Shopify vs WordPress: Where should you launch your store? (2023)

Online shopping has never been so convenient, and the same goes for building an online store. There are dozens of themE-commercePlatforms to help you get your business online, from comprehensive website builders for beginners to do-it-yourself solutions for the tech-savvy.

Shopify vs WordPress: Where should you launch your store? (1)

With so many options, choosing the platform for your website can seem more difficult than building the website itself. For the sake of simplicity, today we will focus on the two biggest players in the e-commerce area: Shopify and WordPress.

You can build a successful online store with either platform, but they differ in their e-commerce approaches and the types of businesses they serve. Before investing in either option, weigh the pros and cons of both options. In this article, we'll explore the key differences between Shopify and WordPress to help you get started selling.

Shopify vs WordPress: What's the difference?

Shopify is an all-in-one eCommerce website builder. With Shopify, you can create your online store, process payments and shipping, and manage your inventory in a single tool. WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that allows users to create any type of website. WordPress is not pre-built for e-commerce – running an online store with WordPress requires additional plugins, setup and ongoing maintenance.

To get a better feel for itwhich e-commerce solution is right for youBelow, let's compare both services based on their key factors: price, setup, e-commerce tools and support.


First, let's look at the real costs of both solutions. Since Shopify and WordPress are different types of software, you will pay for them in different ways.

Shopify Pricing

Shopify follows the "Software as a Service" (SaaS) payment model: users pay monthly for a Shopify account and access the platform via the Internet.

Shopify Offersthree plansfor $29 per month, $79 per month and $299 per month. All plans include access to key eCommerce tools and features, 24/7 support and a freeSSL certificate. A 14-day free trial is available for each plan.

These Shopify plans also come with hosting on Shopify's servers, which is a huge advantage for those who would rather not spend time finding their own hosting and setting up their server. Shopify does this for you and is included in the monthly price.

However, there are some costs that are not included. You come firstdomain name, which you can buy through Shopify. A domain name will cost you about $10 to $20 per year. Second, integrations from the Shopify app marketplace will likely incur an additional cost per month if you want to further expand your website's functionality. Third, a premium website template will set you back $100-$200 more for a one-time purchase. Finally, note the transaction fees for each plan: There is a fee for credit card purchases and a fee for using a payment gateway outside of Shopify's native payment processor, Shopify Payments.

In addition to the three plans we have covered, there are othersShopify Lite, which allows users to integrate basic Shopify tools into a non-Shopify site for $9 per month, andShopify Plus, an enterprise solution.

WordPress pricing

WordPress CMS is free, but running an e-commerce website with it is not. The cost of a WordPress eCommerce site ranges from around $10 to hundreds of dollars per month – it all depends on what you're willing to pay for each part of your technology stack, including:

  • WordPress hosting (required)
  • A domain name (required)
  • An SSL certificate (not required, but highly recommended)
  • Paid plugins (not required but recommended)
  • A premium theme (not required)

The monthly cost of a WordPress site can easily exceed a similar all-inclusive Shopify plan. The best way to find out which platform is cheaper is to list the essential and useful elements of your website and then compare the price of your ideal Shopify plan to the total cost of an equivalent WordPress website.


The biggest hurdle for an online service is often the beginning. Next, let's look at what it takes to get a WordPress or Shopify website up and running.

Shopify setup

Shopify's main selling point is its simplicity. As a website builder, the goal is to provide you with a customer-ready e-commerce website as quickly as possible, managed all in one place, with minimal steps to get started and no coding skills.

To create your eCommerce website with Shopify, simply sign up, connect your domain, choose a layout for your website, and add your product inventory. Shopify takes care of everything else, including hosting, security and updates.

Shopify offers dozens of free templates you can use to customize the look and feel of your site, including nine options that are currently free. Your options are limited compared to the thousands of eCommerce WordPress themes available, but all Shopify themes are highly customizable andresponsive. With a little time and design skills, you can create oneunique Shopify site.

Shopify vs WordPress: Where should you launch your store? (3)

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If you have some knowledge of custom HTML and CSS, you can even play around with your theme's backend to further customize the look and feel of your website.

WordPress setup

Setting up and managing an eCommerce store with WordPress is more involved. This is because WordPress is not a website builder, it is a standalone software for managing your pages and content. You have to take care of the rest.

To start an online store using WordPress, you must first sign up for onehosting company, link your domain to your web server, then install WordPress on your host. Then choose a theme for your look and activate plugins.

