Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links through which I receive commissions. The reviews and opinions expressed in this article are my own.
I am going to say it again – I am an e-commerce junkie. I have tried one e-commerce platform to another in the pursuit of finding what would be the best for my store, and finding the one for me is not an easy task.
If you realize that this is the best time to start your online shop, then you have already taken the first step to venture onto e-commerce. If you have been on my page, you know I already have a recommended list for you.
What this entry will do is review top contenders for the best e-commerce platforms – Wix and Shopify. I understand that some of you would want choices but might get overwhelmed with all the platforms out there.
I will give you a comparison of the two so you could make up your mind.
Both platforms – Wix and Shopify, can offer a lot for your online store’s success. To learn more about the advantages and features of these platforms, here is a review:
How platforms help Ecommerce
You already have an idea for your store, and you have been researching how to make it successful. I know you have come across the term “e-commerce platform” more than once and have asked yourself what it is and what would be the best for you.
A piece of software, an E-Commerce platform, lets you create and build your shop online and run it virtually. It provides you with the tools needed to successfully manage your business – from the inventory to your stocks, to sales and marketing, and the day-to-day business operations.
An ecommerce platform lets you be competitive in the market.
FIrst, decide what kind of e-commerce entrepreneur you want to be and how to get the ball rolling. Next, decide on the niche and start building your store.
This chance to build your online business from scratch could all sound overwhelming. I could attest to that. The good news is – these platforms do not require advanced skills on web designing to create one.
There are many platforms to consider, and there are many features to weigh and consider. Here’s a rundown of the two of them.
Relevant: Read the comparison of Shopify and Amazon here
Shopify at a glance
Shopify was designed and launched as a platform for online businesses. It has helped 600,000 businesses online with combined revenue of $55 billion. It is a complete framework that lets you start and grow your online business. It allows you to do the selling, whether it be online, on your physical shop, or any of your social media accounts. Shopify is better designed for full-time businesses.
Wix at a glance
Wix’s primary function is to be a platform for content. It could accommodate you if you wish to create brochures, photographer’s portfolios, news sites, or even a straightforward blog site. You could say that this is a better option if your business grows around content or writing or if selling is not the main focus of your website.
Wix Vs. Shopify
Wix builds websites that eventually came around as an e-commerce platform, while Shopify was designed for this very purpose. Even with different initial functionality, Wix does not offer you less than Shopify.
The question now is: Are you a consistent user or a hopeful entrepreneur in the e-commerce world?
I will go through the differences and possible deal breakers at an even closer look and help you decide.
When talking about the ease of use, both platforms have good things to offer and can be impressive. Basic functionality is what lets you navigate the page quickly, which could also mean you spend more time selling than going around your page.
- Structured fit for online selling
- Easier to add products
- Editing and dashboard interface is detached
- Takes time in getting used to
- Simple drag-and-drop functionality – click on a feature and drag it wherever you want it to be.
- Good for creativity but a little puzzling when it comes to adding goods.
- Themes are less restrictive
Customizability and designs
The first thing that people notice is design. You are more likely to visit a shop that has everything in order and which the aesthetic appeals to you, rather than a shop that looked like it was not given a thought.
- Specially designed for selling and themes are geared towards it
- Independent designers create the theme templates and have a more inclusive range of free and paid templates
- No design skills necessary
- Easy to customize themes
- Designs cater mobiles, too
- Unable to switch after initial design choice
- Customizing the design plan can only be done by the Wix code.
- Designs cater mobiles, too
- Over 500 design templates available
- Templates are of general models and need customization to turn it to an online shop
Sales and marketing capability
You would think that Shopify would be on the lead as e-commerce is its primary function.
On the other hand, Wix has something up its sleeve. Sometimes, it all boils down to presentation. If your products look beautiful, they can be sold.
- Sales function
Shopify is a one-stop-shop for your online business. Wix, may not be powerful, but would still impress you with the things you can do on this platform.
- Requires integration of a 3rd party to sell digital products
- Allows selling of physical, service, and digital products
- Allows you to add limitless items of multiple variants
- You’ll need an app to zoom photos and play videos
- Allows selling of tangible, service, and digital products
- Requires an app to sell services and products
- The video function is built-in in the site
- Unique check out page for your brand
There are so many apps that you can use together with the e-commerce platform that can help you promote your brand or shop.
- Heavily relies on 3rd party apps for marketing
- Wix Ascend – a separate subscription that will let you manage your marketing campaigns as an all-in-one marketing solution
Social media integration and email marketing
Connecting to social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram and marketplaces like Amazon and eBay helps establish your business and boost sales. While Wix does not support social media integration, Shopify offers this feature.
