Custom-Built Website Versus Shopify. Which Is Better for Your Ecommerce Business?

By Jonathan Matlock
Aug 9, 2019

It’s 2020, and ecommerce stores are popping up around every (virtual) corner. And with the rise in ecommerce businesses, we are also seeing a rise in template websites like Shopify.

If you already have an ecommerce business or are thinking of setting one up, you’ve probably heard of Shopify. It’s one of the biggest ecommerce template websites out there. And it’s a great option for an ecommerce store if you are looking to get your store up and running quickly or if you do not require a lot of customization for your online shop.

However, if your store has specific needs or you would like a site that can grow with your business as it evolves then a built-for-you, custom commerce solution is a great option.

So the question remains, which is the right fit for you and your business?

We know this question can be daunting (and probably why you ended up here on our blog post). But not to worry because we have put together some great information to help you decide if an out-of-the-box website or a tailored-for-you solution will be best for you and your business. Because our goal, after all, is to help you and your business thrive. So feel free to check out our ecommerce website design and development page or keep reading to find out the best fit for your ecom needs.

Is Shopify Right for Your Ecommerce Needs?

So you’ve heard about Shopify, but you aren’t quite sure if it’s the right fit for you. Shopify is an e-commerce platform that helps you set up your online shop. It offers a wide array of features and themes, making it easy to get up and going with your store fairly quickly. You can change the look and feel of your store for a little added customization.

Shopify is also optimized for mobile shopping and comes with built-in data reporting so you can track your stores KPIs and metrics, making it an appealing option for your website. Of course, all of these options are available when you have a custom-built site as well, but Shopify does make the process of getting your store setup a bit quicker.

Shopify Pricing

Shopify uses a tiered pricing model. It includes three levels. The basic is $29 a month. The mid-range is $79 a month, while the advanced will run you $299 a month. The advanced Shopify tire offers extra benefits such as lower card processing rates and transaction fees, advanced reporting options and more staff account. So you will need to check out the features and benefits you get with each to determine which one is best for your specific needs. But remember this is a recurring monthly payment, so you can end up paying more over time compared to a custom-built solution. See our post about why Shopify can cost more than you think.

Do You Need A Custom-Tailored Site For Your Business?

While you may get a little more ease and convenience with an already-made site like Shopify, custom ecommerce solutions are ultra customizable with all the options you could dream of. And these customizable options also allow your website to grow with your business. You see, some businesses just aren’t going to work well with a template website for their Shopify store because as their business grows, their needs grow too, sometimes resulting in outgrowing what a site like Shopify can offer. But a custom-built site will be able to easily evolve with your growing business needs. That way you are set up for success from the beginning.

Custom-Built Solution Pricing

Depending on the needs of your business will depend on the level of customization your site will need, so it’s hard to give an exact price breakdown. But the one thing to remember is that it may seem like a tailored-for-you site costs more, and while the initial startup cost is larger, a well-made, custom solution will be cheaper and virtually pay for itself over time. And if you are a business that could benefit from a custom-developed site, it will increase your sales, generating your business more revenue.

Which One Is Right For Your Ecommerce Business?

One of the main differences with an out-of-the-box site like Shopify and a custom solution is the power to create a site that is made for you and your specific needs. And our custom solutions are anything but "cookie cutter". So if your online biz:

  • Has specific needs
  • Offers a special product
  • Has a really specific target market

Then you’re probably going to benefit from a made-for-you site.

Template options like Shopify allow you to get your site up and going quickly and can offer more convenience, while custom sites might take a little more time and effort. However, a built-for-you site will give you a lot more options and functionality to support your business as it evolves, making it a great investment with a huge payoff in the long run.

What Happens If I'm Already Using Shopify, But I Think I May Need A Custom Site?

Don’t worry! This happens more than you think. You want to get started selling and Shopify seemed like a quick and easy option, but then you quickly realize that the template site doesn’t offer everything you need to be as successful as you would like.

And while that can be frustrating, it’s totally fixable. And the good news is that you can go into building your custom site with a good understanding of what exactly your site needs for your business to really thrive.

Why Start With A Custom Built Website For Your Ecommerce Store?

But one important thing to note here. If you have a store with unique products, an ultra-targeted market or specific needs, then going with a customized site from the beginning will make things a lot easier down the road.

So if you offer different options for product customization, let's say you sell customizable t-shirts for example, or you have special rules for shipping...

Then your online store would really benefit from a custom-made shop. By building a custom ecommerce store, you're guaranteed to get the features, flexibility, and scalability you need, exactly when you need them.

How We Can Help

As you can see, the platform you choose for your ecommerce store will be one of the most important decisions you make for your online business. So if you are still feeling a bit confused or overwhelmed with your options, or maybe you know you have a need for a custom site, but you aren’t quite sure where to start, we are here to help.

Here at Rocket Park, our certified team of website developers and designers are dedicated to your success.

We love helping businesses just like you succeed in the competitive ecommerce space. So if you're looking for some of the best customer service out there and a beautifully built site that’s specifically crafted just for you and your business's specific needs, we’ve got you covered.

Contact us today to speak with us about how a custom-built ecommerce site can take your business to the next level.