Starting your dropshipping store is a great idea, but deciding between the two most popular and functional e-commerce platforms, WooCommerce or Shopify, can be both confusing and challenging.
WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin that converts any WordPress site into an online store in just a few steps, while Shopify is one of the world’s fastest-growing e-commerce platforms with various exceptional features.
By the end of this article, you’ll be able to figure out which e-commerce platform is perfect for your dropshipping store.
- Basic Overview
- Key Features
- Ease of Use
- Design and Themes
- Plugins and Integrations
- SEO Options
- Payment Options
- Support and Documentation
- Final Thoughts
WooCommerce vs Shopify: Basic Overview
Before we dive into our direct comparison between WooCommerce or Shopify, let us go through a basic overview of each platform to get an idea about what each has to offer.
WooCommerce is a powerful and popular WordPress plugin that turns any WordPress site into a fully functional store in just a few minutes.
WooCommerce works seamlessly with WordPress and gives you numerous powerful features to create a stunning and robust dropshipping store.
What’s more, WooCommerce seamlessly works with all major WooCommerce Themes and WooCommerce plugins to ease your e-commerce journey.
It is an open-source platform that is free to install. Although you will have to take care of a number of other aspects of your store manually, WooCommerce provides plenty of extensions and plugins to increase your store’s flexibility and that allow you to create a stunning website with minimum hassle.
WooCommerce is a great option for developers and users with coding experience as it provides limitless customization.
Shopify is the world’s leading and fastest-growing e-commerce platform with millions of users globally. It is a robust solution with powerful features that offer maximum ease of use.
Shopify’s interface is easy to manage and get started with, and Shopify beats the competition when it comes to customer support.
You can easily integrate various popular plugins to get started and increase the functionality of your store. Also, you get access to free and paid themes designed to improve your store’s performance.
Unlike WooCommerce, Shopify is a self-hosted platform that handles all the technical aspects of your store for you. If you have limited experience, Shopify is definitely worth considering.
WooCommerce vs Shopify: Key Features
Each platform offers an enormous number of features – too many to list them all here. Therefore, we decided to pick the best features of both the platforms and compared them.
WooCommerce Key Features
- WooCommerce supports all the WordPress themes, so you won’t have the hassle of needing to find a dedicated WooCommerce theme separately.
- WooCommerce supports 55,000+ WordPress plugins and extensions. From sales marketing to payment gateways, you can add lots of functionality to your store.
- WooCommerce comes with automatic shipping fee calculation to save you time and also provides flexible shipping methods.
- WooCommerce also does not restrict the number of products you can sell or buy.
- WooCommerce gives you complete control over your store. You can customize your needs with almost limitless customization options.
Shopify Key Features
- Like WooCommerce, Shopify offers unlimited sales through your dropshipping store. Furthermore, you can sell both physical and digital goods.
- Shopify lets you generate as many discount codes as you want. This way, you can attract customers for new releases, sales, and more opportunities.
- Through the Shopify app, you can purchase more features, plugins and add-ons, some of which are free and others that you’ll need to pay for.
- To give you an overview of your online business, Shopify comes with advanced reporting and analytics for your profiles, sales, and revenues. You can understand how your business is working and figure out how to increase profits.
- Shopify provides unbeatable customer support. You get 24/7 customer support on all the plans and a dedicated in-depth help center with videos, guides, and tutorials to help you whenever you get stuck.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Ease of Use
Ease of use is the most crucial parameter to understand whether the platform is suitable for your website or not. Most platforms are designed keeping ease of use for non-expert users in mind.
However, even if you are a technical person, you will likely opt for a platform that is easy to use and comes with a little to no learning curve. Let’s have a look at how ease of use compares between these two giant e-commerce platforms.
WooCommerce comes with a setup wizard that allows you to get started with maximum ease and guides you through the entire setup process.
However, you’ll need to do a little more initial legwork with WooCommerce compared to Shopify. You have to set up hosting, domain name, and more on your own.
