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Template vs Custom Website Design – Which is the Best?

Companies usually make a new design for their website after some years. The problem remains deciding on what method to use: either paying for a custom build or using a template.

It is very important to have a functional, up-to-date, and stylish business website. Some companies redesign their websites after every 2-3 years.

The question remains: should you pay for custom web design or make use of a template?

In this article, we have broken down the strategy into two groups to help you make the right decision that will help your business.

Template Design

Template websites are used by blogs, small businesses and startups that wouldn’t want to spend much for a website. The template needs just very little web design expertise and small programming skill. Also, you can easily find a template from the numerous styles available that are suitable for you.

Template website usually:

  • Require little cost
  • Requires little time to build, set up and run the site
  • The sites can easily be updated and maintained or do not update at all. Example: brochureware.


Despite these benefits, there are some challenges:

The templated websites are still just templates.  Despite the beautiful look, your company website wouldn’t be unique. This is because you’ll not be the only one using such a design. Although you can customize and style your website, you’d still be working with the basic framework used by other businesses.

This becomes a problem because on the internet once your website isn’t unique it may not rank high in search engines.

using templates for e-commerce sites would not help your business stand out especially if you’re in a competitive market.  The similarity in style may make some customers not move beyond your homepage.

The second drawback of using templates is how hard it is to implement changes to the design.

For instance, if you find an iconography online that you would like to use on your site, changing the style on your site to suit your need may be difficult and cost you more time and money.  Using a template gives a limit to what you can do on your site as you can only make use of the available provisions.  

Custom Website Design

Companies may decide to hire a design and development team to help build a custom website for their business from the scratch.

The projects would come in different forms, it could be a re-skin, which is the process of updating the style and look of a site. Also it got be a new build and good strategy to give a company a new brand presence. A custom build has lots of benefits:

The final look of the website is well-tailored to the needs and desires of your company.  You’ll enjoy a style and feel that is desired. You will also get great feedback from the design and development team to help you know that the site will serve your needs.

One major benefit of a custom site is that it is designed and geared towards your customers. The design team will carry out user research and market research. To carry out amazing strategy and detailed iteration is part of the design Teams responsibility. The design and development team can help develop a website that is tailored to serve your customers’ needs and help you gain better revenues.  Despite all these benefits, it still has some drawbacks. 


It takes a long time to launch a custom site.  The Content Management System (CMS) will determine how easy it would be maintained. A custom build would offer higher flexibility. This means that a CMS which is easy to use should be selected.

It is also more expensive to design a custom build website, although the long term benefits and earning potential of the project would cover this cost.

Which one to pick?

In conclusion, deciding on what strategy to use in building your site is dependent on the need and financial strength of the company. Both strategies have their benefits and drawbacks.  To enjoy a rich experience, a custom website should be the way to go, although it will cost more and require more time.

The custom sites will complement a stronger digital role and strategy.  The site will provide a stronger reflection of your company’s core values and will help you reach your KPIs more effectively.

A templated website will help you develop a website faster and easier in a less expensive way. So, it’s good to use the right means to help you get the job done. Some cases are suitable to use a templated website where as a custom website would be needed in some other cases.

Excale can consult you which approach to take and design for you a custom or template based design for your website.