The two highly popular e-commerce platform, WooCommerce, and Shopify are the gladiators of e-commerce and are equally powerful, but offer distinct choices if you are interested in online selling. The crux of the matter is, which one is apt for you depends on your individual situation.
Shopify powers more than 600,000 businesses, whereas WooCommerce asserts to be the most popular eCommerce platform” of the web.
In this article, we will help you to arrive at a decision on whether Shopify or WooCommerce is ideal for you and the factors that go into influencing your choice. The showdown between WooCommerce vs Shopify takes into account their:
- Functionality and convenience of usage
- Ecommerce elements
- Pros and Cons
If you are looking for an all-inclusive package, Shopify is the best one for you. You can create and publish your individual online store completely through Shopify, thereby using its apps and well-organized features. WooCommerce can be your choice if a website already exists. A WordPress plugin, WooCommerce changes your portal into an online store.
Two Distinct Core Approaches Of WooCommerce And Shopify Vis-a-Vis Creating And Handling Your Store:
1. WooCommerce is a platform that is self-hosted, which means that the files of your stores are located on your individual server, and you have the scope to alter everything on your eCommerce store as is necessary. This lends you a degree of control that hosted platforms are unable to offer.
If you require additional features, you can enable them by using plugins and extensions, build them yourself or hire the services of others to create them for you. In a self-hosted platform, your hosting provider takes care of providing assistance to server issues. With regard to theme and extensions, it is the job of the developers to answer support queries about their products.
As self-hosted platforms can be installed anywhere, you have greater scope to pick your favourite hosting service. Not remaining confined to a centralized service indicates that you can shift your store if you surpass your hosting provider or explore a profitable deal elsewhere. Such platform powers 30% of online stores, is perfect for WordPress users and can power eCommerce stores of every size.
2. Shopify is a hosted e-commerce platform that hosts and handles the software and offers flexibility, but you are limited to making only those changes that Shopify permits. Hosted platforms offer a comprehensive e-commerce solution consisting of hosing, technical assistance, and a shopping cart feature. In lieu of a fixed rate, you receive hosting and approach a technical team that resolves all issues concerning you. Actually, hosted platforms reduce the technical obstacles with regard to access, provides premium support and offer customization. (by way of themes and plugins.
Among the most preferred e-commerce platforms, Shopify powers complete online outlets and also extends basic shopping cart function for sites using different platforms like WordPress.
Let us scan through more specific comparison between these two leading eCommerce platforms:
Functionality And Ease Of Use
An ideal single platform to operate e-commerce plus affiliate websites under a single roof. WooCommerce provides terrific themes and designs with plenty of features to sell and marketing automation integrations.
WooCommerce provides a friendly installation system, though not as intuitive as Shopify is. It requires you to interchange between multiple systems prior to setting up your store and operating it. Basically, you begin with domain set up, next take up WordPress installation, followed by activation of the WooCommerce plugin, and finally customizing the fundamentals.
You obtain inbuilt SEO tools, site search, consumers can sell unlimited digital as well as physical products, obtain reviews and ratings, product images that can be zoomed, and upselling plus cross-selling features. All of these are in-built and there is no requirement for an extra payment. After that your budget can experience the pinch of single-click upsells, importing or exporting your items using a CSV file, and memberships. Though, these are basic eCommerce features but need pay for essential things.
Shopify utilizes a framework that is properly streamlined and completes the entire pipeline from the starting to the culmination by taking minimal steps. It provides an abandoned cart email with no fancy installation for which you require a plugin in WooCommerce.
So to speak, you can import or export your items, view rating, and reviews, perform real-time shipping, zoom product images – everything out of the box. But you need to pay for things too. Single click upsells, cross/upselling, product search and additional SEO tools. If you like to award reward points or obtain subscriptions, you make payments. In case you have decided to take your marketing efforts to the next level with personalized products you have to spend money on that.
Ease of Use
WooCommerce is an open-source self-hosted platform with no turnkey options. You have to configure hosting, connect SSL certificate, and name the domain, set up WordPress and fine-tune the setting, set up WooCommerce and every plugin that you require, and install the theme. Everything can involve an entire weekend of tasks. If you are a newbie to WordPress, you may invest more time. Definitely, a setup wizard exists, but it would not offer any insight to the way to tweak PHP when there is an error on line 101. There is no chance of getting WordPress and various apps installed for you under such a situation. You require knowledge of basics prior to doing anything and plenty of trial and error.
