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If you already have an idea about how much it costs to build a website from scratch using WordPress and need tips on how to pick a good web designer, check out our “website designer near me” agency checklist.

How Much Does It Cost To Build A Website From Scratch? (WordPress)

One of the main questions we get when people are thinking about building their own website is, “How much does it cost to build a website from scratch?”

Answer: Every Project Is Different

This is not an easy question to answer since the cost of your WordPress website depends on:

(1) Your business goals, (2) budget, (3) the type of website you need, and (4) the approach you take to build it.

Hiring someone to build a website from scratch is going to be more expensive than doing it yourself, especially if your website has multiple advanced features.

DIY Websites Require A Time Investment

If you do decide to build an advanced WordPress website by yourself, it will require you to invest a huge amount of time into its development.

Let’s look at the specific costs you can expect when developing a DIY website.

Cost of The DIY Approach When You Build A Website From Scratch

If you do not have the budget to hire a web design agency, you can create your own website using web builders such as WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace.

Although these builders are fairly cheap, they are not free since you have to pay for the following basic features:

  • Web hosting – $100 to $1,000 yearly
  • Domain name – $35 to $600 yearly
  • Website builder – $100 to $500 yearly

Popular Web Builders Can Be Expensive – $1k+

If you want a more advanced website or an eCommerce website, what you pay to these web builders can easily run as high as $1,000 (or even more), depending on the themes, apps, and plugins you use.

Cost of Hiring A Professional Web Designer To Build A Website From Scratch

Hiring a professional web designer costs anywhere from $75 to $200 per hour, with an average of $150 per hour.

Project totals range anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000 (or more).

Where you land on this scale depends on the scope of your business and how advanced you want your website to be.

Convenience vs Cost

Hiring a professional web design agency costs more upfront, but they also take care of everything for you.

Some of the services a good web design agency provides are:

  • Web hosting
  • Domain name
  • SSL
  • Best plugins for your business
  • Monthly maintenance
  • Ongoing technical support
  • Content management
  • SEO and marketing

When hiring a web designer, you pay more to benefit from their years of experience and industry know-how.

We always say, “Manage your business, let us manage your website.”

We have tens of thousands of hours of collective experience, and its this experience that is most valuable to you, the business owner.

Check out this resource if you want to find more Los Angeles web developers.

Which Option Is Better? DIY Web Design or Hiring A Web Designer?

Neither one is better than the other since every design project is different.

DIY Website Approach To Build A Website From Scratch

If you are just building a hobby website or doing a personal project, then you might consider going the DIY route, as this would save you money and teach you a lot about how websites are made.

It also does not tie a ROI to your project.

Professional Approach To Build A Website From Scratch

If your business needs a high-quality website that is ready to service customers and clients, then hiring a professional web designer is almost certainly the best choice.

Make sure to thoroughly vet your vendor of choice, and check out our many other posts on our blog for more info on how to make the right choice.

Why Build A Website From Scratch?

The key advantage to building a custom website from scratch, as opposed to building a website from a pre-packaged design template, is that you can add all sorts of advanced functionalities to your custom website.


You are not tied to some predetermined template. EVERYTHING is customizable, which is a massive advantage.

You also don’t end up with a website that 2,000 other people downloaded and used.

Its bespoke. It fits your specific business needs and is unique to you and your brand.


Agencies that do go the template route likely employ people that don’t have the necessary skillset to design and build custom websites.

The ONLY reason to choose a template over custom design is:

A) Your budget – you cannot afford any other option.

B) You aren’t looking for a high-level website for business purposes and are more interested in creating a website that functions more like a business card (a totally valid approach).

Further Reading: How To Build A Website From Scratch

For those who want to build a website from scratch, we’ve listed the steps we follow. Feel free to emulate these.

1. Onboarding

During this phase, we have two central objectives we want to achieve—architecture and design.

To ensure the architecture of your website is excellent, we create a sitemap and go through all your web pages to see how they are designed, what they are used for, and how they relate to other pages.

In this way, we develop an overall understanding of your website that enhances its functionality, ease-of-use, and usefulness.

Looking at your website’s architecture and design is the highest level of strategy for your website.

During Our Onboarding Process, We Work Closely With You

Part of our onboarding process is determining the design direction of your project by consulting with you about what you need and want to see with your website.

This is very important to our design process, which is why we provide you with a free, no-pressure consultation and as many completely free follow-up calls as needed.

We encourage you to continue to communicate with us throughout the design process so that we can refine our approach to your website (if needed) and stay in alignment with your design vision.

Researching The Competition

Our onboarding phase also includes market research about your competitors, so that we can create a website that stands out and puts you at the top of your niche.

Whatever field we are designing in, we make sure we understand who we are competing against so that we can create a website that at least matches or exceeds what’s out there.

This is another central component when we build a website from scratch.

