August 16, 2020

How much does it cost to run a website?

Business

the website architect

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monthly website cost

A website can cost a lot of money to build out, but how much is it per month after the initial one-time fee? Let’s dive into the real price of your website.

The monthly cost to run a website can vary between $12 – $300 depending on the website platform you have. If the website was built on a website builder platform like Shopify or Squarespace, the per monthly fee is usually more. However, if your website is built on a free framework like WordPress, you don’t have monthly fees.

Monthly cost to run a website for each platform

Shopify website monthly cost

PackageMonthly Price (USD)
Shopify Basic$29 + (2.9% + 30¢ per transaction)
Shopify$79 + (2.6% + 30¢ per transaction)
Advanced Shopify$299 + (2.4% + 30¢ per transaction)

If your website is not being hosted with Shopify (which hosting is included for all packages) that will cost you (around) $7 – $30 USD/month for website hosting on top of the Shopify package fee. If you also have a custom domain that is not provided by Shopify (Shopify’s sites use x.myshopify.com by default) that can also cost you (around) an extra $15 a year for the domain. You can learn more about Shopify pricing here.

Shopify website monthly total: $38.25 – $331.25

Squarespace website monthly cost

PackageMonthly Price (USD)
Personal$12
Business$18
Commerce – Basic$26
Commerce – Advanced$40

Your website will most likely be hosted by Squarespace if you have a Squarespace website. However, if you choose to have your own hosting that will cost you (around) $7 – $30 USD/month for website hosting on top of the Squarespace package fee. If you also have a custom domain that is not provided by Squarespace (Squarespace sites use x.squarespace.com) to redirect you to the Squarespace domain, that can also cost you (around) an extra $15 a year for the domain. You can learn more about Squarespace pricing here.

Squarespace website monthly total: $12 – $71.25

Wix website monthly cost

PackageMonthly Price (USD)
Connect Domain$5
Combo$10
Unlimited$14
VIP$29
Business Basic$20
Business Unlimited$25
Business VIP$35

Your Wix website can only be hosted with Wix, which can cut down potential costs. If you also want a custom domain that is not stamped with Wix’s brand (Wix sites use x.wixsite.com), that is something you have to pay for separately on the Connect Domain package which adds a $15 a year value. You can learn more about Wix pricing here.

Wix website monthly total: $5 – $35

WordPress website monthly cost

In the long run, WordPress is the cheapest when it comes to the monthly cost. With WordPress, there are also no restrictions with domain names, or pay-cuts to the platform when you sell a product through your website.

If your WordPress website is built by an agency, such as The Website Architect, The WordPress framework (as opposed to using wordpress.com) is free and does not have any packages, restrictions, and monthly fees. The only fees you have to worry about is the yearly domain fee (~$15/year) and the $7 – $30 USD in hosting fees.

WordPress website monthly total: $8.25 – $31.25

Monthly website cost – Who has the best deal?

Wix has the cheapest price if you’re on a budget. However with a cheap website cost, comes a cheap website. And so a Wix site is just not a professional solution for your website as they run adds and limit the domain customization depending on what plan you have.

Overall? WordPress is the best platform for your money. You have to take care of the hosting and domain setup costs yourself, but there are no limitations with a WordPress site that the other platforms have making them less than desirable.

Monthly cost to run a website for each hosting platform

There is no such thing as the best web hosting platform. The best one depends on what you’re looking for in a hosting service like speed, server space, features, security, and price. Were going to look at especially the price difference between each of the popular hosting companies so you can get a sense of what’s cheap and what isn’t.

Hosting PlatformPer Month Price (For all packages) CAD
GoDaddy$6, $8, $18, $20
SiteGround$15, $25, $40
BlueHost$10, $25, $107
iPage$2.50
HostGator$2.75, $4, $6
InMotion$10, $15, $23
A2 Hosting$12, $16, $26.41, $33
WP Engine$40, $153, $386

How to cut down the cost of monthly website fees

If you’re on a strict budget or just looking to make your online presence cheaper there are things you can do to cut down monthly costs of your website.

Downgrade to cheaper website hosting

The first thing you can do to save money monthly with your website is to downgrade your hosting package. When it comes to hosting, keep in mind you do get what you pay for. If you spend $3 a month on hosting, you’re getting $3/month hosting. From package to package hosting can very in 3 main areas:

  • Website speed. Your website speed is going to be slower on lower-end hosting packages. This is because your website is most likely on something called a shared server which means your website is thrown in with a bunch of other sites instead of having its own dedicated space and memory. This makes your website slower as it doesn’t have dedicated resources set out just for your website.
  • Features. Website hosting packages commonly differ in features. Some allow only X number of websites to be hosted within the account, or some may limit the number of emails you can have per domain. It’s important to know what you’re using and not within your package to know if downgrading may affect what you already have set up.
  • Amount of space or GB’s. Packages can limit the amount of space your websites can be. Most websites can be from anywhere between 3GB for a smaller website to 12 GB for a larger website. Downgrading your hosting package may not be viable if your website is bigger than what the plan allows for. So be careful when considering to downgrade.

Consider A downgrading your website hosting package

Sometimes when cutting website expenses the platform you’re on is actually the biggest issue. Platforms like Shopify offer quick solutions to set up an e-commerce website that can start off cheap but actually end up costing you because of the monthly cost. Shopify can be up to $300 per month with the most expensive package just to run the website while also taking cuts off your online sales. Moving to something like WordPress will take a lump sum initially, but you will end up making your money back after so many months of use because of its lack of monthly fees altogether.

Downgrading your hosting package should be enough to help free your budget. Most, if not all hosting platforms have a cheap package for everyone but if the cheapest package is too expensive on your particular hosting platform, you can also consider changing hosting which can be done with the assistance of your new hosting platform.

Cost of the website itself

The initial actual cost of your website comes with the biggest fee. Depending on the size and complexity of your website it can cost from $400 – $10,000. If you made your website yourself using a platform like Squarespace or Shopify, then you’ll understand some of the factors that make websites more complex or timely to setup.

Factors that change the initial cost of a website

  • E-Commerce websites where customers can buy products will always cost more because they add more complexity to it, upping the price.
  • Custom functionality can add hourly work needed to build it out and therefore add to the total sum depending on how much time it takes.
  • The amount of pages also adds to cost. Pages can take a lot of time to design and develop depending on the uniqueness of the other websites’ pages.

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the website architect profile picture

I'm The Website Architect, just another web developer in Toronto, Canada. I'm passionate about Web Design, WordPress, and anything to do with websites. My goal is to make the Internet a more beautiful and usable place, one design choice and website at a time.