Selecting the right eCommerce marketing platform that fits your needs is essential when it comes to growing your business. Shopify and WooCommerce are two of the most popular eCommerce platforms for building an online store. Shopify offers a one stop shop, user friendly way to design your online store while WooCommerce functions as an open source platform with the capabilities to fully customize your website. Here are some of the key differences between WooCommerce and Shopify to keep in mind when choosing which is right for you:
Design plays a key role when it comes to creating a successful online store. Shopify offers a number of premade store templates, 10 of which are free with the most expensive theme being $180. Shopify themes are compatible on mobile devices and provide a theme editor to customize color and style. When using Shopify your theme choices are limited to what is available in the Shopify store, which may result in a design that is comparable to other websites.
WooCommerce is a free plugin for anyone with a WordPress site, which means your design is dependent on your WordPress theme. WooCommerce provides a free online store for their themes called Storefront where you can add on child themes for $39 to further customize your website. WooCommerce’s themes are fully customizable and responsive on mobile devices. A standout feature when designing your website through WooCommerce is the endless ability to personalize your theme. WooCommerce operates as an open source platform which means countless developers are able to sell or give away WooCommerce compatible themes.
A major difference between WooCommerce and Shopify is their method of pricing. When using Shopify you have three basic pricing plans of $29, $79 or $299 of monthly payments to choose from. These plans include hosting, domain and an SSL certificate. Something to note is that premium themes, apps, and a transaction fee of 2-3% may bring up your price. The main difference with WooCommerce is that it’s completely free up front, but this does mean you have to purchase your own domain, hosting, any extensions you may want and an SSL certificate. While these extensions may be more expensive up front, they will be a one time cost rather than a monthly payment like Shopify. When using WooCommerce there is a little more work you put in to set up your website but can end up being cheaper or the same price as Shopify and is fully customizable.
When it comes to payment options for your customers WooCommerce and Shopify generally operate in a similar manner. Both WooCommerce and Shopify give customers the ability to bypass their default card processors for third party alternatives, offering a wide array of choices. Something to note when choosing between the two is that Shopify will charge a transaction fee if the customer chooses to use an external payment gateway.
Although WooCommerce and Shopify are the leading eCommerce platforms today they have some major differences. Shopify offers an easy to use platform but WooCommerce is the superior option if you value flexibility and freedom when it comes to creating your own website.