If you already have a website or considering taking your business to the next level by making an online store. Then you might be confused right now. But ecommerce space has a wide range of ecommerce website builders.
Some people might tell you to choose Shopify; others would say WordPress is best. What are you even supposed to do? Which option is most suitable for your business?
After all, it’s a big decision that shouldn’t be taken lightly because your chosen option will greatly impact your sales, online presence, and brand awareness.
Both are popular options with advanced features. Which one is suitable for you?
Don’t worry because, in this guide, you’ll get a transparent and crystal clear answer of which platform is perfect for you. You’ll learn about the major differences between both platforms, making the decision-making process much easier.
Let’s get started so you can build your online shop quickly on one of these popular ecommerce builders.
What Is Shopify?
Shopify is a popular e-commerce platform allowing individuals and businesses to create and manage online stores. According to stats, Shopify’s cumulative sales amount to approximately $543 billion. The platform supports more than 4 million e-commerce stores. Shopify has hundreds of ecommerce features through which you sell both digital and physical products.
The platform provides tools for setting up a website, adding products, processing payments, managing inventory, and handling various aspects of online selling. Moreover, users can design their store, customize its appearance, and utilize a range of advanced features to facilitate online sales and customer interactions.
Pros & Cons of Using Shopify
Every platform has its own advantages and disadvantages. You can’t just get mesmerized by one advantage and then use it. Instead, weigh both pros and cons to make the right decision.
- It is known for its intuitive interface. Thus making it easy for beginners to do the setup process on their own and manage their online stores.
- The Shopify App Store provides a wide range of add-ons and plugins. This enhances the ecommerce functionality of your business.
- It handles security, hosting, and maintenance, ensuring a stable and secure customer shopping experience.
- Advanced design customization might require knowledge of coding, and high-tech skill level, limiting design flexibility for some users.
- While the platform offers basic SEO features, it might not be as SEO-friendly as some other platforms.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a widely used content management system (CMS). It enables users to create and manage websites and blogs. Originally developed as a blogging platform, it has now evolved into a versatile tool. Now you can build various types of websites: from personal blogs to business websites, e-commerce stores, and more.
According to BuiltWith, approximately 36.28% of the highest-ranking 1 million websites are powered by WordPress.
It has a user-friendly interface, customization options, and over 9,000 free themes. That’s why it’s a top choice for individuals, businesses, and organizations looking to establish an online presence.
Pros & Cons of Using WordPress
Undoubtedly WordPress is an amazing platform powering many websites. But if you are thinking about building your website on this platform, check all the pros and cons of using this platform.
- It offers an intuitive platform for creating various websites, from blogs to business sites, portfolios, and more.
- It provides integration tools and plugins to help optimize your site for search engines, improving its visibility.
- There are frequent software updates, including security patches and essential features. Thus ensuring the platform remains current and secure.
- Due to its popularity, hackers can target WordPress sites if they are not properly secured or updated with malicious code.
- Poorly optimized themes or plugins can impact site speed and performance, affecting user experience.
Shopify Vs WordPress
Now, let’s discuss the main point of this article and check the differences between both platforms. Both are popular ecommerce website builders with various helpful features. By using plugins with ecommerce features you can get access to a wide range of additional features.
|Type Of Platform
|Content Management System (CMS)
|Ease To Set Up
|Easy for beginners
|Quite complex for beginners
|Customization within range of templates
|Highly customizable with a wide selection of themes and ecommerce plugins
|Built specifically for online selling
|Versatile, used for various types of websites
|Integrated payment processing major gateways
|Multiple payment gateways are available
|Themes & Design
|You can do a selection of themes from their store plus anyone having no tech experience can easily use it.
|Have third-party apps, and themes and you need basic coding skills to achieve perfection.
|Apps & Plugins
|Own app store plus 4000 ecommerce plugins
|Own app store plus 50,000 plugins nearly half are for ecommerce platform
|Subscription fee + additional transaction fees
|Generally lower costs, but hosting and plugins can add up
|Download the Privacy & Compliance app
|Use plugins for compliance
|Basic SEO tools provided
|SEO plugins available for advanced optimization
|Strong support and resources
|Large community with ample resources
Now let’s see each aspect one by one.
Type of Platform
Shopify is an e-commerce platform, and we all know that. But most people don’t know it’s a closed-source hosted website builder.
What do I mean by that?
