How long does it take to build a website?

Small BusinessCategory
6 min read
Will Stevens

Wondering how long it takes to build a website? Well, to get a website up and running it could take anywhere between a few hours and a few months.

The average amount of time it takes to build a website depends on the size and complexity of the site.

Let’s look at the different steps involved in creating a website to help understand why the timeline for creating a website can vary so much.

1 Research and planning

What does your website need to do and what should it look like? You need to answer these two basic questions before you create a website.

A good web designer will sit down with their client to discuss these two questions before even sending a quote.

This initial kick off meeting will probably only last an hour, but the research and planning phase could last up to two weeks as you and your designer explore how your site should look and what features it should include. For a very large site with complex, custom design, this phase might take a month or longer. (Tip: If you need to launch a site in a shorter time frame, you can always launch a smaller site first and then expand it.)

If you’re planning to build your own site using a website builder tool, then this phase will probably be much shorter.

You’ll need to find a website builder that includes the features you need and has a web design template you like.

2 Content creation and web design

A great website needs great content, so it makes sense to start work on the content you want on your website before the design process begins.

That’s because by planning and even creating your content early makes it less likely that you’ll forget to include something important. It will also help make sure your website’s design works with the content you want.

Again, the amount of time it takes to plan and create website content depends on the size of the site. If you're planning a website redesign, you'll need to take stock of your current content and decide what you want to keep, get rid of or add.

If you're planning something like a basic five-page site and you already have important things such as images, then it may only take a few hours to plan and write the relevant copy.

For a big site, it could take weeks or even months while copywriters, photographers and graphic designers work on content.

The web design side of things will focus on ensuring the site looks how you want it, and that your content looks good on the site. Professional website design should be about getting you a site that you're happy with and that will meet your users' needs.

You can expect a web designer to provide you with initial mock ups, which you can ask to be adjusted as required. This design phase should take around a month, although again for bigger sites it may take longer.

If you’re using a website builder, you’ll have to learn to get to grips with the tool’s interface and use it to place the various elements of your site where you want them.

GoDaddy’s Website Builder uses a drag and drop interface, which makes the design phase quick and easy.

3 Web development

This is the stage where the content and design ideas that were created in the previous step get turned into an actual website.

This can mean anything from customizing a WordPress template so it’s unique to your website, to coding a huge site from scratch.

You can expect the web development phase to take at least a couple of months and again, it will be longer for very large sites with complex, custom design.

During this stage, you may find you need to make tweaks to the way your site looks or the features it has. You should make sure to stay in touch with your web developers throughout this process.

If you’re using a website builder, you won’t need to spend time on web development because you’ll be using the tool’s existing code and design features.

4 Review and troubleshooting

Does the site look how you wanted it to? Does it have the features you wanted? Does everything work?

Once the development phase is complete, your site is almost ready to launch. You just need to review everything to make sure that your site is everything you’d hoped it would be.

This is the time to hunt for bugs, missing features, typos and other errors. If you’ve used a good designer, you shouldn’t have any major issues to fix, one or two small things may have slipped through.

You should expect this process to take a few days to a week.

What’s the quickest way to get a website?

Probably the quickest way to create a website is by using a website builder. If you’re creating a two or three page website, you can have your site up and running in the time it takes you to write the content, create suitable images and lay things out using the builder tool.

If you need a bigger site site, you can still use a website builder tool. Even though it will take you longer than if you were creating a simple site, it will still be quicker than using a web designer as you’ll be able to skip the web development step and much of the design step.

Can a website be built in a day?

Yes, you can build a website in a day. You shouldn’t expect to launch a large site in such a short space of time, but using a website builder you can create a site in just a few hours.

If you need to, you can expand the site in the future.

Summing up: How long does it take to build a website?

Time to build a simple website with a website builder: A few hours to a day

Time to build a simple website with a web designer: A few weeks

Time to build a website with several pages, and features like contact forms or ecommerce with a website builder: A few days to a few weeks

Time to build a website with several pages, and features like contact forms or ecommerce with a website builder: Several weeks to a few months

Time to build a large, complex website with a web designer: Several months.

Need help getting your business online? GoDaddy can build your website for you. Arrange a call from our experts today and get a free 30-minute web design consultation.