For any online business, choosing the most suitable e-commerce is a touch and challenging task. There are many website platforms nowadays and the two most popular e-commerce platforms are Magento and Shopify. It is important when choosing a suitable platform before starting your e-commerce business.
Magento and Shopify, these two brands are two of the most popular eCommerce platforms in the market today. Shopify is an easy-to-use solution for building online stores.
You pay a monthly fee, and it’s capable of supporting both fledgling and high-volume businesses. Magento is an open-source platform that, like WordPress, is free to install onto your computer. However, you’ll need to pay for web hosting (around $10 per month), security, and extensions.
It’s a powerful platform, but you’ll find it hard to achieve your eCommerce goals without knowing how to code. It’s more suitable for enterprise-level businesses with their own development teams.
Although both platforms offer a wide range of features and functionalities that improve the store performance and boost your sale, there are significant differences among these platforms.
Here is a list of 10 reasons to ditch Magento for Shopify
Magento vs Shopify: List of comparisons
1. Magento vs Shopify: Ease of use
Picking a platform that’s too hard to use will make it impossible for you to create the eCommerce store you want, which could be damaging to your brand image. Shopify is far easier to use than Magento. It’s a fact. When choosing your e-commerce platform, ease of use should be one of your first considerations.
In terms of Coding & Flexibility
- Magento uses a Zend framework that is based on PHP whereas, Shopify uses fluid which is also built using PHP.
- Magento is highly complex and it has a big learning curve even for developers. Doing custom work on Magento takes way too much time and effort due to its robust yet quite complex architecture. There is no denying to the fact that Magento wins when it comes to robust architecture but the question lies do you need all those complex features and functionality?
- Magento can be a stumbling block to beginners and first-time users. There are a lot of technical terms you need to know to maximize the platform potential whereas, Shopify takes advantage of a wizard mode which allows even non-technical users to set up their stores quite well.
- Without needing one line of code, Shopify users can easily modify the basic attributes of the store website with its drag-and-drop editor and easy-to-use tools.
- Furthermore, whenever you run into trouble, you always get great help from 24/7 phone support, live chat, and email functionality.
So, when we consider the user-friendliness of Magento and Shopify, Shopify wins.
2. Magento vs Shopify: Pricing
We all know that cost is the pain point that unites growing businesses with well-established ones. So, naturally, it’s essential to factor cost into our analysis.
- Shopify is designed as a software service hosted by the company which means users have to pay a monthly fee to access the Shopify software.
- Shopify also provides its potential customers with the 15 days of free trial which is quite helpful if you need to investigate the platform before the real start. Here is Shopify pricing for each specific package:
- Basic $29/month
- Pro $79/month
- Unlimited $179/month
- Moreover, Shopify also charges transaction fees for payment gateways like PayPal, Braintree, and Authorize.net. The fee percentage ranges from 2.0% to 0.5%, with more costly monthly subscriptions resulting in lower transaction fees.
Magento, on the other hand, gets a little complex when it comes to pricing.
- Magento’s platform is completely free. This means that installing Magento on your server costs relatively little — it depends on whether or not you hire someone to set it up.
- But, once we get past the initial setup, there are still a ton of missing features that you’re going to have to address. Magento is very basic, but it lives and dies by its extensions, which vary in cost and implementation.
- Of course, you also have hidden server costs. Since Magento simply provides the software, you’ll have to scout out the hardware to support it.
- Again, you’ll have to figure scaling into your costs. For small-to-medium-sized businesses, you should expect to pay at least $50/month, much more if you want a dedicated server.
3. Magento vs Shopify: Themes
The theme of your online store forms the basis of what your customers will see when they land on your site. With that in mind, you need to choose your template carefully to make a good first impression and inspire trust.
- Shopify offers 10 free and 64 premium themes, which cost between $140 and$180 each (which is much cheaper than the average theme on Magento).
- All of Shopify’s themes are mobile responsive, which means they’ll still look awesome when displayed on a mobile or tablet.