The term ‘closed source’ means you don’t have to do anything for coding. Shopify will handle all the maintenance, software updates, and coding of the platform. In most cases, you must download a web domain, hosting, server, etc., which is a complex and long process, especially for inexperienced users.
However, on this platform, you pay them a monthly fee, and the software-as-a-service tool will do everything.
But WordPress is different from other platforms. It has two main offerings:
The .com works like a SaaS tool. So just as in the above platform, you don’t need to do a lot of things. Just pay a simple fee, and they’ll do maintenance for you.
But WordPress.org is different.
It is an open-source software offering various levels of customization. This self-hosted version software solution. You can use the software for free but must buy hosting from any third party. After purchasing it, you are responsible for managing it.
Ease To Set Up
You can easily set up your Shopify account in minutes. You have to click on sign up. You can use the free trial if you don’t have enough budget. From there on, follow all the instructions to create your account.
Congratulations, you’ve set up your business within minutes.
As for WordPress, it’s entirely different. Firstly you’ve to purchase two things. They are:
- Web hosting
Most people purchase it from GoDaddy. After that, you have to install WordPress on the web hosting. Now set up login details, and it’ll direct you to the dashboard.
The user interface of Shopify is straightforward. You can easily start adding new products and customize the website’s theme format according to your liking. It allows you to set payment processing options and make many other customizations.
Moreover, you can purchase a custom domain name of your liking through Shopify.
As for WordPress, the dashboard has numerous features and buttons. However, it is a blank canvas; so initially, you have to add colors.
You can customize it to create the website that you want. It means you’ve to install third-party plugins for:
- SEO analysis
- Security purposes
- Analytical tools
Which platform is best for e-commerce? This is the most burning question, and I’m sure you need an answer to that.
The name Shopify itself has the word shop in it. This means it is directed to e-commerce and caters to the needs of such businesses. It won’t be wrong to say that this platform is an all-in-one solution for your shopping business.
It even has a POS, also known as point-of-sale. This lets you combine your online and physical sales in one dashboard.
But does that mean you shouldn’t use WordPress?
The platform doesn’t have any advanced ecommerce functionality, which is true. But there is a plugin called “WooCommerce.” It is one of the most amazing and popular e-commerce plugins. This open-source tool lets you get almost all the essential features to sell your products in the online world.
But remember WooCommerce doesn’t have any legal terms and conditions, regulations and shipping details, etc. So you have to use another plugin for that.
Suppose you’ve made your first sale. Now what’s next? How can you receive money from your customers?
Both platforms have major payment gateway options. There are various other options, such as:
- Amazon Pay
The best part about Shopify is you can easily connect it with around 100 major payment gateways. Furthermore, they even have their payment option known as Shopify Payments.
As for WordPress, you can’t set up a major payment gateway without the WooCommerce plugin. Afterward, you can integrate with 75 payment solutions, including WooCommerce Payments.
Themes & Design
An attractive design and a beautiful theme are extremely important for your business. If your website is ugly, it can be a huge deal breaker for some customers.
Shopify has around 10 free themes. However, 63 premium themes range from $100 to $180. But what if you want any other theme?
No problem. You can find 1000+ themes from third-party developers. Moreover, all the themes are:
- Mobile friendly
- Need no coding
The theme editor is simple; even those who have no coding experience or non-technical users can easily use it.
WordPress has 9,000+ themes on themeforest, but not all of them are e-commerce friendly. So you’ve to check which one fits your needs. Even after finding a suitable theme, you have to do some editing and coding to make it perfect.
If you don’t have basic coding skills, then you can hire an expert freelancer to do this job. Someone who has advanced design skills and technical skills.
But there’s one thing you shouldn’t forget.
WordPress originally doesn’t provide any themes. So suppose you get a theme from a third-party developer, and it stops working due to any reason.
You have to reach out to that developer for assistance which can be difficult.
Apps & Plugins
You want your website to be functional for everyone. Right?
Then there’s good news: both platforms have various apps and plugins. So regardless of which platform you use, you can build your website in a way that achieves maximum ecommerce functionality.
But what if your Shopify store doesn’t have good ecommerce functionality?
You should head to Shopify App Store. Here you’ll find 8,000 apps that are best for improving the performance of your website.
In contrast, WordPress also has 50,000 plugins.
