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How Much Does It Cost to Build an E-Commerce Website that is Excellent?

Understanding The Cost Required To Setup An Ecommerce Website

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How much does it cost to build an e-commerce website? Well, this article will guide you on what it will cost you to build one, as well as answer some of the most important questions you need to know before kicking off the project.

e commerce website
E-Commerce Website – Photo by Kindel Media

One factor that distinguishes success from failure is proper and adequate planning. Before embarking on an e-commerce website-building journey, it is fundamental that you are abreast with what it will cost you before starting the journey.

After reading this article, you can safely project the amount you need to build your e-commerce website.

By the way, your desire to have an e-commerce website is commendable. With an e-commerce website, you can reach millions of persons within and beyond your immediate reach. Don’t be shocked that by 2040, 95% of the purchase of goods will be made online. Hence, it is better not to delay; building your e-commerce website today.

You need to stay ahead of your competitors! And one way to get this done is by building an e-commerce website for your business.

Factors to Consider when Building your e-commerce website

Some of the factors to consider when building your e-commerce website include:

1. Size of business:

The current size of your business determines the amount you can spend and the number of plugins you need at the moment. Furthermore, it determines if you can use free plugins and extensions or if you will have to go for a premium or paid version.

For instance, if you are a starter e-commerce website owner, you could get a hosting discount from hosting sites like BlueHost or Hostgator. You can start with as low as $3 per month. However, as your business improves and increases in number, you will need to upgrade your hosting plan. This upgrade is essential to help you manage the traffic on your site.

2. Business Segment:

Does your business fall in any of these categories? B2B, B2C, C2C or C2B. The kind of business you operate determines the features required of your proposed e-commerce website. You must know what segment your business falls into before building your e-commerce website. While considering this, you must be as specific as you can.

Another thing to look out for is; are you selling products or services? Your answer to this is also very relevant as it would affect your choice of e-commerce platform. It will also affect the choice of plugins and extensions required for your website.

3. Are you selling all of your products online, or do you have a physical store?

Due to the rate at which online shopping is growing fast, as a business owner with a physical outlet, you are also considering having a store online. Amongst other things, having a store online increases your reach to the global community.

When your business is exposed to the global community, you have access to more potential customers. The more potential customers you get and can convince, the more profit your business generates.

brick and mortar store
Brick and Mortar Store – Photo by Kampus Production

Factors Influencing the Cost of e-commerce website

Once you have decided to build an e-commerce platform, many questions come to mind. One of the questions that linger on your mind is how much it costs to build an e-commerce website? The total cost of building an e-commerce website is affected by some factors discussed in this piece.

1. E-commerce platforms

There are various platforms where you can set up your e-commerce website. They include but are not limited to Shopify, Wix, Big Commerce, and Woo-Commerce. The platform you choose to use influences the cost of building your e-commerce website. For this article, the Woo-Commerce e-commerce platform will be our price reference.

  • Woo-Commerce: Woo-Commerce is a WordPress plugin that allows you to create an online store. When building your store with this platform, you require some costs, and some others are optional.

Since it is a WordPress plugin, you cannot set up your store on this platform without configuring WordPress. After confirmation, you need a hosting platform and your domain name. More information about this is right here. Keep reading to know what this will cost you.

  • Shopify: This is also a drag and drops e-commerce website builder. It has free themes that allow you to customize and create an online store.

2. Theme:

You can either get free or paid themes. Your choice will be dependent on what theme you want and your purchase capacity. Usually, the paid themes are better than the free versions. A Woo-Commerce theme would cost you between $0 – $100.

3. Shipping and Payment Gateways:

You can install shipping extensions if your product requires shipping. These extensions make your delivery process a lot easier. Shipping extensions cost about $20 – $100.

Another essential required plugin you will need to install is your payment gateway. Choosing the wrong payment gateway can make you have a lot of abandoned carts because customers find it difficult to make payments.

