Owning a WordPress site is just a beginning. If you want to attract customers to your website, then finding the right set of features for your site in terms of hosting, plugins, themes, etc. takes a lot of effort. Our comprehensive blog post will help you avoid the time required to do that. As a lot of things are involved in coming up with a full-fledged WordPress site that suits your requirements, it can cost you a lot if you do not have a piece of complete knowledge.
The following are the components that actually add to the cost of bringing your website to life:
- Domain Name
- Website Hosting
- Design and Themes
- Plugins/Extensions (some also call it Apps)
- Development Charges
A lot of businesses are using WordPress to host their website, but that does not mean it is the right solution for your business too. This guide will help in deciding How much should you actually spend.
Domain Name ($10 – $30 / year)
The domain name acts as an address of your website on the internet. Some of the popular domain names include www.youtube.com, www.facebook.com, etc. Your domain name should be short and also easy to remember. You can read more about domains here.
There are a lot of options you can choose from when it comes to purchasing a domain name but GoDaddy and NameCheap are the most affordable options in the market. A domain name will cost you anywhere between $10 – $30 per year.
Whatever it is we suggest not using WordPress’s free domain name option that looks like “www.yourdomainname.wordpress.com.” If you want people to take your business seriously, then you need to move to self-hosted WordPress and get your own domain name.
As .com is the most desirable domain name, it might happen that it has already been taken and will cost you thousands of dollars to purchase the same. You can follow this to get some backup options.
Total Cost (estimate): $10/year – hundreds, thousands, and even millions of dollars.
Website Hosting($2.75 – $729 per month)
Deciding which website hosting service provider you will be choosing for your website is the most important step to invest in when creating your WordPress site.
Website hosting helps you to create a shelf for your website in a library of websites[the internet] wherein all the necessary images, graphics, documents, etc., which are necessary for your website to work are stored. If there is no hosting, then there will be simply no website.
You can go through this to decide which hosting provider proves the best for you. It also explains the different kinds of hostings. The hosting cost can vary anywhere between $2.75 to as high as $729 per month. Following are the various types of hostings:
Shared Hosting($2.75 – $15 per month)
|Host||Entry Plan||Mid-Tier Plan||Highest Plan|
VPS Hosting ($5 – $80 per month)
|Host||Entry Plan||Mid-Tier Plan||Highest Plan|
Dedicated Hosting ($80 – $730 per month)
|Host||Entry Plan||Mid-Tier Plan||Highest Plan|
For a new site that has little traffic shared hosting is a good starting point. If there is sufficient traffic that is coming to your website then you can go for VPS hosting. Once you have thousands of visits to your website in a month, only then you should switch to the Dedicated hosting which provides a dedicated server for your website. You should opt for this only if you have loads of traffic coming in.
While it is not necessary to have a WordPress hosting provider but it makes the installation of WordPress easier with you being able to do it in just a click. You can see the best WordPress Hosting Providers in 2020 here.
Total Cost (estimate): $47.40/year – $1,199.88/year
Themes and Design($0 – $50,000 as a one time charge)
The great thing about themes is that there are already a lot of free ones that you can choose from the WordPress library. You can explore and install them with the click of a button and later uninstall too. Although, WordPress has free themes but they are generally not great for a person really wanting to grow his business.
Once you have bought a theme on WordPress, you can reuse it for as many websites as you want. Also, these can be improved with the help of plugins later on. Find how to install themes here.
You can also purchase WordPress premade templates from sites like Template Monster for prices that range from $75 to $200, Envato Market for prices from $13 to $1,200, Mojo Marketplace for prices that range from $59 to $79. There are also a lot of others like Elegant Themes, ProteusThemes, ThemeIsle, MyThemeShop, Accesspressthemes, Premiumcoding and Tesla Themes. You might want to check the Development Charges section below if you want to use the premade templates.
Also, when choosing a theme do ensure that it is mobile friendly too, as the online retail sales using mobile are already rising.
