by Tom Shackleton

Store design is a key consideration for any eCommerce project. Get the design wrong and you won’t have a positive impression on visitors, but get it right, and you’ll finish up with an on brand, beautifully designed storefront that converts.

Store design is a key consideration for any eCommerce project. Get the design wrong and you won’t have a positive impression on visitors, but get it right, and you’ll finish up with an on brand, beautifully designed storefront that converts.

But when scoping out your new Shopify eCommerce project, how do you choose between a bespoke design or theme customisation?

Both have their advantages, and choosing the right option for your project will help you achieve the results you need, on time and on budget.

Here’s what to consider when choosing between a bespoke Shopify theme design, and a theme customisation.

Bespoke Shopify Theme?

Opting for a bespoke Shopify theme means you, your developer or agency will be working together to design and build every aspect of your store from the ground up.

The flexibility and custom nature of taking this route makes it an attractive option for a wide range of eCommerce businesses, so here’s when you should opt for a bespoke Shopify theme;

Your store needs to match an exact design brief

If you have a precise design brief, or just want to be more flexible on design, a bespoke store design will allow you to create a Shopify store that’s truly unique.

You’ll also have better control over branding, so if design and brand guidelines are tight, a bespoke Shopify store will help to ensure that your new storefront perfectly matches your brand.

You need custom functionality

It may be that your store has a unique purchasing process or needs to provide advanced filtering features to visitors. Any kind of complex or custom functionality like this could make a bespoke store the best option.

Shopify Plus brand, Peepers, uses complex filtering on their collection page to help visitors find just the right pair of glasses for them, so a bespoke design was the obvious choice.


You’re willing to spend more for a truly bespoke store

A bespoke store may involve more work, resulting in a higher cost and longer lead time, but if you’re willing to make this investment, you’ll be left with a truly bespoke store that’s perfectly matched to your customer journey.

Rather than adapting an existing theme’s user journey, you’ll be able to tailor your storefront to perfectly match how customers discover, learn about and purchase your products.

Shopify Theme Customisation?

Opting for the theme customisation route means you or your developer will simply be adapting an existing Shopify theme to your needs.

The Shopify theme store is packed full of high quality, professionally designed themes fit for a huge range of different use cases, so a theme customisation is the route chosen by many an eCommerce business.

Here’s when you might choose a theme customisation…

You don’t need any complex additional functionality

If your store functionality is basic, with a modest number of products and variants, a theme customisation could be the best option for your store.

If you’re not in need of complex filtering features or advanced search, you’ll find a great selection of themes already built and more than capable of adapting to your needs and brand.

You’re not tightly constrained to a design brief

Choosing a theme customisation ultimately means you won’t be able to specify an exact design for your Shopify store.

However, as long as you don’t have a tightly constrained design brief, or bespoke designs provided by another agency or internal team, you’ll be able to adapt an existing theme to your design brief.

Your project is constrained by budget

If keeping to a tight budget is essential, choosing a theme customisation project may well be the best option.

As there’s no need to develop the whole theme from scratch, a theme customisation project will generally cost less, allowing you to stick more easily to a tight budget.

You need your site up and running quickly

For the same reason, customising an existing theme will also allow you to turn your eCommerce project around quicker.

Without the need to develop bespoke designs, you’ll be able to go from concept right through to a live store.

Choosing the Right Option for Your Store

When it comes to deciding which option is the best choice for your store, you should start by mapping out your requirements. Consider your budget, design requirements, the complexity of your store and any areas you’d be willing to compromise to achieve the best possible results.

Whether you opt for a theme customisation or bespoke design, ending up with a storefront that fits your customers’ needs and behaviour should be your ultimate goal.

Interested in finding out more about how Statement can help your eCommerce business with a bespoke Shopify store or theme customisation? Feel free to get in touch with our team

Picture of the author

Sign up to our newsletter for the latest ecommerce goings on and site launches.

By providing my email I agree for Statement to contact me via email with eCommerce advice, events and Shopify launches. Your data is stored securely and we never pass it on to third parties.