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There are four types of expenses involved in owning/operating a website:

Design / Development,   Internet Presence,  Maintenance,  Promotion.

Depending on the type of site, the maintenance and promotion my not be much of an expense, unless your selling, or promoting products or a service. Most sites are a extension of your company profile, a inexpensive way to tell the world about your business and show them who you are. Below I've summarized the cost of owning a web site.

Design / Development Expenses

These expenses related to the cost of designing the website itself. The more complex the website is, the greater the development expense, it varies with number of pages, graphics, photos, interactive services, etc. As a general rule of thumb, an effective website can be developed anywhere from $400 to $2000.

E-commerce websites can usually be developed for under $10000. This figure, however, depends on the number of products, taxation and shipping costs, and other issues, and developing an effective e-commerce site will require a great deal of extra planning and development.

Internet Presence Expenses

A domain name (i.e. a .com or a .ca). com domain names should cost you no more than $25-$30 per year, and .ca domain names between $30-$50 per year.

Hosting. A web host is the computer/server on which your website will be placed. Web host servers operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The typical services are disk space, email accounts, database connectivity etc. Hosting costs between $15 - $40 per month . see our hosting plans.

E-commerce hosting and hosting for sites with high traffic or that consume significant computer resource can be more expensive, however. A quality e-commerce host can cost anywhere from $45 - $100 per month ($540 - $1200 per year) or more, depending on the nature of the site and how much server resource it uses.

Maintenance  Expenses
Maintenance expenses are related to the ongoing costs of maintaining a website. These costs include: adding special offers, new articles or news, expanded resources, general additions, changes, monthly review of site to check for broken links, problems etc. Search engine rankings must be checked regularly and pages and/or meta tags altered if necessary to improve ratings. Depending on the amount of changes the cost can range from $200 - $1000 per year.
Promotion Expenses
Search engine submission/promotion. Set aside a budget of between $200-$500 per year to get your website quickly and properly listed and updated in the major search engines. While it is true that many search engines will accept free submissions, these free listings usually take a minimum of one month to appear in the search engines and can often "slip out" and have to be reindexed. A $500 per year online promotion investment, combined with an appropriate search engine description, will always produce results.
Cost Summary
Initial Development:
Domain Name:
$400 to $2000.00
$25.00-$30.00 per year for a .com domain name
$30.00-$50.00 per year for a .ca domain name
Web Host: $120-$240 per year
Search Engine Submission/Promotion: $400-$500 per year
Total Costs: Up to $2000 for initial setup
$200-$800 per year for maintenance