2. Visual Design

The next stage when we build a website from scratch is the website’s visual design, which we create in a design tool called Figma.

If you want to design a website, we recommend using Figma, which is a highly collaborative cloud-based design tool.

Using Figma, we custom design your entire website.

This makes our designs better than ones that rely on mass produced, pre-packaged design templates.

You Can Design In Figma Too

Designing your own website in Figma is certainly doable….Those who are devoted to making their own DIY website will certainly be able to succeed here.

With that said, Figma does have a considerable learning curve.


Learning to design a website from scratch correctly requires a lot of knowledge and experience.

Making Mockups of Every Page

When we build a website from scratch, we make wireframes and mockups of every page, which we look over closely and scrutinize for flaws before finalizing the design.

When working with clients, this means we get your APPROVAL before finalizing the project.

With Sage, You Know What You’re Getting

This helps us to avoid creating something our clients don’t want.

Making The Website Mobile Responsive

We also make our websites mobile responsive when we build a website from scratch.

It’s a well-known fact that Google gives priority to sites that are mobile responsive.

Nowadays, having a responsive design is absolutely critical for your website’s search engine optimization.

Over 90 percent of the global internet population use mobile devices to access the internet (Statista).

To learn more about our responsive web design, call us for a free, no-pressure consultation.

Are You A Busy Business Owner?

Busy business owners would benefit from hiring a trustworthy web designer to save them time and effort.

If you want to skip the DIY design approach, we encourage you to call us for a free quote.

No tricks or gimmicks.

We offer fair and HONEST contracts written in simple, easy-to-understand language.

3. Development

During this step, we take your approved designs and build them.

Once the initial development is complete, we examine the website for flaws and go through a checklist to ensure it meets the standard required for an excellent design.

4. Pre-Launch

During this phase, we run your website through another checklist to ensure it is ready to go live.

The pre-launch checklist includes tasks like setting up security software, making sure your website is SEO optimized, and setting up Google Analytics.

5. Post-Launch

Once we complete our checklists, we make your website live.

We finalize your launch by undergoing post-launch procedures, then send you a congratulations email.

After your website is live, we map out recommendations that you should consider taking to get the most out of your new website.

We offer several options to support your business on a monthly business, from managed web services to SEO to paid media.

Additional Step To Follow When Building A Website

Secure A Web Domain

Securing your own domain name is a given, but it’s definitely the first step you should take before you begin the development of your website.


If you work with a trustworthy website designer who offers managed web services, you could let them build your website for you first and then secure your domain.

Keep in mind though:

The longer you let your preferred domain linger in the public, the more likely it is that someone else will grab it.

Our Managed Web Services

Sage Digital Agency offers top-of-the-line managed web hosting services.

Whether you work with us or use another service, it’s smart to find a good web hosting service that won’t cause you unnecessary problems with your website.

Premium web hosting is recommended if you have a serious website.

Cheap web hosting, by contrast, is something we recommend against since it limits the quality of your site.

The Downside To Ultra-Cheap Web Hosting

Cheap web hosting is only cheap because it relies on using a shared server.

The problem with shared servers for your business is that shared servers sometimes experience issues with resource sharing, malware, etc….


If something goes wrong with your shared server, it will hurt your website.

BONUS READING: Create SEO Optimized Content

Once you’ve secured a web domain and have built your website (preferably as a custom design in Figma or another excellent design tool), you’ll then want to create SEO-optimized content.

How you go about tackling the creation of SEO content will vary greatly depending on your style.

There are MANY ways to create SEO content.

There are also certain rules that are best followed when doing so.

Optimizing Your SEO Content For Keywords

A big rule when creating SEO content is that you need to make your content around a focus keyword or focus keyword phrase.

There are many tools you can use to find what keywords people are searching for and would be best to use.

Our preferred keyword tools are Ahrefs, Ubersuggest, and Rank Math Pro.

When doing keyword research, you want to focus on finding a keyword that is not too difficult to win but also has enough traffic to be worth your while.

Optimizing Your On-Page SEO

Enhancing your on-page SEO is another important part of creating SEO content.

On-page SEO optimizations cover several areas, which include the following improvements:

  • Title tags and meta descriptions
  • URLs
  • Structured data
  • Content readability
  • Internal and outbound linking
  • Image optimization

Contact Us

Need us to build a website from scratch for your business? Call us today for a free consultation.


To learn how to build a website from scratch (sort of), check out this beginner tutorial from Flux Academy.

Disclaimer: Bear in mind, this video doesn’t teach how to make a fully custom design. Instead, it shows you how to make a design in Figma from start to finish using cloneable assets.

This is a helpful video that will get you started on web design and is quite easy to follow.

It’s a great starting point for learning deeper design principles.

How To Build A Website From Scratch Using WordPress

To focus on building a WordPress website from the ground up, check out this video by Let’s Build WordPress.