Costs of an Internet Presence
Costs of an Internet Presence
The Real Costs of Having a Web Site
The Real Costs of Having a Web Site
Do It Yourself
Do It Yourself
Storage 
Storage 
(Web 
(Web 
Hosting)
Hosting)
$ 20/mo.
$ 20/mo.
Storage Space
Storage Space
10 
10 
MB
MB
Web Design (Set Up Fees)
Web Design (Set Up Fees)
$ 2,000+
$ 2,000+
Standard Maintenance (1 hr./mo.)
Standard Maintenance (1 hr./mo.)
$ 
$ 
100/mo.
100/mo.
Tax Changes (4 hours/year)
Tax Changes (4 hours/year)
$33/mo.
$33/mo.
Promote/Market Your Site
Promote/Market Your Site
 None
 None
Educational Estate Planning Content
Educational Estate Planning Content
 None
 None
Edit It Yourself Interface
Edit It Yourself Interface
 None
 None
$2,000+ Set Up
$2,000+ Set Up
+ 
+ 
$153 / Month
$153 / Month
Now that you are aware of the basic setup of the web, and what it takes to make a useful site, let's discuss the costs if you
did it yourself or hired a web designer.
  In  order  to have  a  web  site,  the first  thing  you  need  is  somewhere  to  store  it.  This  is  physical  hard  drive  space  and
hosting  software  provided by whomever is  hosting  your  web  site.  Think  of  it  like  the  office  space  you  lease  for  your
company. Some ISPs (like AOL or Earthlink) offer you web site space with your email account, though its usually only a
token amount of space.
  Hosting varies, but is commonly between $20 and $50 per month for 10 to 50 MB of space. Let's use $20/mo for 10
MB. Keep in mind that this is JUST space, you don't have any pages yet.
  Thus, the next thing you need is to design the site itself. Web designers vary in price, but usually charge $60 to $150 per
hour. It can take several hours to come up with your site's  look and feel  and then you have to get your basic content up.
Basic content includes information about you, your practice, your office location and anything else you want online. Even
for a very small site of around 15 pages, you can be looking at $2,000 in set up fees.
   Next,  the  hidden  cost  that  most  people  don't  think  about   updates  and  maintenance.  Without  fresh  content,  your
visitors have absolutely no incentive to come back. Now you have to go back to your web designer every time you want
something changed or added, at the mercy of the designer's busy schedule. Even minor changes can take an hour or two.
Moderate to major changes can take several hours. Let's just assume just 1 hr. of minor ongoing updates  per month at
$100/hr. ($100/month), and about 4 hours of updates due to Tax Law Changes per year ($33/month).
  Now you have a site and space for it, but no one knows about it. Marketing your site can cost a fortune. For example,
there are companies that you can pay to get you high search engine placement results, get you high visibility on other web
sites or get you involved in banner ad exchanges. We know many people spending thousands of dollars on this aspect of
their site. As we have mentioned, there are no guarantees that this will be effective.
  And with that small of a  site, there wouldn't  be  any  sizeable  amount of educational estate  planning content for your
visitors. That means you have to write the materials, taking up tons of your time, and then pay your web designer to add it
again. After that, you have to keep it updated, which costs you again. And if you run out of storage space on your hosts
server, you have to pay more there as well.
  So what's the end result? You've spent at least $2,000 to design and build a small site, which costs you $153 more per
month to  keep  updated  and useful    that's without  marketing costs  or  content,  which  could  be  thousands  more.  I  sure
many of you out there already have web sites that aren't doing a thing for you.
There is an inexpensive solution.
  1993 2004 by Schumacher Publishing, Inc.
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