- Allows selling across different channels and platforms or multi-channel integration
- Enables creation of email campaigns on the admin page
- Can integrate with Omnisend Marketing and Privy
- No capability of linking to social media sites
- Can only send three e-mails with no Ascend subscription
- Needs to subscribe to Wix Ascent for premium features
Blogging and SEO
Blogging is the unique function of creating content to get the word out about your online shop.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the ability to rank solid in search engines
- Blogging capability is not as impressive – no blog-specific and built-in analytics feature
- Needs Liquid developer for blog customization
- Creates blogs beautifully and seamlessly built but there’s no archive option
- Wix is built for novice users who want to design their page
- No Archive functionality for blogs – saving old posts for future readability
Both Wix and Shopify make it easier for your page to be searchable on search engines. They can also:
- Customize URLs for easy search
- Add and edit meta titles and headlines
- Add alt text to the images attachment
- Offer best SEO practice guidance
Payment and shipping option
Your online shop would need a facility to process credit and debit card payments. Shipping is the ability to transport the products to your customers after payment is processed.
- Has coverage for 100 payment gateways but Square with transaction fees for 3rd party gateways
- No charge for Shopify Payment
- Offers free shipping to sync with other shippers
- Traditional payment options including Square, but does not accept Amazon and Apple Pay
- No charge for 3rd party gateways
- Does not offer printable labels and would need other apps for global shipping.
Selling in multiple currencies
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More sales would usually mean more sales. This requires more effort and a whole lot of marketing strategies. This could also mean selling to more places and catering to potential customers, even from other countries. This feature allows consumers to see the price in their currency and check out and pay using the same.
- The multi-currency payment option is built-in on other templates
- Ability to sell in local currencies using a multi-currency app
- Will require a currency converter app to see local price
- Does not allow for checking out on other currencies.
Point of sale function
This option will enable you to build a physical store or stall. POS allows you to accept payments using card readers installed on smartphones and still sync on your site’s inventory. Both have POS functionality, however,
- POS functionality is available on almost all countries
- A key feature and integrated on Shopify
- Only available in the US, using Square
- POS is an additional product, and you need to work with Square to make it work
Dropshipping is best if you do not have the space to keep products, or you just want to keep less. It is an online retail approach that lets you take the order and forward it to your supplier so they can take care of the shipping.
- Lets you connect to multiple dropshipping companies using an app
- Recently integrated Modalyst in their features to allow dropshipping.
Inventory and abandoned cart management
It helps you manage and keep track of the products sold and goods that are still available. Your list would let you deliver your products promptly.
Abandoned Cart Management is a vital feature that lets you send a follow-up email to your customers who have not checked out their carts yet. This enables you to recover lost sales.
- Lets you upload multiple products
- Inventory gets updated even on stall or store sales
- Lets you use the stock management tool, download revenue reports, and the inventory interface is easy to navigate.
- Sends one follow up email for carts not yet checked out
- Limited stock inventory management functionality
- Would require 3rd party apps if you need an inventory report or analysis of site visitors
- Sends two automated emails for abandoned carts as follow up but requires a 3rd party app.
Pricing and set-up fees
Both Wix and Shopify are free of setting up fees for your first online store. You will only be charged for premium sites and if you wish to use the tools for your online shop.
Three main plans for Shopify:
Shopify Basic should be enough for your online store needs unless you’re a bigger store catering to a bigger market. It already has discount codes, unlimited storage for products, and integration of multi-channel. It is advisable to upgrade to Shopify and Advanced Shopify if you want to get better data analytics and reporting.
You can enjoy Shopify 14-day free trial to get the hang of it.
Three main plans for Wix
- Basic business – $20/month
- Unlimited business – $25/month
- VIP Business – $35/month
All three plans come with 20GB-50GB data storage, $300 ad vouchers, and unlimited bandwidth. The Business VIP plan would get you priority support and response.
Both Shopify and Wix
- No implemented charges for bandwidth
- No transaction fee – only credit card processing fees
- Free 14-day trial period
You can sign up for Wix’s Premium Plan 14-day trial period and see if it suits you and your needs.
Apps and add ons
Embedding apps on your online store allows you to access more tools and features to boost your shop’s performance. There are also mobile apps that you manage your shop on the go and at the palm of your hands.
