Cover image for custom vs themes web design

Troy Chillingworth

What’s the difference between a custom web design & a bought theme?

When it comes to designing a website, businesses have two main options: custom web design and using a bought theme. Custom web design involves the creation of a unique design for a website that is tailored to the specific needs and goals of a business.  This type of design often requires a significant investment in terms of time and resources, but it allows for complete control over the look, functionality, and user experience of a website. On the other hand, a bought theme is a pre-made design template that can be purchased and installed on a website. These themes are often more affordable and quicker to implement, but they may have limited customization options and may be used by multiple other websites.

It’s important to carefully consider the unique needs and goals of a business when deciding between a custom web design and a bought theme.

Custom vs Pre made themes

Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of both options. 

Bought website themes

A bought theme is a pre-made website design template that can be purchased and used to create a website. These themes often come with a set of standard features and design elements that can be customized to a certain extent, but they are generally less flexible than a custom-designed website. Bought themes are a cost-effective and time-efficient option for creating a basic website, but they may have limitations in terms of customization and unique branding compared to a custom design.

What is the down side to a bought theme?

The downsides of using a bought theme include:

Limited customization

Bought themes often have limited customization options and may not be able to fully meet the specific needs and goals of a business or organization.

Lack of uniqueness

Since bought themes are pre-made templates that are used by many other websites, it can be difficult to create a unique and distinctive online presence.

Security risks

Some bought themes may have security vulnerabilities or be prone to hacking, which can negatively impact a website’s security and reputation.

Poor performance

Bought themes may not be optimized for speed and performance, leading to a slow-loading website and a poor user experience.

Technical limitations

Some bought themes may have technical limitations that make it difficult to add certain features or functionality to a website.

Overall, while bought themes can be a cost-effective and time-efficient option for creating a basic website, they may not be the best choice for businesses and organizations that need a more tailored, unique, and secure online presence.

Layout of gallery on website

What is the upside to using a bought theme?

Bought themes are usually less expensive than custom web design and can be a cost-effective option for creating a basic website. They come pre-made, so they can be quickly and easily set up, allowing for a faster time to launch compared to custom web design.

With many bought themes available, users can choose from a wide range of design options, making it easier to find one that matches their needs and preferences.

Bought themes come with basic functionalities like a pre-designed layout, basic navigation and responsive design which can save time and effort compared to starting from scratch.

Purchased themes are often user-friendly and can be easily customized with the use of a content management system, making it easier for non-technical users to make changes to their website.

Overall, while bought themes may have limitations compared to custom web design, they can be a good choice for businesses and organizations that need a simple, basic website in a cost-effective and time-efficient manner.

The downside to custom web designs

Custom websites often require more time and resources to design and build, which can result in a higher overall cost compared to using pre-made templates.

Creating a bespoke website from scratch can take significantly longer than using pre-made templates.

They require ongoing maintenance and updates to keep them running smoothly, which can be time-consuming and costly.

Customized websites may not have the same level of support as pre-made templates, meaning you may have to rely on your own technical skills or pay for additional support services

What are the benefits to a custom web design?

The benefits of custom web design include:

Unique and tailored online presence

Custom web design allows a business or organization to have a unique and tailored online presence that is aligned with its specific needs, goals, and brand identity.

Improved user experience

Custom web design can help to create a better user experience by providing a website that is optimized for usability, accessibility, and engagement.

Competitive advantage

A custom-designed website can set a business or organization apart from competitors and provide a competitive advantage in terms of online presence and brand recognition.

Better functionality

Custom web design can provide a website with improved functionality, allowing for the integration of advanced features and technologies that may not be possible with pre-made templates.

Scalability and growth

Custom web design provides a website with the ability to grow and scale over time, ensuring that it can continue to meet the changing needs of a business or organization.

Bespoke web design can give a business or organization a killer online presence that’s tailored just for them, helping them achieve their goals and boost their success.

Customized website design for local business

So, to wrap it up, the difference between a custom web design and a pre-made theme is like the difference between a tailored suit and an off-the-rack one. With a custom web design, you get a unique look and feel that’s specifically made for you and your brand. It may cost a bit more, but you get what you pay for – a one-of-a-kind website that’s all your own. On the other hand, pre-made themes are like that off-the-rack suit – they’re readily available and less expensive, but they may not fit quite right and you may have to make some compromises in terms of customization. So, it all comes down to your budget and the look you’re going for.


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