Once you’re set up, you can customize and add products to your site easily. The interface of WooCommerce is clean and straightforward.
However, if you want significant customization, you will need some degree of coding skill and technical knowledge.
Unlike Shopify, WooCommerce comes with a higher learning curve and can be more time-consuming to get started with.
Shopify takes care of all the technical aspects of your website, which means that getting started with Shopify is easy.
All you have to do is select the plan you want and go through the setup wizard. Additionally, it is a hosted solution, so you do not have to worry about setting up most of your site’s technical aspects.
Additionally, you won’t have to worry about backups, managing your store, or the installation process. The interface of the platform is clean and straightforward. From the dashboard, you can add products and make edits without any hassle.
Winner: Both platforms come with an easy setup process. However, if you are a beginner, we recommend picking Shopify over WooCommerce because of its maximum ease of use.
WooCommerce vs Shopify: Security
For any business owner, security is crucial for their website. Especially as when you own an online business or store, you are going to accept payments from users and will need to take their personal information. Keeping this information safe and building users’ trust is crucial.
With the advanced Internet era, hackers have become expert at attacking websites and stealing vital information.
Having an e-commerce platform that provides higher security for your online business should be your top priority. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the security features of WooCommerce and Shopify.
WooCommerce is an open-source e-commerce WordPress plugin. As a part of WordPress, it does not provide any built-in security features.
You are responsible for installing SSL certificates, ensuring that your hosting provider is secure, and installing various WordPress security plugins to handle any potential breaches and create a safe website.
WooCommerce does not come with built-in SSL. However, most web hosting providers offer SSL to their users, so this should not be a problem.
Additionally, WooCommerce is not automatically PCI compliant – you will have to make it compliant yourself.
Because WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin, you have to manually take care of your business’s security. While this can be time consuming, it can be made simpler by choosing a reliable hosting service with excellent security features.
Shopify also provides a built-in SSL certificate, so you do not have to worry about purchasing SSL separately.
Shopify is Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant. You do not have to worry about having to set up or installing anything. The moment you get started with Shopify, you can accept debit or credit card payments.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Design and Themes
Every website focuses on design because your website’s design is directly related to your store’s success. A dull and out-dated design will increase your bounce rate and make users switch to other stores with more aesthetically pleasing designs.
Let’s check and compare the design options offered by WooCommerce and Shopify.
WooCommerce Design & Themes Options
All the themes by WooCommerce are highly responsive and come with plenty of fresh layouts to create a unique design.
Additionally, themes by WooCommerce come with higher customization options; you’ll be able to customize various aspects of your website, including the color scheme, typography, and more.
All the themes come with tons of pre-made layouts that can be simply picked and customized as per your needs.
If you need to make significant changes to your design, you will need coding and technical knowledge. With the help of developers, you have unlimited potential to create whatever design you want with WooCommerce. However, beginners might need help.
Shopify Design & Themes Options
Shopify comes with ten free themes installed to get started with immediately, plus access to 90 premium themes. All the themes by Shopify are designed professionally and can be customized to create a design that looks the way you want.
These themes work well on any device and will give the same excellent, user-friendly designs for all your customers no matter how they’re viewing your site.
These themes are created especially for e-commerce platforms. While the themes can be expensive compared to WooCommerce, they do offer value for money and are worth investing in.
If you are on a strict budget, you also have the option to pick one of their free themes.
Some of the best Shopify themes are Basel and Wookie, which provide customizable and clean designs. Bear in mind, if you want to apply significant changes to your website, you will need to hire a developer or brush up on your coding skills.
Winner: Both e-commerce platforms provide excellent themes and designs. However, Shopify’s designs and are polished and designed specifically for e-commerce sites with various crucial parameters included. On the other hand, WooCommerce comes with unlimited customization, but the designs may be less optimized for performance than Shopify.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Plugins and Integrations
Plugins and integrations are crucial if you want to enhance the functionality of your website. A single e-commerce platform cannot meet the needs of every user. Therefore, by using plugins, you can add features to your website to make it the way you want.
