How Much Does a Website Cost?

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The Cost of Starting an Online Business

When you’re ready to start an online business, the first questions you should ask is:

How much does a website cost?

Now you may recall that I’ve have mentioned in several posts that it is entirely possible to get started in this business for FREE, totally for FREE.  And I stand behind that statement, but I have also mentioned that doing so will slow your progress dramatically, also true, by the way.

Let’s talk about a more realistic version of staring an online business and getting started with a website.  Now I generally focus my articles on the topic of Affiliate Marketing, because of course I am an Affiliate Marketer and I believe you should be too.  But the information that I talk about in this article are true of any kind of website you wish to build.How much does a website cost

In this introductory article we will explore the following: What will you need to get started?

and What are some of the costs that you might encounter along the way?

There are two things that you will absolutely need:

  • A Domain Name
  • Website Hosting

With respect to purchasing a domain name, you will likely spend more time concerned about which name to buy, than worrying about how much it costs. I generally spend about $12 for a domain name and the cost is annual, so you will pay $12 per year.

A Domain Name will Cost about $12 per year.

With that said, it is possible to get a domain name for much cheaper than $12, and this can be done in more than a few ways. One very common way is to reserve your domain for multiple years. Domain Name Registrars (Companies that are authorized to registrar domain names) will very often reduce the annual price of a domain name with a multiple year registration.

Another effective way to get a reduced price for your domain name is to purchase hosting from the same company/registrar.  Many companies will “throw in” a one year domain name registration for no charge when you purchase website hosting.  As you are going to need hosting anyway, why not save a few dollars.

As mentioned, You are going to need web hosting and we are going to talk about that now, but again, these companies will offer deals when you bundle services.

Website Hosting will cost anywhere from $5 to $50 per month.

Much like anything else, Web Hosting can be purchased in single month increments or in annual increments (1 year, 2 years…).

Purchasing monthly can be an effective way to minimize the upfront costs of getting started, but will certainly be more expensive in the long run, where as purchasing extended periods of hosting, will be more expense upfront .

One factor you are going to want to consider early on when selecting website hosting is the number of websites that you plan to build.  If you will be creating one website and focusing on just the one, then selecting hosting is pretty straight forward.  But if you are considering multiple sites, then you may want an upgraded package that allows you to host more than one site.

A single website being hosted on a month by month basis will cost about $10 per month.

Hosting as many as 5 websites would cost about $25 per month and you could purchase hosting for as many as 50 websites for the amazingly low cost of just $170 per month.

Learn more about Website Hosting here “Introduction to Website Hosting and Domain Names”.

What else Will I Need to Get Started?

So far we are looking to spend about $11 per month per website to get started with our new online business.  But what else should we have to make an honest effort to get our business started the right way?  From this point forward additional features are going to cost additional dollars, but a few of these “extras” are rather important and in one case critical to your success.

In my opinion, there are only two critical features that a new website owner might want to consider spending their hard earned money on, and we will discuss them below.  But I want to be clear that Newbies are going to face some challenges as they build their business and the commitment of actual dollars is one of them.  My advise to every Niche Website Newbie reading this article is to be prepared to spend one year’s worth of investment, with little to no return.

Stating a business is challenging and the most success people have several things in common.  A few of them are: The Proper Mindset, a Commitment to Success and the Ability to Follow Instructions.  Now on the surface these may sound rather simple, but as the months roll on, you will be tested and you will need to be persistent and patient. Just Sayin’.

Web Hosting Companies are going to have a laundry list of “Add Ons” that will start to tack on additional cost to your monthly web hosting bill.  So which of these services are really important?

Email – This is a service that could be considered a necessity when starting a business, although if money is tight then you may be able to start without it.  Otherwise, email is a good idea when you are communicating with vendors and customers of your online business.

For example if you where creating an Affiliate Marketing online business that sells stethoscopes and you wanted to call your website “Medinecessities.com”, you might want an email with the domain name as the suffix of the address, for example customerservice@medinecessities.com or admin@medinecessities.com.

Email Services will likely cost about $3 per month

SSL Certificate –  This one is kind of critical particularly for Google.  An SSL certificate is a digital file that is attached to your domain.  The file activates the https protocol that encrypts data that is being transmitted between web server and internet browser.

To simplify that a bit, an SSL certificate offers a level of security for the visitors to your website and this is something that Google views as very important.  An SSL Certificate is a must if yo want any traffic.

An SSL Certificate will cost about $7 per month

Are there Additional Costs I Might Consider?

As I mentioned above, the hosting company will be thrilled to offer you an overwhelming variety of costly services.  So let’s take a look a few and determine if any of these additional services are worth your money.

Website Backup Services – While I highly recommend that you back you website up, this is typically a service that is included with WordPress hosting.  And if you have not learned this yet, I highly recommend that you use WordPress as your website platform.  But if you are going another direction, Backup Services might cost you about $3 per month.

Malware Protection – I will have to be honest with you, I have never considered purchasing malware protection for my websites.  I guess I have always hoped that the Web Hosting Company would have this protection on their servers, but they offer the services anyway, it costs about $6 per month.

So, Let’s Add All of that Up = $21.00

If we add the essential services that an online business might require, we are looking at about $21 per month for a single website.  And as we learned above, this will include a domain name, web hosting, SSL Certificate and an email account.  Any of the top Web Hosting Companies can provide all of these services and much more.



