October 1, 2015
4.5 Minute Read
Developing an E-commerce environment is one of our specialties. Whether you prefer WooCommerce or Shopify, we’ll help you design and develop the perfect online store for your business. You may be wondering which is the best option for you to use? Let’s go through the differences between the two platforms.
Prices for Shopify vary depending on which plan you need. Their monthly Basic Plan fee is $29US followed by the Professional Plan at $79US which includes increased file storage, lower transaction fees, gift cards, professional reports and abandoned cart recovery. The last available plan is the Unlimited at $179US with the addition of less transaction fees than the Professional Plan, an advanced report builder and real-time carrier shipping. Make sure you analyze what your business requires before you go for a plan.
Hosting is also included within Shopify which is great and means no hosting issues to sort out before you start.
For the basic version of WooCommerce, the starting price is absolutely FREE! However, there are other costs that will incur while you’re using WooCommerce. Hosting is not automatic with WooCommerce as it is with Shopify. You might end up spending around $10 on a domain name for your first year plus additional charges per month for hosting. Other plugins to use alongside WooCommerce may be necessary as well. It really depends on what you’re looking for and the amount of flexibility you need for your store. In the end, WooCommerce is typically cheaper to work with than Shopify.
Shopify comes equipped with many themes to choose from, all of which are quite aesthetically pleasing. You can also create unique website designs to separate your site from other Shopify themes out there. We often take this approach with our own clients. While this is a great option, many users are happy to stay with their original theme template.
WooCommerce is a plugin used within WordPress. While it was created for WooThemes, it will integrate well with any WordPress theme in general. WordPress is a fantastic way to develop a site so we use our own WordPress theme to design our sites. The integration of WooCommerce is relatively painless.
Apps That Will Help You Sell
Both WooCommerce and Shopify make it easy to help you sell your merchandise. Shopify comes with a large selection of free apps that can help you from selling on Facebook to printing orders.
WooCommerce has similar helpful apps but not as many of them are free. This is important to consider before you start your online store. Will it end up costing you more in the long run to use WooCommerce or will it be a lot cheaper because you don’t require the additional apps that Shopify includes?
WooCommerce is known for being one of the best SEO E-commerce platforms. Content can easily be added along with changing meta information which makes it a strong contender for SEO rankings on specific pages. Why is changing content important? Because new content is King! Having fresh content helps you boost your exposure and more exposure means more traffic. Blogging can be a great way to add current content to your site. Yoast is also a great free plugin to add with WooCommerce as it will help you manage your SEO effectively.
Shopify is built mainly for E-commerce and the interactions that happen once users are on your website. It provides the SEO setup necessary to help your pages rank well in search engines too. Although blogging is not as easy as WordPress for some users, it is still possible and many Shopify users actually drive customers to their site with social media more than blogging. Shopify is also known for faster loading pages which helps your pages rank higher. This is due to Shopify being a hosted platform.
Shopify offers free 256-bit encryption SSL certificates for small to medium sized businesses. WooCommerce allows users to purchase their own certificates, but these can cost hundreds of dollars each year. The goal with SSL is to help keep information secure, but also has the potential to improve conversions for stores by making customers feel safe when making a purchase due to the lock icon in the URL. SSL creates a secure connection between the browser and the web server that are transferring information to one and other.
When it comes to technical support in WooCommerce and Shopify you get what you pay for.
WooCommerce support is basically left to forums of people with the same problems helping each other out. The amount of WooCommerce forum support available is fantastic but when you look at Shopify’s 24/7 customer support team it pales in comparison. Shopify boasts no stress or headaches trying to find answers, their team will help whenever you need it since everything is centralized in one system.
It really depends on what you need and how you like to solve your issues. If you like fixing your own problems by sifting through content from other users in your position, then the lack of WooCommerce support won’t be a problem. It can actually be a great learning experience. If you lack patience in this area, you will probably prefer Shopify’s constant assistance.
So Which One Do You Choose?
What is best for other businesses might not be best for you. It depends on your unique needs and specific situation whether WooCommerce or Shopify is better for you. WooCommerce is able to use WordPress’ functionality which adds a great deal of flexibility to the platform. Analyzing the functional requirements of your online store will go a long way to help you decide which is best for you. You can end up saving quite a bit of money by using WooCommerce but the comfort and ease of Shopify might be worth the splurge.
Not sure you can make the decision on your own? Give us a call! At SplitMango we pride ourselves in knowing what will work best for your company.