You can use Stripe, PayPal, Square, Amazon Pay, or PayFast as a payment gateway for the Woo-commerce platform. They charge you per transaction, which is to your advantage. You will be charged 2.9% + $0.30 for each transaction.

Payment Gateway
Payment Gateway – Photo by Negative Space

However, if you use Shopify with a third-party payment gateway, you will pay an additional 2% for every transaction, including the 2.9% + $0.30 payment. Without a third-party payment gateway, the payment is 2.9% + 0.30 only.

4. Security:

Your website needs to be properly secured from threats to your company or your customers. More importantly, your e-commerce website needs proper security since it may contain your customer’s financial details.

Customers also shy away from insecure websites, especially if it is an e-commerce website. However, you can get free SSL certificates with hosting sites like Hostgator, DreamHost, and BlueHost. WooCommerce security plugins range from $50 – $160.

5. Web hosting & Domain Name

A lot of people tend to skip this in their planning process. But guess what! If you skip this in the planning process, you will return to it when building your e-commerce website. It is an integral process in e-commerce website building. It is the name your audience will search to locate you online. Your organization can only use your domain name. Once you have registered it, no other business or company can use it.

A domain name costs about $1 -$11 every year, while website hosting costs $80 – $9,000. You can pay for either of these by using your credit card information. With it, you would not have to bother about the expiration date because it removes the payment automatically upon expiration.

On the other hand, Web hosting is the space where your website resides. You are free to refer to it as your site’s abode. Without web hosting, your site cannot be viewed on the internet. If this question, how much does it cost to build an e-commerce website? If on your mind, you should not skip considering the price of a domain name and web hosting as it is an integral part of the process.

The cost of hosting a website is dependent on your e-commerce platform’s choice. You could either choose a self-hosted platform or a SaaS e-commerce platform. Hosting on a self-hosted e-commerce platform costs about $3-$250 per month, while SaaS costs between $29.5 – $300 each month.

Also, it is best to choose a hosting site that will offer you constant support. It is better to be able to contact your hosting service provider anytime you have an issue with your website. In other words, spend on a quality hosting service provider that is easily accessible when challenges arise.

Hosting platforms where you can host your website include DreamHost, Hostinger, HostGator, Bluehost, Kinsta, and GoDaddy.

6. Add-ons and extensions:

No matter what platform you choose, you’d need to make plans for add-ons and extensions. Why add-ons and apps? It will enable you to add extra features to your website. Most of these extensions are paid and will increase the cost of building your site.

We can safely say that Woo-Commerce has the most extension there is. It offers both free and paid versions. It is also worthy of note that it works on WordPress, which has over 50,000 plugins, which is advantageous to users of Woo Commerce platform. You need to think of any feature for your site; there’s an add-on for that function on the WooCommerce platform.

Extensions cost as low as $20 and as high as $300. Another interesting aspect is that you can choose to hire a developer to build a unique plugin for you. Usually, building a new plugin cost more. The price ranges from $500 – $9,500.

On the other hand, for Shopify, you are free to install various third-party apps. Developers can also help you create a unique app for your business that can only be used on your store. Add-ons and apps would cost you from $0 – to $99.

7. E-commerce website design cost

Another crucial cost to look out for is the cost of the overall design of your e-commerce website. The design of your website determines its outlook. When anyone comes to your site, the first thing they see is how it looks. The look of your website determines if the audience will keep on navigating your site or leave it.

You cannot afford to have an e-commerce website that repels your audience. Your e-commerce website is meant to appeal to your audience, not repel. Remember, your audience will always have a similar perception about your brand to what the outlook is.

Your e-commerce website’s design can be stylish, world-class, simple, or high-end. Whichever category you choose, ensure it is beautiful, and the colors, font, images, and videos that are used properly depict your brand.

