Shopify vs WordPress – Where Should You Start Your Online Store?

If you are looking out to create an e-commerce site, then you may have encountered the two major platform options: Shopify and WordPress. Shopify or WordPress, which one is best for you. Let us discuss in detail both the platforms so that you can choose which one is suitable for your business.

What is Shopify?

Shopify is a web application that allows you to create and launch your store with ease. You can also use the application even if you are not familiar with the design or technical stuff. They also provide the themes for the eCommerce sites, where you can choose the theme and customize as per your interest and business requirements. You can also edit HTML and CSS templates if you know to code, and customize an amazing and elegant design for your business.

What is WordPress? amazing

There are two types of WordPress. One is hosted WordPress ( this is a blogging platform or a SaaS tool that is similar to Shopify, where you easily create and maintain your eCommerce site. You have to pay the monthly fee to access the wide range of features. Another type is the Self-hosted WordPress (, where users have to install the WordPress software in their web browser. You will need to find a suitable hosting service and plan, which might be a monthly or yearly one, and you have to make a domain registration. You can customize your site to any extent as per your business requirements. If you give it to the right developer, or if you are good at technical stuff (website building), then you can tweak the site according to your wish. You can generate amazing user experiences and designs with the plugins. You can access the eCommerce features using the WooCommerce (WordPress online store plugin), which is available for free. And if you require any advanced features, then you can use add-ons by buying the premium features. With this plugin, you can flexibly create and run your online store.

As you are planning an online eCommerce store, there are some significant factors that you should consider before starting a fully-fledged eCommerce store. Factors might include Pricing, Ease of Use, Customization, Security, Payment Methods, Flexibility, Maintenance, and other essentials or any other specific things you want. So here, we are going to compare self-hosted WordPress with Shopify. Let us look at Shopify vs WordPress for eCommerce.

Pricing- Cost of using Shopify and WordPress

Price is the most significant factor, and you might be looking for good pricing if you are just starting your business or want to run an online eCommerce store. As there are many expenses involved in building a website and also on its maintenance, proper budgeting becomes essential. And the pricing structure of Shopify and WordPress is too different from each other.


Let us first look at the plans offered by Shopify to its users. Shopify provides a free trial for 14 days- and you can use this trial offer if you want to know more about Shopify and its interface, like if it is comfortable for you to handle, maintain, create the site and satisfy your business needs. If you like it, then you can use their services according to their plans and your needs. Shopify offers you the five price plans, which are Shopify Lite, Basic Shopify ($29 per month), Shopify ($79 per month), Advanced Shopify ($299 per month), and it also provides the Shopify Plus pricing plan. Each of the plans (except Shopify Lite) includes the free SSL certificate, web hosting, and domain name.

The basic plan can be enough if you are just starting your business. In this plan, you can add unlimited products. And this plan also includes two user accounts, 24/7 customer support, and many other features. They don't offer third-party tools and add-ons in the basic plan. Shopify offers their own payment solution, which costs 2.9%+ 30 cents per transaction. Shopify charges a fee of 2.0% for all transactions if you want to use third-party gateways or your own merchant account. You can reduce this transaction fee to 0.5% by subscribing to their advanced plan.


Unlike Shopify, it is hard to say how much a WordPress (WooCommerece) site costs you, as you will require different things: the Hosting (Server space where you can install WordPress and store the site), Themes or Templates (Design or user interface of your site), Ecommerce add-ons or Integrations (Addition of tools that helps you in selling products online), Plugins (additions of software or tool to increase your site functionality). It all depends on your needs or the requirement of the site. And if you are unaware of the workings of WordPress, then you have to hire a developer to create your site. However, you must pay for the hosting, domain name, and SSL certificate to start the eCommerce site. Generally, a hosting service costs you $25.99 per month, an SSL certificate costs $65.99, and a domain name costs $15.99. You can save money on the themes, plugins, and add-ons since you are just beginning. There are many free alternatives of the paid plugins and add-ons you can use on your site, and there are a lot of free themes available where you can choose the best and apply. Later, when your business grows, you can buy the paid and premium services or tools.  And if you are thinking of making your site a more professional one, then using the paid plugins is not a bad investment. However, the WooCommerce plugin is available for free, and later you can buy add-ons.

Themes or Templates, Ease of Use and Maintenance

It doesn't matter if you have any prior knowledge of web designing and building or not, but this is something you must look into. This section explains the creation and design of the site. WooCommerce vs Shopify, let's find out which one is easy and simple to use.


Shopify is a fully hosted program where you don’t need to install, update or manage any plugins or software and no need to worry about the security, backups, performance, and compatibility. Shopify helps you in customizing the templates with some limitations. It offers the drag and drop feature, which is very user-friendly for the beginner. You can buy the premium templates from the Shopify store itself and use them. And If you're buying them from any third-party website, then lookout for a secure one because some websites can infuse malicious codes into the templates.


Here you can customize as per your needs without any compromises. It has the flexibility to tweak to make stunning web designs. There are some free templates available, and as aforesaid, you can buy from the other WordPress themes provider website but should be careful of the malicious codes. In WordPress, you need to install, manage and update the plugins or software you use to ensure the site's safety. Some page builders offer the drag and drop option, and most of them are done in the backend.


Security is one of the most important factors when you are transferring or receiving money online. Many payment gateways may be suitable for you and may not for your customers. That's why you should consider all these aspects when you run the eCommerce site.


In the case of hosted solutions such as Shopify- the responsibility of the website's security lies with the companies who provide them. For instance, if you are a Shopify user then it is the responsibility of Shopify to ensure safety features like your website doesn't get hacked, backups of your data, and others. But you also have some responsibility for security such as creating a strong password and not letting anyone know your credentials. And Shopify has the responsibility on the technical side. Shopify offers a free SSL certificate with the Shopify site that says that your customers or users are browsing the secured connection.


In this case, the site's security is the responsibility of your designer or developer. But if you don't have anyone then it's your job to ensure the safety of it. You must regularly update the themes, plugins or add-ons, or software you use. If you fail to maintain the site properly, there are more chances of being attacked or hacked. And obviously, you cannot risk security, especially when you are running an online store (eCommerce), and you have to ensure the security and safety of your customer's data. You must be careful when you're installing or downloading the themes and plugins, they may contain some malicious codes, and you must be aware of what you are installing. Lastly, you must regularly update the plugins or themes to ensure security. A well-planned, developed, and maintained site will always be secure and safe.

Conclusion- Shopify vs WordPress

It all depends upon your needs and preferences. If you are looking for an easy-to-use, basic site, then you can opt for Shopify. As it is beginner-friendly, you can easily understand the price patterns, and setting up payment is easier and safer than others. The drawback is you have to pay some amount for transactions and also to upgrade the add-ons. And integrations can also be a bit costlier, and you can't tweak the site flexibly because there are some limitations.

Is WordPress good for eCommerce? If you require flexibility in creating and maintaining the site (full control over your site), then you can opt for WordPress. As mentioned above, there are some limitations too.

So, we can conclude that WooCommerce (WordPress) vs Shopify solely depends on your preferences and business needs. 

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