Prebuilt Templates or Custom Made: Which is Right for Your eCommerce Shop?

June 14, 2021

If you own a retail store, it might be high time to consider going online. It is critical for your business to have a website for your store or brand. For starters, it broadens your customer base from local to global. Second, it raises your brand's visibility.

After finally deciding to expand to eCommerce, you will soon be confronted with new tasks and responsibilities, one of which is learning when to use a template or a custom web design.

What is the Difference Between Pre Built Templates and Custom Made eCommerce Shops?

A template is a pre-made website that designers and developers use to build a new website. They tweak it to meet the business objectives, but they save time by using pre-written code and UI rather than creating it from scratch.

On the other hand, custom development entails the difficult design of a new website from the bottom up for each scenario. Custom websites take longer to develop than template-based websites. Custom websites, however, offer more capability than templates.

On that note, here are some cases when your business needs a template or custom website.

When to Use a Template Web Design

If this is your first time going online, start with a template and see how it goes. It is probably ideal for collecting data for three months, and then if everything seems good, create a custom website to give your consumers an even better experience.

  • You want to go online soon. Templates are simple to set up, adapt to your company's goals, and launch. If you engage a team instead of doing the website yourself, it will take about three weeks to complete.
  • You simply want to validate a business concept. It is the same as when you are deciding whether or not to go online at all. Moreover, it is far more practical than building a sophisticated custom website, and discovering it does not produce the required outcomes.
  • You have a niche market to target. A template may be the best option in a niche industry because there are likely fewer competitors, making it easier to stand apart.

When to Use a Custom Web Design

Maximum functionality, security, and a unique layout are all important aspects of custom web design. Many people feel that a customized design equates to more sales; however, it is a little more complex. Here are cases when your company requires custom web design.

  • Your products are sophisticated. Any product classified as difficult purchasing necessitates creating a unique website to offer the buyer all pertinent information.
  • You market products that necessitate advanced customization. These are items that are always measured differently, such as windows. Each has a minimum of two basic dimensions: height and width. Customers are more likely to want more and specify the size of the sill, mullion, casing, and so on. The price will fluctuate after that so that you will need a built-in calculator.
  • You will integrate with third-party services. Custom design necessitates connection with multiple ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and CRM systems to establish a functional website administration system. Thus, it is critical to rely on your website and improve it to make it more user-friendly for you and your clients.

Pros & Cons of Prebuilt Templates for eCommerce Shops

At this juncture, we take a look at the pros and cons of Prebuilt Templates for eCommerce Shops:

Pros of Prebuilt Templates

You will receive what you see. You do not have to imagine the final product in your mind while the website is getting built. Even if the webmaster needs to make multiple adjustments, the site’s overall look will not remain a mystery.

Less Initial Expenses

For as low as $30-$65, you can have a visually appealing, professionally created website template. You also have access to a slew of free templates, albeit they are limited in terms of design and functionality, and you will not be able to obtain the technical help you need.

Basic Features Prebuilt

Standard pages such as ‘home,' ‘about,' ‘services,' and ‘contact' will be pre-loaded into expertly built website layouts. Other website designs include extra elements such as a portfolio or photo gallery and communication and community networking tools such as a blog, newsletter, or bulletin board system.

Provides a Starting Point for Design

Because of the variety of designs and blueprints available on the internet, you can choose from a wide range of options to meet your needs. Consider this: a custom-designed website would only provide you with two or three possibilities. When it comes to website design templates, you get spoiled for choice on the internet.

Cons of Prebuilt Templates

Despite all of the legitimate benefits of website templates, you should not turn a blind eye to their drawbacks.

Restricted Options

Hundreds of individuals have downloaded and used website templates. As a result, they are not exclusive to your business. You can end up with a website that is a carbon copy of several others. You will have to pay many times the price if you want to ensure that no one else buys the identical website template.

Less Potential for Scaling

Because you cannot alter a website template beyond a certain point, it may wind up being non-specific to your needs. If you have a lot of website content but have picked a web template with limited text space, the extra text may stretch the design and cause it to look different.

More Quality Risks

While some website design templates are simple to tweak, modify, and upgrade using free online authoring software such as Microsoft Frontpage, others are more complex and need knowledge of picture editing and website-building tools and coding. Furthermore, you may not have created the template with appropriate coding principles in mind, and if you add too many items, it may slow down quickly.

You may not have the necessary software or expertise to customize, edit, and update your website, whether Macromedia Dreamweaver, Flash, or an understanding of HTML code. In this instance, you might need to hire a web developer to help you adapt and update your site template.

Pros & Cons of Custom Made eCommerce Shop

At this juncture, we take a look at the pros and cons of Custom Made eCommerce Shops:

Pros of Custom Made eCommerce Shop

Custom made eCommerce shops offers a wealth of advantages, such as the following:

Easier to Stand Out Amongst Competition

To attract potential customers, you must create a site that is suited to your business. As your company's brand image, your website should speak for itself.

With a pre-themed layout in CMS, you can design specific features of a page using a drag-and-drop tool. However, you get restricted to that theme's fonts, available themes, and layout. While you can personalize your site, it will still look like all other websites that utilize the same theme. A custom-made design completely resolves this issue.

Full Control over all Aspects of Your Site

Custom-built websites have the advantage of being able to be transformed into anything you wish. You can customize it for your company's navigation and that of your clients. Moreover, you have more control over your website's template design.

Customized Functionality Based on Your Audience

A custom web design can get tailored to your needs based on your website specifications.

On the other hand, a template website design may force you to compromise on the plan you have for your website because you receive a predefined theme. When you choose a custom website design, you have the freedom to let your imagination run wild and create the design to your liking.

Cons of Custom Made eCommerce Shop

Everything has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. A custom website design is no exception.

Higher Upfront Costs

The most significant downside of using a custom eCommerce theme for business owners is the expensive cost. Depending on your theme’s size, kind, and functionality, the cost of adopting a custom theme easily reaches thousands of dollars.

More Planning Required

Because a custom web design is created from the ground up, it takes time to plan and produce, which means your website development may take longer. If you need a website up and running in a matter of days or weeks, you should choose a template rather than a custom design.

Site Maintenance

Even if you are willing to compromise on time and price to develop your website using custom web design, website maintenance, renovation, or revamping will take a significant amount of time.

In a template website design, switching the theme may be as simple as a few clicks.

So, Which is Right for Your eCommerce Shop?

Ultimately, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Every business, regardless of industry, is unique. Therefore, the solution for your eCommerce shop, the heart of your online presence, will be unique to your business. It all relies on how you weigh the advantages and disadvantages of website layouts. However, in general, these pieces of information should be sufficient to enable even a novice to make well-informed choices about the type of website to create.

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