How to plan your B2B website budget

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How much should your B2B website cost?

A great B2B website is designed to generate awareness, acquire and nurture prospects, and qualify sales readiness along your ideal customer’s buyer’s journey. And, of course, it doesn’t hurt if your website helps with your lead generation.

As companies plan their digital marketing budgets for the new year, we’re often asked “How much should my B2B website budget cost?”.

Have no fear, here’s your ultimate guide to B2B website budgets.

We’ll cover best practices, how much you should allocate, as well as some costs you may have not considered yet. Let’s get started!

 

B2B website budget: design and development

75% of judgments on website credibility are based on aesthetics and the overall user experience. Which means it’s more important than ever to prioritize your website’s design and functionality.

While website development budgets can range from hundreds to hundreds of thousands of dollars, you can expect a range of $30,000 to $45,000 for development and $5,000 to $15,000 for design to execute the design and functional best practices that will give your website the competitive edge to meet online standards and compliance requirements.

This cost range typically covers:

– Refreshing any graphic design elements based on your existing brand (logo, colors, typography, icons or graphics, etc)
– Developing your website theme, respective CSS stylesheets, and page templates within an open-source Content Management System platform such as WordPress or Drupal
– Integrating technical SEO best practices such as schema (structured data), competitive keywords, optimized meta tags, and a user-friendly site interface so that search engines can easily access your site and provide the best content to users
– Configuring supporting plugins and security standards
– Applying accessibility standards into website coding and design
– Optimizing browser compatibility for common web browsers
– Optimizing your website for a mobile-first experience across all devices

You can spend more if you need a full brand refresh, more custom tools and applications developed for your website, or need multiple rounds of revisions. However, most B2B marketing website projects should fit this range whether you are a multinational B2B brand with millions of customers, a growth brand with a very niche audience, or anyone in between!

 

Important B2B website budget items to consider

There are some budget items that you definitely don’t want to overlook. It’s important to incorporate them early into your planning, so you can avoid any unnecessary challenges during the project.

1. Setting the tone: the purpose and goals of your website

From the jump, you want to have a good idea of the purpose and goals of your website. While it may be tempting to focus on what your new website will look like, we recommend starting off by asking yourself the following questions:

– What are our objectives?
– What audiences are we targeting?
– What content are they looking for?
– How should we organize the site to deliver our objectives?
– What are our functional and technical requirements?
– What compliance standards need to be integrated and how do we need the website to be compliant?
– What should the design look like?
– How will we measure success?
– What’s working well now? What isn’t?

While requirement briefs are often included in a website project at no extra charge, make sure they cover all the questions listed above to set the right foundation for the rest of the website build.

Once you have an idea of your answers to these questions, you’ll be able to form a structure that will deliver a website with better results. Plus, you’ll find the process way more efficient and less expensive.

 

2. Site architecture, wireframes, and page templates

A user experience that’s the stuff of dreams is both a science and an art. Your website’s user experience (UX) can make all the difference between a website that hits your objectives and an aesthetically pleasing one that comes short.

While technically, space on the internet is infinite, each page on your website actually has very limited real estate. Most visitors will never get below the top of any page on your site. On top of that, most aren’t willing to go further than 3 clicks to find what they’re looking for, so you need to make sure that you’re building the right architecture and page templates into your website that supports their journey and prioritizes your content.

Site architecture and UX planning generally cost $5,000-$10,000 depending on how large or complex your site is.

The key elements in UX planning that we recommend considering include site architecture to map out your whole site and its content hierarchy, wireframes to map out each page’s structure, features, user pathways, and content, plus building the right templates.

By prioritizing these elements, you’ll form a blueprint of your website that will then inform the content, functionality, design, user pathways, and SEO requirements.

 

3. Migration planning and content loading

Content loading is the process of loading and styling content in your website’s content management system. While this can be a lot of work that requires manual loading and proofing, don’t worry! It can be improved with a strong content development process and the right supporting technology. If your website’s templates use WYSIWYG editors to load content into, you’ll also want to make sure that the person who’s loading your content has the right technical knowledge around HTML and SEO best practices (such as meta title tags and meta descriptions) as well as accessibility compliance knowledge to get the job done well.

