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About WooCommerce

WooCommerce is an open-source e-commerce plugin for WordPress. It is designed for small to large-sized online merchants using WordPress.

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San Francisco, California, 94305,

United States

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Shopify Vs which is better for small businesses

Sep 15, 2022

When it comes to ecommerce, Shopify is, without a doubt, the best choice for small businesses. It was built specifically for merchants to sell products online, and it’s also a closed-source platform, making it extremely easy to use. In comparison, was originally built as a content management system (CMS). It requires integration with ecommerce software, such as WooCommerce, before you can get going. It also operates as an open-source platform. This can make building an ecommerce business challenging for Joe Bloggs, who wants to sell his gimmicky slogan t-shirts online with minimal fuss. But it is great for any user who wants ultimate control and customisability. Both are giants in the ecommerce space, but both cater to very different needs. It’s important to identify which platform matches the needs of your business, as the last thing you want is to start building an online store with software that doesn’t tick all the boxes. This is why we’ve independently tested, and researched, both platforms in the areas that matter most to our readers, including value for money and website features. Our findings will help you make an executive decision regarding which platform is right for you and your ecommerce store. So what are you waiting for? Read on to find out how Shopify came out on top when the two platforms went head-to-head. This article will cover: Need to know is different from helps you build a website with managed hosting using the WordPress software. On the other hand, is the source of the software, and enables you to build and maintain a website without any assistance. This article focuses on – not – in combination with the WooCommerce ecommerce software integration. Shopify vs key differences There are two fundamental distinctions between these platforms that you should be aware of: Shopify was built as a dedicated ecommerce platform . While requires an ecommerce software plugin to operate as an ecommerce platform. For the sake of this comparison review we have reviewed WordPress and WooCommerce together. Another important difference between the two platforms is that Shopify is closed-source. This means it was built as a dedicated ecommerce platform and everything you need to operate your online store is already built into the software. This is perfect for small businesses and entrepreneurs just starting out, as it makes setting up your online store super easy, and relatively quick. With, an open-source platform, you are required to build your website from scratch, including all of the sales features. This can be time-consuming and difficult, particularly as you will need knowledge of coding and web development. For medium-sized businesses, or smaller businesses looking to scale, having the budget and time to develop its online store from scratch is a luxury that can be afforded. But for startups and micro businesses, unless you have coding experience, it will be more of a hindrance. Shopify for small businesses 4.6 Shopify’s superb features and extensive app market give ambitious ecommerce businesses everything they need to scale rapidly. PRICE FROM Approx £21 per month Preempts and predicts what a merchant might need next in all aspects of creating a website Best range of apps and extensions Perfect for dropshipping Summary Shopify is perfect for users looking for that all in one online store solution. Its ability to predict what a merchant will need next when creating a website is a brilliant feature, and its countless apps give you complete control over your business, enabling you to grow through diverse multi channel integration options and automated SMS and email marketing. It is definitely better suited to store owners with complex, larger inventories and because there are fewer built in features, using the platform can get expensive compared to other feature-filled competitors like Squarespace and Wix. Show moreless Shopify ranked second in our top ecommerce platforms for small businesses , scoring an impressive overall rating of 4.6 out of 5. It is ideal for small businesses for a number of reasons. Its standout feature is its range of apps and extensions that aim to help businesses improve sales through useful add-ons – like abandoned cart recovery, multiple currencies, and dropshipping functionality . These features work in tandem to create a seamless and enhanced customer experience. In contrast, has zero built-in sales features. However, by combining the platform with ecommerce software, such as WooCommerce, you will be able to purchase extensions that will help you make those all-important sales. These include subscriptions and appointments, and local payment gateways. For an in-depth look at Shopify, be sure to check out our review . for small businesses 4.4 (with the addition of WooCommerce software) is a great ecommerce platform for small businesses that want near limitless customisability and flexibility. Highly customisable 100 payment gateways and no setup or monthly fees Summary (with the addition of WooCommerce software) is a great ecommerce platform for small businesses that want near limitless customisability and flexibility. Because it is an open-source platform, you have the ability to create an abundance of unique and practical features that can make your online store stand out from the competition. This is in comparison to Shopify, which does have lots of great sales features, but that are already built for you - so are uniform across its merchant’s websites. It is also free to use, although you will have to pay for a hosting provider (as it is self-hosted). The cost of a web development team, or a coding crash course to design your store from scratch, may add up. Show moreless (with the addition of WooCommerce software) is a great ecommerce platform for small businesses that want near limitless customisability and flexibility. Because it is an open-source platform, you have the ability to create an abundance of unique and practical features that can make your online store stand out from the competition. This is in comparison to Shopify, which does have lots of great sales features, but that are already built for you – so are uniform across its merchant’s websites. It is also free