Also, the category of website design you choose will affect the design cost. For instance, the cost for simple designs varies from high-end or world-class designs. The best is to see what your major competitors are doing and beat them to it. This makes you a solid competitor that is up to the task and ready to take over the market. Designing an e-commerce website ranges from $5-$120,000.

Beautiful designs
Beautiful e-commerce design – Photo by Tranmautritam

8. Marketing and SEO plan:

After launching your online store, you need to make sales! After all, the site’s essence is for you to make a profit, and there’s no profit without sales. Most beginners find this stage challenging, but it is absolutely rewarding if you have the right resources.

One important piece of information about the marketing and SEO plan is that it is not a once and for all cost; it is a once and again cost.

Various plugins, ad-on, extensions, and other factors constitute the marketing and SEO plan. The essentials will be explained in a few points below.

  • Web copies for e-commerce websites: As part of your marketing plan, you should consider copywriting. Unlike other websites, an e-commerce website doesn’t need too much text. You can use long texts for search purposes and shorter text for easy reading. You also have the free will to mix the two for your website; some pages are with short texts, and others are with longer text.

It’s always good to contract this part to a good copywriter with an excellent art of persuasion. This gives you a good chance of earning new customers and generating more traffic to your website. Among other things, e-commerce copies help convince online shoppers to purchase your products.

The service of a persuasive copywriter’s price ranges between $25 and $250 depending on how long the copy is and the copywriting company or freelancer you engage. An excellent copywriter has the secrets of curating great content that can convert audiences to customers.

  • Pay Per Click Marketing: You will agree that for you to achieve anything, there is a process that one needs to go through. Hence, in achieving your desired outcome for your site, you will go through some marketing processes. One of the processes is pay per click. With it, you can drive traffic to your website.

You can get this done by displaying ads for targeted keywords. As a beginner, it is best to start with Google Ads. Your budget does not have to be very much from the beginning. You can now extend it as time goes by if you get your desired result from the Ad.

It would help if you also had some marketing tools like Optimonster, SEMrush, Google Analytics, and Push Notifications. There are other tools you can consider for marketing on your e-commerce site. For this article, the focus is on those listed above.

  • Optinmonster: What this tool does is help you reach customers who visit your website without making any purchases. This costs about $20/month.
  • Semrush: This tool helps you locate your competitor’s keywords and guide you on how to rank higher. The monthly cost for this begins from $100
  • Push Notifications: With the push notification software, you can engage with your customers even when they are no longer on your e-commerce website.
  • Active Campaign: With this tool, marketing automation becomes easier. You can use it to automate pre-and post-purchase emails. This tool costs about $9- $300. The number of contacts available determines the price.
  • Ahrefs: This tool helps you research keywords and most essentially assists you in getting a clearer understanding of how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) works. You can also use it for auditing your website and analyzing your competitors.

Cost of Hiring a Professional to build your e-commerce website

Whether or not you choose to use a web builder for your e-commerce website, there is a difference between an e-commerce website and an excellent e-commerce website. If you are testing the waters to see what works, you can afford to risk building your website yourself using some of the tools and guides proposed in this article.

However, if you mean serious business and are ready to compete with your competitors, you must hire a professional e-commerce website developer. Hiring a professional will cost you about $1000 and above. You will always be glad you hired a website developer in the long run.


It is now clear to you that the cost of having an e-commerce website is not as expensive as you used to think. You know what factors to consider before you start your e-commerce building journey. With the information in this article, you can safely project what it will cost you to get your e-commerce website up and running perfectly.

Now that you have the answer to your question: how much does it cost to build an e-commerce website? You are safe from spending more than required as you have the proper information to make decisions. Be glad! You can now stay within budget.

Remember this, always opt for the most relevant functionalities appropriate for your website at every point in time. It will save you spending a lot of unnecessary funds. As your online business grows bigger, you may need to add other functionalities to improve the user experience.

Now that you have all of this information, you can check out how to open an e-commerce website. This article discusses some important features your website must have.

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