Because there are so many different online marketplaces you can choose from, and they all offer different features, pricing plans and integrations, we’ve put together some comparisons to help you make a decision.
We are going to start with two of the biggest and most popular marketplaces: Shopify and WooCommerce. Now, they’re both popular for good reasons, but which is best for you?
We are going to give an overview of the benefits of using each platform, and then compare their benefits and drawbacks.
This is a popular and powerful ecommerce marketplace which gives you a lot of freedom to customise your store and inject your brand’s personality into it. You don’t need to be a design wizard to create a great-looking store, and there’s a huge amount of support available. There’s also an extensive catalog of apps and addons you can choose from to add more features and functionality to your site, or to help with other elements of running your business.
There is a 14 day free trial available, then you can choose from the following options:
Starter – $14/£9.45 a month. 2.4% plus 20p credit card rate, up to 25 products, 1GB storage, no transaction fees, unlimited bandwidth and no transaction fees.
Basic – $29/£19.58 a month. Credit card rate – Online: 2.4% + 20p. Includes Shopify PO, 1 GB file storage, unlimited products, 24/7 support, discount code engine, no transaction fees, fraud analysis tools.
Professional: $79/£53.34 a month. Credit card rate – Online: 2.1% + 20p. Includes Shopify POS, 5 GB file storage, unlimited products, 24/7 support, discount code engine, no transaction fees, fraud analysis tools, gift cards, professional reports, abandoned cart recovery
Unlimited: $179/£120.86 a month. Credit card rate – Online: 1.8% + 20p. Includes Shopify POS, unlimited file storage, unlimited products, 24/7 Support, Discount code engine, no transaction fees, fraud analysis tools, gift cards, professional reports, abandoned cart recovery, advanced report builder, real-time carrier shipping
WooCommerce is WordPress’s free ecommerce toolkit for turning your site into an fully functional ecommerce store, and and is the most popular WordPress plugin. You can sell anything on there, including digital downloads, and it’s easily customisable, like Shopify, with loads of templates to choose from, so you can let your branding shine though. It also has hundreds of free and commercial extensions, so you can optimise your shop however you want.
The two platforms offer pretty different features, so it should probably be an easy decision.
The biggest difference is probably the price: WooCommerce is free, while Shopify starts at $14/£9.45 a month, and that doesn’t get you an awful lot. The advantage here is obvious – you get a solid ecommerce store for absolutely nothing.
WooCommerce might be free, but there are tons of addons you can get, and they cost. Your standard shop and features package is quite basic, so you may end up spending the same amount adding features to WooCommerce you would on a Shopify account with those features already included. It’s worth evaluating what you want from a shop and checking out the features and addons available. Shopify also has plenty of addons, but has more built in features.
WooCommerce is more customisable than Shopify, with more themes and freedom to add features to the shop (sliders, product displays). Shopify, however, might be better for those not as clued up on coding as they offer gurus to help customise your own storefront designs.
Both have a blog built in – Shopify’s blog, and WordPress. WooCommerce has the edge here as it’s backed by WordPress’s powerful, SEO friendly platform. That’s not to say that Shopify’s isn’t SEO friendly, because it is – WordPress is just better.
Shopify also gets the edge on WooCommerce for support – they offer 24/7 support, while WooCommerce has no free support option.
Ultimately, WooCommerce is probably better for those who want to customise because of its abundance of plugins and addons, while Shopify is best for a ready-made, read-to-use shop.
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