If you are venturing into an eCommerce business, you need a platform to support the high volume sales. It is essential to have an eCommerce platform to plan, create, and migrate your current physical store into an online store.
Shopify and Magento are the two popular options acclaimed to best for today’s store creation and management platforms. They not only make up a large percentage of the market share but also help you adapt to innovations within the ever-evolving eCommerce industry.
In this blog, we look into some of the fundamental differences between these platforms.
What is Shopify?
Shopify is an easy to use commercial platform for building online stores. It is a fully managed and hosted solution that is easier for beginners to start with. It has a simple user interface that can be used by anyone and doesn’t require programming skills.
Pros of Shopify
- Multiple responsive themes
- Different checkout and payment options
- Good customer support
- Multi-Channel selling
- A large community of users
- Superior extending functionality for websites
- An eCommerce builder guide
- Ease of use
Cons of Shopify
- Themes are separate pricing
- Integrating app is more complex
- The transaction fee for third-party payments
What is Magento?
Magento is an open-source platform. It requires a medium to a high level of web development and programming skills. You should also provide your hosting, install, setup, and configure before creating the store separately. Magento has multiple features that can be integrated only by advanced developers. Magento is also available in a paid version, which is suitable for large enterprises website.
Pros of Magento
- Extensive themes
- Large community to support users
- Free to use
- Magento 2 extensions
- Phone support available
- Ideal for medium to large businesses
- Flexible customization options
Cons of Magento
- Not beginner-friendly
- Hard to install
- Numerous cost associated
Shopify vs. Magento: A Feature Comparison
Online store functionality
All businesses deal with different needs and priorities. Both Shopify and Magento are packed with a basic set of features to use regularly. Similarly, Shopify is easy to set up and use when compared to Magento. You’ll find all the essential features like checkout modules, collections, product pages, and shopping carts with Magento and Shopify. Magento has far more intermediate and advanced features that be integrated into the system. With Shopify, you can set up an app as an extended functionality.
Both the eCommerce platforms allow you to sell unlimited products in your store. You can effortlessly create products and collections. Shopify has direct integration to the dropshipping app, such as Oberlo. On the other hand, Magento allows an unlimited number of products, and you should also consider the server performance and site loading speed to avoid issues on your Magento store. In contrast, Shopify is a fully hosted solution.
Both Shopify and Magento has flexible options to calculate the shipping charges. It is one of the essential factors to consider while choosing a platform. Shopify allows you to integrate with some dropshipping tools and shipping calculators to give the most accurate shipping estimates for the customers.
Payment gateway options
Shopify has over 70 payment gateways while Magento has a lower number of gateways. You can also add third-party payment gateways. If you use Shopify build-in payment gateway, you can avoid transaction fees, while with third party gateways, you may have to pay a fee for each transaction. Both have easy to connect payment processors with direct integration with the inventory.
Apps and Add-ons
With Shopify, you can enhance and expand the functionalities. There are over 100 apps and add-ons are available in the Shopify App Store. Apps and Add-ons are continually growing in many aspects, like loyalty programs, accounting, and email marketing. On the other hand, Magento has more than 5000 apps and add-ons. It is a mix of free as well as paid apps available for both platforms.
SEO helps in driving more traffic to your store with organic rankings via search engines. Magento provides excellent SEO capabilities that allow you to customize SEO prompts and URLs. With Shopify, you’ll need to search and install apps to satisfy your SEO requirements and marketing needs. You can still edit the page titles, image alt tags, meta tags, and SEO tricks with your app’s help.
Both platforms provide extensive customization capabilities. The platforms have an advanced interface that allows you to edit the raw HTML and CSS with full control over your store’s design and theme. Shopify has a consumer-driven and straightforward method to change your eCommerce store’s fundamental attributes, such as colors, fonts, and images, etc. At the same time, customization with Magento is relatively high as the code is fully open source. You can modify the code according to your needs.
To customize the full website, you’ll need the help of developers who specialize in HTML and CSS. Shopify has a theme editor that allows you to play around and hide functions and work on the staging server. It also offers drag and drops options to organize the content on your website. Shopify has a comfortable design interface like WordPress when compared to Magento.
Shopify has integrated blogging functions; however, you can have your developer customize Magento’s blogging features. Magento blog is far more customizable than Shopify.
Themes and Design
A website has to look appealing and easy to navigate to facilitate a better user experience. Having an attractive theme should ensure that your eCommerce website stands unique.
Shopify offers fully customizable themes that are easy to set up. You can easily add your products and content. You can easy to optimize the themes for optimized for mobile. It has both handfuls of free themes and paid themes from Shopify, with many customization options with social media tool integration.
Magento has fewer themes, from a selection of free and paid options. Only 10 of the themes are mobile responsive. It also allows you to implement themes and designs from the backend of your online business. You can use animations and newsletter options on the website.
Ease of use
Both Shopify and Magento are powerful platforms to build your eCommerce store. Shopify has well thought and well-designed user interface, which is easy to set up and starts with an online store. Shopify is easy to use even for beginners, while Magento open-source required programming skills. Shopify has far more customizable elements and easy to use than Magento.
You’ll need powerful marketing tools that can help your business reach and expand. Shopify has offered you the ability to have email campaigns through third-party integrations. You can advertise and sell directly with the support of multilingual sites in different languages. Other the other side, Magento relies on third-party extensions and marketing tools to run campaigns. Where more likely, you need to rely on a web developer to integrate those features. Both platforms have their respective marketplaces where you’ll find exciting and extensive marketing tools to advertise your products.
Shopify offers a 14-day free trial with which you can evaluate and try out functionalities by their e-commerce hosting platform. They don’t charge any setup fees for hosting the eCommerce platform. It has different plans with monthly charges from $14 to $299. You can start your free trial here.
With Magento, you’ll need to get your hosting available at a monthly cost ranging between $5 to $100. Depending on the hosting you choose, you’ll likely have bandwidth charges for hosting your store. In comparison, Shopify has no bandwidth charges. Otherwise, Magento is free to use.
In terms of the transaction fee, Shopify doesn’t charge anything for their payment gateways. If using some other payment gateway, you’ll need to pay a transaction fee ranging anywhere between 0.5% to 2% per transaction as Magento is open-source. There is no transaction fee other than the gateway provider’s price.
Shopify vs. Magento: Which one is best for your eCommerce store?
To effectively run an online eCommerce store, you’ll need the support of the most suitable platform for your business. Both Shopify and Magento are a comprehensive platform to start with your eCommerce store.
Shopify is easy to use and a fully managed service. In comparison, Magento is an open-source where installation, set up and integration require programming skills.
If you are not a tech-savvy person just starting and looking to a professional eCommerce store, Shopify is the most recommended platform for you. It has all the capabilities with the ease of customization.
If you are already established store going into online eCommerce, Magento will be the ideal option for you. It is suitable for medium and large enterprises, with total customization capabilities. It requires to hire a developer to build and successfully manage an eCommerce store.
Whichever platform you choose, both platforms serve to be successful. We wish you all the best for your eCommerce development.
Need guidance in establishing your eCommerce store? Get in touch with your eCommerce experts today!