PrestaShop or Magento (Edition 2016)

PrestaShop or Magento (Edition 2016)

Finding the best e-commerce platform is often dependant on the individual. There’s countless options, so it may be easier to narrow your choice to the more popular platforms. PrestaShop and Magento are highly recommended thanks to the easy-to-use interface, SEO benefits and impressive features.

These are both open-source programs and while they’re very similar in some respects, they’re some key differences. Here’s a handy comparison guide to help you find the perfect software for your growing e-commerce empire.

Installation

When it comes to the installation process, both platforms come out on top. By utilising a one-click installer such as SimpleScripts or Softaculous, you’ll be ready to get started with the click of a button. PrestaShop is a tad faster to set up and in the long term won’t require as much technical know-how for maintenance. That said, in these early stages Magento is more than beginner friendly and won’t require the help of a tech savy developer.

Customisation

Standing apart from the competition requires a unique look and feel to your online shop. PrestaShop is particularly useful for customisation and gives a sense of individuality. An array of extra templates and themes give endless design choice but these do come at a cost. Magento is equally impressive but much of the customisation requires the help of a trained developer. As mentioned, Magento is more complex and implementing changes can be tricky.

Added features

PrestaShop enjoys a huge selection of plugins and extensions, more than 25,000 to be exact. This enables a vast scope for tailored solutions where almost anything can be added or implemented to meet your unique needs. On the other hand, Magento only boasts a selection of 1,500 plugins and extensions. However, there’s an impressive choice of in-built features which allow admin to change everything from site design to layout and operational functions. As a drawback, it doesn’t include the same level of built-in security that’s found with PrestaShop.

SEO

When it comes to search engine optimisation, Magento reigns supreme. For this reason, it’s the sought after choice for large scale online retailers. Many aspects of SEO can be tailored in the platform’s dashboard. This includes an area for social media as well as targeted promotion and optimisation of content. PrestaShop comes a close second, but few e-commerce platforms deliver the SEO power of Magento.

Price

For the new business, it’s essential to cut costs where possible. Thankfully, both of these platforms are completely free. Magento does offer the premium ‘Enterprise Edition’ but this won’t be necessary for most shops. It was designed with the large enterprise in mind and those which sell thousands of products across hundreds of categories. Due to the slightly cheaper cost for purchasing additional themes, PrestaShop may be the more cost effective

Technical support

Users of Magento are privileged to round-the-clock support day and night. The same can’t be said for PrestaShop. It’s no surprise given the size of Magento and its high profile client base. That said, PrestaShop still provides access to a quick turnaround email support, as well as a large community of other users who share expertise and helpful advice.

Conclusion

Both platforms are a great choice for the budding entrepreneur. The user friendly design of PrestaShop offers quick and easy customisation, but Magento brings a wealth of SEO experience, not to mention excellent support. Some argue that Magento is better suited for the larger organisation while PrestaShop is geared towards the small and medium shop. Either way, you can be guaranteed of premium design and functionality with both.

Author Gyles Seward

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