eCommerce sales are continuing to grow all around the globe. Building a high quality eCommerce store online is often a requirement for companies hoping to expand their sales in the modern age. Two of the most popular eCommerce website builders are Shopify and Wix. Which one is right for creating your company’s online store?
Both Wix and Shopify allow you to design and build a website with eCommerce capabilities. However, Wix is a general website builder while Shopify is specifically an eCommerce site builder.
Here’s an overview of the two site builders:
Shopify lets you design and build websites specifically for eCommerce sales. Every site includes features like shopping carts, payment portals, and category structure for organizing products.
Wix also lets you design and build a website which may include some eCommerce functionality. Products can be sold through the site only if these features are added with Wix Store.
In essence, this means Wix websites can be built with online sales capabilities but it is not the primary focus like Shopify. Each website builder has different advantages depending on your business model. Review some of the core differences between Shopify and Wix to determine which is best suited for your needs.
When building a new website, you have to account for pricing. Both Shopify and Wix have different monthly pricing plans for fully customizing your website. While free plans are available, they lack the necessary features to operate as an eCommerce platform. Once you build your website, you have to keep paying in order to maintain your site domain, design, and branding.
Wix pricing is based on how many features you want for your site. The monthly subscription plans are:
The Combo plan is meant only for personal use websites. If you want eCommerce features, you’ll need at least the Unlimited plan.
Shopify pricing starts out higher. Another a subscription based service, how much you pay depends on your plan:
Wix plans are significantly cheaper than Shopify options. However, the latter offers more eCommerce features even at lower price points. Both have transaction fees for credit card processing.
Winner: Tie, as Wix is cheaper overall but Shopify has more eCommerce features
Shopify and Wix both have lots of different web design options. The two have vastly different approaches when it comes to form versus function. The way you style your website will directly impact your brand marketing.
Sites made with Shopify put function over form. While photos, fonts, and branding can be personalized, these superficial touches all come second to site structure. Shopify is meant to be where you sell your goods, not stand out visually. There are only 10 free templates available. Other templates cost more, in addition to your monthly subscription.
It’s form over function for Wix, as design comes first. Wix websites are highly customizable and easy to design. Drag-and-drop, user-friendly templates help even inexperienced business owners build their websites to their exact specifications. There are over 500 templates to start with, with nearly 100 designed specifically for building a fully functional online store.
Having your own store online is just the first step of the world of eCommerce. Next, you have to reach your market. Do you want to allow customers from anywhere in the world? Or would you rather limit yourself to local consumers? How much scalability does your eCommerce site need?
Wix stores do not include a lot of popular eCommerce features, such as a point-of-sale (POS) system. These are sometimes available as extra plan add-ons at a higher price. Or you may have to integrate your site with a third-party software to handle your online business operations.
As mentioned above, Shopify sites are aimed more at eCommerce functionality than aesthetics. As such, payment gateways, shopping carts, and third-party platform integrations are built in from the start. Additionally, Shopify sites are scalable to grow with your expanding business needs. The entire sales process is covered, from product searches and checkout processes to billing and shipping. And the Shopify POS app lets you sell online and in-person so you can make sales at conventions and tradeshows.
The base eCommerce features make Shopify highly beneficial for digitizing your store. For example, Shopify websites include inventory management tools capable of organizing and tracking thousands of unique products. Anyone using a Wix platform would need to track their stock with an independent inventory management software if they have more than a few products. The need for additional software will significantly drive up your site operating costs.
If payment gateways are a concern, Shopify has more than 70 options while Wix only has 17. However, both have top payment gateways like PayPal and Stripe.
Website building isn’t easy, especially if you have no coding experience. Both Shopify and Wix use templates for their website designs. You don’t have to worry about editing HTML code or CSS styling yourself. You can build and launch your first website at your own pace.
Since Wix is primarily a website builder, the templates utilize drag-and-drop features for easy rearrangement. Don’t like the placement of an image? Move it wherever you want. Need to adjust some text layout? It’s done with a click.
Shopify websites are a little harder to edit, even when confined to a template. Since the focus is on the products, you’re fairly limited by the layout. If you want to make additional changes, you’ll have to learn to edit the code within the backend.
As an online store, you have to rely on digital communication and email marketing to draw in your customers. Shopify and Wix have different methods for customer outreach, depending on if you want to retain existing customers or attract new ones.
Shopify includes many email outreach options, such as distributing coupon codes during sales events or notifying individual site users about abandoned carts. These are generally used to entice existing customers into returning to your website. For example, you can set up an automatic process to send a discount code or followup email to customers who have items waiting in their cart.
Wix lets you set up a blog you can share on social media with your target market. And a wide range of SEO tools let you optimize your site for specific customer segments. This makes it easier to reach out to new potential customers. Like Shopify, features like abandoned cart recovery are available, though may cost extra as part of a more expensive plan.
Winner: Tie, depends on the outreach you want
Shopify websites have full access to a library of add-ons and plug-ins made to further personalize your eCommerce store. Even the Basic Shopify plan has different levels of website customization tools available. For example, Shopify includes features for digital marketing and SEO which help you target new customers across the Internet. Advanced Shopify stores can bring in plenty of new business.
Wix features include branding tools like logo design and social media support. And starting with the Unlimited plan, you can get visitor analytics in order to learn more about your site traffic. With a higher priced plan you can also utilize search engine optimization (SEO) tools to increase site performance.
In terms of pure eCommerce capabilities of Wix vs Shopify, Shopify is the winner. However, whether you use Shopify or Wix will depend on what you want from your online store. Small businesses looking for a platform to start blogging about their products and services may be better off with a Wix website. If the entire point of your website is for eCommerce functions, you should use Shopify.
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