- This is important considering that 79% of smartphone users have made an online purchase in the last 6 months.
- Once you’ve chosen your Shopify theme, you can then go crazy with customization by adding new pages, changing the color palette, moving and resizing elements, integrating social media feeds, and more.
Let us look at some of the best Shopify themes;
1. Wookie- Multipurpose Shopify theme
Wookiee is one of the best Shopify themes you could find if versatility is what you’re looking for! Its latest update included 16 new skins and loads of blocks to help you build the eCommerce layout you want.
2. Basel- Responsive eCommerce Shopify theme
Basel, recently updated to version 3.0, is a multipurpose Shopify theme, offering a classic-looking storefront for many types of eCommerce businesses including fashion, electronics, and (as you can see from the screenshot) food and drink.
3. Banita- Shopify theme
Banita is a cool Shopify theme for sale. It’s a multi-concept Shopify theme that will serve all kinds of eCommerce projects well.
4. iOne- Drag & Drop minimal responsive Shopify theme
Pastel colors and sharp edges are the names of the game for iOne. Its twelve demos show off the clean aesthetic perfectly, giving you off-the-shelf solutions and providing inspiration for your own customizations. The theme boasts several unique built-in features such as an instant list/grid change, AJAX paging and toolbar, sticky menu, alternative images, lazy loading, product zoom, off-canvas menu, and plenty more.
If we look at Magento,
- Magento offers ready-made themes that don’t require any coding customization, as well as custom themes that demand the skills of a professional developer.
- The average cost for a ready-made theme is $100, while the custom themes can cost anywhere from $600 to $25,000. Naturally, the custom themes are only suitable for large businesses with chunky budgets.
4. Magento vs Shopify: Sales tools
E-commerce platforms and sales tools go hand-in-hand. You can’t have one without the other. Below are some of the best features on Shopify that enable you to sell products and make money:
- Abandoned cart recovery – recover potentially lost sales by sending automatic emails to customers that left your website before finalizing a purchase
- Multi-channel selling – sell on Amazon, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram as a built-in feature
- Sell digital products (as well as physical ones)
- Partnerships with USPS, DHL Express, UPS, and Canada Post – to save you the hassle of finding your own courier service
Magento’s inventory system comes with excellent built-in features such as bulk product import from your database, multiple product variants, total revenue reports, and total visitor count. Some sales tools from Magento;
- Multi-channel selling options – install extensions to integrate your store with Facebook, Instagram, and eBay
- Checkout customization – create a totally bespoke checkout for your online store
- Abandoned cart recovery
- Set percentage and fixed price discounts
Shopify has a more impressive range of sales tools than Magento. Shopify is one of the best eCommerce platforms around, offering plenty of built-in tools like multichannel selling.
5. Magento vs Shopify: Marketing tools
Having access to powerful marketing tools should help your business reach new customers and improve your bottom line.
- Shopify provides brilliant marketing tools, including the ability to run email campaigns through third-party integrations with Seguno, Klaviyo, Constant Contact, and many others.
- You can also advertise and sell directly on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.
- Shopify is also able to support multilingual sites, helping you sell products in different languages.
In the opposite corner, Magento relies on its Marketplace for the bulk of its marketing tools.
- For instance, you’ll need to install extensions, such as Remarkety, to run email campaigns.
- What’s more, you’ll likely need to rely on the skills of a Magento Web Developer to integrate your marketing tools if you want truly bespoke features
Shopify offers plenty of built-in marketing tools to help your store scale. Both Magento and Shopify rely on their respective app markets for the most important marketing features, such as the ability to create email campaigns, but Shopify enables you to advertise on social media as a built-in feature.
