E-commerce has officially taken over the world. All kind of shopping is being done using the internet these days. Regardless of the nature of the product, for example, grocery or clothes, everything is just a click away. People of every age group are more inclined towards online shopping in recent times. Because it gives the buyers a free hand as buyers can shop at any time of their convenience.
And all the products can be found through “search bar” simply, you don’t have to visit different parts of stores looking for them. Moreover, all options of the products (colors or size details) are also mentioned in the fine points of the product below.
This online store facility is a revolution in the field of shopping. And it is a miracle for not only buyers but sellers also. Because through the online store, sellers have the ability to distribute their products to customers all around the globe. It gives them a broader spectrum to cover and which leads to maximum profits.
Online Business In 2019:
Having an online store was considered as an accessory a few years back. But now, in 2019, it is practically impossible to generate profits without targeting the consumers online. As many people nowadays don’t prefer to go to stores because of their busy schedules. So if you really want to get the benefits in the true sense then working through online websites is a must. It will make you have the same ground as your competitors and then you can compete in fair means.
There are hundreds of new online stores and websites to choose from for the customers these days. So having a website or an online store is not the ultimate answer. On the other hand, having an interesting presentation with buying worthy products will help you make those bucks for which you have started the business.
Which platform is suitable for your business?
If you have decided to make an online store for the internet customers then your main question would be about the suitable platform for your online store in 2019. Well, there are many platforms out there in the market. But which one is the best for you? That completely depends on the budget and the skill set. If you have a lot to spend then your options will be different. And same is the case with the skill set. If you know about coding and have a strong grip over computer languages then self-hosted platforms will be perfect for you.
Shopify and woocommerce are two main platforms which are leading in the market these days. Both of them have their own specialties and set of strengths. So deciding one of them is quite a task on its own. According to a survey in Dec 2018, in 1 million firms of the world, 21% are using woo commerce while 18% of them are using Shopify. And Magento comes after them. These are the top three platforms used by millions of firms. That shows the worth of them in the market pretty clearly. And here is a comparison between Magento and Shopify.
Shopify or woocommerce?
But if we decide to go deeper and take a look at the pattern of top 10000 firms, and then is quite visible that they are more inclined towards Shopify. As 23% of top 10k firms are using Shopify. It shows that top firms have more trust in Shopify as compare to woo commerce. Only 6% of the top 10k firms are using it. It is a big setback. But choosing the platform based on popularity is not the right direction to go. But it still gives you an overview of what your competitors are using.
Which platform is suitable for your business? Either Shopify or woocommerce? Here I am writing about a few contracts and comparisons between woocommerce and Shopify, which will help you in deciding the platform for your business.
Launching of the store:
If we are comparing which platform is easier to just make a fully functional store and start getting the orders, then hands down, Shopify is the winner.
Because Shopify is simple to use. You just have to sign in with your details and after that directions will be given to you. If you follow those directions and tips completely then in a matter of minutes, your online store will be in front of you. Dragging the products and uploading the details will be the next step. And after that, you will be good to go.
And Shopify offers 30 days free trial period which really acts as a plus. As the users have the time to know and learn the platform, they for sure fall in love with all of the features.
Woocommerce Plugin :
Whereas on the other hand, woocommerce is free to use. Actually, woocommerce is a plug-in of WordPress. If you are not aware of WordPress, then you’re in trouble. Because it is the official site which upholds the woocommerce. But if you are already a user of WordPress and you have already bought the hosting and the domain for it, then you just have to install the woocommerce and you will be ready to proceed further.
Yes, it is true that you have to buy domain and hosting of the site on your own. It is not like Shopify, which is offering everything free in the monthly package. So you need to focus on these points before winding up with any of them.
Flexibility and control over website:
In terms of flexibility and control, woocommerce is way ahead of Shopify. As most of the work is being done by the user on their own and have the full authority of customizing and personalizing anything and any factor according to their preference.
Woocommerce is a self-hosted platform, so it gives the free hand to users to decide and make anything of their choice. Starting from the structure to the details of the products, the whole is in the hand of the store owner. After buying the domain and hosting of the website, all the power lies in your hand.
Deciding the theme or customizing it according to your choice is always on the table. And the number of products is also completely depended on you. You don’t have to be worried about the plan you have chosen and the number of products which are allowed by them. Everything is according to your selection. And there is no hard limit over the number of variants either. All of these factors give the user a huge ground to play in. And it helps in producing something completely personalized and catchy.
Limitations in Shopify:
Shopify offered themes and number of products limit depends on the package you have selected. Like basic Shopify plan costs $29 per month and advance Shopify plan is $299. So it is depended on the package you have opted for your use.
But obviously, the options here are limited. And you have to decide from the available options. For example, you are given the option of 60 themes to select from; you have to choose one of them. There is no option for custom themes and you cannot even personalize any available themes.
Well, the given options of Shopify are also worth considering and you can totally make an outstanding online store using those features.
Content and features of the store:
Both of the platforms are fully equipped. As both of them offers features like product creation, payment methods, orders, delivery, customer service, stock, CVS import of a catalog, presentation of products, discount codes, coupons, management of payment methods and many more.
Most of the needs are covered from that, but in addition to all of them, Shopify offers around about 500 applications. And you can just install any of them according to your need. So these add ons make the whole experience even more exciting and practical.
Same is the case with woocommerce, as it also offers all of the above-mentioned features. But this is not it, just like Shopify, woocommerce also has the capacity of the additional plug-in. So it is up to you that which features you personally want in your online platform.
