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How much does it cost to have a website in 2021?

Updated: Mar 3, 2021

There was a great acceleration of moving businesses online in 2020 due to the pandemic. Those whose businesses were greatly affected have been in search of solutions to cope up with the travel and operation restrictions. Some have to pivot to new opportunities for survival while others are resulting in a more long term investment which is digitising their business operations.

Putting a business available online is a trend even before Covid-19 happened and now even becoming a must for most small and big businesses. One of steps in making sure your business is visible online is by having a website. It is now even considered as one of the most powerful marketing channels. It allows a business to give details about the company, services, and build trust with the customers.

But the question is, what is the cost of having a website that fulfils your business needs?

Somewhere online when you do a market research for website development, you may stumble upon RM3,000 for a website or even RM500,000 to develop a really comprehensive one, especially for big corporations.

Developing a website is very similar when it comes to building a house. There are architects and engineers who design and build the house. When it comes to website development, there are the developers, project managers, and UI/UX designers. How they do it is very dependent on the client’s requirements and the investment the client is willing to put in. Both factors should be aligned prior to the start of the project.


Here are major factors that affects the cost of website development:

1. Website Business Goal

Your goals in having this website and the type of website.

  • Personal website & blog

  • Landing page / Brochure type

  • Corporate

  • e-Commerce

  • Educational

  • Web portal

  • Catalogue

  • Community forums / Social networking sites

2. Development Phases

This defines the cost that needs to be considered for all the development needed by the website.

Stage 1: User interface & User experience design (UI/UX)

This plays a crucial role in the success of the website and the development because making an effort to make your website beautiful with user-friendly experience means more visitors would rather go to your page than other pages.

  • Research

  • Wireframe

  • UI/UX design

Development time: 1 to 2 weeks

Cost: RM1,000 to RM16,000.

Stage 2: Front-end

The interface and the first visual touch point that a website visitor recognises. It’s the first thing you see when you go to a website like the buttons, texts, pages, etc. After the result of the UI/UX, front-end developers will then use languages like JavaScript, HTML, Typescript, React, or CSS to work on the interface.

The cost can vary depending on the complexity of animation, interactions, and more.

Development time: 2 to 6 weeks

Cost: RM2,000 to RM50,000

Stage 3: Back-end

This is important when the website needs data interaction from the visual elements. For example, the website has a search functionality. The data coming from all searches will need a place to receive this as part of the database and send back the answer to the user. This can also have an integration with third-party services to make the job faster.

This involves a lot of complex queries, data processing, image processing, machine learning etc.

Development time: 3 to 8 weeks

Cost: RM5,000 to RM50,000

Stage 4: Content Management System (CMS)

This is when you want to create, manage, or edit the contents of your website without having to change the codes of the website or with the help of a developer as these kinds of changes made by developers can incur additional costs. You can have your own CMS software to manage all the changes by yourself.

There are ready-to-go CMS software like Wordpress, Strapi, or Drupal that can provide the general functionalities in managing contents. However, it might not answer the customisation or meet your demands for specific requirements.

Development time: 3 to 8 weeks

Cost: RM10,000 to RM30,000

3. Customised Factors

Components in the website that can be customised as per your requirements. These components are important to be considered in every website development. We’ve narrowed down these website components that make up these costs:

These three major factors can make or break the investment needed regardless of whether you need a personal website, e-Commerce, educational, or other types of website you would like to be developed. The more features, functionalities, and customisation in the website, then the cost can get higher.

Another major question that must be asked is who will develop your website? This is a major factor that affects the cost of a website development.

There are a bunch of available website builders like Wix or Wordpress that motivates people to build their own websites easily however, it can still be challenging especially for those who are not technology savvy.

The option of a freelancer can come to mind particularly for small projects, however you can face freelancers who have the lack of experience, the challenge of doing a technical interview by yourself, and at the end, managing the maintenance and guaranteed warranty of the website. The common problem that you can face in hiring a freelancer is the availability and being able to reach the person in case of any technical issues with the website after the development. If the freelancer becomes uncontactable, there’s no other way but to design and develop another website to meet your demands once again.

If your aim is to have a professional website, boost it, and be able to easily upgrade it to a more robust website when your visitors increase, you will need an experienced and knowledgeable technology partner who can support you from A-Z of your technical needs. This is what web design & development agencies provide that makes their cost high but with secured high quality and guaranteed service.

In summary:

Your website is the face of your business. Creating a stunning website should be the top priority. It should be really good, fast, optimised, catchy, and is designed to match your customers and their behaviours. It’s all up to you on how you would like to present your company to your customers online. The key is having an experienced and knowledgeable partner who can meet your demands, guarantees quality, and can bring value to your business.


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