How Much Does A Website Cost?
- How much will it cost to build a new website?
- How much will changes and updates cost down the road?
- How much will it cost to update my current website?
Updating My Website
- Do I need a mailing list?
- What information should I collect?
- How should I collect the information?
- What should I do with the information I collect?
- Should I send a "Welcome Letter?"
- What's a domain name?
- Do I need a domain name?
- Where can I get a domain name?
- Can I choose any domain name I want?
- Can I make changes myself on my website?
- What kind of changes can I make?
- How can I make changes on my website?
HTML, CSS, PHP and all that "code" stuff
- What is HTML, CSS, PHP and all that other stuff anyway?
- Do I need to know anything about code to have a website?
More FAQs will be coming soon.
How Much Does A Website Cost?
1. How much will it cost to build a new website?
Most of the websites we design and build cost somewhere between $2,000 and $10,000. We have done some for less and some for more.
We don't have a "rate sheet" because no two projects are ever going to be the same. Everything we do here at Digital Vision Media is custom work. We build each and every website specifically to meet your particular needs and requirements. Every company, every business and every artist is different. You will attract visitors that are interested in and looking for information that can only be found in one place: your specific website. Our job is to design and build a website to provide your audience with the exact information and experience they are hoping to find.
We work with most of our clients in one of two ways:
1. The client has a specific budget they wish towork with. We review the budget and then put together a proposal outlining what we can provide within that budget.
2. The client has specific requirements for their website. We gather as much information as we can and come up with a budget that we think will be required to accomplish the goals our client has outlined.
The vast majority of the projects we take on come in on budget and a few even come in below budget.
Because each project we are involved with is unique, it is impossible for us to give you an accurate estimate of the costs involved without getting some basic information from you. We start by exploring what it is you want your website to accomplish, what your goals are and what you hope visitors will take away from your site. From there we examine the practical aspects necessary to achieve your objectives. How many sections will your website have? How many pages will there be? What kind of content will each page contain? How much content is involved? Are the graphics static or do you want some kind of animation or movement? Once we have a good idea of what we are going to design and build for you we put together a detailed Proposal and Cost Estimate.
Designing and building a website is a lot like building a house. How much a house is going to cost depends on a lot of very diverse factors: the location, the square footage, the number of rooms, the size of the lot, etc. If you called a realtor and asked how much a new house is going to cost, the realtor would most likely need to ask you a lot of questions before they could even begin to answer your question. It's the same with a website. Once we have a good idea of what you are looking for we can usually give you a good idea of what it's going to cost.
2. How much will changes and updates cost down the road?
What kind of changes and updates your website will require on an ongoing basis, and how much that will cost, will depend on the nature of your content as well as how much of the work you want to be responsible for and how much you would rather pay someone else to handle for you.
Some of our clients prefer to hire us to do all the upkeep on their website. They want to spend their time and energy doing other things and to them it is worth the money to pay us to handle all aspects of their website.
Some of our clients prefer to do everything themselves, even if it means investing money and time in software and training.
We are happy to work with you in whatever way suites you best.
It really is impossible to realistically estimate any kind of monthly charges without having a good knowledge of what your site will entail. Some of our clients never incur any further costs with us related to their websites (though this is rare). Some of our clients end up spending a fairly regular amount of money each month because they have lots of changes, additions and/or revisions that they want to make to their site on a regular basis. Most of our clients fall somewhere in-between. It's not unusual for us to have a client who spends as little as $10 to $20 every couple of months with us after their site is live. At the same time, it's also not unusual to have a client who spends several hundred dollars each month. Most of our clients fall somewhere in-between.
We almost always build some sort of Content Management System (CMS) with each website we develop. (More information about CMS). How much of the website is updatable through this system depends on the needs of the client. For example, for most of our musical artist websites we build a CMS that allows them to easily update their tour dates, news, photos and videos on their own. This is generally all the content that needs to be updated on a regular basis. However, we can also build CMS systems that allow you to update and change content on every area of your site. In the end, it comes down to the cost of the CMS vs the need to update the content. If you are probably not going to need to update the content on a particular page or area very often it is usually less expensive to pay us to make those rare changes when needed than to include a CMS module for that area. We will work with you to find the balance that works best for you.
3. How much with it cost to update my current website?
We generally refrain from "updating" current websites. We have found that many, many websites, especially older ones, are built on invalid, outdated, sloppy or just plain bad code foundations. It's much more time consuming (and therefore expensive) to rebuild that code than to just start over from scratch.
Even a website that is built on a good code foundation can present difficulties in "updating." There are many different ways to "build" a good website and every developer approaches things differently. It can often take one developer a fair amount of time to work through the work that someone else has done and be in a position to begin "updating" it. It's often not cost effective.
For these, and other reasons, we rarely accept jobs to "update" a current website. We specialize in designing, creating and building websites from scratch.
Updating My Website
1. If DVM builds my website can I update it myself?
Yes! Most people need to be able to update only a few pages on their website, such as a "news" page or a "tour dates" page. We can build you a custom Administration section where you can very easily, with almost no learning curve, update these kinds of pages. If you require a site where more content needs to be updated on a regular basis we can build your site using a third-party Content Management System. Of course, if you'd rather not deal with updating your site yourself we are happy to do it for you.
2. What do I need to know to update my website?
The bottom line: not much. If we build you one of our custom Administration sections to update pages on your site it's all very "what you see is what you get" and we make it as easy as possible for you to simply enter the information and click a button. If you require a more extensive, more sitewide Content Managment System then there will probably be some learning you will need to do to get up and running, but it's usually very minimal and easy for most folks to deal with.
