Bespoke or Customised Shopify Themes?


Rach Brind-Surch

27th July 2021

For any e-commerce site, it’s important to get the design of your online presence right. Poor user experience, confusing navigation and frustrating point of sale will leave your visitors with a poor impression of your brand. Get your design right however, and you will have an e-commerce site that converts and keeps your users coming back time and time again. 

When creating a site on shopify there are a couple of options available at a range of price points. You will need to consider your own needs and project specifications to make the right choice for your business. Let us help take the pain out of your deliberation by breaking down the pros and cons of customising an existing shopify theme, vs using our team of developers to build a unique theme which suits your business perfectly.

A screenshot of the Little Tulip Shop homepage and spotify theme

The Pros and Cons of a customised Shopify Theme

One of the benefits of using shopify is having access to it’s extensive theme library. These can be well produced but often with a modest range of features for a basic store. Because of their mass appeal and simplicity, these themes suit a more constrained budget.

If your store does not have additional needs in terms of function and has a smaller uncomplicated range of products, it may be that you can find a theme that only needs minimal customisation, such as adding your brand colours, images and logos to meet your needs. The cost of this will also minimise the time that your developer will need to spend on your new site and so for those who want a speedy solution then a customisable pre-existing theme may well be the best option.

If your brand has a very specific brand identity, with more intricate constraints on your brand, you may struggle to find a theme you can customise to fully sit alongside the rest of your branding. If you have your heart set on a fully realised design for your website already then realistically you will have to compromise on it with an existing theme as the customisation will have its limitations.

Another issue will be if you require more complex functions such as more detailed filtering features or the option to complete a more complex search. In these cases, it may be worth spending that little bit more in both time and money to create your own bespoke theme.

A Bespoke Shopify theme created for Goffod

The Pros and Cons of a Bespoke Shopify Theme

If you choose to opt for a fully bespoke shopify theme then you will have full control over the design, functionality and build of your e-commerce site. By working with your developers you have full control over your user’s journey and ensure your potential customers are getting the experience you want them to have.

This is important for implementing any insights you have gained from user research, creating a design that sits seamlessly alongside existing branded marketing collateral or assets and paying attention to the small details that make a big difference for users.

Any kind of complex functionality will require you to build a bespoke theme, but can really revolutionise the experience a user has on your site, cutting down on customer support costs and increasing sales. Though it will cost more in the short term and take longer to launch it will result in a better branded site that delivers better results to you and your users. This will undoubtedly lead to better conversion and a smaller bounce rate.

Making the Right Choice for You

At CWS, we want our clients to feel empowered to make the right voice for their business. Through our e-commerce web service, we can help you make the right choice for your shopify store and help you make the decision which will meet your needs now and in the future.

We suggest the best way to make this decision for your business is to consider your requirements alongside your budget. Ask yourself what are needs for your users and what are nice-to-haves. Then ask 'does your budget stretch to the nice-to-haves? Or do you need to prioritise the essentials. Keep in mind it is ultimately the user's needs which are central to your final decision, as if they are not happy, neither is your bottom line.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have about deciding which option is best for you on your journey to creating the best possible e-commerce site for your business. So please do not hesitate to get in touch today

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