Shopify Vs. WooCommerce – How Do I Choose?
New e-commerce sites are launching every day. Shopify and WooCommerce are two of the biggest e-commerce platforms powering millions of websites around the world. If you are considering starting a new site yourself or are making changes to your current site, you might be wondering what the difference is between Shopify and WooCommerce. Since each platform has its strengths and weaknesses, we will break down some of the key differences between them and help you decide which platform is best for your business.
The biggest difference between Shopify and WooCommerce is that Shopify is a hosted e-commerce solution while WooCommerce is a self-hosted solution that requires a separate hosting account.
Shopify manages all the core updates and security of e-commerce sites on their platform. WooCommerce on the other hand requires a much more hands-on approach to maintenance, updates and security monitoring.
The cost of a Shopify site typically runs between $30-300 per month depending on plan. Custom themes and apps are additional one-time or subscription-based fees in addition to the monthly Shopify fees. WooCommerce is built on WordPress and is free to install but you will need to pay for hosting which typically runs between $150-500 a month depending on your resources and maintenance requirements.
Both platforms also require some form of payment processing. Shopify has its own payment processing plan but also supports other major payment processors such as PayPal and Authorize.net. WooCommerce also supports many of the major payment processors. Payment processing for both platforms typically costs between 2-3% per sale.
Features & Apps
You can add features to your site via apps in Shopify and plugins in WooCommerce. Each platform has its own repository of apps/plugins and you can also find free and paid apps/plugins on third-party party websites.
Most of Shopify’s apps are provided by third-party app developers and are hosted on the developer’s servers. Shopify app developers are responsible for maintenance and updates of the app and have different levels of access to your store’s data.
WooCommerce plugins are also primarily offered by third-party developers but the plugins are installed directly on the server or hosting platform running WordPress. WooCommerce plugins options include free, one-time fee or subscription based.
You have a lot more flexibility with how your store is set up and it’s easier to add custom features to WooCommerce.
So, which platform should you use for your e-commerce website?
The platform you choose depends on
- What type of site you are building
- How many custom features you will be adding to the site
- How you plan to support the site
Shopify is a great choice for standard e-commerce sites with high volume and not a lot of static pages.
We recommend WooCommerce for sites with a lot of custom features, when clients are already familiar with WordPress or plan to have a lot of non-product pages and/or a blog alongside their e-commerce site.
Iceberg Can Help
The e-commerce experts at Iceberg Web Design can look at how you plan to use your e-commerce site, which products you want to sell, and any requirements for custom features or 3rd party integrations. Based on this information, we can help you to decide which platform will work best for your e-commerce website.
And when you are ready to build your e-commerce site, our specialists can work with you through every step of the process to ensure your site is exactly what your business needs.