to use, although you will have to pay for a hosting provider (as it is self-hosted). The cost of a web development team, or a coding crash course to design your store from scratch, may add up. Shopify can’t match the zero price, but £19 per month is not very expensive when you factor in hosting costs for users. Visit Shopify to learn more about its pricing plans Visit Shopify Shopify, although not the cheapest ecommerce platform available on the market, certainly lives up to the saying that ‘you get what you pay for’. It offers five plans for businesses , although we won’t go into detail about the enterprise plan as it's only suitable for large businesses. Its other plans suit businesses of all sizes, from micro to medium-sized. They include the Starter plan at £5 per month, basic at £19 per month, standard at £49 per month, and advanced at £259 per month. It also offers a free 14-day trial so you can try out any of its plans to see if it suits your needs. However, keep in mind that you won’t be able to sell on the platform until you choose a paid plan. You can also save on costs by purchasing a plan annually rather than by paying monthly – Shopify will apply a 10% discount to any plan taken out annually. Starter Shopify – £5 per month Shopify’s starter plan is incredibly affordable, but also very limiting. It is designed primarily for businesses that want to sell via social media. It allows users that don’t have a website to sell products on social platforms, through emails, and on Whatsapp. However, it does have a limited shelf-life and, as your brand grows, so too will the importance of creating a website for your business. Once you need to create a website, you will need to upgrade your Shopify plan. Basic Shopify – £19 per month Shopify’s basic plan is not one of the cheapest starter ecommerce plans on the market, but it comes with some great sales features, and is ideal for businesses just starting out in the realm of ecommerce. You get access to 24/7 customer support, multiple sales channels, and gift cards – some of which are not offered on the basic plans of other platforms. None of these are available on’s plan. Standard Shopify plan – £49 per month At £49 per month, Shopify’s standard plan is quite expensive, particularly when you compare it to a free platform like (even with the cost of a hosting provider). However, the features you get on this plan make it a great option for those businesses that are running a busy ecommerce operation. You have access permissions for up to five staff members, meaning multiple users can make changes and update the pages if required. Unlike the basic plan, you also get access to ecommerce automation. This will allow you to manage workflow and streamline manual tasks that could otherwise take up your precious time. Advanced Shopify plan – £259 per month This is where things get expensive, but for a good reason. Shopify’s advanced plan is for ecommerce businesses that are looking to scale. Typically, these businesses need access to in-depth reporting and analytics to make important decisions around stock, product re-ordering, and expansion. With Shopify’s advanced plan, users have access to real-time reporting, as well as custom pricing by market (for internationalisation). To learn more about Shopify’s pricing and plans, visit our dedicated Shopify pricing page. pricing and plans and Woocommerce (the ecommerce plugin required) are both entirely free to download, which makes them immediately cheaper than Shopify’s basic plan. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any cost factors involved. To get your ecommerce store up and running, you’ll need to: Pay for hosting – as is self-hosted, it is your responsibility to set up hosting for your website. This can range in price from £2 – £400, depending on the size of your online store, and whether or not you choose shared, VPS, or dedicated hosting. Bluehost is our top recommendation for any business needing hosting . To find out more, read our in-depth Bluehost review . Pay for a domain – you’ll need to purchase a website name before you can set up your store. This can set you back anywhere between £7 – £12 per year. Bluehost and GoDaddy both provide affordable domain plans. Purchase an SSL certificate – this is required to securely transfer customer data such as card information, passwords, and usernames and will set you back at least £10.50 per month There are also other costs to consider: the price of extensions (add-ons) to allow for marketing, payments, shopping, and store management, all of which could set you back between £0 – £270 each per year. To learn more about how much a WordPress website will set you back, visit our WordPress website cost page . Shopify vs which has the best free plan? Technically speaking, has the best free plan, because it is free to use the platform. However, to make your ecommerce site fully operational, you will need to pay for hosting, a domain, and SSL. Shopify may not offer a free plan, but it does let its users trial the product for 14-days, free of charge. Best for website features: Shopify Our in-depth research shows that Shopify narrowly wins this head-to-head, scoring 4.2 out of 5 for website features, in comparison to, which scores 3.9 out of 5. The main reason Shopify edges this one is that our user testing revealed that the platform preempts and predicts what a merchant might need next in all aspects of creating a website. This kind of automation is unmatched in the ecommerce space, and means small businesses can feel confident they are setting up an online store perfectly tailored to the needs of their customers. If you compare this with WordPress, which is quite literally like working from a blank canvas, its users must plan and pull together different components of their website themselves with no guidance. Integrations Shopify also offers a vast range of integrations and apps, including ones tailored to dropshipping and order fulfilment – if your ecommerce store wants to specialise in these areas. However, WordPress does have a similar range of third-party integrations and extensions, and it is particularly strong in terms of its internationalisation features. Your site can be translated into 24 different languages, and you can offer international shipping and tax amendments by region. This is ideal for ecommerce businesses that want to begin selling products overseas. Shopify also offers these features, be it on their standard plan or above. In addition, Shopify has a cleverly customised ‘shout out’ feature that allows you to send a message to someone who purchases a product, or signs