But there’s so much more to migrating your website than content loading. When you start making changes on a website, every single decision needs to be weighted from both a UX and SEO standpoint. You may have decided that certain pages from your website should be removed to improve the user’s experience, but without a clear redirect plan you might end up damaging your site’s organic search visibility. On the other hand, having too little text may cause search engines to think that your content isn’t valuable, and that can harm how you rank for a topic. Even worse, it may even affect your overall domain authority. We recommend consulting an expert with extensive experience in both B2B SEO and UX from the very beginning of the project so they can discuss the potential consequences of every change you’d like to make. That way, you’ll avoid any surprises during your website migration.

Business stakeholders usually don’t realize site migrations can be so time-consuming and resource-heavy. What most stakeholders are unaware of is that it can take just a few days for organic search visibility to tank, but recovery can take several months, making this migration planning stage critical in any website redesign project. Migration planning, QA, and content loading generally costs $4,000 – $10,000.

 

4. Content development

Content development is often the biggest challenge in almost every B2B marketing website. How you tell your brand’s story is critical when it comes to delivering better results. Many are so focused on the design and architecture of the website, that content development becomes under-budgeted and delegated to a junior copywriter. Avoid this mistake by creating a content plan earlier in the process — one that’s focused on the objectives you’ve defined using competitive SEO and filling the content gaps that your prospects want or need to know.

To start, identify your key audiences, their intent, and the content they’re looking for at different stages. What content helps them as they define their problem, learn how to fix their problem, and decide where to purchase from? Once you’ve answered these questions, take an inventory of existing content that should be migrated “as is” to your new website, existing content that can be edited and repurposed for your new site, and new content that will need to be developed. This stage also provides an opportunity to refresh old content with insights into what people are actually searching for.

Getting content development done is where most in-house website projects hit major delays. To make sure there’s enough time to get everything finished by your website launch date, start your content development as soon as you begin any website design and coding.

Typically content planning and development in a website redesign project averages $8,000 – $24,000 depending on the amount of content needed.

 

5. Transcreation

If you do business in multiple languages, then you should consider a multilingual website. There are terrific language translation technologies available that can help reduce the cost of developing and managing multilingual sites to less than $6,000 in additional development costs.

Depending on the language(s), copy length can drastically affect the overall UX of your website both on desktop and mobile devices, making it unpleasant for certain languages. Enhancing the experience in each language is ideal, often done after launching the website as an ongoing optimization efforts.

Multilingual features can cost $6,000. Content translation which can run from $200 to $500 per page, depending on the length. Enhancing the experience for a particular language can increase this cost to $16k+ depending on the amount of content.

 

6. Technology integration and analytics

Basic web tracking tools such as Google Analytics and Google Search Console can be integrated at no charge in your website design and development. If the structure of your website has changed, make sure a web expert has configured Google Search Console and Bing’s webmaster tools as well as updated the submitted XML sitemap. After launch, it’ll be important to keep an eye out for crawling errors to avoid any damage to your sites organic search performance. This should also be included in any website revamp project.

If you’re using marketing automation platforms like Pardot, Hubspot, Marketo or sales CRM platforms such as Salesforce Sales Cloud or Microsoft Dynamics, then you’ll need to integrate them into your site as well. This shouldn’t add any cost to your design and coding budget, but you will need additional landing page templates, form styling to match the design, updated HTML email templates, and page scoring rules.

Marketing automation and sales CRM integration typically costs around $3,000, but it can increase depending on the complexity of what’s needed.

If you want to use additional technology integration such as customer portals, support tools, catalogues, custom Google Analytics configurations/reports/dashboards, and e-commerce capability, they can often be accommodated with offsite links, Google Tag Manager or iframes. However, they will need detailed use-case and requirements discovery to really determine if a quick integration is enough or if custom code is required.

The cost of technology implementation really depends, but it’s much cheaper (sometimes no additional cost at all) if you plan your website project with these in mind from the start.

