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Custom Web Design vs Website Templates: Which One to Choose?

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Going online is proven to be a key advantage in today’s competitive business world. What’s more, customers carry out in-depth online research on online products or services and spend more time on beautifully designed sites before making any purchase decision. Not only do they check out websites, but they also interact with them longer if they are well designed and aesthetically pleasing. Moreover, customers form their opinion as to your business and make a snap judgment whether your company is credible or not. According to statistics, 48% of people considered a website’s design as the deciding factor in the business credibility as well as 94% of surveyed mentioned that they rejected a website if their attention didn’t begin to wander. Only by leaving a positive effect on your audience can you keep it engaged for a long time. That’s why you should design a visually appealing, user-friendly and highly responsive web solution with a focus on fast loading. This will give your prospects an enjoyable experience, help maintain them on your page longer and effectively increase conversion rates. However, when it comes to website design, you need to decide whether to turn to a custom web design or a website template. Let’s get started to discover the difference!

Website Design: Why It Matters

Let’s reveal why you should care about your website design:

  • A website design conveys your business’ first impression and drives potential customers to your online business.
  • Professional web design tends to promote trust, builds brand recognition and helps the target audience easily identify your brand among competitors.
  • A visually appealing website design that users are likely to use significantly increases conversion rates and keeps customers engaged.
  • An easy-to-use nature of website design reduces bounce rates.
  • Investing in an up-to-date and eye-catching website design allows you to improve customer service, increase customer loyalty and satisfaction levels.
  • With a sophisticated SEO-friendly website, you can drive organic traffic to your website and enhance your online presence.
  • Not only does eye-catching website design attract more customers, but it also sets your business apart from the rest and helps fight off them.

What Is Exactly Custom Web Design?

Generally, a custom web design is tailored to your brand’s unique identity and positioning. Not only does it start from scratch, but it is also specifically created to reach out to your target audience and align with the marketing strategy. Moreover, it can be configured to grow with your business into the future.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Custom Web Design?

Here we are going to overview some advantages and disadvantages of using a custom web design:

Custom Web Design:  Its AdvantagesCustom Web Design:  Its Disadvantages
It is unique and meets your branding needsIt takes more time to deliver a working solution
Works across all browsersIt needs additional support in terms of business growth
Provides integration possibilitiesIt is more expensive
Delivers built-in SEO feature
Keeps code up-to-date
Provides better security and control

Unlike a template-based website, opting for custom web design allows you to deliver flexible and manageable, scalable and SEO-friendly digital products that are unique and highly responsive. However, it requires more money to be invested and development time to be spent.

What Is Exactly a Website Template?

Basically, a website template is a ready-made design that needs to be filled with content such as text, images, and media to become a full-fledged website. Moreover, a website template includes all the essential features of a regular site. Only by choosing a theme’s type and purpose can you install a website template and make customization with a simple click. However, website templates have limited functionality and don’t provide scalability in terms of business growth. Let’s discover some popular components of the web templates:

  • Professionally designed logo
  • Header, footer, navigation
  • Picture galleries
  • Mobile-responsive layout with predefined content blocks
  • Animations
  • Ecommerce functionality and stock content
  • Additional features (e.g., booking functionality, calendars, real estate listings, etc.)
  • Contact forms

What Are the Pros and Cons of Website Templates?

Let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages a template-based website can offer for your business.

Website Template: Its AdvantagesWebsite Template: Its Disadvantages
Less expensiveProduced for the mass market, it is not unique and exclusive as other businesses may use the same template
Any person can design a website through drag-and-drop tools to  add/remove web elementsLimited customization possibilities
Provides affordable pricing for hostingThe poor support and browser compatibility
Cuts the development timeInconsistent user experience across different devices  
Minimizes the launch time of your online projects

As you see, you don’t need to be a coding whiz to add or remove the components of the website template. Moreover, if you have a tight budget and want it to be launched fast, a website template is an attractive option for you.

Custom vs Template Websites: Key Factors to Take into Consideration

If you want your online business to succeed and grow worldwide in the near future, deciding between custom web design and a template-based one is critical. In most cases, the primary factors are the budget and development time. However, there are other factors you should consider when making a decision between the two:

  • Goals: Only by identifying business needs, the purpose of the site, key features and functionality can you go in the right direction.
  • Budget: Being in line with your budget eliminates the discrepancy between what you expect and what’s actually delivered. Moreover, knowing the web design prices gives you a more realistic outlook for budgeting.
  • Niche and competition: Only by carrying out competitive analyses can you efficiently identify competitors in your business vertical, their sorts of websites, effective campaigns, etc. This will help you determine how to make your website better and crush the competition.
  • Potential customers: Only by identifying your typical customers can you select the kind of website your business needs and tailor your web solution accordingly.
  • Development time: Designing a custom web solution takes more time while web templates are less time-sensitive. However, a web template is an attractive option if you need to develop a proof of concept before switching to a more full-fledged website.

Bottom Line: Opt For Website Template or Custom Website Design?

Website design can make or break your business. Whether you are trying to stand out from the crowd, choosing between template-based or custom web designs is a necessity. However, there’s no one right choice for every digital product. Only by identifying your business needs and personal preferences can you make a decision between a custom website design and template-based website. Custom web design is always the way out for those businesses that aren’t limited by budget and development time. Not only is it fully customizable and unique, but it also gives you complete control.

As for a template-based website, it cannot fully adjust to your business needs and comes with too many limitations on brand expression, functionality, security and scalability — this will cost you more down the line. In addition to that, you should probably decide in favor of a website template without having a technical background or related experience. That’s why you need to concentrate on your specific business requirements and resources at hand, evaluate the pros and cons and decide what is best for your business. Only by having a website that expresses the cohesive company identity can you grab the attention of your potential customers, increase customer base and drive more revenue.

About the author



Starting 2012 as a team of passionate professionals, during the years IT Master Soft became masters of matching technical skills and commitment to let our customers’ business grow.