Website archiving software is like insurance in that you pay for it and you hope you never need it. If you're a freelance web developer or a small business owner you probably can't afford a dedicated IT team or expensive hosting plan. You know that you need to keep some type of archive of your website(s), but don't know where to turn or more importantly how much it will cost. You just need a simple way to monitor changes on your website over time without breaking the bank.
In this article, we'll first define what website archiving software is before diving into the factors that affect cost. Because we're dealing with software, it's easier to define costs when compared to other industries. If you need an answer right now, I can tell you that website archiving software can range from $20.00 to $299.00 per month. If you want more context, check out the rest of the article below.
What is website archiving software?
Web archiving is the process of collecting portions of the World Wide Web, preserving the collections in an archival format, and then serving the archives for access and use.
Although the software in the web archiving space can vary greatly, I'm going to focus on software that is concerned with storing screenshots and possibly source code. A perfect example of this is The Wayback Machine.
Is there a recurring subscription or a one-time license?
There are usually two pricing models when it comes to selling software: Recurring subscriptions, or a one-time license purchase. The recurring subscriptions model is commonly referred to as Software as a service (SaaS)
and means that you are charged monthly or annually to continue to use the software. Purchasing a one-time license means that you pay a larger fee upfront, but then have lifetime access to the software. However, you could still pay additional fees in order to receive updates or additional features. Most website archiving software can range anywhere from $20.00 to $299.00 per month
depending upon the features. It's common for SaaS applications to offer multiple plans that offer more features for more money. It's also common for SaaS applications to offer a reduced rate if you purchase an annual membership instead of a monthly membership. One thing to consider with a recurring subscription is that you will be paying for this for a long as you need the service. This means it could end up costing you thousands of dollars over years.
With a one-time license pricing model, the upfront cost is much higher when compared to the recurring subscription model. The advantage is that you only pay once. At the time of this writing, there is no website arching software that offers a one-time license.
How many webpages can I archive?
Because the only pricing model in the website archive software space is the recurring subscription model, most companies offer multiple plans with different limitations. The cheapest plans offer the ability to archive anywhere from 5 to 100 unique webpages, while the most expensive plans have no restrictions. The cheapest plans cost anywhere from $20.00 to $29.00 per month, while the most expensive plans cost around $299.00 per month.
You may be asking yourself why does the amount of webpages I archive affect the price? This is because each screenshot captured needs to be stored on a server somewhere, which costs the software company money. The more screenshots they need to store for you means their hosting bill is going to be more expensive.
How frequently are archives being created and how long are archives kept?
Again, because the only pricing model in the website archive software space is the recurring subscription model, most companies offer multiple plans with different limitations. The cheapest plans can archive your webpages on a daily schedule, while the most expensive plans can archive your webpages every 5 minutes.
Another factor that affects the price is how long the archived images are stored. Some store your images forever, while others remove them after 36 months regardless of the plan you're on.
The frequency in which archives are created along with how long they are stored affects the price because each screenshot captured needs to be stored on a server somewhere, which costs the software company money.
How do I choose a plan?
There currently isn't too much competition in the website archiving software space. This means that you're going to be limited in your choice, and therefore the price you pay. Fortunately, the pricing structure for this software is straightforward and affordable. The most important factors you'll want to consider when choosing a plan are...
- How many webpages can I archive?
- How frequently are archives being created?
- How long are archives kept?
Just remember that the more data your store, the more it will cost per month. Since you'll most likely want to keep archives for years and not months, you can save yourself a decent amount of money by signing up for the annual plan instead of the monthly plan. At My Site Archive,
we offer 2 months for free if you sign up for the annual plan
. If you'd like to learn more about our software, you can read our FAQs
or reach out directly to me at [email protected]