Total Cost (estimate): $200-$10,000
Plugins / Extensions ($50 – $10,000 as a one time charge)
Plugins can be regarded as the backbone of WordPress. These are the building blocks, using which we add functionality to our website. These are apps written in PHP which extend the features which basic WordPress offers. Ranging from SEO Optimization to Work Management, plugins offer a lot more and make the native platform rich for website development.
We would like to inform our readers that most website hacks in WordPress are done through plugins, so you need to be very careful about your choice of plugins. Considering paid plugins over free ones can save you from malware attacks and backdoor to hackers. This certainly affects your website in the longer run.
So, here is a list of some of the safe web plugins which are tested and have been verified to be free of malicious activities :
The Astra Starter Sites plugin allows you to import complete website demos, tweak them and build professional websites. It typically simplifies the hard frontend pay up which UI designers might charge you around 100$ for. Astra uses Elementor natively, which is the smartest way available to customize the looks of the website using drag and drop.
PRICE: Free, but recommended to upgrade to Pro. Costing 47$. More details can be found here
It is a powerful plugin that will enable Google analytics platform (a google web service to track real-time traffic on websites) to the website. Using MonsterInsights we get access to our site’s real-time statistics, analyze Google AdSense banner clicks, track file downloads and also track web referrals to see where users are coming to your site from and where they’re going afterward, and more.
PRICE: Free with the option to upgrade to premium costing $99.50 – $399.50/year.
Email helps you to learn more about your audience so you can build your brand. So, to connect to the audience better regardless of the site, MailChimp is the go-to plugin. It is a user-friendly newsletter provider helping in email automation and more.
PRICE: Free version is available, or we can switch to premium plans cost $59 – $149/year.
W3 Total Cache
It works by caching images, links and data on your website hence making it faster to load. Since the loading time is decreased, the SEO Ranking of the website goes up giving viewers a seamless experience in visiting your website.
PRICE: Free version is available, the professional version is more feature friendly as works better and is available for $99/site
It is a must-have tool and helps in nailing the SEO Ranking for your website, hence, helping the website to be in the top results of the search. It ensures more traffic and readers through its advanced features.
PRICE: A free version is available, or we can always get the premium which costs $69 (one-off).
Total Cost (estimate): $0 – $300 one-off charge
Security ( $100 – $500 as a one time charge)
One should not forget the website security, even if you are not building an eCommerce or payments site. The website security affects your SEO Rank, website loading time and how user data is available to hackers. One important method to ensure security is being up-to-date with the core-WordPress software. Another way is if you are using any plugins, make sure they are not obsolete. As discussed, WordPress websites are easily hackable so, the first thing we need to do it a BACKUP
Many paid and free WordPress backup plugins exist, that can be used. We recommend taking full website backups regularly on a remote location to ensure website safety and recovery. Backup applications cost around $100 one-of and are must buy recommended.
Secondly, we should use a FIREWALL to deny unauthenticated access to hackers who might be trying to break in. Sucuri is our personal favorite as it is safe, trusted and is proven to work. You can read more about the firewall here. A firewall is generally available as web application plugins charging $300 one-off.
Another IMPORTANT thing is an SSL Certificate. It helps to make the site more secure and improving the SEO Ranking as even Google does not prefer non-SSL Secured websites. You can buy one from the hosting service or some even provide it for free. Price ranges from $0 to $ 10 for an SSL certificate.
Total Cost (estimate): $0 – $300 one-off charge
Development Charges ($0 – $1000 as a one time charge)
If you are new and scarce on time, you may choose to hire a developer to build your WordPress website. These are WordPress professionals who can help to bring your idea to life in a shorter period while it may take you days in the process.
Developer costs vary geographically and based on the experience of the developer. The typical cost to set up an entire platform for a basic website might lie in the range of 150$ to 200$ depending upon the features that need to be incorporated.