 

7. Search Engine Optimization for B2B

Like we’ve mentioned above, basic technical search engine optimization should be included in your website design and coding budget at no extra charge. Website content management systems now handle most of the technical side of SEO such as URL structure and page titles. You’ll still want to make sure that your content is competitive on an ongoing basis, which means optimizing any of the following:

– Competitive market analysis
– Keyphrase analysis
– B2B SEO content enhancements
– Advanced schema recommendations
– Custom Google Analytics configurations
– Custom Google Data Studio reporting
– Site positional tracking (keyword ranking, SERP features)

Technical SEO should be included in your site design and coding costs, but once you get into optimizing and developing the actual content on your website for organic and local search, you can expect to see a range of $5,000 – $15,000 on a monthly basis to continue getting the most out of your new website.

8. Launch and continuous improvement

You’re almost there! Two weeks prior to launch day, you’ll find yourself in the QA and testing stage, going through each page of your website to ensure everything is in place and ready for the big day. This is where you should be on the lookout for missed bugs that need fixing, grammatical errors, and technical issues such as missing alt tags or redirects. Use a thorough website QA checklist so you’re fully prepared for a smooth launch. If necessary, conduct a final review of site content with your legal team. All this to say, be prepared to handle any changes that might come your way. Everything is a matter of timeline, budget, and scope. Success at this stage is finding a balance between all of them all as you polish your work.

And then, at last, launch day arrives! Have your technical expert scheduled and ready to help migrate the new website and officially launch your website. Once the site is launched, QA and test again to cover all of your bases.

Time to sit back and relax, right? Not quite. A B2B website shouldn’t stop at launch. There are plenty of opportunities for you to gain even more from your website by performing maintenance and providing constant website updates.

Put the right tools under your belt, like dashboards and data to help you with necessary optimization updates on your website. Think lead generation, organic traffic, visitor behaviour and ROI. Based on these insights, you’ll want to plan monthly updates to your website that will make the most impact against these success metrics. Publish content across your website on a regular basis, make tweaks to the design, functionality and overall user experience, test out various conversion rate optimization tactics and make sure the technical foundation of your site is sound, so that all of the effort you put into optimizing your site continues to work for you.

Remember, launching is not the end of your website project…it’s just the beginning. After all, websites aren’t made of stone. You should continue to iterate and improve.

Other considerations for your B2B website budget

  • Additional design such as icons, graphics, photography, video or animation
  • Additional applications such as ROI calculators or needs assessment tools
  • Additional content development for your resource center or blog
  • Server setup and administration including automated backups and 24/7 site monitoring
  • Awareness and lead generation programs
  • Integration and planning of personalized dynamic content
  • Whether or not you will stick to a custom built resource center or move into a more robust solution such as Uberflip

Total Website Launch Budget: $60,000 – $140,000+, with an ongoing improvement budget of $15,000 – $30,000/month.

 

Budget Line ItemCost Range
Discovery and requirements briefN/C
Site design and coding$35,000 – $60,000+
Site Architecture, wireframes, and templates$5,000 – $10,000+
Migration planning and content loading$4,000 – $10,000+
Content planning and development$8,000 – $24,000+
Transcreation$6,000 – $16,000+
Technology integration$3,000 – $20,000+
Search engine optimization$5,000 – $15,000+ /m
Launch & continuous improvement$10,000 – $15,000+ /m

 

Next steps:

Is your website is contributing to a healthy sales and marketing pipeline? In this webinar, Nolin LeChasseur, Brainrider’s founding partner and CMO, discusses the three core concepts that high-performing B2B marketing teams use to turn their B2B website into a pipeline marketing machine. Watch now.

Looking to get a more accurate assessment of how much your specific B2B website will cost? We’re here to help. Get in touch with one of our experts at Brainrider.

 

About Brainrider

Brainrider is a B2B marketing and creative agency. We provide content, web, MarTech, and digital marketing services through a flexible resource model to meet your business’s specific needs. We’re focused on helping you achieve your business objectives and identifying opportunities for continuous improvement so you’ll always stay ahead of the curve. Contact us here to learn more.

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