[Guest post by Amanda Cline from Xicom Technologies]
E-commerce is a big business and has been dictating trends incredibly. E-commerce websites have been around for a while now and have really made an unconventional leap when it comes to claiming their fame among their users. It’s easy to become the part of an online retail space. With so many themes, extensions, and platform choices available, one can easily start selling products and services online. But, if you want something robust in less investment then you have two options: Shopify and WooCommerce.
In this article, I am bringing you a comparison between Shopify and WooCommerce. You can consider the comparison to dissect their features and functions. By the end of this post, you’d be able to make their decision on which platform you can invest your resources.
WooCommerce and Shopify: Basis
WooCommerce is basically a WordPress plugin and has been around for a while now. Installing this plugin one can conveniently turn their website into a fully-featured online store. As an open-source project from WordPress theme firm WooThemes, the plugin is also benefited from bespoke features, intuitive interface, and a simple representational state transfer (REST) application programming interface (API), which provides online merchants better ways to satisfy their shipping and oder fulfillment related needs.
Shopify is an amazing platform that lets you build a dynamic e-commerce website. The platform is designed best and is one of the best cloud-hosted e-commerce solutions available today. Being a hosted solution, Shopify allows you host your online store on their servers and doesn’t provide you an access to its backend code. However, this might not be the problem of many retailers, you still have a lot of options to customize your website as per your needs.
WooCommerce and Shopify: Design
As far as aesthetics is concerned, WooCommerce comes with a handy collection of themes where you simply need to invest some efforts to select the one which serves you better. Since WooCommerce is a plugin developed by WooThemes, you also need to purchase a theme affiliated with them. However, you also have the freedom to integrate the plugin with any existing theme. You are provided with 5 free themes, and the rest of them are available with one time fee that ranges between $79 to $39 coupled with Adobe Photoshop options. You can also choose to purchase all the themes at $399 to add an edge to your online business.
One thing that makes Shopify truly stand out is its wonderful collection of free and paid designs. The platform boasts an outstanding selection of free themes, and you can also pay for them up to $150 to give them a professional touch. The templates please merchants due to their fashionable design, clean aesthetic, and coloring options.
Some functionalities are already built-in to the themes, so consider this aspect carefully while choosing your theme. The developer should be knowledgeable enough to unleash the full potential of platform’s ‘liquid’ language to introduce more changes to make their website unique. WooCommerce is based on PHP which has grown as a standard among PHP developers and other webmasters, thus making this plugin all the more attractive choice.
WooCommerce and Shopify : Price
WooCommerce is available for free. If you own a WordPress powered website, you can easily add this plugin and start your online channel without breaking the bank.
Now, this will be sounding you good, but there is a flip side. To make the most out of this plugin, you need to take the help of different extensions that come with it.
The majority of these extensions are absolutely free and perform at par with Shopify. However, there are many useful apps available between 5$ to $500 a year, you can choose after analyzing your needs and budget.
You might look at them as additional expenses you need to bear to run your store, but they do offer a considerable amount of flexibility you need to give your channel a competitive edge. You can pay for exclusive features and uninstall the ones which don’t serve you any value.
In terms of pricing, Shopify comes with a more comprehensive pricing structure. It is available in three packages- Basic ($29 per month), Professional ( $ 79 per month), and Unlimited ( $179 per month).
You can choose any package based on your needs. Every package has its own set of features, facilities, and options to run your store. Also, being a hosted platform, any issues you may have related to payment process and hosting, it will be resolved as you login.
WooCommerce and Shopify: Flexibility
One thing that most of the people love about WooCommerce is the level of customization ability it offers. The plugin is extremely helpful to beef up the front-end user experience and playing with back-end administrative tools to control the look and functioning of your website. Shopify, thought is a good option, but it is not as powerful as WooCommerce when it comes to managing robust features.
Shopify is an easy to use platform but it restricts its users when it’s about customizing their website. It does provide them with a library of apps, but you still don’t have access to its backend make the out of this platform and make substantial number of changes you desire the most.
WooCommerce Vs Shopify: Content
WooCommerce outperforms Shopify when we talk about content effectiveness. Since, Shopify isn’t a blogging platform, so supporting different content is an ability you can’t expect from Shopify, though it handles some basic SEO practices. But, with WooCommerce, it’s absolutely easy to add and edit content as well as meta information to make sure your pages enjoy better ranking.
Both WooCommerce and Shopify have their own sets of qualities. And ultimately it boils down your needs which way you should go. If you don’t like to do much customization and like simple pricing structure then Shopify is a nice option. However, if you want more control then go for WooCommerce.