The quick answer? It depends entirely on your budget. While the WordPress CMS (content management software) is free, the cost of the rest your website’s components will depend on your goals.
WordPress is open source software and is free for anyone to download and use. It is contributed to by tens of thousands of developers all over the world and is constantly updated to stay current with advances in technology.
The cost of your WordPress website comes from its other components, which can be generalized as follows:
As we’ve discussed on our previous post, the domain name is your website’s address on the Internet. New domain names generally cost about $15. Domains that have high potential commercial value can range anywhere from $100 to thousands of dollars.
Every website needs web hosting to run the software and store your files. With WordPress websites, it’s best to get web hosting companies that have servers specialized for WordPress.
The cost of WordPress web hosting depends on your requirements. It can range anywhere from $2.99 per month for personal sites to $200+ per month for dedicated hosting. Good business web hosting usually range from $10 to $60 per month.
Custom web design costs normally range anywhere from $500 to $5,000, again depending on artistic and functional considerations.
There are tons of free WordPress themes available that you can use. However, for business sites you want something more advanced with more functionalities. There are premium themes you can purchase with more advanced features. You can also have one custom made, which it will be more expensive.
Premium themes usually cost between $49 to less than $200. Custom made themes can run into the thousands of dollars, depending on their complexity.
Plugins and Extensions
There are more than 40,000 free plugins for WordPress. Each plugin can have multiple extensions or apps that advance or increase their capabilities. There are plugins for website features like contact forms, picture galleries, calendars, social media, ecommerce and many more.
Premium plugins or extensions for free plugins can cost anywhere from $5 to hundreds of dollars.
The advantage of having a WordPress website is it’s always being updated as Internet technology advances. For this reason, software updates is one more cost component to consider in building a WordPress website.
Except for domain name, all the other components need to be updated regularly. Good theme and plugin developers constantly improve their products through software updates. They’re updated every few days to every few months. Web hosting companies also regularly update their server software.
When you purchase a premium WordPress theme or plugin, developers usually provide support and updates for a one year period. Some provide for 6 months or less. You will need to renew your premium themes and plugins every year if you want your website to remain current and secure.
You can build a WordPress website with just a domain name and web hosting, especially if you’re technically savvy. But if you want a functioning business website, you will have to spend a little on themes and plugins.