If you’re looking for a new website or a refresh, then several factors will play a part in your decision-making process, and one of them will likely be price.
Typically, when you think of a website, you’ll have a one-off cost in mind, and this could be anywhere from £100 to £10,000 or more, depending on your requirements. However, business owners often fail to consider the long-term cost of ownership, i.e., the ongoing cost of maintaining, updating, and hosting your website.
Cost of ownership is something we take very seriously and discuss with our clients right from the start, so they fully understand what they’re signing up for. Sadly, not every agency or freelancer has the same approach.
A real-world example
One of our recent clients came to us after launching their previous website with another web agency. The site was built with Joomla, and they spent around £5,000 in the process, a price they thought was good value for what they believed was a custom new website.
However, it wasn’t entirely up to the standard they had expected. As a result, the client struggled to make even the simplest updates as most of the site had been hard-coded, meaning it was impossible to change the content without the help of a developer. They also found that they were tied into ongoing maintenance and hosting, costing them an additional £400 each month. With an average life expectancy of 2-3 years for most websites, this meant that their new website that was only meant to cost £5,000 would cost closer to £20,000 over its expected lifespan.
The client had also tried to move away from the original agency in search of another partner that could take over the site and help them get it to a good place, but as Joomla is a relatively unsupported platform, they struggled to find someone who could support them (at least at a reasonable price). In the end, they went in search of a new agency and a new platform, which is how we met them.
Unfortunately, this kind of thing is not uncommon in our industry, and this is just one example of a situation that can entrap businesses because of hidden fees, cutting corners and the use of bespoke or niche platforms.
Reducing the overall cost of ownership
There are various ways that we look to help clients avoid this situation and reduce their cost of ownership when creating a new website.
Our sites leverage WordPress, which is the world’s most popular and well-supported content management system (CMS), and many use our Modular Content Builder so that:
- You can manage the website and all the content in-house, with no development skills required to build or edit pages and page layouts.
- You’re not tied in and can easily find a new partner in the future should you want to – WordPress is a widely supported platform with no shortage of agencies and freelancers.
- By investing in a high-quality website and spending more upfront, there will be less chance of needing to pay for upgrades in the future, and the site itself should last longer, meaning you’ll spend less in the long run on upgrades and new sites elsewhere.
This means that the only ongoing cost you’ll have is hosting (find out more about what hosting is and the different types here), which can either be through us or not – it’s entirely up to you.
Buying a cheap website might seem like a good idea, but it’ll cost you in the long run, whether it’s on feature updates, a maintenance contract or, like our client, by having to purchase an entirely new site in less than a couple of years to get what you want.
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