Development from Scratch vs Ready-made & Out-of-the-Box Solutions

Development from Scratch vs Ready-made & Out-of-the-Box Solutions

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Entrepreneurs have two ways to launch their own websites: the first one is to start using out-of-the-box software while the second one is to create a web resource from scratch. There are several types of ready-made solutions, so we would like to help you choose the best option that would be cost-effective, functional, and flexible.

What Are Out-of-the-Box Solutions?

Out-of-the-box software is also called commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) development. It is a set of different programs, which include basic functionality suitable for the general public. 

The ready-made commercial solutions are developed by third-party companies to cover certain needs of the B2B sector. Developers strive to make their services simple and user-friendly so that you could install the digital products quickly and operate them easily. 

Every business uses out-of-the-box systems: the most common examples are email clients, VoIP telephony, accounting software, office suite packages, and the like. 

There are a few types of ready-made developments:

  • Saas (software-as-a-service). A good example is marketplaces, which offer you a ready-made website on its hosting and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system. Saas option is used mainly by online stores: all you need to do is just fill the site with content and choose a visual look. It is easy to move elements by the drag-and-drop method.

  • Open-source CMS solutions are a piece of software, which you can download to your PC and then install on any hosting. These out-of-the-box solutions are the heart of web resources and often have big communities, which develop templates, widgets, plugins and assist in solving some problems. The open-source developments are designed to help users create and edit their web resources. 

It is worth mentioning that open-source CMS websites have fewer limitations in comparison with Saas solutions. They allow scaling your project and implementing further features. Saas sites belong to their vendors while open-source web resources are totally in your possession.

Several things you should know about out-of-the-box solutions:

  • they are distributed in several ways: some of them you can buy for good while other systems require a monthly or annual subscription;

  • certain programs are created to be installed only on a PC. However, the current trend is cloud access: users work on special web resources from any convenient gadgets.

Off-the-Shelf Solutions: Pros & Cons

Out-of-the-Box software benefits are as follows:

  • Quick installation and easy use (ready-to-go concept). No technical experience is required;

  • Proven solutions under the hood;

  • Regular updates and availability of support (high dependence on the chosen system);

  • Enough functionality in most cases;

  • Opportunity to scale your system in no time;

  • Democratic price (always lower than developing from scratch).

Common pitfalls:

  • Limited functionality without the opportunity of customizing;

  • Sharp rise in the price especially if your service provider is a monopolist;

  • Dependence on your provider in terms of getting updates and solving problems. Some of the features you need may be released with a delay;

  • Availability of unnecessary features, which pile up the system and complicate the interaction;

  • Hidden fees (may take place);

  • Insufficient functionality (sometimes). You have to hire specialists to expand your project.

What is Development from Scratch?

Above, we have already mentioned the concept of developing from scratch, which means the creation of your own unique solution, custom software. This approach is preferable for huge projects due to their high requirements and customized structure.

The development process assumes the awareness of your or your clients’ needs. If you have been operating in the market for a long time, you have already realized the necessary features and interface with a high probability. However, don’t worry if you aren’t aware of all requirements: our team is ready to conduct the discovery phase in order to dive into your business and find out your present and possible future requests. It will allow creating a system, which would be relevant through the years.

High-customized software is able to boost the operation process in your business, but the game is worth the candle only if truly specialists are responsible for the product. Otherwise, you’ll lose your money, time, and the system developed will require a total modification.

Customized Solutions: Pros & Cons


  • Profitability. Yes, you have to pay a decent amount upfront but in the long run, you’ll save money by avoiding licensing fees;

  • Enhanced productivity. Boosted sales are a key to gaining market share. Rest assured that the custom software will pay off soon if, of course, the number of your sales is enough. Small companies had better use the out-of-the-box software;

  • Customization. Implementing different ideas is easier because your hands are untied. So, custom solutions are always about unique features and design.

  • Higher competitiveness. Convenient software created for external users enhances your competitiveness by improving interaction with you and highlighting your service among other market players.


  • Costs. Not every company can afford significant expenses in a short period of time. Moreover, in case of poor planning, there is a risk that the digital product won’t pay off. That’s why the discovery stage is so important (slightly higher investments save decent money);

  • Time-consuming development. Planning and developing requires some time. Furthermore, it may be a challenge to find a professional development team with relevant experience.

What Will It Be?

Below, we have listed some recommendations on what kind of software to choose.

Out-of-the-box solutions are appropriate if:

  • the final user is internal;

  • your business is well understood and examined;

  • you don’t expect much user growth;

  • the time is crucial;

  • your team doesn’t include developers.

 Software from scratch is most preferable if:

  • the final user is external (a good attempt to enhance competitiveness);

  • your business niche is new, it is poorly studied and, as result, the market isn’t able to offer a suitable ready-made option;

  • your audience is going to increase significantly;

  • your company has developers or outsource cooperation isn’t a problem;

  • the project isn’t time-sensitive.

Thus, out-of-the-box software benefits are evident as well as digital products from scratch. The choice highly depends on the budget.

Feel free to contact us if you have decided to surprise your customers with a user-friendly solution created from scratch.


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