6. Magento vs Shopify: Additional expenses
- Shopify also charges transaction fees for payments made through external payment gateways like PayPal, Braintree, and Authorize.net. The fee percentage ranges from 0.5% to 2.0%, with more costly monthly subscriptions resulting in lower transaction fees. This means each time an online transaction is made Shopify takes a cut. If your store sees a lot of transactions, the fees can easily rack up to quite a lot of money. Users can only avoid these fees by using Shopify’s direct payment gateway, limiting their choice.
- On the other side, the more complex nature of Magento’s coding language may mean that users need to enlist the services of a developer to help set up and manage the store. This will of course depend on your coding experience and skill – so make sure you factor this into any budget..
7. Magento vs Shopify: Inventory management
All Shopify plans allow for unlimited products in your store. Magento also lets you create and sell an unlimited number of products. You can easily create products and collections on both of the platforms, but the reason Shopify gets the thumbs up on this one is because of its direct integration with drop shipping inventory apps like Oberlo.
It should be noted here though, that while Magento allows a virtually unlimited number of products, your host performance and site loading speed might turn out to be serious issues if you add too many products to your Magento store –
Something you don’t have to worry about with Shopify, since it is a fully managed and hosted solution.
8. Magento vs Shopify: Payment gateway options
- Shopify has a major edge here, with support for over 70 payment gateways while Magento is relatively at a disadvantage with support for a far lower number of gateways.
- More gateways, however, can be added to the Magento store via third-party add-ons. The main problem with Shopify is that it kind of forces you to go with its built-in payment gateway.
- Shopify’s gateway has 0% transaction fees, while they make you pay fees for third-party gateways.
9. Magento vs Shopify: Customization capabilities
Both platforms offer robust customization capabilities, via an advanced interface that allows you to edit the raw HTML/CSS code directly to give you total control over the design and the look and feel of your store.
- However, Shopify scores better here by providing a simple, menu-driven method to change the basic attributes of your store such as fonts, colors, etc. very easily while with the customization capabilities with Magento are as high as they can get because all its code is open source, any of which you can modify in any way you wish to.
This unrestricted freedom to customize can be used only by those who have deeply entrenched web programming and HTML/CSS coding know-how.
- Also, Shopify offers a theme editor that allows you to play around with the look and feel of your theme, and it can hide sections so that you can work on future updates beforehand without having a duplicate theme or working on a staging server.
- Finally, Shopify provides drag and drop sections, which are nice for organizing the content on your website. It’s nothing like an actual drag and drop builder, but it makes for a much easier design interface when compared to Magento.
10. Magento vs Shopify: Reliability and Security
Security is a big deal when it comes to eCommerce. Lack of it is one of the reasons many people are still afraid to shop online. You need to make customers feel safe and secure when buying from your store, and one of the best ways to do that is with something called PCI Compliance.
- While Magento does provide the ability to create PCI Compliant storefronts, you as the merchant are on the hook for ensuring your site is safe and secure. This can be a costly and time-consuming endeavor, and it can leave many merchants feeling stressed and distracted from the more important aspects of running their business.
- With Shopify, you don’t have to worry about your customers’ information getting hacked or stolen—that’s the platform’s responsibility. Shopify will ensure your site is PCI-compliant, as well as take care of various compliance assessments and risk management, making sure your site is secure without the need for you to schedule a regular evaluation of your site.
In conclusion, Shopify is a more user-friendly eCommerce platform than Magento. With easy access to support, eCommerce experts, and app partners, you’ll be able to take your business online much faster. As compared to Shopify, Magento might result in becoming more of a project that takes you weeks or maybe months to complete. It entirely depends on the availability of resources and the partners you choose in addition to the platform to help you set up your store.
You should use Shopify if:
- You want to get your store up and running as quickly as possible,
- You’ve been using an eCommerce website builder (like Wix, Squarespace or
- Weebly) and want to switch to something more powerful,
- You’re just starting in eCommerce, but are hoping to develop a fully-fledged eCommerce business,
- You’d like the convenience of an all-in-one payment, and having a support team on hand.
Contact us anytime for a Shopify Web Developer for your site.