stock items vs freelance projects

Have you ever wondered what is the difference between building stock items and freelance items? Beside the obvious argument: “freelance is dedicated and stock is for everyone”, there are tons of other aspects that need to be taken into account.

In this article, we will show you exactly which these are and emphasise the important advantages and disadvantages of building each of them.

Stock Items vs Freelance Projects

Let’s analyse the concepts before we start getting into it.

Stock Items = are those websites / videos / sounds / pictures / animations / illustrations, etc that 

are built to be flexible and serve as templates / themes for a large target group of


Freelance Projects = are those websites / videos / sounds / pictures / animations / illustrations,

etc, that are built for a specific customer, including all the requirements of the


Now that we have clarified and differentiated them by using the most important and classic argument, let’s get into the specific ones.

1.The Design

The design is one of the most important factor when trying to build an item. We’ll focus more on Mobile Websites because this is where we have the most experience. However, these principles can apply to Desktop Websites as well.

Therefore, if you are planning to create stock mobile website templates or themes, then you should now that, in order to sell and reach a broader audience, the design must be flexible.

What do we mean by flexible? Well, it’s easy, try not to suggest any theme for your product. For example: don’t do a “restaurant” dedicated product if you want to target the medical audience as well.

Can’t they change the pictures and text? Yes, they sure can, but one of the most important aspect when building stock items is creating the playground for your possible client’s imagination. The biggest mistake is to suggest what your product should be used for.

However, when creating freelance items for a specific customer, the design receives a whole new perspective. Now, you need to try and include all the ideas your customer has and create a branded, dedicated product.

2. The Code

The target audience varies regardless who you build for. There will never be two people with the same amount of knowledge and experience.

Therefore, you should always code in a clean and understandable manner. Try using classes names that clearly show the purpose of the classes, be organised when creating the structure so it can be easily edited.

Normally, for a freelance project, the customers will not want to modify the product himself for different reasons. But that should not be a reason for you to write the code in a complicated manner. Think about the fact that maybe one day that exact customer will want you to modify the product you have created for him. You will thank yourself if the code is clean written.

3. The Price

The prices are volatile and they depend on the market and the complexity of the product of course. Despite the fact that we cannot offer an exact price, we can state the difference in the price of stock items and freelance items. Here what customers expect from you:

Stock Items Prices: When building stock items, the price is usually way lower than the price for a freelance project. The reasons are simple:

  1. Customers have to put effort in customising the product to fit their brand.
  2. You, as the developer, sell the same product to more customers, therefore, that product will make you a continuously income, not just a one time payment as a freelance

Freelance Items Prices: Deniably, prices for freelance works are higher than for stock items. The reasons are again extremely clear:

  1. The beneficiary (the customer) won’t have any left work to do on the project.
  2. A developer will need some valuable time to create the end product, therefore, in order to make profit, he/she will increase the price.
  3. The product is exclusively delivered/sold to one customer only, meaning there is only a one time payment.
advantages and disadvantages

Advantages and Disadvantages For Stock Items


  • One of the biggest advantage of buying or building stock items is the quality and readability of the code. If you sell or buy from a market that has a review system implemented ( such as Envato Market ), the product will be built in such manner that it will be extremely customisable and flexible even by the people that have less knowledge on this matter.
  • If you buy stock products from a reputable author, then you should find tons of great components that are built in order to engage the users and respect the design language on the product.
  • The price is extremely reduced compared to a freelance product


  • ( for customers ) If the item misses a component you need to build one from scratch or hire a professional developer to build it for you
  • ( for devs ) You will never make everyone happy so make sure you take this into consideration when starting building stock items. Advice: make sure you create one product for a specific design language, don’t mix them in order to reach every person. You will get the exact opposite result.

Advantages and Disadvantages For Freelance Items


  • As a customer, your work will be exactly as you want it to be, without needing further edits.
  • Your imagination is the limit
  • As a developer, you can charge more on freelance items.


  • ( for customers ) The price is significantly higher if you want your website to be done by a pro.
  • ( for customers and devs ) The flexibility of the code can suffer due to the functionality of the website which is gaining terrain. Therefore, it will be a bit harder to edit if/when needed.

What should I choose?

As a developer you should choose what you like doing most. If you are into working with people, love coding and rely on customers ideas to create a product, then you should definitely do freelance work. But make sure you invest a lot on your social media exposure and marketing so people ca see your talent!

However, if you are a lone wolf who has tons of interesting ideas that can be implemented and meant for a broad target audience, you should build stock items. The advantages are numerous: you benefit from the marketing of the market you sell on, you have no boss, you have the freedom of creating everything you need, and so on.

As a customer, there are a few things that you should take into account:

  • Your budget
  • Of course, your code knowledge
  • And the requirements

If you have a large budget and you don’t want / don’t have time to work on the end product, then you should hire a freelancer to do it for you. Expect a higher price than on stock.

However, if you have time to play and build your own website based on a stock template, you definitely should! It will save you tons of money.

Moreover, you shouldn’t worry  that you don’t have the “know how”. If you choose one of our products, our documentations are written for our grannies! Everybody can understand it. And if you find it difficult to install a theme and customise it, then choosing a HTML Site Template is the way to go. You just customise it and put the files on your server! Voila. It’s that easy!

Make sure you drop an eye into our portfolio – who knows, maybe you find your dream website! We also do freelance projects so if you have crazy ideas and need some help, make sure you contact us here.