What Are the Benefits of Custom Software Development Over Off-the-Shelf Software?

What Are the Benefits of Custom Software Development Over Off-the-Shelf Software?

When deciding if you want custom software development or off-the-shelf software, consider the pros and cons of each.

Think about the following points

  1. Overall business problem
  2. Security requirements
  3. Available products and vendors
  4. Total costs over the software’s lifetime
  5. Flexibility

What are the benefits of custom software development over off-the-shelf software?

Off-the-shelf software is designed for the generalized needs of a business, so it may not meet all your current and future requirements. While off-the-shelf may look relatively cheaper initially as scalability brings down its cost, custom software often has a lower cost over its lifetime.

Here are some of the benefits of custom software development over off-the-shelf software development

1. Customization

If custom software is a tailored suit, then off-the-shelf is an off-the-rack suit. A tailored-made suit is designed with agreed-upon fabric, size, color, and style, and it will fit the wearer perfectly. Whereas an off-the-rack suit is mass-produced in standard sizes, and will rarely fit perfectly.

Off-the-shelf may initially look easier to implement, but it will provide a limited solution to your business problems. At the same time, a custom solution will fit your business requirements perfectly as it’s designed to meet all your current and future business requirements. Over long-term use, custom software has more benefits after the initial deployment.

2. Flexibility

Produced for mass use or general purpose, off-the-shelf software is inherently inflexible. Depending on your requirements, you likely will have to incorporate some changes before deployment.  At times it may be difficult to integrate with your current software platforms.

Custom software is flexible. It’s designed to consider all current and future requirements. As the developers wrote the code specifically for you, they also can easily implement any changes required.

3. Security

As off-the-shelf software is used in mass markets, it draws more attention from hackers. Once a vulnerability in its code is discovered, all the users are compromised. Custom software draws less attention from hackers and remains comparatively safer.

4. Ownership

You own the code of custom software development and can implement it as many times as you want to. Plus, it won’t go out of date for long (unless you stop using it for the purpose you designed it).

However, should the supplier of off-the-shelf software cancel the license or go bankrupt, your whole business runs the risk of being severely affected without any immediate solution.

Why Do Businesses Use Custom Software Development?

In summary, businesses use custom software development because…

  1. It can be customized per the user’s requirements (Tips to make your Custom Software Development project successful)
  2. It’s inherently flexible
  3. It’s more secure
  4. The user owns it.

The software industry nowadays is churning out a lot of software regularly, including custom software and off-the-shelf.  But many businesses prefer custom software development because of the benefits listed above.

In your business, if you have specific requirements and want to own the software you use, we recommend custom software development.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is off-the-shelf software?

The Off-the-shelf software is a ready-made standardized software application that you can download, set up, and use. They are mass-produced and fit for immediate use. Since many companies do not have the time to develop an individual solution, off-the-shelf software is their first choice.

Examples of Off the shelf software

  • The Microsoft Office
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Windows 10 Operating System
  • Zoho
  • Odoo
  • SAP
  • Oracle
  • Salesforce