Converting a standard WordPress blog site to an eCommerce site is easy with the free versionWooCommerce-plugin. WooCommerce gives you all the features an online store needs: inventory management, payment gateways, product listings and a shopping cart, plus many more features you may not have known you needed.

We also recommendadditional pluginsto configure and optimize other aspects of your website, such as SEO, social media integration, security and lead capture.

Obviously, the WordPress setup process is less convenient than Shopify's. The disadvantage, however, is the greater flexibility. WordPress lets you choose the hosting provider you want instead of settling for Shopify hosting. And thanks to the thousands of plugins (including specializedWooCommerce-Plugins),E-commerce themes, and the WordPress source code available to you, you can customize your site to look and work the way you want.

Shopify vs WordPress: Where should you launch your store? (4)

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A highly customized offer for many online businessesWordPress-e-handelssideis worth the extra time and effort.

E-commerce tools

Your eCommerce website requires certain essential tools to get the job done. How do Shopify and WordPress compare in terms of inventory, product listings, and transactions?

Shopify eCommerce Tools

Shopify hosts only e-commerce websites - the product is designed to give merchants access to everything they need in one virtual place. Once you've logged into your account, you can manage your entire inventory, list your products on your website, track individual orders and compile sales data into reports. Shopify even lets you enable customer accounts so users can log in and customize their shopping experience on your site.

However, be aware of Shopify's limitations on product listings. All Shopify plans allow unlimited product listings, but each listing is limited to three options and 100 variants for each option. For example, if you sell cakes, a cake list might include a flavor option. Chocolate and vanilla would be variants of this flavor.

If you assume this will be a problem, note that WooCommerce has no such limitations. (If your cake shop really does offer more than 100 varieties, email me.)

For payment processing, you can either choose Shopify's own payment gateway, orChoose an alternative(e.g. PayPal, Square or Amazon Pay). Note that if you use a third-party gateway, you will be charged a small transaction fee (from 0.5% to 2% depending on Shopify plan). Shopify also allows customers to apply discounts and coupon codes to their purchases.

In addition to the built-in features, Shopify's App Store lists hundreds of integrations to enhance your website, including SEO boosters, marketing automation solutions, social media integration, and shipping. Still, your add-on options are more limited than WordPress - WordPress plugins come in thousands, many of high quality and all customizable.

Finally, Shopify offers a blogging tool that you can use to support your content marketing efforts or share news and announcements.

WordPress E-Commerce Tools

By default, WordPress is a simple blogging platform. Any e-commerce functionality must be added with plugins. If you choose WooCommerce as your eCommerce addon, you'll benefit from most of the tools that Shopify also offers. If you need a feature that WooCommerce doesn't offer, there's almost certainly a plugin for it.

The WooCommerce interface is similar to the WordPress dashboard, so you can quickly learn how to add products and manage your store. Like WordPress itself, WooCommerce allows you to customize your product views to match the item you're selling. This is another advantage over Shopify - you can sell almost anything.

Plus, your site is built on the web's most popular blogging platform, so content marketing is easy when you're not posting new articles or tracking sales.

WooCommerce integrates with over 100payment gatewaysand charge no transaction fees. However, it is your responsibility to ensure a smooth purchasing experienceKeep your customers' private data safe.


Customers spend hard-earned money on your e-commerce site, so they expect a seamless, error-free experience. A solid support network is essential in those moments when things go wrong and you can't afford to hesitate.


True to its all-inclusive model, Shopify offers its members 24/7 access to its renowned customer service. You can get in touch with the team via e-mail, phone or live chat.

Along with its customer support offerings, Shopify also offers an extensive knowledge base and forums that you can consult before contacting a specialist.

WordPress support

Neither WordPress nor WooCommerce offer face-to-face support, so it's up to you to resolve any technical issues you may have. However, both offer extensive documentation and guides that you can consult. And if you run into a problem, chances are someone has gotten there first and you'll find the solution in WordPress' active support community – Google is your friend here.

Still, there's nothing like live support, which makes Shopify better for those who expect to ask a lot of questions and prefer personal answers to problems.

The main differences between Shopify and WordPress

Finally, let's summarize the Shopify and WordPress platforms. All in all, here are the general guidelines for your decision:

If you want a convenient, simple and dedicated e-commerce solution, go with Shopify.You can set up your website in minutes, and Shopify takes care of almost everything on the technical side, from hosting to payment processing to security. And if you encounter any problems, you can always contact Shopify Support. Ecommerce beginners will benefit a lot from this platform.