If you are just looking for a shop to sell your products efficiently then for sure Shopify is a good option. But if you want more and you want to represent your business in front of your audience and also tackle the demands in form of news or blog, then selecting woocommerce will be the right choice for you.
Payment method options:
In case of payment methods, both Shopify and woocommerce are up to the mark. Both of them offer the facility of different gateways. Although the pricing is different. But it is worth spending on.
Woocommerce offers multiple gateways to proceed with the process of payment. And all of these options are ranging from high-level options to those names which are just popular in few regions. So it gives a wide range to choose from. And as we know that woocommerce is self-hosted and provide the option of installing as many plug-ins as you want so it gives you the upper hand of deciding according to your needs.
Woocommerce works :
works with Stripe, PayPal, Square, Authorize.Net, these are the big names in the market. But woocommerce also works with gateways like Postgiro or Przelewy24 which are the gateways of Swedish and Poland respectively. So it is giving its users a complete set of options, which will suit the convenience and choice of the users totally.
Shopify works with it’s on gateway which does not require any sort of configuration. As it is included in the package offered by the Shopify. But if you are willing to work with those big names and you want to use third party payment gateways, Shopify even gives you the option of doing so. So if you are inclined towards Stripe, PayPal or Authorize.Net then you are in total luck.
Even though you have to pay extra if you want to do the business using those third-way gateways. And that usually cost around 2% of the transaction. Certainly, that is not a big value at all. So it is worth using at the end.
The procedure for delivery of products:
Customers are more excited about getting the products as compared to the excitement of purchasing anything. So shipment is far more important. Here two things are very important. First is the quality of the product which you are going to send. Because in many cases, first-time buyers decide through one transaction and make their mind about your brand. But it is a completely different topic.
The price of the shipment is depended upon the weight of it and the fact if it is national or international shipping. And it is even possible to create a real-time cost generator for the delivery of the product beforehand.
Woocommerce gives the option of installing external plugins for the process. And that leaves everything in your hand, the quality, pricing and the speed of shipping. You can avail the option of FedEx or UPS depending on your needs
Shopify gives the option of the shipment in the package offered natively. Well, you have to select the advance plan if you are looking for the option of shipment through the site. In addition to that, Shopify is associated with Amazon and Rakuten which is really practical for the procedure. And beneficial as well.
Multilingual services around the world:
As the main purpose of an online store is to target audience from all around the globe. And having a website in their native language act as a huge help also. So having a multilingual site will be more beneficial than just English. Yes English is the international language and billions of people understand it, but still, people are more inclined towards their own language as more to English.
Shopify does not really offer this service. As it is mainly for the people of the United States of America, United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada, so its main focus is English only. But it is targeting the consumers worldwide. And now it is offering the plug-in named “lignify” which costs around $17.50 per month. And it is worth spending after all.
Woocommerce comes with the facility of multilingualism. You just have to install WPML and it cost around $79 for the first year. And the price goes down to $39 per year for coming years. And if you want to buy it for once at all then it is just $195. It is way more convenient and cheap if the comparison is being done with Shopify here. So opting according to your needs and resources is the right and smart choice.
What can be achieved in the world of the internet without being SEO friendly? If you are not getting on the top search engines then you do not even exist. That is how the world of the internet works.
Both of the platforms are SEO friendly and pay attention to search engine result pages because, in the end, it is going to increase the sales. Woocommerce is very strong in this department and it let to come on the front of the searches. And as a result of that, customers are increased. You have to install a Premium plug-in Yoast SEO and that helps you in getting the audience from all around the world.
Shopify is also very friendly when it comes to search engine optimization but it has its own drawbacks. Like it does not allow you to freely personalize your URLs according to your choice. And it makes the process of blogs and content pages extensive. As the process is folder/blog/news and pages/URL and it is not optimal at all for the customers or search engines.
So deciding carefully is not an option. If you think your needs and demands are not fulfilled from one platform then there is no point of choosing it. You should only choose those which are right for your business.
Maintenance of the store:
Just like the physical store, this online store also needs regular maintenance. As described earlier that woocommerce gives you complete control over your online store. That is the liberty of creating the store according to your preference. When it comes to maintenance, you are on your own too. In maintenance also you have to do the entire task to do.
If you are not aware of the techniques you are facing some issue with your store, then you have to call external help. And you have to hire a professional to take a look at your store.
It is not the same for Shopify, as it offers its customers the facility of regular maintenance. And Shopify takes care of all problems or the errors which occur on a regular basis. As all of it is covered in the package offered by Shopify.
If you are a beginner or generally wants a hustle free procedure, then Shopify is your friend. You need to use Shopify, as it will guide you in all the ways possible. And you can sell anything of your choice as far as it is simple and does not have a lot of variations. As Shopify is not affable for complicated products.
And another reason to go for Shopify would be the maintenance factor, as you don’t have to be worried about it. And many things in addition to maintenance are covered in the packages offered by Shopify. So it is a good deal for you.
But if you are planning to sell complicated products then opting woocommerce at the start is the best choice. Because in Shopify products go under examination and their decision-making team decides the future of it. So you need to decide woocommerce if you have bigger complicated products with a lot of variations.
On the other hand, if you’re comfortable with the environment of WordPress and you are aware of plug-in and applications then woocommerce will be the best choice for you.
So decide which platform is right for your business in 2019 is completely depended on you. Let us know, which platform fulfill your needs and which platform you are more inclined towards?