SaaS landing page pricewell logo

Build vs Buy Stripe Subscription Payment

Alamin Farhatt

When setting up a subscription business, what is more important— building your own subscription system from scratch, or buying a ready-made solution?

Two people looking at a laptop, thinking

Build vs Buy Stripe Subscription Payment

Your business is up and running. You have checked almost everything off of your to-do list. But wait… you have to figure out a way to charge customers.

You still haven’t decided what solution you are going for to process your payment.

Are you planning to build it in-house or purchase a subscription with Stripe?

Depending on your business type, one plan will always outweigh the other; however, risks and unforeseeable factors arise after making your decision.

This article looks at the iceberg effect that most businesses face and the debatable components of whether you should buy or build.

The building argument: Should I build?

Building a solution in-house is every developer’s dream. Molding your in-house solution in a manner that fits your use case or business model can be an exciting experience for all developers. Building a payment solution in-house is specifically advisable when it comes to the following:


The best thing about creating your payment solution in-house is you get to customize it to fit your business model completely. It’s the main reason why you’re developing your solution. In addition, you can customize it anytime and add more features as your business scales up.

You build features that have a use case in your business’s ecosystem without having any extra ones that might go unused. You can get customer feedback and modify your solution to give them the best user experience while making payments.

All this takes time and resources, but the benefit will always outweigh the cost for most businesses.


Your business is unique in its way. It already has other existing software and functionalities that make up its ecosystem.

A custom-made payment solution ensures you create a fully compatible solution that seamlessly integrates with your whole system. They have to complement each other 100%. Your in-house processes are why your solution is tailored, like gears perfectly aligned to accelerate your business forward.


Building your solution in-house gives you total control of your business. However, having sensitive data available to an outsourced solution can be a nightmare for most businesses. As a business, you want all your data to remain in-house. Control enables you to master your CRM and give your customers the best payment experience.  

The other side of the coin: Buying a Stripe integration

The real question is not, “Should I buy or build?” The real question should be whether to buy a best-of-breed payment solution to process your payments while focusing your time and energy elsewhere.

Stripe, a fast and growing off-the-shelf solution, is one of the best, if not the best, payment solutions for your ecosystem.

Earth Class Mail CEO Doug Breaker explains when one should code using a chart.

Focus matrix according to Doug Breaker of Earth Class Mail

According to him, the strategic and critical point is the only point where businesses should build their solution in-house. On the other hand, coding your solution, even though critical, is not strategic and should therefore be outsourced.

“If it isn’t critical and strategic, we shouldn’t be writing code for it” - Doug Breaker

Here are some of the arguments for buying a Stripe integration:

Time of implementation

In the business world, time is currency. Building your solution from the ground is 1. Time-consuming, and 2. Resource draining. It can take several weeks to build your plan and can be costly.

Buying an already-made Stripe integration for your business removes all the heavy lifting. Stripe will ensure that your customers can pick a plan, upgrade, download invoices and cancel subscriptions.

This will free up time for your developer team to focus on better parts of the business that need updates and even develop better solutions.

Of course, while choosing your billing, you must factor in the time it will take to implement it.

For customization, it can take up to 10 weeks to fully integrate the billing solution in-house. The factors that affect this include:

  • The learning curve for your development team
  • The time it takes to develop the solution.
  • The testing and implementation period.
  • Your pricing model

However, the process can be straightforward for a Stripe integration once you have your account ready. First, you must install the WooCommerce plugin if you use a WordPress site. The process can take 30 minutes to set up and cost a fraction of what it will cost should you build it in-house.

“We set up Stripe Data Pipeline within 5 minutes, and it requires zero ongoing maintenance, so it was a no-brainer to buy instead of to build” - HouseCall Pro.

Ongoing support

The main issue with building your billing system is as your business scales up, unforeseen factors seem to arise which require your developer team to fix.

Imagine pulling your team off of a project they are working on for them to fix a sudden complexity in the invoicing process (which will happen and will take time). A growing business eventually outgrows the modest billing capabilities of a getaway.  

What happens when you need to update your billing flow or update your pricing?

Again, you have to call your developer team.

Stripe has 24/7 online support for all its users via chat, mail, and even phone. Stripe also has a team of experts who can help with any issues.

You must understand that even though you understand your business, they understand their model. Therefore, they use support as a learning engine that gives detailed insight and helps categorize questions more efficiently to provide the right contextual information.

This ensures that your developer team focuses on the core product and does not sidetrack to the maintenance of your internal tools.

No code billing

PriceWell is one of the market’s best low-code/no-code billing solutions. They can help your business grow without writing any line of code. Your business can accept recurring payments without writing any line of code. PriceWell maintains the code, so your developers don’t have to.


Your business model matters a lot when choosing your billing option. For example, you might decide to build in-house and later on regret it and wish you ought to have chosen a payment solution. The reverse is also true. Both options initially give an illusion that they are the best choice but later prove otherwise.

Essentially, it all lies with the decision-makers in the business as to what risks they like to take and what solution they find fit for their ecosystem.

Photo by Desola Lanre-Ologun

Recommended Reading