In an age where hundreds of millions of dollars are being spent on eCommerce, it’s not surprising that there are many options out there for you to choose from. Choosing the right platform for your eCommerce store can be a daunting task. It is challenging to know which platform will be best for your business with so many options available. In this article, we’ll compare the two most popular eCommerce platforms for building your own online store: Shopify and Woocommerce.
Shopify vs. WordPress: Which is the best e-commerce platform? This question was also asked on Reddit, and it started a heated debate. The Shopify community said they were far superior to WordPress because of their themes, which are more flexible than WordPress. However, many people from the WordPress camp argued back, saying that their themes are just as good as those found on Shopify. In this blog post, we’ll be comparing Shopify and WordPress for e-commerce business owners. We’ll provide a comparison of the two platforms and help you decide which one is best for your needs!
Table of Contents
Shopify is a leading eCommerce platform that powers the world’s best entrepreneurs in retail, wholesale, manufacturing, food service, and more. From graphic design to inventory management to customer service, Shopify offers everything an entrepreneur needs to succeed. Shopify also provides a complete commerce solution with apps, eCommerce software, and mobile commerce platform to help businesses succeed. Shopify powers more than 500,000 online stores. It has clever marketing tools that help out with SEO, design, customer service, and inventory management. The site is also great for collecting payment information through Shopify’s built-in payment system.
Woocommerce is a free plugin of WordPress that allows users to create their own e-commerce website by integrating it with their existing WordPress site. It can make a shopping cart within a single domain and offers a variety of features such as products, orders, customers, and many other options. The platform has over 10 million downloads on the WordPress Plugin Directory and more than 500,000 active installations. WooCommerce is also designed to integrate seamlessly with WordPress, making it simple for non-technical users to set up their own online stores that are powered by the world’s most popular content management system (CMS).
The Shopify app is a little expensive, but it makes up for the price by being easier to use. Shopify Basic starts at $29/month, and Shopify Plus starts at $79/month. You can also sign up for a free Shopify account, but if you want to use the app’s more advanced features, you’ll have to upgrade to a paid plan.
If you need a free, open-source solution, then WooCommerce might be the right choice for you. It is built on PHP & MySQL and is fully customizable. Obviously, it is loaded with fewer features, and you need to have good technical knowledge for operating your eCommerce site over WooCommerce.
Both Shopify and WordPress are easy to use because they both offer drag-and-drop design templates, store management tools, and various integrations with social media platforms. Therefore, you can start marketing your business right away and SEO features that make it easier for various top search engines like Google and Bing to find your website.
Shopify has a drag-and-drop building, which means you can create your site in minutes. You don’t need to be a programmer or designer to make edits either. The dashboard is more straightforward and includes:
Shopify is a lot easier to use for beginners. The interface is intuitive, and the platform offers more free templates. It also has more detailed help articles, which means that you can get started without reading through several different tutorials. Shopify provides a broader range of customization options for those who need them. In March 2018, Shopify released a new app called Shopify POS. This new POS brings the power of Shopify to your physical stores with all the features you need to manage sales, inventory, and customer relationships. Your entire store’s data will sync automatically with your online store.
In comparison to Shopify, Woocommerce seems clunky with a cluttered interface that’s not as user-friendly. Woocommerce is more complicated to learn than Shopify. For example, tons of features are hidden behind the scenes on WooCommerce versus being visible on Shopify. You’ll have to spend a lot of time browsing through the back-end of the website to figure out how everything works, which can be frustrating for newcomers who don’t have any experience with coding. Woocommerce is suitable for you if you have the ability to add a variety of different features, from widgets and shortcodes to menus and custom sidebar setups.
Shopify offers fantastic performance because it stores live data directly on its servers. This means that there is no delay in loading pages, and the site loads almost instantly. The downside to this is that you are limited to this volume of traffic. You can create products and immediately post them or edit them on the fly. Thanks to its responsive design, the Shopify app looks great on any device. For instance, it’s designed to be displayed beautifully on your smartphone so you can take it with you as you go about your day and place orders as they come up.
Woocommerce is not nearly as fast or reliable as Shopify, but it may be sufficient for low-volume stores on shared hosting. WooCommerce has a higher load time than Shopify. A WooCommerce store loads in about 10 seconds, whereas a Shopify store loads in under 5 seconds. The performance of WooCommerce is not as stable as Shopify. Also, because Shopify offers an integrated credit card processor, it offers lower rates than woocommerce. The site runs faster and more reliably with less stress on the server.
Shopify offers excellent scalability, which is essential if you’re looking to grow your business. If you ever need more than the 200k monthly visitors that Shopify’s free package offers, then the enterprise plan provides higher limits. Shopify offers unlimited bandwidth and unlimited storage space. You can add a total number of products and inventory items to your store, and you’ll never have to worry about running out of reach. The Shopify Publishing platform includes a wide variety of flexible shopping features such as Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel integration, and more. This platform enables merchants to have complete control of design, inventory, and customer service. Here are some points you need to consider about Shopify:
Woocommerce also offers unlimited stores, but there is no limit on monthly visitors. It’s been proven that WooCommerce offers a lot more power and flexibility for those who want to customize their online store.
This is one of the defining reasons why merchants are choosing Shopify over other eCommerce systems. Shopify has several different payment methods that you can choose from. Shopify, unlike Woocommerce, offers the ability to accept payments through cards, PayPal, Stripe, and Apple Pay. You can use Shopify Payments, their own payment processing system, or use a third-party processor like Stripe. These services are easy to set up, and they come with fraud protection, fraud detection, and chargebacks built-in.