On the other hand, Shopify ensures a better grip of the system as you access it. A regular user can enter the dashboard and grasp the next step. Moreover, setting up your online store can take some hours.
With regard to customer support, WooCommerce can land you up in a “circle jerk” of support. Shopify has better customer support as it is only a call or a chat away to get it fixed.
Payment Alternatives And Fees
Considering the payment options, both WooCommerce offers you over 100 payment gateways which are either in-built or incorporated through integrations. The primary ones include:
Credit and debit cards
Shopify, for instance, charges 2% every transaction if you utilize a gateway involving a third-party. You can lessen it by upgrading to an advanced Shopify plan. In fact, you can avoid the transaction fee completely by applying Shopify Payments – their own option.
A great advantage offered by WooCommerce is its non-charging of transaction fees. However, bank charges and charges by a payment provider do apply. If you are selling or merchandising a huge volume of items, WooCommerce would be a sensible option. Moreover, it is also apt for the seller who prefers to select their individual merchant account.
It is not to be missed out that incorporating new payment providers under WooCommerce can price up to above $70 such as Authorize.net. However, Shopify may integrate such options in your Shopify plan as normal. WooCommerce wins the payment options and fees element on the ground it does not charge fees for the transaction. Only if you use Shopify Payments, you will be charged a surplus and that makes WooCommerce a winner in this regard.
On the pricing front, Shopify offers set pricing, whereas WooCommerce has greater flexibility. The prices of Shopify vary from $29 – $299/month. You explore more advanced functions such as professional reports when you upgrade. WooCommerce is free but involves additional costs such as hosting, security and a domain name.
The complex aspect is that there is no simple way to choose a winner as both have diverse pricing models. However, Shopify has clearer pricing as you see what you pay.
WooCommerce vs Shopify – Security
Here, Shopify qualifies as an easy winner because it is a hosted platform indicating that it takes care of your security. Shopify contains an SSL certificate and is also PCI-DSS friendly. With WooCommerce, you may require to source SSL and configure yourself the PCI-DSS compliance. You would also prefer to configure plugins for site security, two-factor authentication and different things to safeguard your website.
WooCommerce vs Shopify: Pros & Cons
When we compare WooCommerce vs Shopify, it gets evident that both have their positives and negatives. Let’s find out about them and assign them to each platform.
- Fair pricing and you know precisely the amount to be paid every month
- You can access thousands of apps to grow your eCommerce store
- Plentiful and amazing themes
- Shopify handles everything from hosting, security and technical maintenance of operating a store and is a scalable platform as it can manage any growth experienced by your store
- You can launch your store within a few minutes
- Dropshipping becomes easy with Shopify
- Can link Shopify to different marketplaces and social networks such as Facebook or Amazon to sell your product directly and access limitless audience
- You receive quality customer support 24/7
- You cannot control your site with Shopify
- Other platforms offer you better customization compared to Shopify
- You are trapped in the cycle of a monthly payment that only gets higher
- Limitless customization because it is an open-source platform with an available code and you
can build a store with a real personality.
- WordPress possesses an extensive online community
- WooCommerce is easy to install on WordPress
- Endless plugins and themes, as anyone can create and sell them on the website. Moreover, WordPress themes are compatible with WooCommerce stores offering you endless designs
- WooCommerce plugin requires no charges
- Access to the blogging infrastructure of WordPress and the ability to edit the metadata of your online store indicates the capacity of WooCommerce to allow you to harness the SEO and manage Google rankings.
- WooCommerce turns out to be more expensive because of themes, plugins and hosting
- You are caught up in a situation where you have to handle everything from security, maintenance to backups and even hosting.
- WordPress contains a slight learning curve
- Lacks customer support
Reasons To Choose WooCommerce Over Shopify
If you prefer to make the best out of your two-pronged strategy of affiliate marketing and online selling of products, then WooCommerce is a great option. Besides, if you want a greater scope with design, adjust to tinkering and your marketing strategy is to push traffic via content for search engines then choosing WooCommerce is a viable option.
Reasons To Choose Shopify Over WooCommerce
If you are a beginner to eCommerce or want to avoid technical details then choose Shopify. In case, you are dropshipping, interested in testing and analyzing things, picking Shopify is the way out.
At the end of the day, selecting one eCommerce platform over the other depends on your requirements. By gaining some insight into the type of business that thrives on WooCommerce and Shopify respectively, you can pick the one that works best for your online store based on their cost-effectiveness, exercising full control and scalability.