WordPress vs Shopify: Which Should You Use for Your E-Commerce Site?

Graham Pinkney

Many businesses nowadays are choosing to add some sort of e-commerce function to their site. This allows customers to buy from them directly online instead of seeking out their products in a store or from a third-party vendor; whether that is online or on the high street. When a business chooses to open an e-commerce site, they usually have two options for platforms. These are WordPress and Shopify. Let’s take a closer look at both of them and try to work out if there is a side of the WordPress vs Shopify debate which would work best for your needs.

What can Shopify do?

If you need to set up an online store with very little technical knowledge, Shopify may be able to help you out. It is an online platform which has been designed to be super-flexible so merchants can customise it to their needs. As said, you don’t need any knowledge of coding or design to build a Shopify site. However, if you do have some, you will be able to alter the HTML and CSS of your website yourself; thus allowing for a
deeper level of customisation. Shopify host their own servers which means you do not need to worry about purchasing webspace or anything like that. All you need to do is pay a fee to Shopify each month and you will be able to manage your store and set it up just how you want it to be, no matter where you happen to be.

What can WordPress do?

When it comes to WordPress, there are two distinct variations which you must know about if you are thinking about using this as a platform. The first is hosted WordPress. This is very similar to Shopify in that it gives you a set of features to help construct a website; perfect for anyone without any technical know-how. However, it is lacking in some capabilities so you might have to look into Shopify integration with WordPress to be able to operate your online store as you would like. The other option is self-hosted WordPress. This requires knowledge of how to develop open-source code and shape it into what you envision. Using this method means that you can customise it to look and behave exactly as you want it to. There are also some different costs to consider since you will have to pay for hosting, domain registration, and some other factors.

Which is Right for You?

Ultimately, the Shopify vs WordPress fight will be solved by your own needs and technical knowledge. Are you comfortable manipulating code and want the freedom to build a platform however you see fit? WordPress is going to be the right choice for your company. Do your skills lie elsewhere, and you would rather have the expertise of a specialist platform to put together what you envision? Shopify will be your answer. Think carefully about what you need your platform to do for you and an answer between WordPress and Shopify will hopefully present itself.

Graham Pinkney

Author Graham Pinkney

Graham heads up our digital marketing team here at Elementary with nearly a decade of agency experience working across clients from large retailers to SME's in varying industries. Graham's background is primarily in SEO, content marketing, analytics and conversion rate optimisation.

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