These days, you can easily find a service or product that will do what you need it to. For example, if you need to sell tickets to an event you could use CVENT, EventBrite, or Picatic. We could call these “off the shelf” solutions. Which one should you choose? What if it does not have a feature you want? What if the price is not right? To start off, write a list of features that you absolutely need from a service, and then make a list of things that would be fantastic to have, but not necessary. Then collect a list of three to five services that you would like to consider. Finally, use the steps below to help narrow down your options. If none of the options are quite right then a custom application may be the right choice for your business!
1. Features: Research all of the services and compile a list of each one’s services and features.
While doing this research ask yourself these questions as well:
- If you notice that a service is missing a feature, will they help build that feature for you?
- Are there a lot of features that you wouldn’t use?
By doing this research you will start to get a vague idea if a product or service is right for your purposes.
2. Price: Next, research the pricing.
- How are you charged? Is it subscription based (monthly or yearly), pay per use, or are you buying the software itself?
- If you need a custom feature, how much is it going to cost?
- When thinking about the features, does the price feel right?
- When thinking about your use case, does the price feel right?
After this step, you might want start crossing products and services off your list, but wait until the reviews section to really narrow down your choices.
3. Reviews: Try to find a few positive and negative reviews for each product.
Read through the reviews, they will tell you how easy the service is to use, what the companies customer service is like and help you solidify your opinion. We think reading reviews really helps narrow down your options and exposes the things that you wouldn’t have found looking at the company alone.
4. Choose: Now comes the hard part, choosing what to do.
Read over all of your research and digest it. Think about how your business will be using the service. See if you can review a demo. Use this all this information to see if there is one that is perfect for you. Are they all too expensive? Are there features that you really need that are missing? Are the reviews not that great?
If after the research you and your business are still not felling too great about your options, maybe a custom application is the right path for you! Talk to us, we will listen to what you are looking for and help you find the right solution for you. We only recommend a custom app when there is not a solution to your problem. In other words, we won’t reinvent the wheel.