If you want a convenient, more flexible e-commerce solution, go with WordPress.Users with more web and/or commerce experience will appreciate the greater number of plugin options, tighter control over backend code, more tools for content marketing and management, and fewer restrictions on product listings. Current WordPress users are also better off sticking with this platform if much of their website infrastructure is already in place.

Subjects: E-commerce


Shopify vs WordPress: Where should you launch your store? ›

Comparison winner

Should I build my website on Shopify or WordPress? ›

Shopify is better for businesses focused on sales, while WordPress can help you build a website that does much more.

What are the advantages of WordPress vs Shopify? ›

The main advantage of using WordPress over Shopify is its flexible, open-source nature. WordPress lets you build any type of site you like, while Shopify's 'walled garden' approach can be restrictive in certain contexts (for example, where hosting choices and technical SEO are concerned).

Should I switch from WordPress to Shopify? ›

Shopify has all the necessary eCommerce features built in. If you have a WordPress website, you need a plug-in if you want to do any sales. You should migrate from WordPress to Shopify if you want to focus on running an online store rather than creating content in the form of blogs.

How do I use Shopify and WordPress together? ›

Listed below is a step-by-step process you can follow in order to combine the two.
  1. Create a Shopify Account. ...
  2. Activate Shopify's eCommerce Plugin. ...
  3. Connect to WordPress. ...
  4. Add Your Product(s) ...
  5. Set Up Your Payment Methods. ...
  6. Set Up Your Shipping Options. ...
  7. Add Your Products to WordPress.

Do professional website builders use WordPress? ›

Yes, professional web developers use WordPress for building websites. WordPress is a popular content management system that allows for easy customization and management of websites. Many professional developers use it as a starting point for building custom websites or developing custom themes and plugins.

Is Shopify the best place to build a website? ›

Shopify is the easiest and most reliable way to bring your business online. As an ecommerce platform, Shopify makes it simple to build an online store without any coding skills or a big budget.

What are the disadvantages of Shopify? ›

Cons of Using Shopify
  • Pricing. Hosting your online business on Shopify may cost more than you bargained for. ...
  • Difficulty With Content Marketing. promoting your business is as important as starting the business. ...
  • Limited Customization. We stated earlier that Shopify is customizable. ...
  • No Email Hosting. ...
  • Difficult Exit.
Aug 4, 2023

Who is Shopify's biggest competitor? ›

The four Shopify biggest competitors are WooCommerce, Wix, SquareSpace, and Ecwid. Shopify offers 4 plans on the standard version and one Shopify Plus version for enterprise-level companies.

Is Shopify harder than WordPress? ›

Adding products on Shopify is really straightforward. WordPress, on the other hand, is a little more complex. For starters, you'll need to know how to code – even if it's just at a basic level – to use the platform.

When should I move away from Shopify? ›

Lack of product options and categories

If you want to offer products with unique customization options (like this), you are better off using a different platform. Items such as apparel products with various attributes will need to be broken out into different SKU sets.

Is WordPress good or not for an eCommerce website? ›

WordPress is the most widely used CMS platform, and it is a viable option for eCommerce businesses too. With the integration of the WooCommerce plugin, you can create a dynamic eCommerce store. WordPress with WooCommerce gives you the authority of complete customization in terms of the layout and themes of the website.

What's more expensive Shopify or WordPress? ›

Shopify might be more expensive upfront because it comes with hosting and security features. WordPress can be more flexible and offer more affordable options for hosting and plugins.

Does Shopify work well with WordPress? ›

It is one of the most flexible eCommerce platforms, that also works well with multiple popular CMS platforms. That is why many people are nowadays using Shopify & CMS platforms together to market their products better. Shopify WordPress integration can do wonders for your eCommerce business.

Why should I build my website on Shopify? ›

Shopify offers quick, reliable, and unmetered web hosting for small businesses around the world, no matter what plan you choose. Shopify also provides a free domain for new websites until you're ready to create a custom one.

Why is Shopify better than other websites? ›

Shopify online stores have built-in SEO features that allow businesses to optimize their content. Shopify email is awesome. Create a custom email campaign through Shopify, send emails from your domain, and easily manage your campaigns. And if you use an existing email provider, Shopify makes it easy to integrate.


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