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WooCommerce vs Shopify: How to build an eCommerce/online store

by Editorial Team

October 22, 2018


More consumers would preferable shop through an eCommerce store, than from a traditional one, according to Shopify’s eCommerce industry report.

With more internet penetration in Africa, and other parts of the world, more eCommerce stores are emerging. Asides giants such as Amazon and a few others who have built a very strong reputation as merchant and eCommerce platforms, new brands are setting up personalised virtual stores for their users to access their products directly.

WooCommerce and Shopify have majorly influenced personalised eCommerce setups, but they both function in a couple of different ways, and this is what to know about them, and how to build your own online store with either of them.


WooCommerce functions majorly as a WordPress plugin, and is designed to fit small and large merchant websites that run on WordPress, and is very easy to install and customise.

If you plan running your online store on WordPress through your website, WooCommerce would be a perfect fit, and here are a few pros about WooCommerce;

    • Stylish themes and countless design templates: If you do pay attention to appearance, the WooCommerce plugin allows you to make as many design variations as possible, which gives you more control on the user’s experience.
    • Very strong SEO: Running your eCommerce store on WordPress comes with this advantage. Since traditional blog websites do well using WordPress SEO, WooCommerce lets your products dominate Google rankings with a well optimised SEO.
  • Supports multiple payment options: This is a primary requirement for any online store — to be able to receive payment from customers, and WooCommerce supports a wide range of payment options.

Although with the many features WooCommerce offers, there are some potential cons to it, depending on your kind of eCommerce store.

  • Pricing: eCommerce gives you multiple options to help you build a unique online store, from countless payment options, to design templates, WooCommerce charges differently compared to Shopify. With WooCommerce you’ll need to purchase separate hosting e.g BlueHost, a domain name, any extensions you want and an SSL certificate, which substantially increases its cost depending on the model of your online store.
  • Tech Support: WooCommerce was created as an extension, but in the event of an error, and you’ll need instant tech support, WooCommerce doesn’t support that yet, but you can still get your complaints settled by opening a support request.



Shopify functions as a shopping mall, everything you need to begin selling your products has been provided, unlike WooCommerce which is more of a self serviced eCommerce store.

With Shopify you’ll have a more simple approach compared to WooCommerce, and here are some pros about Shopify you should consider;

  • Pricing:  Shopify gives you a more fixed cost, meaning you’ll get only the perks of the plan you pay for, and Shopify offers three pricing plans.
  • Dedicated Tech/Customer Support: Unlike WooCommerce, Shopify offers a steady and quick response tech support team, to effectively handle any issues you could possibly encounter.
  • Multiple Payment options: Shopify also supports multiple payment options, so you can accept payment from customers around the globe.
  • Increased sales channel: Compared to WooCommerce which works majorly with your WordPress website, Shopify allows you sell products on other sales platforms like Instagram or Amazon.

Although Shopify is really great for building your own eCommerce store, it is limited in design. With Shopify, you really can’t rebrand the looks of your store without some technical skill.

Between Shopify and WooCommerce, there isn’t one that you could particularly say works better than the other, the best way to decide which works better, will have to be judged based on your business model, and market outreach. If you’ve got an established brand, and you’ve got a lot of traffic to your home website, WooCommerce could then be the perfect fit for you, and if you’re into merchandising, and retail redistribution, then you should consider Spotify as a more appropriate model for you online shop.

If you have ever considered building your own personal online store, but can’t get around the technicality of Shopify, or decide a suitable design from WooCommerce, then request a free design from us at Charisol.

At Charisol we are a 100% software engineering and design team, composed of top talents from across the globe, set to create you a stunning and aesthetic ecommerce store. Contact us for a free design right away.

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