Shopify VS WordPress-WooCommerce. Which one is best? or Which one should I choose for my new startup?. These are the Questions that a lot of startups and established businesses are asking over the internet on different platforms. I will try to answer these questions in below Comparision.
Before starting a comparison, we must know the difference between Shopify and WordPress. Here is a brief description of Shopify and WordPress.
Shopify is an online SAAS based tool or services, where you can subscribe for a paid plan, set up your eCommerce store and start selling your product or services.
In order to use Shopify, you have signup at Shopify.com and create a new account. Once done, you need to go through a quick setup, choose your theme, upload your products and then you start selling your products. Your eCommerce store is up and running after a few clicks.
WordPress is a Free, Open Source Standalone, Web-based software that you need to install your self. WordPress is a Content Management System, that was written particularly for creating blogs, Magazines and news websites. After huge success over the internet, it’s functionality is being extended using Plugins and Themes (Free and Paid). In order to set up an online store using WordPress, you will need to install WooCommerce plugin in your WordPress. Once you have installed the WooCommerce plugin and after a quick setup, you can add products to your website and start selling theme.
Before installing WordPress, you will need to register a domain name and buy a web hosting plan, where you install and set up your online store.
Shopify VS WordPress – Setup cost and monthly fee
Shopify Software, Hosting, and a subdomain will cost $9 per month for a Lite Plan. Basic Plan with Domain name and hosting will cost you $29 per month. This fee will also include SSL certificate for your store.
WordPress Software is Free, Domain and Web Hosting will cost you between $5-30 per month depending on server specs and quality. SSL certificate costs between $30-$300.
Store design and development, product data entry fees may vary between $10-60 per hr for Shopify and $5- 30 per hr for WordPress.
Shopify VS WordPress – Features
Shopify and WordPress-WooCommerce both come with a lot of free and paid features. Following are most used and necessary features of Shopify and WordPress that are mandatory for setting up an online store.
Shopify is a tailor-made software, developed specifically for selling products online. Shopify provides significant options to run and manage your online store. These features/Options are
- Unlimited products
- Unlimited file storage
- Automatic fraud analysis
- Manual order creation
- Discount codes
- Blog module
- Free SSL certificate
- Mobile commerce optimization
- Editable HTML and CSS
- Credit card payments
- Multiple languages
- Adjustable shipping rates and taxes
- Customer profiles
- Drop shipping capabilities
- SEO-ready site structure
- Individual product reviews
- Facebook selling module
- Social media integration
- Physical and digital products in the store
- Unlimited traffic to your store
- Daily backups
- Site stats and product reports
- Advanced reports (on Shopify and Shopify Advanced plans)
- Fully featured mobile app
- Product importing via CSV files
- Different product variations
- Print orders
- Gift cards (on Shopify and Shopify Advanced plans)
- Abandoned cart recovery (on Shopify and Shopify Advanced plans)
Out of these features mentioned above, most are free. Features like backup, CSV import and export, third party shipping and payment methods, will cost you additional charges.
When you have a fresh installation of WordPress with WooCommerce installed, you will have following basic and necessary features that are required for setting up and online store.
- You can sell physical products, digital products (including software and apps), plus it’s also good for affiliate marketing.
- Payments via PayPal and Stripe built-in (plus a range of other gateways available for an extra fee)
- Adjustable shipping rates and taxes
- Unlimited number of products and product categories
- Stock levels control
- Mobile-friendly structure
- You have complete control over your data
- Works with your current WordPress theme
- Literally hundreds of plugins (extensions) available
- Product Reviews
- Discount codes/Coupons Codes
- SEO friendly structure.
- Manual order creations.
- Daily/Weekly/Monthly Order stats
- Free Product import and export using WordPress default importer and exporter.
- Different Product Variations and categories
These are few free features that came with WooCommerce. We extend WooCommerce features by using free and paid plugins. Some extended features include:
- Daily backups using free and paid plugins
- Multilingual Websites
- Product Import and export with stocks and custom fields option using third-party plugins
- Free Airway bill, packing slip and invoice printing using third-party plugins
- A free Facebook ad and Facebook stores extension
- Many Free and paid payment gateways are available.
- Many Free and paid shipping methods are available.
These are few most extended features of WooCommerce store. You can extend WooCommerce features by using free and paid plugins. You can also extend WooCommerce features by developing your own plugin.
Shopify VS WordPress-WooCommerce: Technical Support
Shopify is also known for its best support. There is 24/7 Free support available and Shopify users can reach Shopify support using Chat, email or phone support. Apart from this, you can also get a lot of support on the Shopify blog, forum, and StackOverflow.
For any technical support, you can also hire a Shopify Expert to get your new Shopify store setup or resolve your Shopify website issues.
WooCommerce is completely open source and free software powered by Automattic. You can get free support via WordPress forums.
If you have purchased any premium theme or plugin from WooCommerce, then you can also get Support from WooCommerce.com.
There tons of blogs and support available internet. You can also hire a WordPress-WooCommerce specialist to set up your store or to resolve your online store issues.
Shopify VS WordPress-WooCommerce: SEO
Shopify handles basic SEO information including Meta tags, image alt tags etc. Due to a better and standardized User Experience, Shopify generates more sales as compared to other shopping carts.
WordPress is primarily a content creation platform, and it’s known by SEO experts as one of the most reliable options available. It’s easy to add and edit content and meta information to ensure that pages have a strong chance of ranking for specific keywords.
By using SEO plugins like Yoast and All in One SEO, we can easily handle SEO for online stores. WooCommerce takes advantage of WordPress and WordPress plugins that are already available in WordPress plugins directory. Hence WooCommerce gives you more features and ease regarding SEO. The only problem is that your site speed largely depends on the hosting you go with and search engine ranking depends on site speed as well.
Shopify VS WordPress-WooCommerce: Conclusion
Comparisons such as this are never cut and dry. When I talk with clients, my recommendations always fluctuate depending on their specific requirements and situations.
You can go with Shopify, If
- You appreciate a hands-off approach, where you can just sign up and have an eCommerce store launched as a result of it.
- You don’t want to have to deal with any of the setup yourself, and you don’t mind paying a fee to have everything taken care of for you.
- At the same time, you want a highly optimized solution that’s in no way worse than what the competition has.
- You want to have a reliable and fast-responding support team at your disposal, just in case you have any questions.
- You basically don’t care about any of the technical details of your eCommerce platform. You just want it to work as expected, and be accessible to all customers and on all devices (mobile and desktop).
You can go with WooCommerce, If
- You want to be in full control of your eCommerce store, your content, and files etc.
- You want to have access to thousands of site designs and thousands of plugins that will enable you to extend the functionality of your store.
- You don’t mind spending a couple of hours setting things up, and you’re not afraid to handle the tasks required on your own (or you’ve hired someone to do this for you).
- (Optionally) You have only a minimal budget to start with, and you want to do everything on your own.