How Much Does a Website Cost? Regular Expenses

Let's talk about the ongoing maintenance and upkeep costs for your website

Who likes surprises when it comes to spending money?

Not this guy.

So, it should go without saying that surprise expenses that creep in when you’re trying to launch your website are a bad thing because none of us like wasting money or being surprised at yet another recurring charge.

So, today I’m going to talk about something that’s near and dear to every website owner’s heart.

Every one of us who’s got a website online that’s worth anything has to contend with these factors.

(Sorry, if you’re on a “free” website builder platform, which is not advisable to say the least, these don’t apply to you. Why are you still building on a platform you don’t control? )

These things are the baseline building blocks at the core of every website.

Because everything costs money, right?

So, if you want to start a new website but you’re not sure what’s involved, you should know that the things I’m covering here are the basics that all websites have in common.

When it comes to figuring out how much your website project is going to cost, it’s the right thing to do your homework so you know what to expect before you enter those digits into the checkout field.

Domain name registration costs

One of the first things you’ll probably be thinking about is a domain name for your new website.

I know that when I’m hit with inspiration about a site I’d like to build, or a project I want to create one of the first things that I do is run to my registrar and see what’s available.

Admittedly, there are a bunch of domains in there that are still websites and projects waiting to happen but at least I’ve got them registered.

When you register your domain it’s done on a yearly basis, so make sure you add that into the equation when you’re thinking about the costs of your website, at least on an annual basis.

You can register domains for several years at a time, but they will always need to be renewed.

I’ve created this guide on how to choose your domain name that can be a big help to getting a perfect domain name for your new site.

Domain names can be registered for multiple years at a time, but they’re a regular cost you’ll want to keep track of.

$10-$20 per year

Web hosting

If your domain name is the equivalent of your street address on the internet, then your web hosting service is the home you live in at that address.

Web hosting is usually billed monthly, though some providers give price breaks for annual sign-ups and can vary a good bit depending on what you need.

It’s worth it here to spend a little extra if needed to get a quality service. The internet is inundated with offers from this company and that company that offer crazy-low rates to sign with them.

What’s not talked about as much is the fact that most of those services are also low-quality and are a pain to deal with.

But when you’re trying to calculate how much things are going to cost you for this new endeavor on the internet you need to calculate the monthly costs of your hosting service in to that equation.

$100 per year and up depending on the service


Security is vital for every website, no exceptions, so make sure you have a line item for security in your budget when you’re planning your new website.

Security covers things like SSL certificates, and malware monitoring. It also means that you’re covering your bases by having an offsite backup plan in place.

Secure connections are mandatory these days so having an SSL certificate in place is essential. These can range from free to several hundred dollars per year, depending on your need.

In many circumstances, a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt will do the trick, but when you need extended validation or more robust encryption you’ll want to look to premium SSL certificates, especially if you’re running an e-commerce shop.

Premium Plugins

Many times sites are built with third-party plugins that require renewal, and you should be on the same page with your developer about what’s being put in place.

Renewals get you access to the latest features and updates and they also address any security issues, so it’s always good to keep those up to date. Your license may need to be renewed monthly or annually to continue to get those updates.

Website Maintenance Services

Once you’ve finished your site and you’re online you will a few things you’ll need to keep up with to make sure your site stays online, stays safe and secure, and is up to date.

Just like your car, there is regular maintenance required for your website.

There are two ways to do this:

  1. You can roll up your sleeves and do it all yourself
  2. You can subscribe to a website maintenance service to handle it for you

This means that you have set aside part of your budget for upkeep and maintenance….

This covers things like:

  • Keeping your site up to date with the latest releases for your site’s core software to cover security patches and bug fixes
  • Checking your security monitoring to make sure everything is in place and functioning properly
  • Ensuring that you are providing the fastest and best user experience possible
  • Managing content and providing fresh content updates
  • Fixing broken links, optimizing images, and keeping everything organized can provide an SEO boost

$100 per month

Next Steps

This stuff makes sense, right?

It’s just a matter of making sure that you’re clear on what you can expect. Because, who likes surprises when it comes to spending money?

Not me, and I’m willing to bet you’re not either.

The next step that you need to take is to get the Ultimate WordPress Start-Up Guide here.

I built this guide so that you would have all the things you need to start a new website project with WordPress right at your fingertips.

This guide will allow lead you down a path that covers it all in an easy-to-understand way so that your new website is a success from day one.

Make sure you don’t miss any of the crucial steps in getting your new website project online by following the steps in this guide.

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