Off the shelf Magento theme or bespoke?

Off the shelf Magento theme or bespoke?

There are multitudes of flashy looking websites offering pre-designed Magento themes, often very cheaply and occasionally without charge. However, frequently these themes may not be the best fit for your business; indeed, sometimes they can even end up costing you more in the long run.

It is an undoubted fact that there are a great deal of low quality themes out there – and sometimes just because a theme has sold 1000s of copies doesn’t mean that it is good, or suitable for your requirements.

On the other hand, if you are prepared to pay out for a bespoke website, such as can be provided by Elementary Digital, it will be custom made to reflect your brand, product range, promotions and marketing exactly. It will also be tailored to offer the kind of customer service you want, ensuring your e-commerce business gives out a high level of customer satisfaction, which leads to return custom and that all important word-of mouth advertising. This inevitably involves creative thought, strategies and analysis, but most of all – customisation.

With many off-the-shelf themes, there are rarely good options for customisations as your business develops, grows and evolves. Most themes are based around out-of-the-box Magento and only style the basic Magento pages (such as home page, basket, check-out and account pages). Whilst they can save time and money in the short term, for example, the lack of being able to customise the checkout process at a later date could end up costing you far more than you saved initially.


Most Magento themes do not take into consideration unique customisation to visual aspects or functionality, or other product pricing, grouping/fulfillment options. With Elementary Digital, during the design process trained and managed developers who are Magento-certified deal with your designs, imagery, CSS styles and layouts. This means you get impeccable front-end website code providing a visual reference for the whole development process. Not only would recreating this from off-the-shelf themes be time-consuming, the functionality would be diminished. Moving forward, a custom design team would be quickly able to create new elements matching the original design.


Because themes out-of-the-box are highly unlikely to meet all of a client’s requirements, this leaves a level of uncertainty with regards to how long a completely finished web design will take from first concept to first customer.

With a bespoke site it is possible to take out the unknowns from a project scope; this enables the offer of contractually-bound fixed price project fees, complete with warranties, ongoing support and update processes, all backed by high service levels. Bespoke design and specifications processes are designed to remove uncertainty, with fixed price projects that offer clear milestones and completion dates.

Finally, as a retailer, you will want intellectual property over your website, something that can only be guaranteed if the site is specifically designed for your business and only your business.

Choosing a company like Elementary Digital to create your personalised, bespoke website is the only way to guarantee the website you and your customers need and deserve – get in touch today to find out more.


Author Gyles Seward

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