Which is the better platform to run an ecommerce site - Wordpress or Shopify?

I want to launch a site and it seems that Shopify is very well integrated from POS, inventory and logistics management, ties to Facebook, Pinterest, etc, etc. The offering looks to be total turnkey. I am new at this. Recommendations and/or opinions would be most appreciated!


Shopify for sure. But, why limit yourself there? There are some other really great systems out there that provide more tools out of the box.

Oh, and while I'm sure *some* businesses do well with a Facebook store, it's not so simple to just "build and they will come." Stores are connected to Pages. You might want to get a start locally using Facebook Marketplace.

Answered 6 years ago

Shopify is better out of the box for ecommerce, and it comes built-in with web hosting, security, updates, support, etc.

Unless you are a developer or have one on your team, I'd recommend Shopify.

There are some downsides to Shopify - it's a bit harder to customize, and the WordPress plugin ecosystem is bigger, but assuming you're a small to medium ecommerce company right now, it's probably the way to go.

WordPress is great, and has WooCommerce, but it's just not as focused on ecomm as Shopify. WordPress is better if you need a ton of customizations and want to really do a lot of things that may be limited by Shopify. WordPress has better blogging and content creation options.

Answered 6 years ago

You are correct in your assumption that Shopify is a more turnkey solution. Although Wordpress has become a very versatile content management system, it is not a great solution for a novice.

Here's a review that I wrote about Shopify, if you are curious:

Answered 6 years ago

Shopify over wordpress any day. It is built specifically for Ecommerce websites and the 24/7 live chat help is absolutely incredible.

If you are interested I wrote an article you can read with some helpful tips and tricks here:

Answered 6 years ago

So here is a real quick break down from my experience of 5+ years on Shopify and 10+ years with WordPress.

As many have said WordPress has likely a larger pool of developers and designers for you to pull from if you are hiring out the development of your site and therefore probably would allow for slightly more customization and easier design changes along with potentially lower costs. And there is nothing that you can't do in WordPress that you can do with Shopify - just a function of how easy / hard it is to get it done.

Along that same line of thought Shopify can be very easy to set up IF you are happy with a theme "out of the box" then you can be up and running in a day or two. If you are hiring out the development we have found that there is a smaller pool of developers who specialize in "Liquid" which is the programming language Shopify is built on. Can you find developers who are awesome in Liquid/Shopify - sure - but it will typically cost you a bit more as they are a tad harder to find and are usually in high demand.

Two ends of the spectrum - where each in my opinion are clear winners....
Quick - Up and Done... Shopify
So if you are looking to get set up and running in a week and you will be "OK" with picking a stock theme in Shopify and running with it to get an ecom store going - then Shopify is your winner by a mile.

Got Time - Very Particular on Look / Feel / Need to be in clear control of pages on an ongoing bases for UX or SEO changes.... WordPress (or even Magento)....

As you move towards the middle then the arguments blur a bit between which is absolutely or clearly "better"....

In the end both are totally awesome -

Hope that helps!! Best of Luck in your new adventure!!

Answered 6 years ago

There is no 'right' answer to this question, as it totally depends on the needs of your specific store.

Shopify is an excellent choice if you want to get set up quickly and prefer to not deal with hosting, PCI Compliance and developers. They have many beautiful pre-made templates, excellent support and a huge marketplace that will provide you with just about any feature and function you need.

The downside to Shopify is that it gets extremely expensive. That $29/month plan looks great until you realize that you have to add another $100/month in apps to get it to do what you want. And Shopify Plus? That's $2000/month, which is insanity. As with most SaaS platforms, you also have very little control over the checkout, even with the Plus plan. So you may not be able to customize things as much as you would like. You also have to use Stripe if you don't want to pay extra transaction fees. Shopify also doesn't do multi-language, multi-currency or wholesale well, so if one of those is important to your business you will need to look elsewhere.

WooCommerce is a great platform if you want to be able to completely customize every aspect of your store. It is also free, and integrates seamlessly with WordPress, which is a bonus.

The downsides are numerous. You need a developer, there is no way around it. If you don't have a good development partner to keep your store updated and running smoothly you'll be in big trouble. There is also very little support (it is free, what do you expect?). You will constantly be dealing with upgrades and conflicts with other apps. PCI Compliance and security are constant concerns, as WordPress is the most hacked platform on the planet. You will need an excellent hosting partner as well, as that is the foundation you are building on.

Bottom line is, if you want a completely custom cart, Woo is a better choice but requires a developer, hosting and PCI Compliance. If you want simple and easy without having to deal with developers and hosting, Shopify is a better choice, but it comes at a steeper price.

Also don't limit your choices to these two carts - there are numerous other ones that may be a better fit for your business including Pinnacle Cart, Americommerce and Magento. They all have their pros and cons as well. Just because Shopify is the most popular doesn't mean it is the best for your business. Pick a cart that handles 75% of what you need out of the box, not just now but 5 years down the road as well. Re-platforming is never fun, so you'll want a cart that grows with your business. Good luck!

Answered 6 years ago

I would also look at 3dcart, they have been growing and receiving awards. Bee throrough in your search and make sure you have your must-have and good-to -have's down clear so you can see what you would need down the road.

Answered 6 years ago

If you have a bog standard ecommerce store and don't need to do anything fancy or stand out of the crowd now or in the next 5 years then Shopify is a good choice for you.

If you've seen something on another ecommerce site that Shopify doesn't have and you think you may want to grow your business to use it then I would seriously look at investing in WordPress with WooCommerce now. It is not easy to move from boxed solutions like shopify to something else.

Answered 6 years ago

I've used both Shopify and Wordpress with the WooCommerce plugin. Both setups work well. The choice depends on your needs.

Shopify is definitely a turnkey solution. It has built-in POS and inventory management and easily integrates with numerous selling channels as you've mentioned. There's a lite plan ($9/month) that doesn't give you an online store, but does allow you to sell products on Facebook and your own website. If you are looking to get up and running rather quickly, Shopify is the way to go.

Wordpress with WooCommerce takes a bit more effort to set up. While it's free, you'll need to host your site somewhere, so you'll need a web host that is optimized for WooCommerce. Also, to get the functionality that Shopify offers out-of-the-box, you'll want to add some plugins to WooCommerce. You may also want to upgrade to a paid theme to further customize your shop. So, using Wordpress with WooCommerce may not end up being less expensive than Shopify. The main advantage of using Wordpress with WooCommerce is that you have much greater flexibility in customizing your store.

If you are looking to quickly open up a standard online store, then Shopify is your best bet. If you are willing to put in some time and are looking for a more customized store, then go with Wordpress with WooCommerce.

We started with Shopify and then switched to Wordpress with WooCommerce as our needs grew and we wanted some custom features in our store that were difficult or impossible to do on Shopify.

Good luck!

Answered 6 years ago

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