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+61 (0) 3 9103 1413

1300 720 705

The Dream Factory
Level 3, 90 Maribyrnong Street
Footscray VIC 3011

+44 (0) 207 566 3939

Chiltern House Business Centre
45 Station Road, Henley-on-Thames
Oxfordshire, RG9 1A

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Templates versus Hand Coding

6 December 2017

What is the difference you ask? Let us explain;


Off the shelf templates offer a mass marketed pre designed standard layout. You cannot customise it beyond the offered colours, file formats, specified content management systems (CMS) and depending on the coding supporting the template may not work on all browsers. The  results can be many websites looking the same. As a client, you do not have many options to customise features or page layout.

Hand coded

Offers you customisation in layout, function, file formats, a selection of content management systems, and the ability to create total uniqueness. The client has control and input into this option as it starts from a blank (Photoshop) canvas. You can include any feature you require on your site and can use a variety of content management systems to manage your website. It also means that it is easier to add additional features and pages at a later date.

Which one is for my business?

That will depend on the complexity, technical functionality, and amount of content (plug ins calendars etc., video, imagery, number of pages, so and so on). Your decision will be driven by your requirements and budget. If you are after a simple website, a template solution may meet you needs. If however, you need tailored solutions with many layers of complexity, a hand-coded solution will be the way to go. If you would like to read more about the differences, read our web design page.

A nice quote by Steve Jobs sums up a consideration you may need to reflect upon
in your decision making process:

“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower”

The questions to answer before you take the next step in deciding which way to go:

  • What does your website say about your business – are you a follower or are you the leader?
  • Which site builder is best suited for you and your web development goals
  • Consider your timeframe, budget and level of content management you the client expect to participate in.