WordPress vs. Shopify: What’s best for your eCommerce Store?



As a business owner looking for new ways to reach more customers, you have finally decided to start selling online. So, where do you begin? For starters, you need a website that serves as an online store for your brand. There are two ways in which you can build one–one of them is to use programming languages to do it from scratch.You may also opt for a simpler way, i.e., a CMS to construct your website.

Content Management System is, in essence, a platform that enables users to create web-based content in a much more simple and quick manner. And CMSs like Shopify and WordPress have made it incredibly easy to create an ecommerce website. This is why these are two of the most popular ways to do so. To a beginner, both of them might seem to offer similar facilities. However, they actually differ from each other in terms of their approaches fundamentally.

If you are thinking about which of the two is ‘better’- there is no real answer to that – they are both equally good. Instead, what you might rather consider is which one is better for you. And this blog is all about finding that out by comparing the two, so keep reading to get some real answers!

WordPress Vs. Shopify: A Comparison of Two Popular Platforms

Let’s analyze the differences between WordPress Vs. Shopify to help you make the choice –

1. What will cost more?

The answer almost always depends on your specific requirements but generally, WordPress turns out to be a more economical option. But with Shopify, you are more aware of the exact charges because everything is included in the plans that they offer. That said, Shopify charges extra for certain services that WordPress does not. These include themes, payment gateways (in case you want to use a third-party option), and apps which have to be paid for every month. WordPress only charges a one-time fee for the same services.

On the other hand, you can technically run a WooCommerce store for an extremely low price as your main fixed expense is hosting. The costs here will increase as you add more to your website – WooCommerce as well as premium plug-ins and themes – so it is totally up to you!

2. Creating an Online Store

If you ask any web development company, they’ll all tell you – it’s really a choice between simple and straightforward versus slightly complex yet multi-functional.

Shopify is really easy to configure and is great for the typical list of products which you can manage after the initial setup.
The various activities which you can perform are listed to the left on your dashboard. These include –

● Managing your orders
● Making changes to the product list
● Viewing your customers
● Observe analytics
● Adding and removing discounts
● Adding apps

Unfortunately, the underlying server-side code is not accessible to users. They can only make changes to the HTML/CSS code in the themes.

In the case of WordPress, you must use a plug-in in order to turn a generic CMS into an online shop. Most companies that offer website development services use WooCommerce.Other than that, a plug-in like Easy Digital Downloads is great for selling digital files like music.

That’s what makes the process of making an eCommerce website on WordPress more complicated than Shopify. The plus side to this is the huge availability of plug-ins that can give a lot more functionality to your site than in Shopify. Additionally, you can not only access the server-side code but also modify it, which is fantastic news for developers.

3. Hosting

To begin with, these two are different when it comes to this vital feature. Using Shopify means you are using a hosted platform, unlike WordPress which is self-hosted. When you choose Shopify, you don’t have to bother with the technical aspects of the website like hosting, maintenance or security. These are all handled by Shopify itself but it means a lesser degree of control in terms of features.

With WordPress, you can make adjustments to virtually any part of your site because the software exists on your own hosting. So, if you are confident that you can handle the security and maintenance of the site on your own, then go for WordPress. Conversely, if you don’t want anything to do with the technical aspects of the website, then Shopify might be ideal for you.

Types of Products that can be sold

You can use both of these platforms to sell a variety of products but the difference, again, is in the details. With WordPress, you can change the way the product information is displayed by changing the interface with the help of plug-ins.

In other words, WordPress is more flexible in this respect and in terms of product variety.In contrast, Shopify does not allow every kind of product to be sold on its platform. These are usually those items that violate its terms of use, so it is better to read those carefully before continuing.

Things People Generally Sell Online
● Homemade Goods like
○ Bath bombs and soaps
○ Traditional and curated handcrafted goods
○ Candles and Sweets
○ Art, prints, and digital products
● Printed merchandise like t-shirts
● Jewelry and Enamel pins

Other than Physical Products, You can also sell
● Services like
○ Memberships and Consultations
○ Digital products
○ Classes, workshops, and software Installations
○ Donations
● Event tickets
● Digital gift cards

WordPress Versus Shopify – The Final Verdict

At the end of the day, each of these has its pros and cons. It all comes down to the details on your end, so hopefully, you now know which platform will serve your requirements best.

To clarify things further, let’s go over everything once more briefly –

WordPress is great if you

● Want a lot more freedom and control over each and every function that these two provide including product variations.
● Want to be able to make changes to the server-side code.
● Are looking for an economical option.

On the flip side, choose Shopify if you

● Prefer a simpler interface.
● Don’t want to spend too much time learning the ropes and would rather skip to running your store.
● Would rather choose a hosted option so that you won’t have to handle data security and maintenance of your website. All of which you can simply leave to Shopify.

In the end it all comes down to the nature of your business requirements. No matter what you choose, one thing is for certain – you definitely don’t need to learn a programming language for creating a website! The technical aspects of website-building are already taken care of in a CMS like WordPress. In other words, all you have to do is personalize a template and work on the content of your site.

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