Selecting a Database Solution: Cookie Vs Custom

Businesses need different workflow systems for different industries and services; processing sales, managing property or maintaining public records. It is clear that software is needed to maintain workflows of all types, the question comes down to which one is best? Every industry will have its advertised “bests” that are designed to meet the general needs of that industry. But this does not always mean it is best for you and your business. Using out of the box software usually requires you make concessions on how your processes work or what data you are able to store. Custom built systems on the other hand adapt to the methods and processes that make the most sense for your business. In this article we will be outlining the benefits of a custom built program vs its cookie cutter counterpart.

Transaction using point of sale system

Custom Point of sale

A custom point of sale (POS) system will do exactly what you want it to do. Since it’s built based on your needs we can design it to fulfill your exact requirements. We will even make additional suggestions once we have a full understanding of your business. Regular point of sale systems like SalesForce, Retail Pro, Lightspeed and others like them will do what is already programmed into them. What is already programmed into them will allow your business to function, but as your business grows and your needs change a pre-built POS system will not be able to grow with you and may even hinder your business.

We have designed a POS system for a client looking to bridge the gap between ecommerce and store front sales. We were able to link the POS system we designed with their payment processing system so that they can more easily manage their sales and accounting. As the company grew we then created and integrated this payment processing and POS system to their new fulfillment system. This was all possible thanks to having a flexible point of sale system that grows with the business.

Customer Relationship Management

A custom Customer Relationship Management (CRM) program can allow you to collect the exact amount of information you choose from your clients. Detailed records of client transactions, subscriptions and contact information can contribute so much to your business. You can learn what kind of people are most interested in your products. you would be able to adjust your marketing or in stock products based on the information you collect.

Most organizations will make use of a customer relationship management system to collect data for inventory and marketing purposes. The information they collect is usually designed to conform to the standard lead conversion process. But where these systems fail is when your business has a unique process for converting potential customers to clients. Whether your process needs cross integration with other data sources or you simply need advanced or automated search functions, your standard CRM will not be able to accomplish this out of the box.

Real Estate Management and Property Management

Custom real estate management software will be a must have if you want your properties to stand out from the millions of homes on zillow or redfin. Zillow, redfin and any other pre-built system will be what most people go to when researching to buy a home. But since buying a home takes a lot of time and research, people will shop around and likely end up on your website if you have listings in places they are interested in. Having a system dedicated to your real estate can make the difference whether or not people ever see the listing you have to offer.

house under construction

One of our real estate clients requested to have a system that can connect from a dashboard they use to manage their properties to their listings on their website. The benefit of having their own system separate from Zillow is that potential buyers opt in for notifications when a home that meets their criteria is listed. This can be done on Zillow also, but your listing will be bunched with all of the other listings that fit that criteria. With their own dashboard they are able to compare repair investment costs, profits, performance of each agent and more. Every measurable detail went a long way for this client because real estate is a competition of who can get in front of the buyers first.

Custom Database systems

We live in a world of data; a large amount of goods, preferences, population and much more. Interpreting this data holds a lot of value for every industry. Having a custom database system that stores and connects your data and provides you with charts and graphs you need can save you a lot of time. There are many pre-built database options to choose from but configuring them can be cumbersome.  These database systems are reliable and have been on the market for years; the flaw with them is that they are very complicated and require an expert who has been trained extensively to even use them.  Most companies do not have the budget for a full time in-house person to manage the edits or updates required to maintain these complex systems. A custom database system will give you the tools to manage your own data and access the functions you need for your business goals. When the time comes to create a new routine or ability in your system, Gliffen will be here to help update your system to grow with you.


Getting in contact with a support person is almost always a nightmare when dealing with big out of the box software providers. When you do finally get a person they will know nothing about your business because it was not their assignment to know your business. For solutions regarding your question or concern they will refer to their script of solutions, their solutions and answers will be repeats of the “help” section of whatever software in question. Gliffen is here to provide actual support. If you ever need to contact us with a question we will know your business and provide you with real answers and solutions that meet your needs.