One of the biggest challenges you face when building your online business is deciding which platform to use.
How do you choose between Shopify and WordPress, the two biggest platforms in website building and e-commerce?
In this post, we will discuss these two platforms in detail to help you better understand which one is best for you.
Topics covered in this article include a website or online store settings, usability, blog and SEO features, and ongoing maintenance.
Shopify vs WordPress … Let’s take a look.
What is Shopify?
Shopify is a user-friendly e-commerce platform that enables small businesses to quickly and easily build and run online stores.
With more than 5 million websites worldwide, Shopify is renowned for its ease of use, ease of use and scalability.
This platform provides all the tools you need to host your online store and market, manage, and grow your business.
Below is an overview of how Shopify works.
- Use Shopify’s Setup Wizard to build the store
- Set up payment using Shopify Payments or any other service you choose
- Add new products and synchronize inventory as needed
- Start selling in-store, on a separate website, or on social media
You can also use additional apps in the App Store to extend site and store functionality.
Everything you need to manage your store can be found through Shopify’s store dashboard, making life easier.
The downside to consider, however, is that Shopify is the only place to build an e-commerce site. Therefore, if the store is not a big business priority, you should consider other Web site deployment platforms that offer more flexibility, such as WordPress.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a free, open-source content management system (CMS) that anyone can download and use.
While Shopify focuses only on e-commerce websites, WordPress enables you to build any kind of website.
With this CMS, you can deploy:
- Business website
- E-commerce stores
- Member Site
- And more, more.
This diversity helps you understand why WordPress supports 43% of all Web sites on the Internet.
Shopify vs WordPress: Let’s compare
Shopify and WordPress are both big names in website building and e-commerce spaces, making it harder to choose one.
This analysis looks at the key factors that entrepreneurs like you should consider before choosing one of these platforms to build your online business.
Getting started: Site settings
In terms of getting started, Shopify and WordPress have very different processes. Shopify prioritizes fast implementation and can be verified in the Setup Wizard.
WordPress, on the other hand, has a more comprehensive setup process that takes more time to complete.
Because Shopify does not offer a free plan, we offer a free 14-day trial so you can start right from the moment you go to your homepage.
When you start your free trial, Shopify will take you to the first step of the setup wizard to see if you’re starting a new business or if you’re already selling online or in person.
Next, you need to specify where you want to sell, such as an online store, social media platform, online marketing place, or in person. If you haven’t already decided, you can choose the “I don’t know” option or skip the section completely.
You will need to specify a store name when you complete this operation. Shopify provides a custom URL (the [yourbusinessname].myshopify.com domain), but you can set it up later if you want to use your own domain.
After you specify a store name, you must select a business location. This completes the setup wizard.
Shopify then takes you to the dashboard in the store where you can customize the appearance of your site, add products, and install apps.
There are two ways to get WordPress: Through a hosting service, or by downloading and installing it on a personally managed server.
If you have little or no coding experience, consider installing WordPress through a reliable hosting service.
WordPress recommends three hosting options, but there are other providers to choose from (for example, WPX, Kinsta, etc.)
Finding the right hosting provider to meet your needs depends on:
- Your budget
- The hosting company specializes in WordPress
- The size of the website you want to create
- The bandwidth you think your site needs based on your traffic requirements
- Review performance and support by the provider.
- Most reputable hosting services offer automatic or one-click WordPress installations
- After you’ve selected your hosting provider and purchased your domain, you’ll need to install WordPress.
After you install WordPress, you will be taken to the default WordPress dashboard. Here you can manage your blog posts, add plug-ins, and modify the look of your website design (for example, change the color scheme of your website)
WordPress has a much faster learning curve than Shopify, but once you overcome it, you have much more site deployment flexibility. Shopify is easy to navigate, but only if you are building an e-commerce website.
Managing your online store on Shopify is simple and straightforward. Shopify manages everything about your website, making it easy to find your way around.
The left sidebar in the Shopify Dashboard is where most navigation will take place. Let’s break it down:
- Home: Return to the main dashboard screen.
- Order: Include all information the customer ordered, such as name, payment amount, shipment status, and so on.
