Learning how to start an eCommerce business is full of interesting challenges. Not only do you need to find high demand products to offer, you need to sell online in an authentic and convincing way.
There’s often a lot of eCommerce software to set up before you make sales, but don’t let this hold you back. The right types of eCommerce marketing automation, like emailed discounts and automated dropshipping, are extremely powerful. Strategies like this make it easier to serve customers and reach them at the right times.
You may be surprised by how much work is involved in getting your business up and running. There’s an eCommerce business license to get, eCommerce business insurance to buy, and an eCommerce business plan to draft. You’ll also want to research the best banks and best eCommerce websites to use and familiarize yourself with eCommerce accounting.
It’s wise to set up an eCommerce blog so you can drive consistent traffic with eCommerce SEO. But before you can get to blogging or any kind of eCommerce content marketing, you need a website. Your website is customers’ first impression of your business, so you need an eCommerce website builder that’s appealing and usable.
Once you’ve learned the basics of what is eCommerce website, you can start researching how much you want to spend on one. Keep reading for useful tips on eCommerce website costs and how to choose a great developer.
eCommerce Website Cost
The cost of your eCommerce website depends on several factors, including design, functionality, and the standards of the person making it. This is partly why web designs can vary so much. Minimalist, elegant websites sometimes cost a fortune, whereas click-heavy websites may cost less than one expects.
I know what you’re thinking: “Is there a way to get a website without paying an arm and a leg?” The good news is there is. BlueCart eCommerce is a great option for eCommerce business owners both old and new.
Our platform offers professionals an eCommerce website that doubles as an online store. Whether you sell B2B, direct to consumer, wholesale, or anything else, there are multiple tools at your disposal. BlueCart comes with payment processing, eCommerce shipping, SEO-friendliness, and mobile responsiveness built-in.
As you may imagine, there are tens of thousands of design agencies to choose from. Some website designers specialize in basic websites for new business owners. Other design agencies offer customizations for a flat fee or hourly rate. Still, other web designers provide premium designs with a price tag to match.
When making your decision, you should have a price range and design characteristics prepared. It helps to read a couple eCommerce books if you aren’t sure what to look for. This will narrow down the list of agencies to choose from and speed up communication.
If you have a tight budget or want to bootstrap as much as possible, this is a great option too. Make sure that whoever is building your site is sufficiently skilled to carry it out. The last thing you want is major website issues when your business is getting listed on a new platform like BlueCart eCommerce or an online marketplace.
What Is The Average Cost of An eCommerce Website?
While there’s no easy way to calculate the average cost of an eCommerce website, most end up between $12,000 and $22,000. There are numerous reasons for such high variance.
One reason for large fluctuations is the designer’s experience and technical know-how. Web developers with more industry knowledge can command higher prices. Headless eCommerce websites are an example of this, which require significant amounts of technical configuration.
A second reason is the type of clients a design agency serves. If a small business needs their first-ever digital presence, they won’t need a complex site. There often isn’t a large price associated with these kinds of projects. Accordingly, sites with hundreds of products or those using a detailed catalog creator should expect to pay more.
A third reason for significant price variance is the agency’s own standards. Some businesses commit two to four times more energy to a single project than other agencies do, so they command higher fees.
Different Types of eCommerce Websites
The type of eCommerce site you’re building also has a lot to do with its final details. If you sell custom subscription boxes, it’s worth looking into a subscription website builder. This can teach you the basics of subscription eCommerce website design so you know how to structure your own site.
If you do dropshipping instead, you may or may not need a website and eCommerce website hosting. This depends on whether or not you want to do private label dropshipping, which is shipping third-party products to customers after they’re sold.
You can look through some of the best dropshipping websites and take a dropshipping course to get acquainted. Once you know what will work best for your eCommerce business, start thinking about who you want to build your site.
What to Look For In a Website Developer
If you’ve decided to work with a web developer, you’ve made a great choice. While most companies offer great services for competitive prices, that doesn't mean you should settle for less.
You should also be sure you’re avoiding scams. A particular agency may look great on the surface but turn out to be unresponsive or charge hidden fees.
Here are some important questions to ask when evaluating website developers:
- Does this developer understand my industry? It may be a no-brainer, but your developer should know what your kind of customers expect. An aftermarket vehicle parts website appeals to different buyers than upcycled clothing, and their designs should reflect this. If your developer mentions that they specialize in sites completely different from your demographic, take this as a sign to look elsewhere.
- Has this developer demonstrated strong technical proficiency? This is an entirely normal benchmark to have, and any developer you consider shouldn’t be put off by it. They should be able to show specific examples of what you’re looking for so you can make an informed decision. If there’s a particular coding language you or your in-house team prefers, don’t be shy--ask about it. The right developer will take your questions in stride and help you feel at ease.
- Does this developer have considerable experience? You don’t need to hire the biggest or most experienced developer. However, you should hire someone with demonstrated efficiency in problem-solving. The age-old years of experience test is still useful in making a good call. One to three years’ experience indicates beginners, three to five years’ experience indicates intermediate, and five to seven years’ experience indicates expertise. Beyond standard metrics, go with what your gut tells you. If you appreciate their style of work, it’s a sign of a good fit.
- Does this developer respond quickly and helpfully? Robust web development takes time, but that doesn’t mean your agency should put you on the back burner. Everyone gets busy at times, but if they take several hours to respond to you, it’s a sign of critical issues. They may be understaffed or dealing with other challenges, but that’s their responsibility, not yours. Take a pass on any agency or developer with slow or uninformative responses.
- Is the value being offered commensurate with their price? You don’t need to spend $50,000 on an eCommerce website, but you should exercise healthy skepticism when considering costs. Take a look at their portfolio and testimonials. Are there multiple positive reviews from happy customers? This indicates previous clients felt they got quality results for a great price.
Would You Like a Mobile Version with That?
Getting the essentials of eCommerce websites costs down is a critical step when assessing eCommerce business ideas. Once you’ve settled on your market niche, the right developer, and a fair cost, you can work it into your budget.
You decide how your website looks, functions, and the type of payments you accept, such as ACH payment, so there’s nothing wrong with being picky, or learning how to build an eCommerce website on your own. Afford yourself both quality and flexibility, which are key parts of connecting with customers online.