Custom software may fuel your business, not depending on your company size.
Yet, small businesses tend to avoid custom solutions, and their main argument is the high cost of custom software compared to generic or package options.
In this article, we’ll review six main benefits of custom software development for small businesses to see whether they overweight concerns connected with investment.
Fears making small businesses hold on implementing custom software solutions.
Small businesses are more likely to rely on generic package-sold software than one-of-a-kind solutions.
Their first bottleneck is cost; custom software development often involves extra expenses. Yet, proper budget planning and the right vendor choice during the discovery phase of project may solve this issue.
Fear of inadequate quality is the second factor for small companies not wishing to rush with custom solutions. Usually, when starting a business, you may not have a possibility of a second chance, and a failure with the custom project can be drastic for the whole company. As a solution, a company should invest some more time into researching options and finding a reliable software development firm.
The lack of understanding of improving a business process with custom-made software is the third important factor to halt startups from custom innovations. Yet, in this case, practice will be essential in overcoming obstacles.
What is custom software development?
Custom software development is designing, deploying, and maintaining software tuned for specific customer needs.
In practice, all the most successful recent startups started from the development of custom software solutions. For example, Uber’s rideshare app emerged from the need for software allowing several people to book and share one trip. A successful ticket search service Skyscanner utilizes a custom-built mechanism that predicts ticket prices. Both companies started by offering a one-of-a-kind solution to customers, which was impossible with off-the-shelf software.
As you see, the development of custom-made software starts with a need to solve some issue, improve a process, or better respond to customer demands.
Thus, the benefits of such an undertaking will be very individual. For example, Uber ended up attracting a massive network of clients and contractors, making the company the world’s first rideshare giant.
Your benefits may differ, yet, there are some general improvements small businesses may drive from custom software development.
5 Benefits of custom software solutions for small businesses
- Tailor-made solutions. Custom software may help you solve your company’s operational issues. Example: an in-company chatting and ticketing system tuned for your employee needs. Or it may address the specific needs of your clients. It may be an app offering free detective e-books, or a service, allowing you to book ice cream for holidays, etc. According to Ryan Vice from Forbes Technology Council, while off-the-shelf products aim to be a one-size-fits-all solution for many users, a custom solution allows you to target your needs without adjusting several different apps.
- Improved security and privacy. You cannot offer 100% privacy to your registered users if you rely on third-party service providers. Yet, with a custom solution, you can always know the current status of security operations without putting your business at the mercy of third-party providers, as sometimes the choice of generic software can end up in a disaster. For example, a highly reputable computer services provider CCleaner helped remove the accumulated crud from your computer and detected the Floxif trojan in their packages. Before it was fixed, the malware infected over two million PCs worldwide.
- Flexibility. Only you can know which operations to automate or cut or extend. In this domain, custom software offers unprecedented flexibility compared to generic solutions. You can order a needed feature on-demand and quickly respond to scaling needs.
- Dedicated support. Software development firms providing custom software also take care of maintenance and support. In this regard, you win. If compared to the support of package options, custom software development grants immediate reaction to issues, which is life-saving in disaster scenarios.
- Adaptability. When a business grows and acquires new features, software mirrors this process. If not, it becomes a technical blocker, needing a solution. With custom software, you are always sure the tech side of your business is tuned to your evolving needs and is ready to adapt to a changing environment.
So, buy or build?
As mentioned above, the first blocker to implementing custom-made solutions is cost. Yet, custom software enables savings too. You save time on operations, have faster access to support, and provide better services to your customers.
Also, you may outsource the development to the world where development services are lower due to taxation benefits. For example, the countries of Eastern Europe have 50% smaller hourly rates than North America.
Thus, proper planning, clear vision, and skillful use of custom software will boost your business, allowing for a significant return on the initial investment.