1. Do I need a mailing list?
Almost everyone can benefit from a mailing list. It's a great way to stay connected with your clients or fans and keep your name and/or product in front of them on a regular basis.
2. What information should I collect?
Studies have shown that the less information you ask for, the more visitors will sign up for your mailing list. In other words, if you just ask for their email address you will get more submissions than if you ask for their email, their name, their physical address, etc. An email address is often the only thing you really need. Our advice is to only ask for the information that you know you will use. If you don't need their name, don't ask for it. If you don't need their physical address (and really most people don't), don't ask for it. Some touring artists may also want to request a zip code so you can target your fans when you are playing in their area.
3. How should I collect the information?
Their are a variety of ways to deal with the information. We can build you a custom signup page and save the information into an online database which you can access whenever you need it. Or we can arrange to have the submissions sent to you via email. You may choose to use a third-party service such as Emma or ReverbNation to collect your information and manage it. We can help you decide what's best for you.
4. What should I do with the information I collect?
Use it! The whole point of collecting email addresses is to stay in contact with your visitors. It doesn't do you much good to collect a lot of email addresses and never use them. We encourage you to send out a monthly newsletter and also notify your visitors about special events and happenings. Of course, you don't want to go overboard. No one wants to get a constant flow of emails from you, no matter how much they like you. Find a good balance that works for you.
5. Should I send a "Welcome Letter?"
Absolutely! When someone new signs up for your mailing list it is important to reach out them right away. A welcome letter is the perfect opportunity to make a good impression. Thank them for signing up for your mailing list and give them an idea of what to expect in the future. Depending on what method you use to collect your sign up emails we may be able to set up an "automatic" Welcome Letter email when someone new signs up.
1. What's a domain name?
A domain name is the unique identifier that represents your website. For instance, "www.digitalvisionmedia.com" is our domain name. It is what someone would type into their web browser to visit your website. Many artists or individuals use their name as their domain name, for instance "www.pamtillis.com." Many companies also use their company's name as their domain name, for instance "www.bluegrassunderground."
2. Do I need a domain name?
Yes, if you wish to have your own unique web site with its own unique address you will need a domain name.
3. Where can I get a domain name?
There are many, many businesses that sell domain names. Actually, you're not really "buying" your domain name, you're simply renting it for a period of time. Some of the most popular places to acquire domain names are: Network Solutions, Dotster and GoDaddy. Each of these companies has different pricing structures and different policies, so check to find one that works for you. If you rent your domain for a longer period of time you will usually get a price break.
4. Can I choose any domain name I want?
Yes and no. You can choose any name you want as long as someone else is not already using it. For instance, you can't use www.digitalvisionmedia.com because we are already using it. You can't use www.jenniferclarke.com because someone else is already using that. However, you might be able to use www.jenniferclarke.net or www.jenniferclarke.org if your name is Jennifer Clarke and no one is already using those names. Or you could use www.jennifer-clarke.com if it was available. If the name you really want is unavailable you might have to get a bit creative. In the end though, you want a name that will be as easy as possible for your visitors to remember and find. The three businesses we mentioned above that sell domain names have a process where you can check to see what names are available and what names are taken.
1. What's a host?
A host is a company that provides server space for the file which make up your website. Just as you may have files on your computer that you can access, the files for your website need to be stored on a computer (or server) that is linked to the internet so that your website can be seen by everyone.
2. Do I need a host?
Yes, if you wish for visitors to be able to find and view your website. While it is possible to set up your own personal computer to act as a "host" we do not recommend this practice. There are many, many services that hosts provide that make having your own website much easier.
3. Where can I find a host?
There are many, many reputable hosting companies. Some that we are familiar with are: Internet Connection, Pair Networks, GoDaddy, HostMySite and Host Monster. But, there are literally hundreds of others as well and we make no specific recommendations. All hosts offer a variety of plans and services and all offer different pricing. Look around and see what fits your needs the best. If you need help we'd be glad to offer some suggestions.
1. Can I make changes myself on my website?
Yes! We offer a variety of solutions that enable our clients to easily make changes to the content of their website. We would be happy to discuss these options with you and help you decide which is best for your needs.
2. What kind of changes can I make?
We can set up a system that will allow you to easily make changes to content that changes frequently, such as news, tour dates, photo galleries, etc. Additionally, we can also provide solutions for changing other content. However, in most cases it's not practical for you to change the "look," "structure," "design" or "navigation" of your website yourself. We are always available to make those kinds changes for you at any time you might need them.
3. How can I make changes to my website?
We offer a variety of solutions for helping you to change the content on your site. If you need to update information that changes frequently, such as news, tour dates, photo galleries, etc. we will build you a custom "what you see is what you get" "Admin" section that anyone can easily use, with no special knowledge required. If you need a more comprehensive solution to change even more content we can build your website to incorporate more sophisticated "Content Management Systems." There is even a wonderful program from Adobe called Contribute that allows "non-tech" people to update almost anything on their website. Like all software it has a bit of a learning curve, but the more time you are willing to spend with it the more you will be able to do.
HTML, CSS, PHP and all that "code" stuff
2. Do I need to know anything about code to have a website?
Absolutely not! You don't need to know a thing about how the code on your website works. You can leave all that stuff to us. And, you can rest assured that we we write "clean," "standards compliant," "valid" code. That might not mean much to you, but it means a lot to us. Basically, it means that we write code that is fully compliant with the standards set by the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium), the folks who set the "rules" for proper website development. Having a website that is built with clean, standards compliant, valid code means that it will work on as many web browsers as possible and be more easily updated as standards are updated in the future.