With plugins, you can enhance shipping methods, use email marketing features, SEO, and more. Let’s check the integration options of WooCommerce and Shopify.
WooCommerce Plugins & Integrations
As WooCommerce is an open-source platform, it relies heavily on plugins and integrations. However, surprisingly, WooComemrce provides 55,000+ integrations with excellent WordPress plugins so that you can build a website without any restriction.
You can find plenty of plugins in its marketplace. You can see both free and paid extensions available. Additionally, browsing through these extensions is extremely easy.
You can either purchase each extension separately or purchase the extension bundles made for various business purposes.
Shopify Dropshipping Plugins & Integrations
Shopify DropShipping comes with 1,200+ free and paid plugins and extensions to add to your store. You can pick the relevant integrations and install them right away from their app store. Navigating through the extension library is easy.
If you are confused about which plugin you should pick, we recommend checking the reviews and ratings. Installing these plugins is straightforward, and one can get started easily. However, the number of plugins provided by Shopify is far fewer than WooCommerce.
Winner: Undoubtedly, WooCommerce wins this round due to its extensive library of plugins and extensions. You can create any website you want with its 55,000+ WordPress plugins integrations.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: SEO Options
For any online business, one of the most crucial aspects should be how people arrive at your dropshipping store from the search engine. To achieve this, your store must have a higher SEO ranking than its competitors.
A higher search engine ranking means as soon as visitors type the product they need, your store should appear on their search page.
Therefore, before you pick the right platform for your dropshipping business, ensure that it comes with all the vital SEO features. Let us take a look at the SEO features of WooCommerce and Shopify.
WooCommerce SEO Options
WooCommerce ensures that your products receive a higher Google ranking since it is built using SEO-optimized codes. It lets you add or edit the meta title and meta description of your pages to tell Google precisely what those pages contain.
Additionally, WooCommerce is a dedicated WordPress plugin, so it integrates seamlessly with popular WordPress-friendly SEO plugins, both free and paid. You can use the best SEO plugins, including Yoast SEO, to boost your e-commerce site.
Shopify SEO Options
Shopify also provides excellent SEO features. As with WooCommerce, you can easily add meta titles and descriptions for your product pages. However, it does restrict your ability to choose URLs. You will also find plenty of useful SEO plugins in Shopify’s app store.
One of the best plugins by Shopify is SEO Booster, which scans your store and ensures the best solution to whatever problem that may be slowing down your site.
You can also add basic SEO information with Shopify, so you can be sure that you get the best SEO performance and higher rankings on search engines.
Winner: Although both the e-commerce platforms provide the basic SEO features that are crucial for any online store, WooCommerce wins this round because of its versatility of SEO plugins.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Payment Options
If you are selling products online via a dropshipping business, you will need to accept payments from various parts of the world. Having a limited number of payment methods will lead to higher abandoned cart ratios and low sales.
Your store must cover all the popular payment methods for to offer your customers a hassle-free experience. Let’s have a detailed comparison of payment options offered by WooCommerce vs Shopify.
WooCommerce Payments Options
WooCommerce offers more than 100 payment gateways to add to your e-commerce site. It integrates with various popular payment plugins such as Stripe, PayPal, Apple Pay, credit and debit card, and more.
One bonus of picking WooCommerce is that it does not charge you any transaction fees when you integrate with third-party payment services. If you are selling products in bulk, WooCommerce is an ideal choice.
Shopify Payments Options
Shopify also provides integration with more than 100 payment gateways. You can add whichever payment gateways you want easily using its app store. Shopify integrates perfectly with PayPal, Apple Pay, credit & debit cards, Stripe, and more.
However, Shopify charges you transaction fees depending on the plan you pick. For instance, Shopify will charge you 2% per transaction fee if you go with its basic plan. If you want to get rid of the transaction fees, you can do so using Shopify Payments.
