How Much Does a Website Cost? Rethink Your Budget with Growth-Driven Design

Picture the traditional approach of working with an agency to build your company’s website. On the front end, you spend significant amounts of time and money expressing your company’s needs, then entrust your vision to an outsider who might not have experience in your industry. Then, you wait 9-12 months for your site to launch, only to discover that by the time you go live, industry trends have shifted, the needs of your customers have changed, or the products and services you offer have been ramped up or scaled back.

Sounds risky, right? That’s because it is. To get the results you want from a website and to protect your organization from undue financial risk, it’s crucial to make the right investment.

Traditional website design can be like placing a high-risk bet. Not only is it a huge time investment; web design also has a high up-front cost, which can run over budget. With this approach, there is always the possibility that you will be left with a static website built on subjective opinions rather than measurable results that could positively impact your company.

Remember, the easiest approach isn’t always the wisest investment. To grow your brand, think long term.

You’ve probably wondered if there is a more efficient strategy for driving long-term success with an impressive, dynamic website, all while staying current with industry trends, consumer needs, and corporate mission. Enter growth-driven design (GDD), your opportunity to launch a website quickly and improve your results incrementally over time.

What is Growth-Driven Design?

Like your business, your website should survive and thrive based on the insights you gather from data analysis and measurement. With GDD, you will have the opportunity to continually nurture and improve your website according to this data. Your site will become stronger as you continue to measure performance and connect it to specific incremental changes. Think of it like this: With GDD, you build a launching pad that will grow and flourish as you gather and analyze user experience and engagement on your site.

But how do you get there? The first step to redefining your web design approach starts with rethinking your mindset about traditional versus growth-driven design. Before you dive in and overhaul your web design process, consider the following insights from GDD experts.

Understand the value of your website

Before you can turn visitors into prospects, and prospects into customers, anyone considering working with your organization or buying its products is likely going to conduct a bit of research. They want to get some background on what you do, what you’re about, and why you’re the solution to their problem. In most cases, a prospect has already moved through 70 percent of the sales funnel before reaching out to your company, which means your website better make a good first impression. You want the site to accurately represent your organization and its offerings, while also encouraging customer engagement.

Figure Out your financial priorities

Building an average small- to medium-sized company website can cost upwards of $80,000 up front, according to Hubspot. That’s a pretty big investment to make before any work is done. When the time comes to refresh or overhaul your website, make sure you think through how you want to invest your company’s resources. It all depends on where your priorities lie.

If you’re looking for a one-and-done approach, go with traditional web design. It’ll take a while, you won’t have much control over the process, but you won’t have to think about another redesign for a few years. Besides, who knows where the market will be at that point, right? Wrong. If using data to continuously test and improve your site based on what your users want and need seems like a wiser approach, GDD is a better option for you.

Understand the risks of traditional web design

When comparing both approaches to web design, GDD emerges as the better investment in the long run. Traditional web design carries a major cost at the beginning of the project, which means websites often sit static for 1-2 years after launch, for fear of dishing out more money to make changes. Put simply, you could spend a hefty sum of money investing in something that may not be relevant shortly after its launch.

In addition, traditional website design is largely subjective, according to HubSpot. Traditional web designers rarely use data analysis to inform their creative process. There is no “trial and error” period with the traditional approach, which could result in a website that doesn’t connect with users and ultimately fails to show a positive return on investment. With a static, ineffective website, you will have wasted both valuable time and money without an easy remedy.

Rethink The one-and-done mindset

Building a high-performing website should be thought of as a marathon rather than a sprint; it involves data measurement and analysis to maximize the success of your site over time. That’s why it’s important to pace your investment.

Growth-driven design allows you to continuously test your site to ensure the best performance possible, which makes it far more cost effective and user friendly than traditional design. Like any other investment, GDD offers the potential for positive, long-term impact since you are continuously improving and adjusting the site along the way.

The Bottom Line

If your website isn’t considered a business priority or you work in an industry in which customers don’t typically engage with companies or products online, traditional web design will work perfectly well for you. Revisiting your site every couple years is probably the easiest approach. But remember, the easiest approach is not always the wisest investment.

When it comes to growing your brand online and maximizing user experience on your primary digital property, think long-term. Data-driven decisions minimize risk, maximize performance, and will ultimately be a much better solution for your company.

Are you ready to learn more about optimizing site performance and increasing lead flow? Here’s how to partner GDD and inbound marketing to increase site traffic and user engagement.

Ashley Abramson

Ashley Abramson

Ashley Abramson is a freelance writer in Minneapolis. When she's not writing for clients, she's working on her online magazine or spending time with her husband and two young sons.