Choosing the best software option for your business

Custom Software Vs Off-The-Shelf

Which Should You Choose? So you've got a great idea, and you've done a bit of research and groundwork to begin bringing it to market. Do you go with an off-the-shelf solution or build custom? Let's take a look at both sides.

Custom software and apps are built to meet the unique needs of a company or startup. Conversely, off-the-shelf solutions are built to meet the needs of a broader market. While off-the-shelf solutions may seem like a cost effective option, they are not always the best choice for businesses (we would say that though, right?) - when you choose an off-the-shelf solution, you can increasingly be limited to the features that are included in the software. These features may not be what your business needs, and as a result, you may end up paying for features that you don't use or need.

On the other hand, custom software/apps are built specifically for your business, so you get exactly what you need. This means that you can tailor the product to meet your specific requirements, which can lead to increased efficiency and productivity. Additionally, custom software can be updated and modified as your business grows and evolves, so it remains relevant and useful for many years to come.

What Are The Advantages Of Off-The-Shelf Software?

Cost-effective. One of the main advantages of going with an off-the-shelf solution is cost-effectiveness. Building custom software can be expensive, especially for small businesses with limited resources. On the other hand, off-the-shelf solutions are typically more affordable, as they are already developed and can be purchased or licensed for a fraction of the cost of building custom software.

Faster time-to-market. Another advantage of using an off-the-shelf solution is that it can be implemented much more quickly than building custom software. This is because off-the-shelf solutions are already developed and can be easily integrated into an existing system. This can be especially important for businesses that need to get a product to market quickly to remain competitive.

The Case For Building Custom

Of course, there are also some disadvantages to using off-the-shelf solutions. For example, they may not offer the level of customisation or unique features that a business needs to stand out from competitors. Additionally, they may not integrate seamlessly with existing systems or meet specific requirements. Ultimately, the decision to build custom or use an off-the-shelf solution will depend on a variety of factors, such as budget, timeline, and specific business needs.

Vendor lock-in is a risk with off-the-shelf solutions. Businesses are essentially dependent on the vendor for ongoing support and maintenance of the system. This means that if the vendor decides to discontinue the product or raise prices significantly, the business may be left in a difficult situation. They may have to switch to a new solution, which can be time-consuming and expensive, or they may be forced to continue using an outdated or unsupported product.

Another advantage of custom software and apps is that it can lead to better monetisation for the owner of the product. With a custom build, you can implement features and functionalities that are unique and not available within off-the-shelf solutions. This can differentiate your product from competitors and make it more valuable to potential customers. Furthermore, you can monetise in a variety of ways, including:

  • Licensing: You can charge users a fee to use your software on a per-user or per-month basis.
  • Subscriptions: You can offer a subscription-based model where users pay a recurring fee for continued access to your product.
  • Advertising: If your app or software has a large user base, you can monetise it through advertising.
  • Upgrades: You can offer premium features or upgrades to your software / app for an additional fee.

In the longer term, building custom software is less commercially risky than using an off-the-shelf solution, and it can lead to better monetisation for you, the product's owner. The solution can be tailored to meet your unique business needs, providing you with greater efficiency, productivity, and value. Additionally, custom software can be monetised in a variety of ways, including licensing, subscription-based pricing, advertising, and upgrades. By building custom software, you can differentiate your business from competitors and create a sustainable revenue stream for years to come.

Partner With OK200

If you're looking to build custom software or apps for your business, OK200 is the ideal partner for you. Our team of experienced developers has a track record of delivering high-quality, custom solutions that meet the unique needs of businesses across a variety of industries.

By working with OK200, you can be confident that you're getting a truly bespoke solution that's tailored specifically to your business. This can help you stand out from competitors, attract and retain customers, and drive revenue growth.

Whether you need an app, API, platform or custom software, our team has the expertise and knowledge to deliver the results you need. Plus, we understand the unique challenges that companies face, such as limited budgets and tight timelines, and we're committed to working with you to find solutions that fit within your constraints.

Don't settle for off-the-shelf solutions that don't fully meet your needs. Contact OK200 today to learn more about how we can help you build custom software and apps that will help your business thrive.

Hero image by Kelly Sikkema on unsplash.