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Website Basics - How Much Time Does It Take To Build Your Own Website?

A question you ask may when building a website is how long it will take. You might hate the answer: “it depends”. To clarify, when we say ‘it depends’, we’re talking about how extensive the website is, and also whether you hire a professional or try to build the website yourself. Let’s take a look at the website types upon which the timeframe ‘depends’, and estimate time for doing it yourself.

websites novice versus professional

A Simple, Small Website

Let’s begin with smallest websites you see online, a small website with as few as 5 pages with its own content management system. This website won’t have any advanced features like libraries of content or calendars. Such a website can take anywhere between 1 to 2 months, if your goal is building a professional looking website. Sometimes a pre-designed template can speed things up, but be aware that using a template does not always mean that you will save time. In many cases the template includes functionality that has a learning curve that you must budget for in your time, or in some cases the template may override the core CMS in ways that prevent you from getting the exact look and functionality that you want.

A Small to Medium Sized Website

Moving up in the number of pages and not as much in terms in complexity or features, these websites are ones that contain 5-10 pages and require frequent content updates with the integrated content management systems. These websites are basically enlarged versions of smaller websites and can take anywhere between 2 and 3 months to develop yourself.

A Medium to Large sized Website

This type of website is usually content intensive for specific topics and is updated frequently via integrated content management systems. They also feature extra, more extensive features like calendar, shopping carts, or social media integration. Such a website will take much more time to complete and also requires a larger investment in time to prepare content, images, and other website assets needed. Development phase for this project can take anywhere between 3 and 5 months, and may be more than you can do on your own.

Massive, Complex Website with Numerous Features

Large website development projects will often involve the integration of customer relationship management systems, inventory systems, or other database sets with websites features. The need to organize hundreds of content and product pages into a singular well-designed website that’s accessible and user-friendly for the audience can easily take more than 6 months for a professional developer to plan, design, develop and launch. It would be extremely difficult or impossible for a novice web designer to complete such a project successfully.

Please note that the above guidelines are rough estimates, and the exact timeline can only be determined once a professional reviews your exact requirements. Of course, the timeframe can be shortened considerably if you opt for professional web design services rather than doing it yourself. Plus, the quality will be significantly better too, with after-sales support to help you modify and build upon the website as your business scales.

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