How Much Does Custom Software Cost?

BY: EMMANUEL URIAS

Custom software development is the designing of software applications for a specific user or group of users within an organization. Such software is designed to address their needs precisely as opposed to the more traditional and widespread off-the-shelf software. Such software is typically created just for that specific entity by a third-party by contract or in-house group of developers and is not packaged for reselling.

Costs of Custom Software

Typically, the cost of custom software development ranges from $40,000 to $50,000. However, this range is very broad; this is because there are numerous aspects that contribute to the costs of custom software development.

What Impacts The Cost of Custom Software?

  1. Software Size

The more screens/pages you have, the more work that needs to be done to build your application, and the more expensive it will be to deliver. Small applications range from 10-25 screens, medium size is in the realm of 25-40 and a large size is anything more than 40.

  1. Software Complexity

Complicated logic means more time coding and testing.  If your custom software application performs a lot of heavy analysis, scoring or number crunching, or if your “secret code” has a lot of nuances and permutations, your application probably has some complexity to it that warrants special attention.

  1. Creative Design

Creative design in custom software development is where you get to choose different fonts and color palettes among others. Much like when you are designing and decorating a house, the more extravagant your design needs and wants, the more expensive your costs tend to be.

  1. Integration With Other Systems

Integrating with external software introduces a lot of unknown variables into the equation. You just don’t know how well the other system let’s information in or out, and what hoops you have to jump through in the process.

Sometimes the integrations are effortless and sometimes they are extremely difficult. Typical integrations like payment providers such as PayPal or Authorize.Net are extremely easy to integrate with.  The same goes for credit check services from Equifax or Experian.

Older or lesser known systems may pose a challenge and increase the project cost.

  1. Migration of Existing Data

If you have data in an existing system that needs to go into your new application, assuming it is more than you can feasibly type in by hand, then you will need migration. Migration is nothing more than custom scripts that take data out of your old system, dust it off and reshape it so it can fit into your new system.

The steps of the process are fairly straight-forward, but there are a lot of questions and decisions that need to be made as the two systems will store the data differently.

Most migration efforts are run a few times after the software is finished to make sure everything got translated correctly and the new system is using the data as desired. The effort of figuring out the translation rules, writing the scripts, and performing a series of tests and adjustments, will add time and cost to the project.

Therefore, when you are looking into the costs of software development and coming up with your budget for your custom software development, you need to consider these factors.

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