domain name prices are approximate and exclude any special offers that may be available (except for a free domain with the first year of GoDaddy’s Website Builder). Website Builder prices were correct at time of writing, but do not include discount offers that may be available. Total cost of creating your website includes the cost of web design (if applicable), and one year of hosting, SSL certificate and domain name registration.
Both a website builder tool and a web designer can help you to create a great website. The main advantage of a website builder is that it is cheaper, while a web designer will help you achieve a unique look for your site.
Read on to learn more about the pros and cons of using a website builder or a web designer.
Website builders are a great option if you don’t have a large budget and want complete control over your site.
Recent advances in technology mean that website builders are now suitable for all but the largest of websites.
You should consider a using website builder tool if you’re looking to build a:
- Basic website
- Hospitality sector website
- Small ecommerce website
Prices for GoDaddy’s Website Builder start at just £6.99 a month (with an annual plan). As this price includes web hosting, you’ll be hard pressed to find a cheaper option.
Another bonus is that you won’t need to contact your web designer whenever you want to make a change to your site. You’ll just do it yourself — you can even upload photos and make text changes from your phone!
On top of this, our Website Builder tool comes with a host of extra online marketing features to help promote your website.
Web designers can create websites of any size with any functionality, but they often charge a premium for their skills.
That means that while it’s possible to ask a web designer to build you a small site (a brochure-type site, for example) it might not be the most cost-effective option.
After all, you’ll have to pay the fee for the site to be designed, then a monthly fee for your web hosting and perhaps even a monthly maintenance fee to your designer so the site stays in good condition. (You’ll also need to pay for your domain name, as with the website builder option.)
Web designers come into their own when it comes to more complex websites, such as large ecommerce websites and complex, bespoke projects.
Overall, hiring a web designer is likely to cost you more than using a website builder.
If you do need a designer for your project, don’t forget to ask for multiple quotes before agreeing on a price. (And bear in mind that sometimes a low price can be too good to be true.)
If you’re building an ecommerce website, you can read our dedicated guide on how much an ecommerce website should cost.
Planning the website you want to create is a key step to understanding how much it will cost you to build a website.
Before you settle on the method you’re going to use to create a website and how much you’re happy to pay for it you should consider:
Ask yourself these questions:
- How many pages will your website need? This is as simple as listing the major sections you need (e.g. About Us, Contact, Blog).
- Will you need to sell products via your website? This is important, as it requires extra security to protect customers’ banking data.
- Do you need a map (if you have a physical location then the answer is yes).
- How will people get in touch with you — phone, email, text, chat?
Make a list of the features your website will need and the kind of content it requires. If you’re not sure, look at websites that are like the one you want to create and take note of the features and content they have.
Having a strong idea of the look and feel you want for your website can help you choose the provider you want to go with.
Most website builders, like the one offered by GoDaddy, come with quick-start templates. The template you choose will dictate the overall look of your website.
If you plan to use a website builder, make sure:
- The provider offers a template that you like
- You’ll be able to customize the template to meet your needs
You can view GoDaddy Website Builder templates here via the dropdown at the top.
If you want a truly one-of-a-kind look for your website, you’ll have to pay a designer to create it for you.
You don’t need to be able to code to create your own website, but you will need to be comfortable with tech if you want to create a website on your own.
If you’re comfortable with using apps on a phone and find it easy to get to grips with a new one, you should be able to handle a website builder. Bonus tip: GoDaddy’s Website Builder offers a free trial, so you can try before you buy.
If you want to use the advanced features offered by a website builder, you may need to learn some basic coding skills. The same goes for WordPress, although if you’re planning a complex or bespoke WordPress website, then coding is likely to be crucial.
If you don’t think you have the skills needed to create and manage a website, even using a website builder tool, you’re probably going to have to use a web designer. Remember though, this is likely to cost more and you may have to pay for changes and updates to your website.
Bonus: If you use GoDaddy’s Website Builder, you’ll have access to free support from the GoDaddy Guides, so if there’s anything you’re struggling with when creating or updating your website, we should be able to help.
How much can you afford to spend on creating your website? If you’ve got big plans for your website, but don’t have much to spend on it, you’re probably going to have to scale things back.
Remember, you can always start small and expand later.
Not paying attention can end up costing you a pretty penny. Here’s a few tips to help you make sure your website costs what it should.
Shop around – Especially if you plan on using a web designer.
Don’t fork out for features you don’t need – A three-page website doesn’t need a dedicated server! Understand what your website needs, then pay for that and nothing else. If you pick GoDaddy for your website needs, we’ll be able to help you add new features to your website as you need them.
Make sure you go with a reputable provider – If you don’t, you could end up being overcharged or, worse, being overcharged and then having to pay again to get a website that actually does what you want. Check reviews and testimonials for any company or web designer you plan to work with.
The cost of creating a website can range from around £120 to over £10,000. For the average small business, it will be near the bottom end of that range.
Getting a business online no longer needs to be expensive or complicated. The advent of modern website builders means that it’s something the average small business owner can do themselves.