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Build vs. Buy: How to blow $100k saving money (baremetrics.com)
17 points by doppp 9 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 11 comments

> Next thing you know, you’ve spent literally hundreds of hours building a tool that’s not core to your business.

Unfortunately often the problem is the opposite. You may spend 10 units of time integrating a 3rd party system into your workflow versus 100 units of time writing your own custom system, but then you'll spend 1000 units of time uncovering gotchas in the 3rd party system, fixing them - which means learning system outside of intended scope and developing your own code, or inventing workarounds for less than perfect 3rd party system, or skipping some functionality in your workflow because you need something which you can't get from 3rd party tools etc...

Not core to your business? Doesn't mean you can't waste both time and money buying.

> developing your own code

In MS Excel.

Of course a seller of a $250 tool would argue buy vs build.

How about an option C, shop around? Profitwell for example has reasonable SaaS metrics and it cost $0. Seems like the best of both worlds, no code for me to write and $250 in my pocket.

I can't find any pricing page for Profitwell

Because they do not charge. (For this part of their stack)

If you’re working on small sites which are worth ~30x monthly net, a $250/month recurring cost will remove $7,500 from the value of your business... or a month of engineering at $90k/year.

If you’re technical yourself, build it for no cost and save the $7,500. If you’re deciding between buy/build, it’s a wash on this imaginary scenario so do whatever you like better.

There's $250 cost. And then there's... Optimizely. 5 figures a month. Then you look at other tools and realize most the work is meh at best. They don't integrate with react without work anyways.

Point is, it all depends.

It is also wise to be a little skeptical about the speech that a tool seller gives about the virtues and wonders of buying tools from tool sellers such as himself.

If your into Dev &| Ops the example of A/B testing should be something that you engineer in really no time. Be it reconfiguring your existing webserver or re-using an elastic search instance your anyway running I think it's like cooking an Asian meal as an Italian cook, you have the tools , you have the knowledge.

I remember paying for things like analytics and video chat where there were still major blockers that I could have fixed myself easily if I had written the software myself. Instead, the high priority requests for us were triaged as low priority for them and never got resolved.

Sometimes cost isn't the issue.

My advice: If the tool is right, buy it. If nothing out there fits your wants, then build.

There's a big advantage to controlling your own stack. It's why companies like Google built things like file systems.

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