Custom Vs Template Website Breakdown
Written by: Jordan Lorsung

Pros and Cons of Custom Vs Template Websites

The bottom line today is that a company’s website is its #1 salesperson.

The importance of having a visually pleasing and well functioning website is essential for anyone hoping to have a credible and effective online presence.

When looking into revamping, or building a site it is hard to know which design route one should take: template designs or custom crafted. We’ve put together a helpful list of pros and cons for both to help elaborate on the custom vs template website debate.


Custom Crafted

Having a custom website built means that an individual or company would be hiring an outside design and development firm to construct a website that is crafted specifically for their individual needs and wants.


  • Completely Customizable/Flexible – Brand Specific
  • Advanced Functionality (ecommerce, lead databases, portals, backend integrations)
  • Undoubtedly Unique – no one else will have the same site!
  • Ability to own, expand and manipulate whenever
  • Built SEO/Mobile/Browser friendly
  • Knowledgeable and personal support and troubleshooting


  • Larger initial cost
  • Takes longer to develop
  • End result not immediately visible

Our Verdict

If you’ve got big plans for your online presence, and really want the site to be able to grow and support a variety of features, a custom designed website will be worth the initial cost! Already have a vision of your website design in mind? Start estimating your costs with our Website Cost Calculator. If you are looking  to boost your e-commerce sales in addition to website design, see if you can incorporate any of these profitable tips into your business.



Template sites are themes or layout pre-built by someone else which companies and individuals can then populate with their content. Many sites offer hosting and templates, such as WordPress, SquareSpace, and Wix to name a few.


  • Significantly lower build costs
  • Quicker to build
  • Simplistic & Easily Fillable
  • Can update/build in house
  • Ability to immediately see the end design of the site


  • Not unique – Tons of other websites could be using the same template → cookie cutter
  • Limited customization/flexibility
  • Coding Errors – Code may be antiqued, not SEO-friendly/browser/mobile
  • Limited functionality (ecommerce, lead databases, portals not supported)
  • Varied support
  • Limits growth options

Our Verdict

If you only need a bare bones site (think online brochure or small business) and don’t have a lot of capital to invest, starting out with a template website may be in your best interest. However, if you plan on growing significantly then a template may hinder your company’s progress down the line.

Regardless of where you fit in the custom vs template website breakdown, the single most important first step to the website decision process is to determine your budget. The prices of custom or template websites largely fluctuate depending on what features and designs are included in them. After you figure out your budget, you can find an agency or platform that works best for what your specific needs are.


Nuanced Media is an experienced Phoenix web design agency, and we are always happy to help and educate, so if you have any questions regarding your future website please don’t hesitate to reach out and connect with us.

Jordan Lorsung
Jordan Lorsung

A Minnesota transplant, Jordan recently uprooted and moved to Tucson after graduating from the University of Minnesota with a Bachelors degree in Anthropology. Her educational focus along with her prior experiences in various communication positions have equipped her with a versatile set of perspectives when working as a digital marketing strategist. In her spare time she loves binging on film/tv and planning her next adventure!

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