If your desire is to work on or create multiple websites at a time, then the cost will certainly go up from there, but the good news is that the cost is not linear.  For example, if one site costs $21, two will not cost $42 and so on.  This will be an important thing to remember as your business grows and I want you to pay close attention to this,  You will be able to profit from selling websites and profit from providing your own web hosting as you gain more experience.

Remember one of the basic “tricks” to creating a successful online business is to generate multiple streams of revenue.  Selling websites and web hosting is a revenue stream that you are sure to come in contact with as your career progresses.  The next step for a “NEWBIE” is to find a mentor and a great training program.  You are fortunate because you have found both.  I highly recommend that you take a strong look at the training that is provided at Wealthy Affiliate and once you sign up, I will be your personal coach until you are a success.

And I have even better news, Wealthy Affiliate is FREE to join and you can start two websites while on a “STARTER” plan.  Additionally a Premium Membership will cost $49 per month and you can have up to 50 websites, and SSL Certificates and Domain Emails are included.


10 comments

  1. Hey there,

    Starting a website or a blog is not expensive, as you have stated in the post. You need to make sure though that your hosting provider supports and provides WordPress in the same package, in order to avoid extra costs. Some host providers charge extra for WordPress.

    Thanks for a very detailed post!

    Marios

    1. Thank you Marios for your comment.

      You are correct that a great many bloggers and website creators in general use the wordpress platform.  And I myself prefer wordpress.  But the truth is that not everyone uses wordpress and there are a lot more website platforms out there then most of us might think.

      Of course WIX is the first to come to mind for me, but I could list many others. It boils down to familiarity, once a website creator settles into a particular platform they will tend to stay with that platform.  They simply become accustomed to their favorite.

      With all of that said, you are correct.  If you want to use wordpress then you might want to select a web hosting company that provides specific wordpress hosting.

      Thanks again for the comment, Glenn 

  2. This is interesting.I have never looked at a breakdown of all the services and the cost of each service. It really does add up. The cost is one thing, but having several necessary services taken care of for even less money that the expected total, and the facility of hosting many more websites….with on going support, makes the Wealthy Affiliate platform so attractive. Thank you for the information.

    1. You are welcome, JJ

      I have been working with websites for over 15 years and can certainly share a great deal of experience regarding how much a website costs. It’s not that long ago that I was writing HTML code to create my websites, but those days are long gone with the advent of wordpress and similar website platforms.

      BTW, learning some basic HTML programming language is not a bad idea. You can solve quite a few problems in wordpress with some basic HTML.

      Have a great day, Glenn

  3. I always build my websites on WordPress and would totally recommend it especially for beginners. It is ideal for people who have little or no experience in web design. Like you rightly say things like great hosting, with SSL certificates are a must too. Buying your own domain name is definitely the way to go too, this will look more professional as you build your business online. Finding somewhere that can offer everything that you need is difficult without spending a fortune, I think you are spot on to recommend Wealthy Affiliate here. Good call!

    1. Thank you Martin for the comment,

      Of course, my primary intention with this post was to layout the potential costs of building a website. But, I also wanted to make clear that these costs only solidify the value created by a Wealthy Affiliate membership.

      Nichewebsitenewbie.com has one very fundamental purpose, to give prospective web entrepreneurs the information they need to make sound spending decisions.

      Many of the services provided by web hosting companies could be considered “luxuries” for the beginner, so I hope that I offered a clearer picture of the necessary services for everyone.

      Great to hear from you, Glenn 

  4. Glenn, thank you for this helpful article.

     Let me see if I understand. If I buy my domain, hosting, email and SSL certificate myself from individual vendors or if I bundle with one company the average cost is $42 per month for each website and I will be entirely on my own to try and figure out how to earn any money from my websites.

    But, if I choose Wealthy Affiliate through you for $49 per month I will receive hosting, SSL, email, affiliate marketing training and you as my personal coach and all of this for up to 50 websites. My only monthly addition cost would be domains for the websites. 

    WOW! What a deal. 

    1. Hello Tom,

      I think you summarized the article nicely and I apprectiate the comment.  We could add a few more Wealthy Affilaite perks to your list, but I will let you find them once you are inside.

      See ya soon, Glenn 

  5. Hi!

    I love that even though you have confirmed that the website can be done for “free,” you brought up a solid point that “free” can and will slow down how a person is progressing.

    I don’t understand when people are looking to set up a “business” for free! Really?

    Sign me up!

    Any business–no matter how small or big it is– requires some kind of skin in the game. And money is not an exception. Even if you draw – it requires to buy paper and pencils!

    As for hosting, I used to pay separately $7.99 and tried to “set up” everything by myself. What a pain, even with the instructional video! P-L-E-A-S-E, give me something where I pay a few bucks and worry about content but not all those bells and whistles.

    Good job! Thank you.

    1. Thank you for the great comment, Ella

      As you read through the rest of nichewebsitenewbie.com, you will learn that the biggest mistake newbies tend to make is not treating this endeavor as an actual business. If you want to succeed then you will absolutely need to treat this like any other business and that includes investment.

      The investment doesn’t just need to be financial, but will also need to be an investment of time and effort. Just like any other business, as you have pointed out in your comment.

      Great suggestion, Glenn

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