This article is brought to you by Greek Digital marketing agency Nelios
Nelios Chief Production Officer Haralambos Theodorou points out all the pricing parameters of website design. So pay attention if you do not want it to cost you a fortune!
During a time when the speed of technological advance resembles that of Lewis Hamilton’s and a 4-year-old hotel website is almost considered to be a… “senile senior”, the construction of a new website, and therefore incurring new costs, is one of the most frequent must-do’s for a hotel. Which parameters, however, shape its final cost, what is the range of this cost and how to we make a choice?
First of all, let us begin by admitting the following: there is not right or wrong choice in the construction of a hotel website. On the contrary, it is defined by the needs and desires of the hotel enterprise. Therefore, we resume by listing the following parameters that shape the cost analysis of constructing a new website.
Custom or Open Source CMS
The first parameter concerns the cost of creating a CMS platform; think of it as the ‘brains’ of the website as it is essentially the website’s content management system. We have two options: an open source CMS (a configurative platform similar to WordPress) or we proceed to a custom CMS (usually the custom CMS design of the company with which you are collaborating for the website construction). As it is understandable, the cost of the first option is lower although it requires more funds in terms of support due to frequent upgrades mainly in the security framework. In the second case of a custom CMS, the initial cost is higher but there on-going support expenses are lower.
Design / Concept
The second parameter that affects the final cost of a website is its design, that is, its appearance, its display. Also here, we can choose one of two paths – or almost two (explanation to follow). We can choose a ready-made template, a pre-constructed design, on to which we can “plug” our own credentials and materials (logos, content, pictures). This solution is significantly more affordable and time-efficient, since the website can be ready within a few weeks. However, this choice makes the possibility of interference and configuration extremely narrow (in some cases only colour changes are permitted).
On the other hand, there is of course the full-out option of a custom design website. A website that is exclusively designed for the specific hotel, entirely in-line with the concept, brand, corporate identity and communication strategy, that allows absolute flexibility to showcase its USP’s. It can also have custom animations, special applications that promote user experience and of course create a unique character for the brand they present. In this case, the time to completion is significantly more than the first option. Indicatively, it could reach 3 months or perhaps exceed that too. For a custom website, there is no fixed price because each company evaluates the added value of the concept-defining process differently (which is also correlated to the time to completion greatly).
It is the number of different types of pages or layouts (“views” as it is referred to in our language) that comprise a website. For example, a basic hotel website will consist of 8 basic views that are: homepage, list of rooms, page for rooms, offer page, contact page, photo gallery page, facilities page and the experience page. With these 8 views we can create a sound hotel website. If the hotel must highlight one if its products in a special way (e.g. Restaurant or Spa) we need more pages, and so the cost increases.
When choosing one of the ready-made options, the cost ranges around 2 – 3.000 euro, whereas the custom design websites start from 10.000 euro. In between lie the hybrid options. In essence, these are ready templates (like in the first option) that allow us to personalise parameters to a greater extent with the addition of some functionalities and modifications.
Nelios will be participating at the Xenia 2018 hospitality show (Hall 3, Stand C37) to take place in Athens during November 24-26.