- Products: Add, remove, or edit products. Create an inventory management product collection. Issue a gift card
- Customer: All customer-centric information, including personal information and order history, is located here.
- Analysis: Includes key information about your business, such as total sales, repeat customer rates, total orders, average order amounts, and sales by traffic source.
- Marketing: Build marketing campaigns to generate more leads, promote upcoming events, or launch new products across multiple channels.
- Discounts: Create and manage discount codes or automatic discounts for specific products or customers
You can also make changes to the Online Store through the Dashboard.
The “Online Store” tab allows you to:
- Change or customize the store theme
- Create blog posts and site pages
- Configure site navigation
- Customize your site preferences (for example, homepage title and meta description, default social sharing images, customer privacy, etc.)
- If you need additional instructions when setting up the store, click the “Setup Guide” button in the upper right corner of the dashboard header. A tutorial appears with instructions and support.
You can also access the advanced settings through the Dashboard. Here you can set up payment, add users to the store, configure payment options, buy a new domain, or customize an existing domain. The list continues.
WordPress has a much faster learning curve than Shopify, but once overcome, site deployment flexibility is much greater.
In fact, before you start building your WordPress website, you must purchase your domain, connect to a hosting provider, install WordPress, and then log in to your WordPress dashboard. It makes things easy.
Navigating the WordPress dashboard is very simple because every section is clearly labeled.
The left sidebar of the WordPress dashboard is where most navigation takes place.
You can update the plug-ins and WordPress software here.
Next, you can add, edit, or review your blog posts and pages in the Posts and Pages sections. You can also add or change the categories and tags used in your posts in the “Posts” tab.
You can also access the settings of the plug-in you installed. For example, if you are building an online store, you can access WoodCommerce from the left sidebar. You must go through the WoodCommerce Setup Wizard before you can start setting up the store.
If you want to customize the appearance of your site — for example, Themes — the “Appearance” tab.
You can also add users and assign them to specific roles if more than one person manages your Web site. Great when your online business grows into a small team!
If you want to make more technical changes to the site, you can find it in the Settings menu in the left sidebar.
From here, you can make basic changes, such as selecting a new time zone, changing the way dates are displayed on the dashboard, selecting a different site language, or displaying a URL.
Shopify offers built-in capabilities to help you manage key parts of your e-commerce business, such as marketing, shipping, inventory, and analytics.
You can also sell unlimited products across websites, social media, third-party marketplaces, and even face-to-face, on any platform you can think of.
Shopify also features Shopify Payments, an integrated payment system that is quick and easy to set up. With Shopify Payments, customers can use almost any payment method that they can use to purchase products. However, keep this in mind as it involves additional transaction costs.
Shopify also offers the option to receive payment using a different payment gateway but must estimate the rate between 0.5% and 2% per transaction.
WoodCommerce is the most popular e-commerce plug-in for WordPress and the world’s leading e-commerce platform.
Like Shopify, WoodCommerce allows you to sell unlimited digital and physical products, including all the core features of the online store, including products, categories, shopping carts, and more.
The plug-in also offers premium additional features such as multi-currency support, automatic tax calculation, and real-time shipping rates for major carriers.
Of course, WordPress offers the ability to use a variety of other e-commerce plug-ins, but WOWCommerce is far ahead in terms of functionality, documentation, and support.
The WordPress Theme Directory offers over 9,000 free themes available, probably close to the same number for premium, third-party themes. You can find these themes in the official WordPress Themes directory.
Shopify Theme Store does not match WordPress Theme Directory with over 1800 e-commerce themes. Most themes offer customization options, so you have some flexibility to modify them based on your branding requirements. If you use Thruve Theme Builder for your website, you have full control over all visual aspects of the WordPress WoodCommerce store.
The Shopify App Store has 6,000 Shopify apps for free and for a fee. This app is divided into 12 categories, making it easier to find the right application to enhance your store.
You can find apps for most business needs, including:
- Customize the store’s search capabilities
- Enhance your business email marketing
- Turn your store into a mobile app
- Upgrade store pages, images, and videos
- And much more.
