Choosing the Right Ecommerce Platform For Your Online Store
E-commerce platforms such as Shopify and Magento have seen a pandemic boom that was unprecedented and are now being used by small and large merchants to propel online sales.
When you start your own e-commerce store your first challenge is to select a platform that best fits your business. You'll have to identify a platform that is most flexible, versatile and easy to customize. Let us look at the two most common options – Shopify and Magento – and analyze their features:
What is Shopify?
Shopify is a cloud-based e-commerce platform with more than one million businesses using its services worldwide. You can pick from a wide range of templates and create your own store design. Shopify's most important USPs are its robust inventory management tools and payment gateway that come with it. The platform is compatible with a variety of payment cards and provides SSL encryption for security.
Users and business who don’t have significant IT resources appreciate that Shopify already provides website infrastructure that includes hosting, gateways, domain registration, SSL certifications and database settings.
Shopify provides a website builder that is a user-friendly interface allowing you to edit drag-and-drop style or use other features that help you to customize your store. It is also fair to say that you do not require coding skills to get started on Shopify.
What is Magento (now Adobe Commerce)?
Magento is an open source system that is used by larger corporates and multinational brands. Its platform is scalable and diversified, but less ideal for users who are not tech-savvy as it doesn’t offer many pre-designed themes and templates.
You can implement your own theme, however this will require deep developer knowledge or agency support. Magento is a pricier solution when compared to Shopify and therefore fits companies that achieve multimillion dollar sales online.
Who has the best SEO features?
Both platforms offer a number of functions that can be used to specifically improve your search engine ranking. Shopify automatically generates an XML sitemap and canonical tags for pages with matching content. In addition, many themes generate meta titles that include your shop name. However, you can also manually define each title as well as meta descriptions, URLs or alternative text for images.
You can also find all the features mentioned in Magento – but with less degree of automation. For example, if you want a sitemap for your Magento platform, it will require manual backend efforts.
Who offers better apps and add-ons?
If you are using WordPress, also known as the webpages factory that requires nothing beyond domain and hosting service, and are looking for the next step, then Shopify is a great option as it comes with thousands of apps and extensions.
Magento offers a strong library of plugins and apps that can be added with a a single click, e.g. integrated blogs, request for quote, gift cards or pre-orders that will help your store have competitive advantages over your rivals.
Early stage startups usually do not have sufficient capital to invest in expensive premium add-ons. Fortunately, some developers continue to follow the Magento open source idea and make Magento modules available to all users free of charge. Although paid extensions usually offer a larger range of functions and comprehensive support, you can still get a long way with free Magento extensions.
Both Shopify and Magento are great e-commerce solutions – the main difference is that Shopify wins with themes and templates. Also, due to its high level of beginner-friendliness, simple software operations and general provider support including setup, hosting, maintenance and security measures less tech-savvy users can operate their store on their own.
Magento users do not enjoy these set up advantages, but since Magento is an open source system it can be adapted and expanded in much more detail than Shopify. This obviously can be an important building block on the way to build your unique individual online shop.
At Prisma Softwares we help businesses to set up their store on both Shopify and Magento. We are happy to advise you on meaningful extensions of your store’s functionalities. We offer our service free of charge to new customers, this may include debugging of your code or an analysis of your store.