Winner: WooCommerce wins this round because it does not charge any transaction fees. With Shopify, you will have to pay more unless you are using Shopify Payments. However, with WooCommerce, you can send a high volume of products without paying transaction fees.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Support and Documentation
No matter how functional your dropshipping store, you will need assistance at some point. Be it for troubleshooting or simply to understand new updates/features. Having reliable customer support is therefore another basic parameter by which to judge the platforms.
You should be aiming for a solution where as soon as you face any trouble, you can get in touch with the team and have reliable and trustworthy support. So let’s have an insiders’ view into WooCommerce and Shopify.
WooCommerce Support and Documentation
WooCommerce comes with plenty of documentation on their official website. You can go through its extensive documentation and find various helpful guides and tutorials to get started.
Although there’s no official support team, you can find answers through the WooCommerce WordPress forum easily. Additionally, when you opt for a hosting provider, you will get a dedicated support team 24/7 by your side.
Shopify Support and Documentation
Shopify provides exceptional customer support. It gives 24/7 customer support through live chat, email, and over the phone.
You can contact the team anytime, any day. Additionally, you will find an extensive library of helpful guides, tutorials, and more in its help center.
You can find solutions for your problems through its forums, guides, videos, and more. Also, you get a setup wizard that helps you get started with Shopify quickly.
Winner: Shopify takes the lead with its 24/7 customer support availability and in-depth guides and tutorials. While WooCommerce also provides limited customer support on its own, if you combine the power of a reliable hosting provider with WooCommerce, you may receive the best customer support.
WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping: Pricing
Starting your dropshipping business is not easy. You have to consider various factors when it comes to pricing. Bear in mind, you may have to spend on additional features, so spending more than your budget on any platform will do more harm than good.
With that said, let us take a look at the pricing structure of WooCommerce Dropshipping vs. Shopify Dropshipping.
WooCommerce Pricing Plans
WooCommerce is a free, open-source platform that comes with free download and installation. However, an important point to consider here is that even if the platform is free to use, that does not mean you won’t have to pay anything.
WooCommerce comes with extra costs. You will have to take care of every aspect of your website, such as hosting, SSL certificate, security, and domain name.
These all come with a cost attached, which may add up to more than what you might pay to use Shopify. Also, you may need to pay for various third-party plugins to enhance the functionality of your website.
Shopify Pricing Plans
Shopify comes with a dedicated pricing structure to make it easier to understand how much money you will spend. Their pricing plans are as follows:
- Basic Shopify-$29 per month: The Basic Shopify plan is ideal for beginners starting their new dropshipping business. It comes with unlimited products, abandoned cart recovery, and excellent basic features of Shopify.
- Shopify-$79 per month: If you already own a dropshipping business and need the best features for growing your store, the plan is ideal for you.
- Advanced Shopify-$299 per month: As the name suggests, the advanced Shopify plan comes with all the advanced features of Shopify to expand your business without any hassle.
All Shopify’s plans come with a free SSL certificate, unlimited products, discount codes, abandoned cart recovery, and more.
Winner: The winner in the pricing battle is challenging because it depends on what you expect from the e-commerce platform for your dropshipping store. For instance, if you are looking for a free e-commerce platform but are willing to pay for hosting, a domain name, an SSL certificate and extensions, WooCommerce could be your pick. However, if you need a fixed budget for monthly outgoings, Shopify might suit you better.
Final Thoughts: WooCommerce Dropshipping vs Shopify Dropshipping
We have seen that both the platforms possess excellent functionalities that let you create a perfect dropshipping store. Both come at an affordable price and let you customize every aspect of your site.
If you are a beginner and non-tech person, we recommend picking Shopify. It is the perfect platform to provide excellent, simple solutions for any e-commerce platform.
Similarly, if you need a free yet robust solution, we recommend picking WooCommerce. However, you need to have the technical knowledge to get the most out of this option.
Ultimately, you should pick the platform that fits your needs. Irrespective of your choice, you can create an excellent dropshipping store.
We hope this article helped you pick the right platform for you. If you have any further questions on WooCommerce vs. Shopify, let us know in the comment section below.
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