Which Ecommerce Platform is the Best?
It’s no secret that the eCommerce industry is booming and an increasing number of businesses are moving online to reach a wider audience and increase their exposure. With eCommerce demand at an all time high, businesses owners are now spoilt for choice with countless eCommerce platforms.
Currently, there are plenty of eCommerce platforms out there that all offer similar features and options. However, with so many eCommerce platforms available, which one should businesses use? Two of the leading contenders in the industry are WooCommerce and Magento. Both offer plenty of features to make unique stores that function smoothly, while also having their own special features. To help you decide which eCommerce platform is the best for you and your business, we’re taking a look at both of the top options. Here’s an extensive guide on the difference between WooCommerce and Magento.
WooCommerce is an all in one plugin that was released in 2011 by the creators WooThemes. It currently has over 28 million downloads and powers over 28% of all online stores. With its amazing ease of use and excellent compatibility with the highly popular WordPress, WooCommerce has become the most popular eCommerce platform out there. Renowned for its customisation, low transaction fees and powerful features, it’s easy to see why so many people choose WooCommerce.
Another popular eCommerce platform that has helped revolutionise the industry is Magento. Released in 2008, the software was quickly snapped up by eCommerce giants eBay and has spawned a huge gathering and community around it. Currently, Magento is available in two different versions, a free version and a paid enterprise version. Depending on which you pick mainly depends on the size of your store and how many monthly transactions you are expecting to make. With a huge variety of different themes and extensions available for the platform, Magento has grown to become a powerful eCommerce solution.
Although WooCommerce and Magento are very similar platforms, the one thing that sets them apart is their features. Both offer countless options, yet both are built for different target audiences.
WooCommerce is a great option for many small businesses as many companies already use WordPress for their website. Adding WooCommerce to your website is as simple as installing a free plugin and following the setup wizard. The software then takes control of everything else and leaves you with a fully functional eCommerce store. The combined power of both WordPress and WooCommerce allow users to customise their store however they want. With countless developers out there that specialise in WordPress development, making your dreams reality really isn’t an issue.
Once your store is setup, managing it is very easy. The interface integrates itself into the existing WordPress interface to make it as simple as clicking buttons and dragging images. You can also personalise and customise all of the automated transaction emails that get sent to customers. This gives you full flexibility over your store and the ability to add your businesses colour theme.
Magento, on the other hand, is aimed at larger eCommerce retailers that need a solution to manage thousands of items. With the ability to work with multiple payment options, different currencies and multiple languages, the platform can have a steep learning curve. However, once you’ve mastered the platform, the end result is only limited by your imagination. If you’re not a very technical person, then there are plenty of Magento developers you can hire, but unfortunately, they don’t come cheap. This is the major downside to Magento. While it’s rich in features and is very scalable, it all comes at a cost which can easily be avoided by using other eCommerce platforms.
WooCommerce is currently free to download and use, but the chances are you’ll want to use some of their extensions to take full advantage of the platform. These extensions can range in price and often cost between $5 and $500 per year. If you’re planning on accepting more payment methods than just PayPal and bank transfers, then you’ll need to purchase an extension.
Magento is slightly more expensive when it comes to cost. The community version of Magento is free and includes more features as standard, but you’ll still need to add some extensions to get the full potential. These extensions can cost up to $1000 each, and that’s just to install them. Setting them up will also require a Magento developer to help you get it to do what you want. As we’ve mentioned before, Magento developers are typically more expensive than WordPress developers. This is mainly due to the fact that there aren’t that many of them and they are always in high demand.
For large enterprise eCommerce stores, Magento offers a unique enterprise option that provides a higher level of support and improved search functionality as well as a whole array of other features. However, at $14,000 per year, this option is really only for the large eCommerce stores who can afford to spend thousands on extensions.
The Not So Obvious Winner
If we had to give an answer over which eCommerce platform is the best, then we would have to go with WooCommerce. However, there are plenty of scenarios when WooCommerce probably isn’t the best option, and Magento would be the right choice. Understanding what you want from your store is essential before making your decision.
WordPress is great for smaller businesses who are just starting out or only manage a few hundred items, whereas large enterprises that deal with thousands of products will most likely benefit from Magento, thanks to its enterprise features and excellent scalability. Both platforms gives users an amazing experience and both platforms are highly functional, but when it comes down to money, it’s cleary why WooCommerce is the popular choice.
Here at Purplebox Digital, we’ve helped create numerous eCommerce stores for clients using both WooCommerce and Magento. With our in-house team of experienced developers, we help clients achieve their full eCommerce potential. Contact us below for more information on how we can help.