Theme vs Custom website for solar companies | Making the right decision

Need a new website for your solar business? Learn the difference between a website theme and a custom website and which is right for you.

February 9, 2023
Need a new website for your solar business? Learn the difference between a website theme and a custom website and which is right for you.
Lucian Wu
Lucian Wu


You've likely faced the age-old question: should you buy a website theme or build a custom website for your business? 

It’s quite simple actually. 

If spending the time to mould the theme to suit your business, then getting a theme is right. 

But if your time is better spent on other areas of your business, then you should consider hiring someone to build a custom website for you.

This article will help you make the best decision for your company. We'll cover the pros and cons of both options and give you a clear understanding of what you need to know to make the best choice for your business.

What is a website theme?

A website theme is a pre-designed template that you can buy and install on your website to give it a certain look and feel. 

Think of it like buying a suit off the rack – it may fit well, but it's not tailored to your exact specifications. 

The advantage of using a theme is that it's usually less expensive and quicker to get up and running compared to a custom website. 

The downside is that you're limited in terms of customization options and you'll likely end up with a website that looks very similar to other solar companies.

Some examples of solar companies that might benefit from using a theme include:

Startup solar businesses

If you're just starting out and don't have a lot of resources to invest in a custom website, a theme can be a great option. It can get you online quickly and cheaply.

If you don't need a lot of custom features and just need a website to provide basic information about your company and services, a theme can be a good fit.

Solar businesses on a budget

If you're on a tight budget, a theme is a more cost-effective option compared to a custom website.

You’re on a tight schedule

If you need to get a website up and running quickly, a theme can help you get online fast. You can be up and running in just a few days, whereas a custom website can take several weeks or even months to complete.

You should also be aware that a theme will still take some time to fiddle around with in order to make it suit your company. Eg. Adding your logo, changing the colours, adjusting fonts, etc.

What are custom websites?

Custom websites, on the other hand, are built from the ground up specifically for your company. 

A custom website is a website that is built from scratch to meet the specific needs and goals of a business. Unlike a website theme, a custom website is created specifically for your business. This means that the design, layout, and functionality are tailored to your branding guidelines.

Custom websites are typically built by a web development agency or a freelance web developer. The process starts with a consultation, where the agency or developer will learn about your business and what you want your website to accomplish. From there, they'll work with you to create a design and layout that meets your needs and represents your brand.

Most importantly, custom websites be targeting your specific customers , with their individual pains and problems.

Once the design is approved, the developer will start building the website. This involves coding the site, integrating any necessary functionality, and testing it to make sure everything works as it should.

Custom websites tend to be more expensive than themes.

Some examples of solar companies that might benefit from buying a custom website from an agency include:

Established solar companies

If your company has been around for a while and has a strong brand and reputation, a custom website can help you showcase that and establish a strong online presence.

It doesn’t look too good on your reputation if you’re a well established company, but your website is still using a theme that is accessible to everyone.

Companies that want to stand out against their competitors

Companies looking for unique, custom design: If you want your website to stand out from the competition and have a unique design that represents your brand, a custom website is the way to go. 

Also, if you’re looking for custom functionality, such as a specific solar calculator or savings calculator, you won’t be able to find that from a theme.

Solar companies that want full control over the user experience

With a custom website, you have complete control over the user experience and how visitors interact with your site. This can lead to higher engagement and a better conversion rate.

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Cost Comparison

One of the biggest differences between a theme and a custom website is cost. Themes are often less expensive and can be a great option for businesses on a tight budget. General purpose themes typically cost between $50-$300, making them an affordable option for many businesses.

Custom websites, on the other hand, can be much more expensive. The cost of a custom website will depend on a number of factors, including the complexity of the design, the functionality you need, and the experience of the developer or agency you hire. In general, custom websites can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $30,000 or more, depending on the specific needs of your business.

The hidden cost of themes

Themes may seem cheap at first, but don't be fooled by the price tag. You often need to tweak the theme to make it match your brand, and that's where the real work begins. You may need to change the logo, fonts, color scheme, and even settings. This can take time and require technical skills, which can be difficult and expensive to get.

Many themes have limitations when it comes to customization and functionality. You may need to install plugins or make even more modifications to get the features you need. And if you need a developer's help, that can add up fast!

In some cases, the cost of all these changes can end up being higher than building a custom website from scratch. So, before you choose a theme, think about your budget, time, and business needs. A custom website may be worth the investment in the long run.


Maintenance is another important factor to consider when choosing between a custom website and a theme. Custom websites typically require more maintenance because you might be making changes to the website regularly in order to keep it up-to-date and in line with your business goals.

On the other hand, if you're using a theme, it's unlikely that you'll be making changes that regularly. However, it's important to keep in mind that themes can also require maintenance. 

So, while themes can be a more affordable option, they are not necessarily a maintenance-free option. If you're using a theme, you should still expect to invest some time and resources into maintaining and updating your website.

Conversion from visitor to lead

A website is not just an expense, it's an investment! 

And when it comes to investing, you want to make sure you get the best return on investment (ROI). That's why it's important to consider the impact your website has on your bottom line.

A custom website can be a powerful sales tool that can help you convert visitors into leads and customers. Think of your website as an automated sales machine that works for you 24/7. The right custom website can help you capture more leads, create more sales, and grow your business. 

By creating a custom website, you can design a specialized sales funnel that takes your visitors on a journey, from the moment they land on your site to the moment they become a customer.

A theme won’t have the same impact on your visitors. 


In conclusion, whether a theme or a custom website is right for your solar company depends on your goals, budget, and level of technical expertise.

Themes can be a great option for small businesses or startups that are just starting out and want to get a website up and running quickly and on a budget. Themes are affordable, easy to use, and offer a wide range of customization options.

However, if you're looking to establish a strong online presence, create a unique and memorable brand experience, and convert more visitors into leads and customers, a custom website may be the way to go. 

Ultimately, the choice between a theme and custom website will depend on the specific needs of your solar company.

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