Why do startups need custom software?

28 October5 min read
Why do startups need custom software?

The word ‘custom’ is often used with respect to so many products these days. As more and more businesses come up, the competition among them keeps increasing, raising the need to stand out among the others. With ‘custom’ or bespoke’ software, businesses can have products that are different from standard, mass-produced products that are widely available. 

Mass-market, generic software is usually unable to meet the requirements of a sophisticated business. So, business owners then hire IT specialists to make adjustments and add-on features to meet their specific requirements and the unique needs of their customers. In most of these cases, creating custom software from scratch might be a lot more beneficial. In fact, whether it is generic software or custom software, the product still undergoes all steps of software creation such as planning, development, testing, deployment and maintenance. 

Need for custom software

It’s difficult to have a unique brand nowadays, as each new idea gets bombarded with multiple new startups. To stand out among your competition, you need to have a unique identity, which can be achieved by efficient and effective planning. By focusing on building custom software, you can easily bring a unique flavour to your business. 

With custom software, the overall cost of building your product also gets reduced, as you’re only paying for the implementation of your unique set of requirements and features. While the initial price might be steeper, companies don’t hesitate in shelling out this amount as it cuts down on future costs. 

Process of developing custom software

Building a custom software product can include several phases, each of which has to be executed properly to create a good end result. The phases included while creating custom software are as follows: 

  • Gathering information: FIrst, start by gathering all the information about the business’s vision and mission. What does the business hope to achieve and how can the software aid with this?
  • Signing an agreement: For the sake of the business as well as the software development company, a well-written agreement should be created which encapsulates the nature of the agreement in a clear manner.
  • Project development: The software development process can follow many methodologies like waterfall and Agile. It’s important to find one that suits your project and follow it through.
  • Feedback and testing: As the product is being developed, there should be a constant testing cycle by dedicated testers, as well as clients or end-users who can provide feedback.
  • Future support: After the software product is delivered, the business might require further support or maintenance.

Freelancers or software houses: who should you opt for?

1. Freelancer

A freelancer might be a more pocket-friendly option in most cases. Freelancers are ideal for small, short-term or one-time projects that may not have too many requirements. Freelancers also don’t usually have strict contracts or agreements and can be more flexible with changes. 

On the other hand, freelancers might not be as professional and may not be able to promise future or long-term commitments. They may not have the expertise in certain technologies, which can block or delay the project. There are also cases in which freelancers have cut off all modes of contact, with a business’s information at stake. 

2. Software company

Software companies provide a lot more professional service. They have large teams of developers and testers with varied expertise. Software companies are ideal for long-term relationships, so startups that have concrete ideas in mind and long-term plans for it should definitely opt for software companies. 

But hiring a software company can be expensive. Yet, the shared experience and expertise these can provide is a lot more than a freelancer can. 

How to find a good software company

You may find a lot of software companies that provide the services that you’re looking for. So how do you decide on which one’s the best for you? Here’s a short checklist to go through before you make this decision: 

  • Check the reputation and portfolio of the software house on platforms like Amplifyre or Clutch
  • Look at reviews and testimonials from previous clients
  • Go through their previous projects to see if they’ve worked on anything similar to what you need
  • Compare the rates quoted by similar software houses to see what fits your budget
  • Inquire about the technologies that they have expertise in and would be useful for your project
  • Discuss the time frame for the project delivery
  • Discuss future support and maintenance prospects

How much does custom software development cost?

A software company may charge the business/client in one of two ways; either a fixed-price quote that includes the complete scope of the project, or a variable, material basis that takes into account the resources used for completing the project. 

Fixed price basis

The business and the software house sign a contract for the exact development scope of the project and the fees that they agree upon. This option can be ideal for short-term or smaller projects website development, extensions, plugins, etc. where the scope is clear and well-defined. 

Material/Hourly basis

Here, the business and software house only define a general scope of the project. The payment terms are based on the number of hours spent by the software house on the project. While this might sound weird, it is more feasible in cases where there needs to be continuous implementation or improvements. The business gets a lot more control in changing the requirements based on testing and feedback. 


Custom software is definitely the need of the hour. And the best way to have one is by contacting a software house that can make it for you! We can create tailor-made software based on your business, which can definitely be a step above the rest.