Did you just create a wicked awesome product that you’re looking to sell online on the latest eCommerce platform? Whether you’ve been using Woocommerce, Shopify, or any of the other platforms, something needs to be said.
The cost of these platforms might seem cheap at $20 a month or so, and that is cheap for an eCommerce platform. You go through the math in your mind: say, your product is worth $50 and it’s $20 a month for the hosting. But then you have to develop a site, promote the product, etc. and you wonder how much is it going to cost to continue having this site up and running?
How Much Does Your Website Actually Cost?
A lot of people don’t look at the hidden costs of having an eCommerce site or any website that is built to bring in traffic. Websites can cost from hundreds of dollars a month up to thousands if they are being marketed. You have to think about what you are spending and what you are expecting to get out of what you’re spending.
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Think About a Good Google Ranking
Having an online presence means you have posts going up on Facebook that are engaging your customers and potential leads, you have landing pages that are specifically geared towards answering a problem that one of your potential leads might have, you have a system where you have email campaigns that go out and talk to the customer about how to solve that different business problem, and obviously you engage with them about some of your services.
If you want to have a good Google ranking, you’re going to need to have an active blog on your website. In extreme cases, you might be doing things such as making a podcast, a YouTube channel or writing a book.
But when you have an online store or you have a website where you’re looking to have it as the primary focus to drive revenue for your business, the costs will add up. The email campaigns and other bits and pieces will cost $50 to $80 a month. The landing pages will be at least $20 a month.
Other Costs Can Add Up
If you’re writing the blogs yourself, that’s going to be a couple of hours a week that you’re spending writing those blogs, if you know exactly what you’re doing. Every week you’re going to have to do a vote towards doing that or hiring someone else to do that.
Hiring someone at the minimum will be $50 to $60 a week to have that written. If you want real quality content, a reasonable blog article written, you are looking at the $100 range.
Once you’ve got all these systems and bits and pieces in place, you still need people to hear about you. You need to be having posts going up on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and maybe Instagram. All these things cost time and money.
A tool to help with this would be Sendible and Social Bee, which automatically send out these posts to different places. It saves a bit of time but it also costs a bit more money.
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Linking Your Customers
You need to somehow keep all your customers linked between all these different systems. You need to buy into other tools that link all these together, and that costs more money. It costs a lot of money to operate a successful online business and online store, so don’t make the mistake of pricing your product too cheaply and then realising that your marketing plan is lacking because you’ve done that.
Consult a Professional
If you are serious about having an online store but you know nothing about it, consult a professional and have them guide you through how to set that up. Just setting up the email marketing campaigns and sales funnels could have you looking at $10,000 including management with Adwords for 3 months. Have a think about that before you start going down this path.
The Internet used to be a build-it-and-they-will-come type of situation, but that’s not the case anymore. If you’re doing it and you’ve thought about it, there’s probably someone else out there who’s already done it and thought about it. If there isn’t, there will be soon. If that still doesn’t happen and you haven’t promoted yourself, no one’s going to know about you and you’ll be out of business soon. So don’t undervalue the cost of running a website and how much work and effort are involved to get yourself marketed properly online.