The internet is flooded with e-commerce platforms which help people run their online business.
However, one should be very careful while ascertaining the pros and cons of each platform such as Magento vs WooCommerce vs Shopify vs Opencart before making a choice.
Before embarking on the journey of creating a business website and an online store, it is a pre-requisite to have a premium domain name with lightspeed hosting and round the clock tech support.
As most e-commerce platforms are open source, a cPanel hosting plan would suit them best.
A cPanel login opens the doors for almost every possible installation and customization and makes it simple too.
Given the nature of online business – it is critical to put together the best web hosting plan with a suitable e-commerce platform to ensure you have the right combination to power your online store.
WooCommerce vs Shopify
So, a domain check has been performed, a top level domain has been registered, the domain name is sorted, the best hosting plan has also been signed up for.
What’s next? Its time to decide how to create a website, which e-commerce platform will power your online business store.
WooCommerce vs Shopify is the question in front of almost every enterprise starting up a new store or contemplating a redesign of their e-commerce website.
Is WooCommerce superior or is Shopify a cut above the rest? There is no specific, single answer to this question.
It all comes down to the requirements of an individual business website, the needs of that specific online store, the e-commerce features and customizations an enterprise is looking for etc.
At a high level, WooCommerce states it is the internet’s best and preferred ecommerce platform, while there are 800,000 stores on Shopify.
WooCommerce WordPress is an indomitable combination, they can turn any simple website to a powerful ecommerce store.
Shopify, with its stable platform, unlimited design templates and support can make life pretty easy for an online business.
A quick WooCommerce vs Shopify comparison (pros) is as below.
|Unmatched Scalability: While your store keeps growing and business, WooCommerce remains stable and supports your business with utmost reliability.
|All in One Platform: When you opt for Shopify, it is a bundle of the Shopify platform, web hosting and security.
|Infinite Customization: If you have a vision and a dream, WooCommerce allows you to create a design out of it. There is no limit to customization with WooCommerce platform
|Multi-Channel Integration: With Shopify, the world is your market. From Amazon to eBay, you can have store on any e-commerce aggregator.
|Pocket Friendly: WooCommerce itself is free! A very large number of the must have WooCommerce plugins are also free. If it is not free, then a WooCommerce listing plugin of your choice may not cost much either.
|Ease of Use: Shopify can be setup within minutes
Let’s get to know WooCommerce and Shopify in more details with their features and costs.
The Operational Costs
The cost of running an e-commerce store is the biggest expense for any online business. Often, it is also the trickiest given the various costs which are not totally upfront.
WooCommerce is available as a plugin with WordPress and is a free plugin. To run a WooCommerce store, an e-commerce store must invest in a domain name and a hosting plan. These could add up operational costs.
Having said so, there are hosting providers who offer free domain name with web hosting plans. There are also cheap web hosting plans which offer WordPress hosting.
It is also easy to find business hosting providers offering special WooCommerce hosting plans.
A quick preview of the Exabytes WooCommerce hosting plans is as below.
Shopify is the easiest e-commerce platform to adjust and learn. As Shopify is available as a bundle i.e. hosting and e-commerce platform together, you have to pay for it.
These start at SGD 29.00 per month for their most basic plan and keeps increasing.
Along with a Shopify purchase, you get a sub-domain attached to the Shopify domain, for example – https://sgbestecommerce.myshopify.com .
This may not work well for a business looking to setup their own branding and marketing. A simple domain check or domain search will show that purchasing a top level domain costs a minimum of SGD 11.88 per year.
The costs mentioned so far are for setting up an ecommerce store on WooCommerce or signing up for a Shopify account.
However, there are additional expenses which could be incurred as detailed below.
Starting a WooCommerce store is cheap and simple to do so. WooCommerce demonstrates its business-friendly approach by not charging merchants anything on their online payments and online transactions – a very big boon and blessing for online business owners.
The must have WooCommerce plugins are generally free of cost. For those which may be a paid plugin, a fairly similar alternative can be found very easily.
Related article: 9 Best Free WooCommerce Plugins Features
However, with the widest possible network of developers, product owners and support community – WooCommerce has the biggest catalogue of all plugins and add-ons one would ever need.
A word of caution – As the online business and ecommerce shop grows in size, a WooCommerce hosting plan may need upgrades to its capacity.
It is an aspect to be remembered while choosing WooCommerce WordPress.
Shopify has several costs which come in after an account has been bought. While close to a million websites run on Shopify, its basic plan is not feature rich, it only offers 2 user accounts.
If you want to customize your website, there would be additional expenses to factor in. A lot of the most important Shopify plugins come at a cost.
As and when an online business grows and the ecommerce store starts having more products on the website, there is a need for a plan upgrade – all of this costs money.
Online payments, merchant transactions etc. can be very complex with Shopify. There is a difference in how things work with third party payment gateways and Shopify’s internal payment system.
The Shopify payments solution charges an online payment store at 2.9% + 30 cents on the basic plan.
If an ecommerce store wants to use its own payment gateway, Shopify charges 2.0% on all transactions.
At Exabytes – we offer the best WooCommerce hosting plans in Singapore. Our WooCommerce WordPress web hosting starts as low as SGD 7.99 per month.