Do you have a great product but an outdated or poor-performing eCommerce website? Are your conversion rates lagging behind your competitors? Or do you feel your design doesn’t reflect the quality of your product? If you answered yes to any of these questions, it might be time for a new custom website design.
A well-designed eCommerce website can be a powerful marketing and sales tool, helping you to reach new customers, grow your business, and make your brand more recognizable and trustworthy.
This article will discuss whether it’s worth making a custom Shopify theme in 2022. We’ll also examine the pros and cons of using a custom Shopify theme, associated costs, and the development process. Let’s get started.
What Is A Custom Storefront?
Custom Storefront refers to a bespoke eCommerce website uniquely built with third-party technology and connected to an eCommerce platform. It provides a custom experience tailored to the client’s specific needs.
Building a custom theme can lead to increased conversion rates, thanks to the improved user experience and better SEO results. Compared to a standard template Shopify store, it can provide a more personalized experience for the user and deliver better results for the business.
When considering whether or not to make a custom theme, it is important to weigh the benefits against the costs. While a custom theme may require a larger upfront investment, the long-term benefits of increased conversion rates and improved SEO may make it worthwhile.
Custom Template Vs. Traditional Template
For many online stores, a storefront is closely linked with the back-end. In some cases, they may even be seen as an inseparable couple. Any change made on the front-end layer requires changes on the back-end (and vice versa).
While making basic changes like theme colors or typography is safe and can be done without programming skills, more advanced customization will require both front-end and back-end development skills.
The possibility for customization is one of the main reasons why some brands have decided to look for a more flexible solution that will allow them to build a separate, custom storefront.
A traditional storefront is seen in many online stores using open-source platforms, such as WooCommerce. Custom code gives you more power to make changes on both the front-end and back-end.
Perks Of Custom Shopify Theme Development
In Shopify, there is a lack of automated ways to upgrade themes and keep any customizations with routine updates to themes. This will be a big problem for those who have heavily-customized pre-made themes. You should create a custom Shopify theme instead of editing the code for a pre-made theme. It’ll not only improve efficiency but offers other perks, like:
1. Stay Up-To-Date
To stay current, you need to update your theme regularly. As the owner of a custom Shopify theme, you can decide which upgrades need to be implemented in your theme. Keeping your theme updated, you won’t run into problems when upgrading to newer versions of Shopify. Also, a custom theme is designed specifically for your store. This means you can include the features and style you want without worrying about whether or not a pre-made theme offers it.
2. Improved Performance
A custom Shopify theme can be optimized for speed and performance. This is because you can control the code and remove unused features or code that might slow down your store. For example, you can compress images to improve loading times. Also, a custom theme can be designed to be responsive, which is important for mobile users.
3. Increased Security
When you use a custom Shopify theme, you can add security features that aren’t available in pre-made themes. For example, you can add two-factor authentication or set up password protection for certain pages. Or you can incorporate security features into the design of your theme, like adding a secure checkout badge. Also, limit access to your theme to only certain people on your team. This way, you can be sure that only authorized personnel are making changes to your store.
4. Greater Flexibility
With a custom Shopify theme, you have more control over the design and layout of your store. For example, you can change the color scheme or font size. And you’re not limited to the pre-designed layouts available with pre-made theme library. This means you can create a unique, branded look for your store that reflects your company’s personality. Also, you can add custom features to your store, like social media buttons or a search bar.
5. Better Search Engine Optimization
A custom Shopify store theme can be designed with search engine optimization (SEO). Your store will be more visible to potential customers searching for products or services like yours. You can use keyword-rich titles and descriptions and include alt text for images. Also, ensure your theme is mobile-friendly so that Google can properly index it.
6. Lower Maintenance Costs
Once a Shopify theme from scratch is developed, the only costs you’ll incur are the annual hosting fees. There’s no need to pay for theme updates or support since you’ll be able to do it yourself. The maintenance costs can be lower than those associated with pre-made themes, which often charge for upgrades and support.