There are two different options for processing payments in WooCommerce. The first is by using an “external” plugin that allows you to pay with a credit card, PayPal, etc. The second is by connecting your store to a third-party payment processor. The downside to this method is the fee that will be charged for each transaction processed. You can use PayPal and Stripe and many other methods such as Amazon Pay, Google Wallet, Skrill (Moneybookers), and even Bitcoin.
Shopify offers live chat and email support. The live chat has a wait time of 7 seconds on average, with the longest wait time being 27 minutes. They also do not charge for any support. Woocommerce does not have a live chat, but they have a forum where users can get help from other members, which is free. However, they do offer premium support for a fee of $9 per month or $99 per year, which entitles customers to unlimited phone, ticket, and email support.
WooCommerce has a ton of free documentation to help get your store up and running. The WooCommerce support team is available every day, so it’s an excellent choice if you need installation help or have questions about how products work. You can find more information on the Woocommerce forums, but it’s not an official support option.
Shopify is a platform that’s well equipped for SEO. It automatically makes your store maps and web pages readable by bots and crawlers, which means you’ll rank higher in search engines and get more traffic to your site. You can also use Google Shopping to show products on Google Shopping Search Results, allowing you to tap into the world’s largest search engine and boost your sales. Plus, it’s easy to use with no coding required. Woocommerce also has an SEO-friendly system that lets you customize the URLs of your products and blog posts.
WooCommerce can be a bit overwhelming for beginners as there are a lot of settings to configure. If you insist on using WooCommerce, make sure you hire someone who knows how to optimize your site for search engines.
The hosting services that are associated with Shopify and WordPress are very different. WordPress is a free download, which means you would have to use third-party hosting services to host your website and store files on the internet. Shopify provides its own hosting service that will automatically update as you make changes; this ensures everything stays up-to-date without worrying about third-party hosting services.
With Shopify, you have various options for how much you pay at the beginning and how much you want to pay per month. On the other hand, with WordPress, there is only one option: you have to pay every month.
Shopify is hosted on a cloud server in the Shopify data center, where anyone can get an account for free and start their own store (although premium features of Shopify cost you).
On the other hand, WordPress has its custom-built servers. If your site is busy or starts getting large amounts of traffic (and thus needing additional resources), then scaling will be much cheaper because you won’t have to pay monthly fees upfront in WordPress.
Building your business site from scratch like some other websites might take months before they’re ready for heavy demands. So, remember this when choosing what type of eCommerce builder may work best for you!
One of the primary differences between WordPress and Shopify is security features. For example, Shopify has an SSL certificate that comes with every store and you have to pay extra for it. WordPress has two types of security options. The first one is called Jetpack, which comes as an add-on and includes a firewall, malware protection, spam protection, virus protection, and other additional features.
The second security option with WordPress is Wordfence Security, which includes these features plus more in-depth analytics to find out what caused the breach. It has an automated malware scanner.
Each platform provides different levels of security, so you’ll need to determine which one best suits your needs! A Shopify store comes with an SSL certificate that protects your information. WordPress does not come with this by default, the Jetpack add-on provides you with some basic security features like spam and malware protection. Still, it doesn’t have an automated malware scanner or advanced virus detection capabilities. If you need more in-depth analytics to determine what caused the breach, you’ll need to get Wordfence Security for WordPress.
The Shopify interface has a shallow learning curve. It is my personal opinion that developing your eCommerce website in Shopify is the better option for someone who doesn’t have any previous experience with e-commerce. The majority of templates of Shopify are straightforward to customize.
Shopify also has a WYSIWYG editor that lets you edit your content with formatting, images, list tags, etc. This means it’s much less likely for you to make mistakes when editing the template than using WordPress, which uses HTML and is more complicated to edit.
Shopify has a drag-and-drop builder, which will make it easier for someone who doesn’t understand code, as they can easily customize their theme without having to worry about messing up the code.
WordPress has a much higher learning curve as you have to know HTML and CSS to create a theme. This can be difficult for people who are new to developing or designing. It’s also important to note that the templates for WordPress will not be as straightforward as Shopify. It takes more time and effort to customize your website using the WordPress platform.
The thing about editing code is that it can be challenging for someone who doesn’t understand what they’re doing as it can be easy to make mistakes that will affect your theme. However, WordPress has a WYSIWYG editor that lets you edit your content with formatting, images, list tags, etc. It also comes with the option to use HTML or CSS coding, and they both have their pros and cons.
Shopify is the more beginner-friendly option when comparing Shopify and WordPress. The platform also has a lower learning curve, and you don’t have to know code to get started with designing or developing.
The templates for Shopify are straightforward to customize, and you can use the drag-and-drop builder, which will make it easier if you’re not a developer. You also have less chance of making mistakes when editing your content than with WordPress, where you need to know HTML and CSS to create a theme.
On the other hand, WordPress has a higher learning curve and takes more time to customize your website. It also requires you to know HTML or CSS coding to create your theme, which can be difficult for people new to the development process.
However, with WordPress, there is an option of using either HTML or CSS code editing, which might help with the learning curve.
Both Shopify and WordPress have their advantages and disadvantages. Still, if you’re a beginner, it would be better for you to use Shopify as it has less of a learning curve as compared to WordPress.