“How much it will cost to run my site?” is the first thought of every blogger and webmaster when starting a website. More than 80% of the sites on the net are not maintained and never grown to the extent as it was intended while starting. One of major reason for dropping of a site is not estimating the running cost appropriately. Especially when you have chosen self-hosted WordPress it is much necessary to understand the running cost for long term. In this article we will check out all important costs incurring for running a WordPress website.
Running Cost of WordPress Site
Here are some of the important costs you need allocate budget when planning to run a WordPress site.
Self-hosted WordPress site needs a paid hosting service to store your content. There are different types of hosting service with huge difference in pricing. Generally, at initial stage you can choose one of the shared hosting platforms like SiteGround. When you look at the home page of SiteGround, you can see the attractive price of $2.99 per month hosting offer, sometimes it will be even lower as $1.99 per month.
Most of the bloggers overlook these hosting plans and make mistake by looking at the initial price. When you read carefully, the price offered by SiteGround and many other platforms is applicable for the first payment. The renewal price will be applicable at full rate ($14.99 as per the above screenshot). If you are looking for a high-end hosting services like WPEngine, the cost of hosting can be as high as $20 per month. This is also for the restricted number of unique page views of 25K and there will be overage charges when the traffic goes beyond the monthly limit.
Hosting Cost: Let us consider the lower end of shared hosting service and account $4 per month for initial term and $8 for renewal.
Though there are thousands of free themes available on WordPress repository it is a good practice to choose one of the premium themes suitable for your site. There are two simple reasons you should go for a commercial theme:
- Premium themes are updated to ensure the compatibility with the latest WordPress version.
- Getting support is easy for the paid themes.
Both of these points are important for hosting a site for long run. A good theme cost around $50 to $80 based on the features and bundled options. You can buy premium themes with one-time cost from marketplaces like Themeforest, however, the support will be available for limited period (6 months free with Themeforest). If you want to have lifetime support and updates, then consider lightweight themes like Astra or GeneratePress available in this price range. But these themes are available on yearly subscription and you should upgrade yearly to get the support/updates.
Theme Cost: Let us take the lower end of a good theme with $50 per month.
Similar to theme, it is not possible to run a WordPress site as the way you like without premium plugins. Whether you want to have a premium SEO, caching or backup, you need to look for a premium plugins which will cost hefty amount for a nominal site. You can purchase plugins for one-time payment from marketplaces like Codecanyon with six months free support. Otherwise, premium plugins like WP Rocket, Yoast SEO and Perfmatters offered through developer sites are available on yearly subscription basis. You can get support and updates only when renewing the subscription.
Plugins Cost: Though you can purchase some plugins for one-time cost, you will also change plugins over time. So, let us consider you need 10 premium plugins with an average cost of $40 for yearly subscription.
An email is a mandatory option for a site owner to receive and send communication to users. Google business apps is one of the popular services and costs around $6 per user per month to use white labeled Gmail service.
If you want to go for Microsoft 365 email service, it will cost around $5.99 per month with providers like GoDaddy when you buy domain from them. Note that the initial price may be lower for few months, but you need to pay higher cost for renewal.
Email Cost: Let us consider $5 per month for email feature.
Checking on the world’s largest domain registrar for a .com site shows that you need $11.99 per month for a domain.
The renewal cost is $14.99 for a .com site.
Domain Cost: Let us consider $12 per year initial term and $15 for renewal.
6. Private Registration
It is always recommended to have a private registration to have your data not visible to public. This personal privacy needs additional $7.99 per month with GoDaddy and the same will cost $9.99 for renewal. Though you can get this free with registrars like Namecheap, most companies charge for domain privacy service.
Domain Privacy Cost: Let us consider $8 per year for the initial term and $10 for renewal.
Let Us Do the Math…
We think the above 6 things are minimum requirements in order to start a WordPress site and the below chart shows the cost incurred in detail.
|Service||Yearly cost with per month for first time||Yearly cost with per month renewal cost|
|Hosting||$4 *12 = $48||$8 * 12 = $96|
|$5 * 12 = $60||$5 * 12 = $60|
If you are planning to buy hosting for one year then the initial setup cost of a WordPress site will be the one-time setup cost plus per year first time cost. This will be whooping $578 for the initial year. The renewing cost will be the one-time setup cost plus the per year renewal cost. This will be $631 per each year for running a simple WordPress site.
For beginners the above amount will be huge for starting a WordPress site and the cost will increase when you are looking for a bundled package with hosting, email, domain, etc. from a single vendor. This is the reason people always go for a free themes and plugins to save cost and caught in wrong foot without appropriate cost estimated properly in advance. In the above calculation, you may save some amount with plugins when you do not have 10 plugins. But running a site needs many other resources like image processing tool, video processing tool, email marketing and any other specific services you may need for your site.
So, when you are planning to run a website for long term, the above cost calculation of running a WordPress site will hold good with some amount may be distributed here and there. Remember, you need to go for VPS, Cloud or dedicated hosting when your site grows in size. The starting price of Cloud hosting with SiteGround is $100 per month ($1200 per year) which will result in $1735 as a running cost. Therefore, if you plan to scale up your site in few years, then you should allocate sufficient find and earn big money to manage the site.