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Natalya Brinza Project Manager
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in the online-business

Which one is Better: Shopify or Magento?

Choosing an ecommerce platform for an online store development is considered a key factor of a business's success. If you don't want your business to fail, check out this compare-list — use the right platform to do your best.

Today, Shopify and Magento are the most widely used ecommerce store development platforms. But because of fundamental differences, these platforms don't give a developer the result he wants to achieve. Read our article about the platforms' tips to be well aware of what each of them is about and to understand the difference between Magento and Shopify.

Read alsoPlatform for website development

Before reading, keep in mind that Shopify is a commercial product, which is paid for, whereas Magento cost is totally free. Also, Magento enables you to provide hosting, install and setup before creating a store, while Shopify is an already hosted solution.

MAGENTO vs SHOPIFY: features and characteristics

1 Basic web store functionality

The answer to the question “Why choose Shopify?” is - though both platforms offer basic functionality that is ready to be used on an ongoing basis, but Shopify seems easier to setup and use compared to Magento functionality.

2 Inventory management

The Shopify Starter plan let you use a maximum of 25 store items, whereas Magento doesn't limit you in number of items at all. But there may be troubles with the host performance and site loading if you add too many items on your Magento store. But with fully managed Shopify, you don't have to be worried.

3 Calculation of shipping charges

This the most basic and essential aspect of selling sites. This option is rather flexible and powerful on both platforms.

4 Supplying coupons and discount codes

This feature is available on both platforms but with one difference: on Shopify, it is offered on all plans except starter plan. On Magento, you can create discount code and or use another calculation functionalities.

5 Payments gateway options

Here, the winner of Shopify and Magento comparison is Shopify, with support for 70 payment gateways. Magento supports a far lower number of gateways, but additional ones can be supplied to Magento store via third-party add-ons.

Read alsoChoosing payment methods for Magento

Shopify or Magento

Continue reading about Shopify versus Magento for more useful information!

6 Themes and Templates

Both Shopify and Magento Community installation have a large collection of themes and templates to make your web store extraordinary. Though the number of free templates on Shopify is much smaller than on Magento, they look more contemporary as compared to the Magento themes. Speaking about paid themes, Magento is a winner as its paid themes start at $1! Each platform provides a good number of responsive templates, both free and paid.

7 Apps and Add-ons

Here will be a great answer on “Why choose Magento?”. Magento offers 5000+ free paid apps and add-ons, while Shopify provides just a little over 100. In any case, you can definitely expand the functionality of your online store in different ways.

8 SEO capabilities

Both features of Magento and Shopify allow for providing SEO in order to drive more organic traffic to a web store via search engines.

Read also: SEO for Magento

9 Customization capabilities

Both platforms allow the editing of HTML and CSS code. That way you have total control over the design and the usability of your store. Shopify provides a simple method to change the basic attributes of a website, while Magento web development is also on a high level because its code is open source, so you are able to modify your site any how you want. But be ready to use all your know-hows in web programming and HTML/CSS coding.

Read alsoHow to develop a website using HTML and CSS?

10 Blogging functionality

This feature is already integrated in Shopify. For Magento, there is a free plug-in. Easy blogging functionality can be achieved without any difficulties on both platforms, and it isn't a stumbling block when choosing Shopify or Magento.

We also understand, that for choosing Shopify or Magento that list may not be enough, so here we are going to give you a detail overview of Shopify pros and cons. So, benefits of Shopify are:

  • Shopify offers more than 100 professional and modern templates. So you can be sure that your store will look 100% complete. There are paid and free themes, divided by industry (clothing, jewelry, furniture, electronics, etc.). You can also order the development of an individual theme from third-party developers.

  • Shopify offers a wide range of additional applications and modules for expanding the functionality of the online store. More than 1000 paid and free solutions for successful management can be downloaded on the site: customer service, account balances, tracking delivery, reporting, etc.

  • Shopify provides 24/7 support. In the technical service you can call, write a letter or chat with her representative in the chat. Detailed instructions on the site will help you find the answer yourself.

Magento vs Shopify

Disadvantages of Shopify are:

  • In addition to the monthly fee, Shopify charges 1-2% from each purchase in the online store. This fee for maintaining the effective operation of the platform is not only in the plan "Unlimited".

  • Most applications for extending functionality are paid. The monthly fee for some of them can be 2-3 times higher than the fee for using the platform itself. For example, the installation of the accounting system Freshbooks will cost you $ 32 per month.

  • Even if you work with HTML and CSS and want to improve your site yourself (or hire a programmer), then you will not be able to make any changes. To do this, you will only need help from the developers of the Shopify team.

Among superiorities of Magento, we can highlight these:

  • CMS Magento allows you to create several online stores, at the same time you can manage them from a single center. This is the main advantage of CMS Magento, which is appreciated by many site owners.

  • When creating an online store on CMS Magento, you can easily use different currencies, in addition, if necessary, you can easily convert them. This function is great for creating an online store abroad.

  • CMS Magento allows you to create a convenient catalog of products with the ability to add categories and subcategories.

  • In the online store, created on the CMS Magento, you can functionally manage prices.

  • Visitors of the online store, developed on CMS Magento, can add feedback, evaluate the goods, put tags.

  • CMS Magento, thanks to access to the html code, gives a lot of tools for performing search engine optimization.

Read also: How to Choose the Best CMS Software?

And cons of Magento are:

  • CMS Magento is a complex system developed on the basis of ZendFramework. In addition, to work with dynamic content, Magento uses a little familiar the Phototype framework, rather than the familiar jQuery. In addition, CMS Magento is devoid of the familiar MVC pattern.

  • CMS Magento has problems with tax calculations. This is due to the fact that the Internet is a "tax-free zone", many e-store owners prefer to hide their income from public services.

  • Requires a good hosting. In the official document engine said that for the normal operation of the online store requires at least 256 MB of memory. It is desirable that hosting is in your country or nearby.

  • One of the main drawbacks is the inability to link the online store database to the 1C program.

TO SUM UP: shortly about the differences:

Speaking about Magento vs Shopify and their ease of use, specialists confirm that both of them come with a well-designed and thought-out user interface, making running an online store as simple as possible.

The cost of setup and the monthly fee also don't disappoint. The cost of Magento is totally free, but you need pay for hosting, though. That has monthly cost ranging from $5 to even hundreds dollars. Instead of this, Shopify offers different plans with monthly fee ranging from $14 to $179 without having to provide your own hosting and domain.

So, Shopify seems to be much easier since it is a hosted and fully managed service, while Magento is free, requiring to purchase hosting, but need to be maintained by tech-savvy people. And who is the winner for you? Magento or Shopify?

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