- Shopify App Store – allows your customer to create a wishlist, set delivery to dropship and use currency conversion
- Shopify mobile app – you can manage your store wherever you are
- Shopify POS mobile app – for Shopify users with physical shops or market stalls and need to sync inventory and take payments
- Ecwid – sets up your abandoned cart emails and gives access to global shipping payments
- Wix has a multilingual app powerful enough that turns your site into any language.
- Wix Mobile App can create blogs and manage events
Technical and customer support
It is possible that you have reached this part and still have not decided which e-commerce platform you will use to start your online business. The make or break of it all – customer service.
- 24/7 Customer Support
- Live chat support available
- Need to sync inventory and take payments
- Template support is 3rd party
- Phone support avai;able for 7 regions only – North America, United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, Singapore, HongKong, and New Zealand
- In-editor help which answers frequently asked questions
- Wix Help Center has videos and articles to help you
- Charges extra for VIP support and urgent response
- Unable to call but you provide your number, and they will call you back
Both platforms offer
- Over the phone and email support
- Dedicated social media accounts
- Forums and a help center
Alternatives to Shopify and Wix
Wix and Shopify are two of the top contenders in the sea of e-commerce platforms. However, you still have a lot more to choose from, if neither of these two appeals to you.
Here are three more alternatives that you might want to consider:
If you have a bigger business in mind and find Shopify or Wix a little smaller-scaled than you want it to be, then BigCommerce is your guy. It’s perfect for rapidly growing enterprises. It has the best and most built-in features compared to any platform. It can help your shop become an e-commerce empire. For stores generating up to $1 million profit, the highest price plan is suitable for you.
Here’s where you can check BigCommerce and start your 15-day trial period now.
Boasting with the sleekest templates available, your online store would stand out. Although a little trickier to use compared to other e-commerce platforms because it demands more creativity, it still has superb built-in features and a reliable inventory management system.
You would also like to read the comparison of Wix vs. Squarespace here
If you are looking for a more cost-efficient alternative, you can consider Weebly. It is regarded as the best value for money choice out there. It’s easy to use and is for someone who wants to give building a website a chance and has a few sellable products on the side. Anything more complex than the primary e-commerce site Weebly offers, you might want to consider other platforms.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here’s a quick question and answer for frequently asked questions:
1. Can I code on any of these platforms?
A: Yes, Shopify has Liquid – Shopify’s template language, accessible to make customizations on templates. Wix code can also be accessed to enhance themes and templates.
2. Do Wix and Shopify support discount functionality?
A: Yes, for both. You can create discount codes for your customers to enjoy. For Wix, you have to set how much. Shopify is more advanced as it lets you give out percentage discounts.
3. Which is better for SEO functionality?
A: Wix has a bit more advantage here. Both platforms allow URL slugs and meta titles and descriptions; however, only Wix offers keyword support. Wix, since it is a content site, has more stable blogging features, which is essential for Search Engine Optimization.
4. Will the themes respond to mobiles?
A: Yes. Shopify has ten free themes and 50+ options for themes with ecommerce capabilities, while Wix has 71. Each one of those themes will work on your phone, so the site looks good on handsets and tablets, too, and could mean an additional to your sale.
5. Do these platforms support multilingual functionality?
A: Wix allows the set up of different versions of the same page in various languages. It can translate links, texts, SEO settings, and Wix Stores with just a click of a button. Shopify, on the other hand, requires a third-party app, such as GTranslate, to offer this function.
These ecommerce platforms let you kickstart your online business. Both have pros and cons and would depend on the kind of entrepreneur that you are or want to be. Wix Vs. Shopify is a battle between two outstanding platforms and great online shop builders.
These two powerful platforms can impact your online store and make a significant difference in its future.
Wix Is more of a general-purpose platform and would be perfect if you are looking to build this kind of website. The layout tools and a more comprehensive range of templates make it suitable for this kind of business. Wix’s no transaction fee and abandoned cart recovery management that sends two follow up e-mails are plus sides on top of selling cheaper than Shopify.
Shopify, on the other hand, works with fully responsive templates, has multi-currency functionality, has a broader range of essential apps, and it’s AMP support on products, make it a more business-like choice.
Wix is for entrepreneurs who want to start with simple brochures and are not dedicated to full-time selling, while corporate and power users use Shopify.
Let me know in the comments which of these two you ended up choosing. You can also tell me if there’s any other e-commerce platform you prefer over these so I can check out.
Liked this article? Feel free to share it. You can also read more to prepare you on your online business journey.
- Amazon or Shopify? Which one should you choose and why?
- Comparing Etsy and Shopify
- Wix or Squarespace? Find out which of the two is the best website builder
Want me to review any other ecommerce platform? Let me know in the comments below.