Shopify Versus WooCommerce

I did a review of about 100 Irish companies that had their businesses highlighted in an Irish Independent series to see what platforms they were using for eCommerce.  As I build sites in WooCommerce and Shopify I was interested to see the split between the platforms.

It was interesting that there seemed to be a leaning in the clothing area towards Shopify despite there being no real reason for this being the case.  But overall the largest percentage of the eCommerce websites were using the Shopify platforms.

So let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of each platform

Cost – How Much Will It Cost you

Winner WooCommerce

Shopify and WooCommerce are two different technical structures.  Shopify is a pure eCommerce system setup for eCommerce while WooCommerce is an add on (or plugin) to the hugely popular WordPress platform (also free).  So in theory you can set up Woocommerce for free but even for the basic package of Shopify you will pay a set monthly recurring payment.  You can try it out for free for 14 days but need to pay after that trial period.

Both Shopify come with a huge ecosystem of paid Apps (in the case of Shopify), plugins in the case of WooCommerce.  They are free and paid but the WooCommerce ones tend to be less expensive over all and in the case of Shopify nearly all the apps also have a monthly pricing model which over a year can mount up as an ongoing cost as you may add an app pay a small enough monthly fee and by year end rack upa. decent fee for an unused one.

However in its defense the power of some of the Shopify apps and robustness stand equal if not better than some of the Woocommerce plugins.

Ease of Use – Can Anyone with Low Technical Expertise use it

Winner Shopify – Ease of Use

Shopify is easier to use and it is clear once you start using it that the development team and the user experience team worked closely together to make it as easy as possible to set up.  Woocommerce is more technical and until you set up the payment gateway which (you may not have done before you start) it simply takes longer.  couple this with the fact that you also need to have a WordPress site in place means that it is more technical

Shopify by contrast can have you up and running selling your first product in a couple of hours.

It is in Shopify’s interest to get. you onboard easily as one to start making money and it does that by proving an easy to use interface for the shop setup. In addition you are not saddled with security updates or plugin (app) updates and so on.  Shopify handle all of this themselves.

WooCommerce in contrast expects you to manage the main plugin all associated plugins and of course the WordPress system it sits on yourself.  If you make a mistake it can crash your site.