Planning a digital wayfinding deployment in your facility? Great! Now here’s the real question: Should you build custom wayfinding software, or should you buy an off-the-shelf solution? It’s an age-old debate, and one that depends heavily on your facility’s unique needs. However, there are a few considerations that ultimately determine which direction you should take.


At Express Image Digital, we know balancing your immediate software needs with your long-term growth is paramount. Below, we’ve outlined the pros and cons of building versus buying your software.


Custom-Building Your Digital Wayfinding Software: Pros & Cons

Though building custom digital wayfinding software is an involved process, the potential return on your investment is worth it. The benefits of custom-built software cannot be understated, primarily because done-for-you options rarely are capable of meeting your every unique need. By opting to build, rather than buy, your digital wayfinding software, you’ll enjoy:


●        Increased design control. Without third-party involvement, you have more control over feature selection and functionality.

●        Custom integrations. Building custom software allows you to select the key features and integrations that work with the digital platforms and content management systems of your choosing.

●        Lower upfront costs. Why pay for features you don’t need or want? Custom software allows you to be selective about the features that make sense for your business.


On the other side of the coin, though, custom digital wayfinding software does have a couple of drawbacks. First and foremost, custom-built software can be difficult to scale over time with growth. If you decide you’d like to incorporate new features, adding them after the build can present a considerable challenge. Too, the cost of maintaining custom-built software is considerably higher than that for off-the-shelf products.


Buying Your Digital Wayfinding Software: Pros & Cons

If you’re looking for rapid deployment, buying your digital wayfinding software is an attractive option. Because building proprietary software requires considerable time, off-the-shelf options can be useful in situations where time constraints present a challenge. Too, pre-built software offers something custom-built programs lack: scalability.


Because pre-built software options naturally include third-party developers, they’re easier to scale with growth. Companies are continually tweaking and improving their products, which means new features are more readily available and integrable as you need them. Ongoing maintenance of pre-built software is generally less complicated than maintaining custom-built programs; however, the caveat is that you’ll depend on a third party for nearly everything.


Moreover, off-the-shelf software is often rigid, which means it can be difficult to customize features to meet the unique needs of your business. Depending on the software, you may end up with a collection of unneeded features, which are impossible to eliminate. Ultimately, you have less control over system functionality and integrations because pre-built programs are only designed to satisfy the needs of most business, most of the time. 


Explore Your Custom Wayfinding Software Options With Express Image Digital

At Express Image Digital, we’re confident the right digital wayfinding software can help transform your business, and we’re ready to show you how. As an end-to-end digital wayfinding solutions provider, we specialize in custom software development, hardware acquisition, content management systems, and a wide variety of other services. If you’re ready to enhance your business with interactive digital wayfinding, we’re the team to help you do it.


To learn more about how we can help you enhance your business, give our team a call at 651-237-5677. Ready to see our work in action? Feel free to request your demo today!