Trying to decide between Shopify or WooCommerce? We get it — your customers and eCommerce store deserve the best, yet making that decision is never easy.
The eCommerce platform you’ll ultimately choose needs to provide you with the necessary tools to customise your online shop and build a seamless customer experience. At the same time, it must swiftly adapt to your changing needs as the business grows and customer expectations shift.
Follow us as we dive into the pros and cons of Shopify and WooCommerce, two of the most popular eCommerce store builders, and get the insights you need to make the right choice for your business.
What is Shopify?
Shopify is a feature-rich eCommerce platform that allows you to turn your online store into a real business. With Shopify, you can sell online, in-store via Shopify POS, and even on social media.
Shopify’s mission is to empower entrepreneurs to succeed in eCommerce and help people start, run, and grow their businesses effortlessly. Besides offering subscriptions designed for the day-to-day needs of startups and small to medium-sized businesses, Shopify also provides an enterprise-level subscription (Shopify Plus) with advanced customisation features and technical support for larger companies with over $1 million in sales.
Curious to learn more about what Shopify can do for your business? Check out our in-depth 2022 guide on what is Shopify and how it works.
What is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is an eCommerce plugin that was created especially for WordPress. Thus, this platform represents a good fit for eCommerce businesses that already use WordPress for their website.
WooCommerce allows you to create an online store where you can sell physical and digital products such as clothing, electronics, books, and more. You can also sell services through your store, including coaching and freelance work.
This plugin is built with customisation and scalability in mind. It’s also open-source, meaning the code and functionality are publicly available for other developers to improve upon.
What are the pros and cons of using Shopify for your eCommerce shop?
Scalability - Shopify has been successfully tested by large brands with thousands of products, such as Gymshark, Diesel, and Kylie Cosmetics. This only serves to show that Shopify is designed to support your growing business at each stage.
Ease of use - Shopify has a user-friendly, intuitive interface that allows you to manage your business without needing any technical skills. This makes it easy to work with and learn even without previous experience with eCommerce store builders.
Strong online presence - With Shopify, you’ll have a professional, modern online store that’s easy to navigate and appealing to customers. You can also create a mobile application and integrate it with other apps to expand your business.
24/7 customer service - Shopify offers a strong customer service team that can help you with any issues you may have. You can reach customer service via email, phone, or live chat.
Higher monthly fees - Shopify is more expensive than other eCommerce software solutions, such as an open-source eCommerce platform like WooCommerce. However, it includes several features that are not offered in the free version of WooCommerce, for example, free SSL certificate and hosting.
What are the pros and cons of WooCommerce?
Low upfront cost - The free version of Woocommerce is one of the most affordable eCommerce solutions available. You only pay when you want to scale up your business and add on paid features.
Open-source platform - The code for WooCommerce is open source, meaning anyone can view and improve upon it. This feature also makes it a scalable solution that can grow with your business.
Extensive plugins - There are many WooCommerce plugins that you can use to customise your online store. Plus, WooCommerce lets you create your own plugins, enabling you to personalise your eCommerce store to fit your brand and company needs.
Dependent on WordPress -WooCommerce is a plugin that works only on online stores built in WordPress. To be able to use it you’d have to either have a WordPress website or redesign your website in this CMS platform.
Lower overall functionality - While plugins can add extra functionality to your online store, they may not be as polished as the features built into Shopify. In other words, WooCommerce plugins might not be as reliable or bug-free as Shopify’s core features.
Limited documentation - Although open source is a great feature in terms of customisation possibilities, the documentation available for plugins is minimal. So finding solutions to common problems can be challenging.
Complex interface - Since WooCommerce relies on plugins for functionality rather than on built-in features, it has a steeper learning curve than Shopify. In short, you’ll need to spend more time learning how to use the platform to get a better understanding of how everything works.
Shopify vs. WooCommerce: Wrapping up
At the end of the day, the eCommerce platform you decide to go with needs to align with your budget and business goals while providing a user-friendly experience.
On the one hand, Shopify is a powerful, scalable eCommerce platform both for entrepreneurs who want to quickly build an online store without having to deal with any technical complexities and for large enterprises with complex business requirements. On the other hand, WooCommerce is a cost-efficient solution for those who don’t mind coding to increase the customisation of their WordPress online store.
Nevertheless, if you decide to build your eCommerce store on Shopify, having a technical partner by your side can make this journey much smoother. The team at Vevol Media will help you streamline the process of designing, building, and optimising your Shopify or Shopify Plus store so you can get the website you’ve always wanted and start selling in no time.
Our experts will guide you in turning your ideas into sleek, optimised online stores that fit your brand image and boost customer experience. Contact us to learn more about our customised Shopify solutions.