Cost of Custom Software

For businesses thinking about custom software development — here's some information on prices & costs

There's not as much data out there as you'd think on the actual costs and prices of custom software development. This is an attempt to change that, and in the future we'll be publishing more specific data on costs and pricing with hard case studies. In the meantime though, we hope this can help business leaders and decision makers with their project planning.


Typically, most of our custom development projects cost from $50,000 — $120,000, and then on the ClikGlobal side of things, where we're utilizing skilled, well-managed offshore labor, the sweet-spot for most clients is from $30,000 — $60,000.

The development process can usually be broken down into (4) phases: architecture, actual development and then theming … where we're focused on building the visuals and user interface. Sometimes this can be a fairly simple process if a project is internal in nature (and businesses aren't really worried about marketing anything to a consumer), but other times this can be substantial when a development project faces users or consumers. Lastly, quality assurance guarantees that we get it right. Here are a few more specifics.

If ClikFocus is developing your software exclusively, we're looking at roughly $20,000 for a relatively simple web site. If we add a simple e-commerce functionality to that, that's usually a $10,000 - $20,000 overlay. This all depends on how much things need to be customized. And then, for operational software, this depends on things like the user interface, how much customization is wanted or required (again), and things like whether or not there's a requested mobile component. When we're looking at really large databases (millions of content pieces), things like advanced search functionalities and permission based systems, this is where we get into the $100,000+ range for the cost of development, and ensures that we can do a good job and that the end result is intuitive.

Is a custom development project a good business decision for a client?

At this point, we know what things cost — certainly on our end and with lower-cost (but still highly effective) options like ClikGlobal's managed offshoring model — but also with other developers. We'd love to talk to you, even if we're not the right fit. We know how important it is to have an idea of what a substantial investment like custom software development costs in order to really consider the ROI of a project. We seriously prefer to work with carefully informed clients, and specifically clients that have proven business models and a history of revenue. From our perspective, it's much easier, rewarding and valuable to solve known problems than it is to work with a startup that might not know exactly what it wants or needs. Something we always ask is what's the marketing plan with a project? How does this solve an identified need? What are the numbers behind it?

Because in the end we want to know that that a custom development project represents a good business decision to our client before we work with them and we want them to have a great experience.