up for an on-site profile. Best for sales features: Shopify Out of all the research areas, Shopify is the standout performer across the ecommerce board for sales features – scoring a solid 4.5 out of 5.. Even though WordPress + Woocommerce isn’t far off, scoring 4.1 out of 5. If you lined the features of both up, they would look pretty similar. Both offer multi-channel selling, as well as unlimited products. Although, with WordPress, you will need to pay for integrations with the likes of Amazon, eBay, and Instagram. What primarily sets the two apart is the fact the majority of Shopify’s sales features are at your fingertips, ready to use in an instant. Features like gift cards, abandoned cart recovery, and discount codes are available to encourage shoppers, and they are all included in the basic Shopify plan. The same can be said for, however, you’ll need to install third-party integrations, or purchase extensions, to make use of them. This is frustrating and impacts costs, as some of these features are important to maintain a positive post-purchase customer experience . Perhaps the only win for WordPress in this area, when compared to Shopify, is its fully customisable checkout. Unlike other ecommerce platforms, which are only partly adaptable, WordPress allows users to edit all aspects of the page. This is why we scored full marks (5 out of 5) in the checkout area of investigation. This is great for small businesses that want customers to enjoy a fully unique buying experience, from start to finish. Best for design flexibility: When it comes to design flexibility, open-source platforms, like, are impossible to beat. Providing you have the skills to do so, you can literally build any element or feature for your website that you desire. You have full control over how the website looks, and can even create a unique checkout page, which you can’t do with any closed-source platforms, including Shopify. This enables your customers to have a truly unique shopping experience with your business, and this is an important factor that may entice them to shop with you again. In contrast, Shopify certainly has its limitations. Scoring a respectable 3.9 out of 5 in this category, customers are required to choose from one of Shopify’s templates before they can begin setting up and building their store. Although there are plenty to choose from, you are still building upwards from a foundation created by Shopify. It definitely feels less unique and creative than WordPress. However, what is very useful and flexible, is the fact that Shopify users can change their theme at any time. Information such as navigation buttons and products will be reconfigured in your new theme. This is great if you suddenly decide to change your branding, or move into a new industry and want to give your website a different look and feel. Best for help and support: scores full marks in this category (5 out of 5), and for a good reason. Customers have free access to hundreds of support guides and documents on the WordPress forum that help to answer queries ranging from themes and plugins to developing your storefront. If Woocommerce is your ecommerce plugin, you can also submit tickets for general support. And for all hosting and domain queries, Bluehost offers 24/7 phone and email support to its customers. It's hard to match all that customer support at your fingertips, but Shopify gives it a good go. Scoring 3.8 out of 5 in this category, the ecommerce platform allows users to request help within the editor. Its from there that you can access the knowledge and help centre, although the Shopify offering is nowhere near as extensive and detailed as Specialist advanced support and a dedicated support agent are available with Shopify’s advanced and enterprise plans, but this will prove costly, particularly for small businesses. Best for ease of use: Shopify Although these two ecommerce solutions have clearly different rankings, when it comes to ease of use, both of them scored an average of 3.5 out of 5. However, on a granular level, Shopify just edges out the winner with a score of 71% compared to WordPress, which achieves 70.5%. With Shopify, users were appreciative of the consistent typography and simple, understandable language. Icons are easy to identify, and there is a feature undo button so you can remove any element that doesn’t fit your site. These features make things easy, identifiable, and most importantly, reversible. But it is the abundance of apps and extensions that have given users a headache. Although sales features are this platform’s definite selling point, when it comes to ease of use, it can become quite convoluted to set up your website with all the features you need. Some extensions are offered by third parties, which confuses things further, like enabling dropshipping. Although a caveat of this, and the reason Shopify beats WordPress in this category by the skin of its teeth, is that the platform preempts and predicts what a merchant might need next when creating their website. This helps website building beginners ensure they have the right tools and features for their online store. As for, the user experience is similar. Although the installation process is noted as being incredibly simple, users need to install the Woocommerce plugin before they can begin building their ecommerce shop. Woocommerce does come with a setup wizard that assists you with initial support, including information on creating pages and setting up payments. However, because of its open-source nature, you need to spend plenty of time coding and designing elements in the back-end before they can be added. At the end of the day, neither platform oozes ease. So, if you are looking for an easy web builder to create your online store, be sure to check out our review of the best easy website builders for small businesses. How do Shopify and compare to other ecommerce platforms? Swipe right to see more 0 out of 0

WooCommerce Web Traffic

Page Views per User (PVPU)
Page Views per Million (PVPM)
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  • When was WooCommerce founded?

    WooCommerce was founded in 2008.

  • Where is WooCommerce's headquarters?

    WooCommerce's headquarters is located at San Francisco.

  • What is WooCommerce's latest funding round?

    WooCommerce's latest funding round is Acquired.

  • Who are the investors of WooCommerce?

    Investors of WooCommerce include Automattic.

  • Who are WooCommerce's competitors?

    Competitors of WooCommerce include, Fast, Shopware, Shoplazza, Tipser and 7 more.

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