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What is the Difference Between Off-the-Shelf and Custom Software?

These days engineers do not need to waste their time thinking about codes for weeks. There have been applications and frameworks introduced that make the process easier and faster.

Businesses look forward to getting their coding done as early as possible, but in most cases, they don’t have the clarity on whether they should buy Off-The-Shelf software or go for custom software development.

Read further to know the difference between Custom and Off-The-Shelf software to understand which one would be the best choice.

What is Off-the-Shelf Software?

Off-the-Shelf software is a ready-made software that one can easily download, set up, and use.

Companies can utilize it when they run out of time and are available to meet the needs of as many users as possible. It has more functions if we compare it to custom software development, but plenty of them are not useful, which turns out to be a resource wastage.

What is Custom Software?

Every business comes with different needs and requirements. The software market cannot meet them all because the more you customize it, the more complex it becomes.

But the good news is, you’ll have the option for custom software development, which possibly can solve the issue. It is the development of a customized product as per the users’ choices.

Custom software development depends on the uniqueness, target audience, available budget, and more of any company. All one needs to do is hire an experienced developer for the development process.

The Difference Between Off – The – Shelf Software and Custom Software Development !!

Specialties of Off-the-Shelf Software


Off-the-Shelf software is ready-made, easily installed, and used by anyone with plenty of features designed for mass.

Less Expensive

These are less expensive in comparison to the custom software because of their mass production. It means you are not the only one paying for it. Moreover, the developers don’t sell the code to you, and you don’t own it completely; you are only allowed to use it.

Community Support & Reviews

Off-the-Shelf software has a massive community base through which you’ll be able to know about the user reviews, instructions, their experiences about the software, and a lot more things.

All your doubts will be cleared as you join these communities because most of them are vigorously active and ready to help newbies.


Off-the-shelf software is more reliable to use as it is tested for years and then made available for the users. Just Make sure you do not install it from suspicious sites and check for the community reviews before you download/ purchase it.

Specialties of Custom Software

Meets the Needs

Custom software has the power to meet all the needs and requirements of a business that the Off-the-Shelf software cannot do. All you have to do is to hire a professional developer to develop custom software.

Having custom software development taking place will help your business to get all the required features ready.

Your Property

When you choose to develop software with unique design and features to cater to your needs, then you can even name it as per your choice. Nonetheless, you own the software completely, and only you’ll have the right to use it unless you sell it to others with a license.

Helps in Business Growth

Custom software development leads to the growth of the business, as it is specifically developed for solving a particular issue.

You only need to identify the issue and let the developer know about it.

Assured Safety

Safety is assured with the development of custom software, whereas Off-the-Shelf software can get hacked by cybercriminals.

Hiring custom software development services will ensure your safety and formulate the solution accordingly.

Finally- Which One to Choose?

Now that you have read the differences between custom software development and Off-the-Shelf software. Try to keep your situation in mind while choosing the right one for your business.

If you need an extraordinary approach and provide unique and customized solutions to your clients, then developing custom software would be a better choice.


Kamal Singh is a technical expert, a passionate writer, and a seasoned IT professional and who is working with Devstringx, a top software development company in Delhi NCR. His role includes overall quality assessment and business development for Devstringx. He also holds in-depth knowledge of IT outsourcing services and angular development services.

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