For a complex design involving setting up a web-store, newsletters, sign-up, profiles, and payment-gateways, it is recommended to get a developer to ensure the safety of the platform service and you might have to easily spend over $1,000 as a one-time setup cost.
There is an abundance of resources available online (both paid and free) to guide you through the process, hence it is only a matter of confidence and time, about hiring a developer. Also, usually, the hosting service providers, are all in for getting you a developer to set up your website and generally charge up to $300 for basic setup which is not recommended as hosting providers have one-click WordPress installation available these days.
Like any other tech, the WordPress community is at large very friendly and supportive on their forums and is easily reachable.
Total Development Cost (estimate): $0 – $1000 one-off charge.
Brief WordPress Pricing Overview :
Though we have deeply described the pricing and the ways to minimize the setup cost, it is hard to put up an approximate figure on the total setup, as it depends upon the technicalities of the requirement. Here, is just a quick overview of the services that you can buy for the least money.
|To be spent on||Minimum Costing||Recommendation|
|Domain||12$||Recommended to get a .com domain name|
|Hosting||$3.95 – $34.95||Recommended to start off with shared hosting|
|Design and Theme||$0-$200||Recommended to use free themes and then switch to paid ones|
|Plugins||0$ to 400$||Recommended to get safe free plugins, and for more feature requirement to pay for these|
|Security||0$ to 300$||Ensuring security is a must|
|Development Charges||0$ – 1000$||For basic website can be skipped with free tutorials available.|
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. I already have a domain. Can I proceed with the same with buying hosting from someone else?
Ans: Yes, in fact, if you have a domain that’ll bring down the overall setup of the price. But just be sure that no other website is working on your domain. You can but you should not access two websites using a single domain.
Q. Which category of hosting service do you recommend? Which of the above mentioned perform the best?
Ans: For hosting services we recommend starting off with shared hosting initially if you have a small presence online. After investing in marketing when you have drawn a sufficient crowd to your website, you can go ahead to purchase a Dedicated server using the Dedicated hosting.
Q. What are some good sources to learn to develop my own website using WordPress?
Q. Is website security such a big thing? Do I really need to pay for an SSL certificate?
Ans: Yes, your WordPress website security is a big issue and we do not recommend cutting costs upon it. All the user data and even your credentials (using WhoIs) can be disclosed is website security is week.
SSL Certificate, on the other hand, helps in securing the connection the users have with your website hence making their credit card and transaction information safe. Also, it increases the website on Google Search rank.
Q. Are paid plugins really that helpful? Should I buy the paid version of the plugins I use?
Ans: We suggest you try free versions of the trusted plugins at first. If you really like and need extra functionality, you should go ahead and purchase them.
Q. I need some additional information on some plugins. How can I know which ones are right?
Ans: You can reach out to us on <firstname.lastname@example.org> for suggestions on plugins or simply look out for your requirements on Google.
Q. A developer in my region charges much higher than this. Is it worth the money?
Ans: As informed, the developer charges vary region to region. If you are building a complex user-centric website with transactions and lots of user data, we would recommend getting it done via a developer. In case the developers in your area are costly, you can use tools like freelancer to hire developers from other regions that are in your budget.
Q. What are some good ways I can be on top of Google Search Result?
Ans: Google search Results require a technique called Search Engine Optimization. Lookout and search for it to know more. Also, your website’s loading time and security are important to get a good search rank.
Q. One of my websites is performing/loading slowly. Can you suggest how should I speed it up?
Ans: One of the ways to speed up a website is to use a fast server ( hosting service ). Another way involves the reduction of big content like large images on the website. You can also use caching techniques suggested by Google to speed up the website.
Q. What are the things which I can really avoid out of the above?
Ans: If you want to avoid something, we would say to cut it down on plugins. Security, Domain and Hosting are a must. Developer charges can also be compromised and adjusted. We also recommend getting a professionally coded website if your monthly expense on WordPress goes over $1000.