7. Clean Code – Fast Website
Speed is critical for a successful website. No one wants to wait around for a slow website to load. Custom themes are known for having clean code, which means your website will load quickly. This is because the code is written specifically for your store, and there’s no extra, unused code that could slow down your site. Also, a well-designed custom theme will be responsive to load quickly on mobile devices.
8. Improved Customer Experience
A custom Shopify development theme can provide an improved customer experience (CX). This is because you have control over the design and layout of your store. You can create a user-friendly interface that’s easy to navigate. Also, you can add custom features that will enhance the customer experience, like social media buttons or a search bar.
9. Increased Sales
A well-designed own Shopify theme can lead to increased sales. This is because potential customers are likelier to stay in your store and browse your products if they have a positive experience. Also, a custom store can be designed with conversion in mind. For example, you can include prominently placed call-to-action buttons or add a search bar to help customers find what they’re looking for.
10. Brand Recognition
With creative control over your store’s design, you can create a branded look that reflects your company’s personality. This will help customers remember your store and make it easier to find you when searching for products or services like yours. Also, a custom store can be designed to match your existing website so that your marketing channels have a consistent look and feel.
Downsides Of Custom Shopify Themes
While there are some definite upsides to custom Shopify templates, there are also a few potential downsides to consider. They include:
Customization inevitably costs more than a pre-made theme installation. If you don’t have the coding skills in-house, you’ll need to outsource to a Shopify development agency. The cost will depend on the scope of your project and the company you partner with. Blue Owl is a Shopify Parternerd eCommerce development agency. We create custom themes for Shopify merchants who want a unique store. You can ask for a quote before starting the project.
A custom theme code will take longer to develop than installing a pre-made theme. This is because you’re starting from scratch and building everything from the ground up. The time investment required will again depend on the scope of your project. Once your custom theme is live, you’ll need to maintain it. This includes ensuring that all the code is up-to-date and compatible with future Shopify updates.
Despite the potential downsides, if you have a large brand, require unique functionality, or want complete control over the look and feel of your store, a custom Shopify theme may be the best option. Blue Owl can help you create a custom theme that meets your needs and drives conversions.
1. Is Headless Commerce Better Than Custom Theme Development?
Headless commerce can be a better option for some businesses than custom theme development. Headless commerce can give you more flexibility if you have a complex product catalog or need to integrate with many third-party applications. It’ll also be easier to scale your store in the future.
2. How Much Does It Cost To Develop A Custom Shopify Theme in 2022?
The cost of custom theme development will vary depending on the project’s complexity. A simple theme could cost around $10,000 to develop, while a more complex theme could cost up to $25,000. Also, remember that you’ll need to pay for ongoing support and maintenance after the initial development phase.
3. How Long Does It Take To Develop A Custom Shopify Theme?
The development time for a custom Shopify theme can vary depending on the features and complexity of the design. However, on average, it takes around 3 months to complete a custom Shopify theme from start to finish. The complex nature of some themes can extend the timeline to 4-6 months or longer.
4. Is It Worth Making A Custom Shopify Theme?
Yes, it’s worth considering a custom Shopify theme for businesses that expect high-volume traffic and larger average order values. A custom theme will give you more control over your online store’s look, feel, and functionality, making it easier to create a unique and seamless shopping experience for your customers. Also, a custom theme may be the best solution if you have specific needs that an existing Shopify theme store can’t meet.
Scale Your Business With Blue Owl | Shopify Headless Commerce Agency
Being a Shopify partner agency, we’re always excited to see new businesses take off with Shopify. We’ve seen firsthand how much of an impact a custom Shopify theme can make on a business. It can help you stand out from the competition, showcase your products, and scale your business more effectively.
Using a custom Shopify theme also gives you more control over the look and feel of your store. You’re not limited to the default themes that come with Shopify, so you can make your store your own.
Get started with us to create a stunning custom Shopify theme for your business. Let us help you take your business to the next level!