- Browse the app market and you’ll find apps created by Shopify, such as 3D Warehouse, Barcode Printer, Geolocation, and even apps created by third-party developers.
Each app in the Shopify App Store must meet certain requirements before it is available to Shopify users.
WordPress Plugin Repository has over 59,000 free plug-ins. So there’s a plug-in for everything.
So if you need to improve lead generation forms, use quizzes to communicate with visitors, or design compelling web pages, you can find the WordPress plug-in.
Many plug-ins offer premium models with basic features that are free for all users and premium features.
Just browse the official WordPress plug-in library and install everything you need to enhance the functionality of your website.
Shopify and WordPress share similarities with ongoing maintenance. Both platforms leave most of the work for the user.
Shopify does some of the work for ongoing site maintenance.
All platform updates are performed by your in-house technical team and are automatically distributed to your site, but do not back up your website.
Shopify performs full platform backup for storage and use in the event of a large disaster. However, these backups cannot be used to restore data from individual stores.
This will take down the store, erase all products, categories, customer data, etc., and no recent backups. You lose everything.
Shopify suggests that the merchant manually backs up the store using a CSV file. You can export data from the Shopify store and store information such as products, customers, orders, discount codes and gift cards.
Alternatively, you can find the app in the Shopify app store to perform regular automatic backups.
You are also responsible for updates to store content, such as deleting outdated products, updating copies of site pages, and tracking inventory.
And before updating the plug-in, make sure you have a recent backup of the website that you can revert if necessary.
You can also back up sites such as BackupBuddy using a trusted plug-in.
At first glance, maintaining a WordPress Web site can seem cumbersome. Especially for beginners. But it’s not that difficult.
If you have a routine to update themes, plug-ins, and site content, maintaining your website is an easy-to-follow routine.
If you’re having trouble creating routines for managing your website, this detailed guide is a good fit.
In terms of SEO, WordPress and Shopify both offer basic SEO features to help your website get discovered by search engines. But, if you want to take your SEO efforts to the next level, you’ll need additional apps or plugins to make that happen.
Shopify comes with built-in features to help you create pages search engines can find with ease, such as editing page titles and meta descriptions, adding 301 redirects, and customizing page URLs.
If you want to up your SEO game, you can find more advanced SEO tools in Shopify’s app store.
WordPress also provides built-in SEO features such as post and page meta-descriptions, image substitution properties, configurable URLs, and the ability to add correct title markups.
However, if you want to use advanced SEO features, you must use a plug-in such as Yoast SEO or SEOPress.
Each comes with a wide range of features, such as automated technical SEO improvements, advanced XML sitemap, and templates for title and meta-description.
Both plug-ins offer free and paid plans.
Shopify vs WordPress
Which one should I choose? Shopify or WordPress?
Well, it depends on your business goals and your budget more important.
Here’s a summary of each platform that helps you make the right decision:
- Set up an online store in minutes (Shopify only supports e-commerce websites)
- Built-in payment with Shopify Payments (including transaction costs)
- Suitable for e-commerce sites of all sizes
- A clean selection of professionally designed store themes
- Access to over 6,000 apps
- Offline and in-store sales with Shopify POS
- Amazon, Multi-channel marketplaces selling on eBay and more
- Built-in tools for inventory and product data management, marketing, and analysis
- 24/7 customer support to help with setup or troubleshooting
- Sell both physical and digital products
- Free installation and use
- For use on 40% or later on the Internet
- Suitable for all sizes and types of websites
- Ability to fully customize websites using themes or plug-ins
- Access to an extensive library of plug-ins
- Regular software updates
- It’s easy to find a reliable host for your website.
- Support for full e-commerce capabilities
- Ideal for digital products, blogs, member sites, services, and more
- Shopify is a powerful e-commerce platform that helps you set up your business in minutes. Access a wide
- range of features to easily manage your store and start selling right away.
However, if you want access to a more versatile website building platform, WordPress is the right choice because it offers more design and customization flexibility. As the world’s leading e-commerce platform, WoodCommerce lets you design impressive websites with full-featured online stores.
And to build a transition-focused WordPress website that differentiates you from your competitors and turns visitors into engaged customers, you need the Thrube Suite.
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