Is Shopify Custom App expensive?

In the last post, we had mentioned how Custom app helps you get competitive advantages on Shopify. Now, let’s move on the custom app development cost. Is it worth to pay?


This might seem way too philosophical for a blog post about Shopify, but as we all know, nothing in life is perfect. No matter how sparkling awesome public apps seem to be, they definitely have their flaws and weaknesses. And trust us, we’ve spent the last 6 months trying to develop and sell them.

We’ll try to tackle one of those weaknesses in this article, specifically cost, and how a custom app could be the perfect solution.

The Public Apps’ dilemma

High costs

With the title above, you might already cease to believe in our judgement. How is it possible that public apps could have high costs when the majority of them cost less than $30 per month to use?

Let us explain. While it is obvious that the amount of money you pay every month will be insignificant, the total amount of money you are going to spend as a Shopify Store Owner will be incredibly high. You are not going to be a Shopify merchant for a month or two, but rather years, or, if we are being hopeful, decades.

This statement is even more accurate if you have more than one web store. We are talking about dropshippers and agencies – store owners who need to pay for public apps on multiple sites at once. 

So what about custom app? When you have a custom app, you can use them on all your sites without any recurring fees, saving you a lot of money down the line. Moreover, if you were to build more web stores in the future, the cost stays the same. 

Do note that if you are a just a small to medium-sized Shopify Store Owner or you are just starting out on the platform, we must suggest that you stick with public apps. Even in the case that they don’t satisfy your needs, investing in custom apps will be way too risky of an investment to approve. 

Difficult to manage

The average Shopify Store Owner installs a total of 06 apps on their stores. There are many categories of apps on the App Store, from Sales & conversions, Orders & shipping, Marketing, Customer Support, etc. These apps often help you with expanding and improving your business, many of which even have direct effects on your revenue.

This means if you install too many apps, managing them will be a big hassle. You are not a programmer nor a coder, you are a businessman. To switch back and forth between these apps and managing the actual business operation every day could be very tiresome, especially if any of them were to encounter bugs or to not function properly.

The Custom App’s solution

One-off payment

One-off payment is essentially the opposite of monthly charges. Instead of paying the developers for an app every month, you could pay for it once up-front and never think about it again. Let us do you a cost comparison:

You are a dropshipper with a total of 10 web stores on the platform, each of which installs a total of 06 public apps, costing you $150 every month. With 10 web stores, your monthly expenses on public apps is $1500, annual expenses is $18,000 and after 05 years you have already spent nearly $100,000 on public apps.

On the other hand, if you were to order the making of 06 custom apps, each of which does exactly what public apps can, the cost might be far less. Shopify endorses a list of Shopify Experts that provide Custom App Development Service on their site, majority of which have a starting price of $500. While it is obvious that $500 won’t get you anything worthwhile, most Experts on the list offer their service for less than $5,000, with some more reputable companies asking for more than $10,000. 

Even if that’s the case, even if you somehow require an app that actually costs $10,000 to make, the total cost of 06 apps will be $60,000, roughly half that of public apps.

Additionally, if you find a good Custom app developer, you could not only get the app for less but also get an app that is fundamentally better in terms of function. This is because the custom app they built for you will be specifically designed to fit your needs, which means that any features that the public apps don’t provide, you’ll have it. Any features that the public apps have but you don’t need, you won’t have to pay for it.

The cost of your custom apps will then match the value that you were to gain from them, unlike public apps.

Better management & performance

A custom app has the potential to do far more than a public app. Why? Because it was built for you, and you specifically. It could remove the things that you don’t need and add in the things that you do, things that public apps might not necessarily provide. 

Managing your business could be so much easier if there’s one custom app that could do what 03 public apps can. Moreover, and you probably already know this, installing too many apps could negatively affect your store and Admin page’s performance. You might be able to get away with a slower Admin page, but having the Store page slow might discourage customers from visiting and returning. You will have to dangle yourself in codes or contact a third-party developer to optimize your Store if that happens, which really just adds to the overall costs. It’s far better to consider custom app development cost now to save yourself both money and time in the future.

How much does a custom app cost by the way?

By now you’ve probably gained some useful insights about Custom and Public apps, and hopefully have realized how inexpensive and reasonable of a solution Custom apps could be.

If you have any other questions about the Custom app development cost, feel free to contact us at [email protected]We are now providing a Custom App Development Service ourselves, so we’ll assist you with the best of our abilities. 

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