But Shopify users often don’t get any help from third-party apps. Because the platform’s main purpose is to build and support e-commerce websites. So the built-in features can easily tackle issues including:
WordPress users have to rely heavily on plugins for payment, security, e-commerce, etc. And if you don’t know how to code, the situation will be terribly difficult for you.
There’s another issue.
Some plugins don’t work well when incorporated together. If you come across a similar situation, what should you do?
You should do the technical tweaking. It’ll make plugins function properly.
In comparison to Shopify, WordPress is more cost-effective. However, there are many other things you should consider during this process. It includes plugins, hosting service providers, and many other things.
Shopify costs around $25 every month. You can check three pricing options on their office page. The page has three pricing plans. Moreover, you must remember the additional cost of domain hosting services you must purchase once a year. Starting from the basic plan to the advanced.
As for WordPress, you can use it for free. However, there are other things that are additional costs, especially domain and web hosting services.
But what are the prices of domain hostings?
They start from $10 to $25 per year. This is the minimum price, but it can increase up to thousands.
GDPR compliance refers to adhering to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a set of data protection and privacy regulations enacted by the European Union (EU). This aims to give people greater control over their personal data, its collection, and storage by organizations.
Both platforms are compliant with GDPR. Here are some tips you can apply to make it better.
- Implementing cookie consent banners
- Offering users the choice to opt out of data collection
- Establishing a procedure to delete data upon user deletion requests
- Notifying users in case of data breaches
Shopify users can make it compliant by downloading Privacy & Compliance app. Then you should apply all the tips that I mentioned above. There are different WordPress plugins to increase GDPR compliance.
Search Engine Optimization
In WordPress, you have a lot of ways to increase your organic traffic, and SEO is one of them. But are SEO features really important?
Yes, it is, especially when your website is on WordPress. It is a big advantage because that way, you don’t have to spend money on running paid ads. You can increase visibility in search results with SEO.
Let’s say you sell History books.
So, anyone searching for “history books” on Google is your target audience. You want them to see your content and visit your website.
How can you ensure it?
By doing search engine optimization. Many SEO tactics include on-page, off-page, local, and technical SEO techniques. You’ve different SEO plugins and tools for optimization.
As for Shopify, there are some basic tools provided to increase your reach.
Do you know what’s the biggest deal breaker when you’re shopping online?
Poor customer service. Because building e-commerce websites is not easy, you need to maintain them regularly.
Customers highly love Shopify customer service. They are available 24/7 to listen to customer queries. You can get help via;
Not only this, there are various forums and active communities that are ready to answer your queries.
But what about WordPress?
You can connect with forums, communities, groups, and experts in the relevant field. Or you can get answers from WordPress support forums.
Which One Should You Choose?
You know the pros, cons, and differences between both platforms now. Which one should you choose?
Both are powerful platforms with advanced features. Here is what I recommend.
Choose Shopify if you aim to grow and scale your business. You have a clear focus and a goal to build your com store because this platform has almost everything necessary to make your e-commerce store a huge success.
It also has a special AI feature known as Shopify Magic. Through this, you can make compelling product descriptions. You can also run email marketing campaigns on this platform. They have introduced a new feature known as Shopify Email. This is a powerful email marketing tool to increase your sales and current revenue.
You can also get access to an essential feature. This helpful feature is Google Smart Shopping through which you can do budgeting and many other things. These are available in advanced versions of this popular ecommerce builder.
There’s no need to spend your precious time doing coding or learning it to manage your business. So as a business owner, you can focus on creating a plan for your business and start it by creating an account on this platform.
And what to do if you get stuck?
Help is available 24/7, so there is no need to worry about it.
Let’s suppose you are an experienced web developer or already have one on your team. Then you can choose WordPress. Just use the WooCommerce plugin, and you can customize your website however you want.
It started as blogging and by using blog content you can increase your brand awareness. You can use Gutenberg that’s a basic layout tool. Thus by using it you can create, edit and remove content blocks.
If you are starting a business, then make sure to choose the right platform and do proper market research. It is the key to winning your audience’s heart and building an unshakeable empire.
At EchoFish, we help businesses expand their reach and generate high-quality leads in record time. Do you want to grow your business at an exponential rate? Contact us today.
I'm a very hard-working, motivated, and committed individual with a positive attitude towards life and a passion for doing new things that help people.I love challenges in my career because they make you more robust than before when you overcome them.