With a number of options available in the market, the cost of a website can range significantly from $0 upfront to up to $400,000 at the higher range. So how do you tell the difference between, and how do you know if you are getting value for your money? The answer lies in your objectives, and intended usage. 

While a website in the hundreds of thousands may seem like a lot, this could in fact represent good value to your organisation depending on your circumstances. Enterprise companies that are looking for a robust mission-critical solution for example, require systems and applications that have 99.99% uptime along with a service level agreement that covers response and resolution time. In instances such as this, beyond the immediate cost of recovery, the true cost of an unsecure website can extend to reputational damage and more.

If you are an SME on the other hand, a website package that costs less than $10,000 AUD may suffice as you only require basic design, development and support services. For small businesses, off-the-shelf solutions such as small business web design packages offer a great entry point with minimal fuss.

Selecting the best solution for for your business

A simple way of determining who best to look for when you are looking to set up a website is to remember the three D’s – design, develop and deploy. You will need to either find a platform that can handle all these three things in its entirety, or partner with a professional organisation such as MBW or S1T2 (for larger customers) who can support your business in these matters.

There are a number of platform solutions available on the market (Wix and Squarespace) which offer direct solutions without requiring you to engage any website designers or developers. These are often extremely cheap to use but require you to set up and launch on your own.

The alternative is to find a digital agency to help you create and implement your new website. The best thing about working with a digital agency is that they will handle the entire process, meaning you get to focus on your business while they manage your website and everything associated with it.

Look for out agencies that only offer some of the necessary services for a website. For example, while an organisation such as MBW has the necessary expertise to provide a turn-key solution, a vendor that only offers website hosting on the other hand will only manage the website server once your website is deployed. This is an important distinction to make as you may want to find a vendor that provides design, development and website hosting services.

Furthermore, if you work with multiple vendors, often each supplier may separate their scope of work if an error were to occur which in turn can make it difficult to know who you need to contact when there is a problem. If you opt to use a platform without an agency, you will need to be prepared in the event your website has technical issues.

When you look at how much does it cost to build a website in Australia, be sure to include the ongoing fees into your budgeting. We highly recommend finding an agency that can fully manage the website hosting in a secure environment, preferably using cloud infrastructure such as AWS or Microsoft Azure.

Web development and web design package prices

A cost-effective way to save on website costs is to look for website packages that include both web design and web development. These are particularly useful for businesses that are looking to commence their online journey, and may not have the budget for in-house expertise or custom development.

MBW web design packages start from $3,900 and include design, development, content creation and technical support throughout. While this can increase in price depending on additional features required, the base cost offers a great entry point for businesses looking to get online. 

We know from our research and customer feedback that small businesses are looking for website packages that are both convenient and affordable, and as such aim to offer this as a complete solution to businesses just getting started.

What is the cost if you want to build a website in Australia from scratch?

When looking at the cost to build a website in Australia, you should consider your comfort level when working with a local team (based in-country) or an outsourced team. The reason for this is that it can significantly impact the price.

For organisations that prefer a local team, the benefits are that you work with english-speaking resources that often are better trained in translating designs to website pages. While an offshore team may be cheaper, often the time spent providing feedback will outweigh the advantages of cost-savings. Remember, websites are technical in nature, and not having the right team can cause you much headache down the track.

You should also factor in both the initial costs of designing a website as well as the costs to maintain and update it over time. If you are procuring a new website, on average, it should last you at least 5 years before you need any major upgrades, so you want to be sure that you have considered the total lifespan involved.

In the case of a new website, these costs could be structured in a way similar to below.

Website design prices

  • User personas
  • Wireframes and concept
  • Website design
  • Content creation

Web development prices

  • Website development
    • Front end
    • Back end
    • Content management system
    • API integration
    • CRM integration
  • Website hosting and ongoing maintenance/support

The average cost of a web developer in Australia is $1,200/day but good developers that specialise in website architecture such as cloud infrastructure can increase to $2,000/day. Website designers can range between $500-$1,200 per day.

By itself, these costs may seem substantial, however the missing piece here is to correlate these budgets with the kinds of returns you expect from your website. For mortgage brokers for example, one home loan settlement is worth a couple thousand dollars so a few leads and closed settlements from your digital channels can more than compensate for the outgoings. If you can work with a digital agency that gets your website generating new leads every month, then it is likely that you will easily receive your return on investment from your website in the first year. 

SEO prices in Australia

Search engine optimisation or SEO is another expense that needs to be budgeted for. Companies looking to kickstart their marketing will find SEO useful to drive traffic to their website. The cost of this can be broken down into an initial setup fee and a monthly fee for the ongoing management and work required on a regular basis.

Below we have detailed an estimate of pricing:

  • Initial setup fee: $1,500 – $3,000
  • Monthly ongoing fee: $2,500 to $5,000

Furthermore, because SEO usually takes between 6-18 months to see results, you will need to budget for this expense over the long run. Anything less than 6 months and you run the risk of losing your money without seeing any returns.

Working with a local Australian agency

It is imperative that if you select an agency to work with you consider their locale, unique expertise and experience. Usually an initial call or meeting can tell you a lot about previous experience so make sure to have an open discussion about your needs and any goals associated with your website before beginning.

On top of this, even though it may be possible to find an agency based outside Australia, we always recommend working with a local agency so that you know support is never too far away. This can also help with your marketing initiatives as often you will want to execute campaigns during Australian office hours or in times specific to your local audience – and these are the times where it is most crucial that your website is operating effectively.