Creating an E-Commerce Site – The Price Tag

Business owners will need to consider the cost of an E-Commerce website in two cases, a store redesign, or when starting fresh. No matter what the reason behind it is, if the business isn’t aware of all the costs behind designing a website, then things are sure to go wrong. It is extremely important for businesses to know the cost behind the operations and understand the reasoning behind them, as there are plenty.

Choosing a Platform
All E-Commerce platforms have subtle and not so subtle differences, and the one you pick depends on the businesses needs, not that any are necessarily better or worse than another. Here at MakDigitalDesign, Volusion, WordPress, BigCommerce, Magento, Shopify, and more are supported.

Software As a Service (SaaS)
These are cloud based platforms that offer hosting, tons of features, and are easy to update, since everything is stored in the cloud. These are really cost efficient because they make creating and editing a site really easy with their custom theme engines, quick load times, and ability to toggle features at a whim. The development time on these kind of platforms is significantly lower than others, because of the theme engines, again saving the business owner money. However, a lot of the platforms operating in this regard, charge the business a percent of their income, and the back end functionality can not be changed (although that is not necessary most of the time).

If you choose to do On-Premise, you will have to purchase and run machines to host the site, which could be a lot more expensive than SaaS. However, there are benefits that could outweigh the cost concern. The back-end code is readily available on an On-Premise platform, allowing developers to easily make changes that can fit in with the functionality your business is trying to achieve. The problem lies in updating the software however. If too much of the back-end code is meddled with, upgrading the platform without significantly altering the site in the process is nigh impossible. Also the cost of programming custom features into the back-end can quickly rack up a fortune.

Costs Totaled + The Unforeseen
So, you’ve picked your platform, figured out the details with the developers, but of course there’s more. Things that can’t be forgotten about that are generic to all sites is the cost of shipping your goods, marketing, and the payment processor’s cut of the transaction. Something you may not have seen coming however, is that there might be certain plug-ins for the platform that will come at a premium. It is important to not gloss over these, as they can be a seriously important part of running a business’s site to the best of it’s abilities.

Wrapping Things Up
Choosing the platform to go towards, and estimating the total costs involved in launching an E-Commerce website are far from easy, as there is no correct answer. However, consider your budget, and what your business is capable of, to try and establish what works best for it.

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