The term, “bespoke (custom)” (pronounced bee-SPOHK) is a term used for a custom made product or service. Traditionally applied to custom-tailored clothing, the term has been extended to information technology, especially for software consulting services, such as bespoke (custom) web development.
When it comes to having a new website developed for your business, you’re generally faced with two options, these being either a bespoke (custom) design or a template or themed website. With popular content management systems such as WordPress and it’s popularity with many web developers, the past few years has seen a slew of ‘web designers’ springing up with bad design skills or are unable to develop well on off-the-shelf themes when building sites for their demanding clients. While that’s not to say you can’t end up with a great site using a theme, it’s typically only one step removed from a drag-and-drop site builder which you could use yourself, and it generally won’t be fully tailored to your needs and requirements. Themed websites are good, however for most demanding businesses who want a website which truly depicts them and their offerings, combined with a personal representation of themselves; a theme built website won’t always cut it for them and may require a fully bespoke (custom) build, either using an open-source CMS like WordPress or a completely bespoke (custom) system.
This does, of course, come at a higher cost than a theme-based website and we decided to catch up with Newcastle based Way Fresh to look at justifying this.
The Benefits of a Bespoke (custom) Build
While there’s no denying that a bespoke (custom) build will cost far more than a theme-based design would, it’s important to take a look at the benefits when compared. As such, we can clearly outline the core benefits of a bespoke (custom) build here:
Custom Web Design
A theme is simply a template, and while they allow a great looking website to be built relatively quickly, there’s a chance that plenty of other businesses are using the same one. For some, this wouldn’t bother them, however if you’re image conscious, you don’t want a website which looks very similar to your competitors – in some instances even using the same theme.
There’s a lot to be said about a business who takes pride in their corporate appearance and understands that first impressions really do count. There’s no doubting that your business is bespoke (custom) so why shouldn’t your website be too?
Bespoke (custom) Functionality
A theme-built website, regardless of whether it’s on WordPress, Joomla or any other off-the-shelf CMS, will generally include certain core functionalities, and many such systems can be enhanced with the use of modules and plugins. While this is great and means that those who aren’t developers can build a great looking site, it does often mean that functionalities can be limited.
If you have any sort of bespoke (custom) requirement in terms of what your website does other than display images and text and use basic contact forms (and let’s face it, most do); a bespoke (custom) build may be right for you. In most instances, when you have requirements unique to your business you’ll often find you have to compromise with a theme-based site, but why should you have to? A bespoke (custom) build offers just that, a bespoke (custom) solution for your business.
- Visual Appeal – starting from scratch means you can do anything. Sky’s the limit!
- Branding – A custom website with custom graphics allows you to stand out and enables people to remember you.
- Flexibility – Setting up the proper architecture with a custom website enables you the flexibility to grow with your website.
- Improved Customization – A website without a clunky template allows for more flexible customization
- Clean Code – Code is based on your requirements and not of a template
- Security – Templates are technically opensource. A custom website’s code is yours.
Yes, a bespoke (custom) build will always cost more than a theme-based site, however the justification is there and for all except possibly a start-up business who needs something VERY basic, the extra cost can make sense.