The Hidden Costs of Having a Website
So I hear that you guys have just created a wicked awesome product that you're looking to sell online on the latest eCommerce platform. Now, whether you've been using Woocommerce, Shopify, or any of the other platforms, something needs to be said. The costs of these platforms might seem cheap at $20 a month or so, and that is cheap for the platform. You can't go wrong. Maybe your product is worth $50. You look at this and you go through the math in your mind. You're going, okay, $20 a month for the hosting, and then you have to develop a site. You have to promote the product and you might be going, okay, well how? How? How much is it going to cost me 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 for that matter, any website that is built to bring in traffic. Websites can cost from hundreds of dollars a month, anywhere upwards to thousands if they are being marketed, so you have to think, what are you spending and what are you expecting to get out of what you're spending? If you have an online presence and you're doing it right, that means that you have posts going up on Facebook that are engaging your customers and engaging your potential leads. You have landing pages for your website, which are 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.
Think About a Good Google Ranking
If you want to have a good Google ranking, you're going to need to have an active blog on your website, and in extreme cases you might be doing things such as making a podcast, a YouTube channel, or writing a book. I'm very passionate about the whole process 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. It's gonna add up. The email campaigns and bits and pieces will be $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 who knows your industry. Hiring someone at the minimum will be 50-60 dollars a week to have that written. If you want real quality content you are looking at the 100 dollar range to have a reasonable blog article written. Then, once you've got all these systems and bits and pieces in place, you still need people to hear about you. So then you need to be having posts going up on Facebook and on LinkedIn and on Twitter and maybe Instagram, and all these things cost time and money. A tool to help with this would be Sendable, which automatically sends out these posts to different places. It saves a bit of time but it also costs a bit more money.
Linking Your Customers
You then 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. That costs more money. It costs a lot of money operating 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 and you know nothing about it, consult a professional and have them guide you through how to set that up. Just to set up the email marketing campaigns and sales funnels could have you looking at $10,000 including management with Adwords for three months. So just 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 situation. 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, and 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, just don't undervalue the cost of what it costs to run a website and how much work and effort is involved to get yourself marketed properly online.
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