With online sales revenue estimated to touch $5.4 trillion in 2022, there is a frenzied line of merchants eager to set up their online e-commerce store. And the business owners are having it easy with many online e-commerce platforms like Shopify and Wix helping them build and host their online store at competitive costs.
So is it Shopify store builder that a business owner should prefer or a cloud-based website builder Wix? Let’s help them select one that best fits their business needs with a comparison review and full pros and cons.
Wix is a website-building tool and a hosted solution that lets users create websites on its servers using a drag-and-drop interface with no coding requirement. Wix hosts the web in the free version and the only thing that goes against it is the advertisements. If you want an ad-free website with custom URLs and e-commerce options, you have to upgrade to a paid version.
Wix powers 7 million websites across the globe and offers to build websites for blogging, online e-commerce stores, appointment booking, and more.
Shopify powers 1.58 million websites worldwide. It is an e-commerce platform that helps businesses launch and manage their online stores. It requires no coding, no software installation, and no hosting services. It works on a SaaS (Software as a Service) model through a monthly subscription. Businesses can sell anything from products, services, memberships, event tickets, to digital cards online through Shopify.
So, which of the two do merchants select to set up their online e-commerce store? Here, let’s begin with it.
1. Ease of Use
Both Shopify and Wix are easy to use but each has its learning curve. Agreed, both are built keeping user-friendliness in mind, however, the user has to learn to build websites on both platforms.
Wix has an easy-to-use drag-and-drop tool and provides three front-end interfaces for website building.
Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence)
Velo by Wix
Wix ADI is an automated tool that suggests templates and themes based on user inputs. The user can edit the elements to suit their needs. The Wix Editor guides users to pick templates and add content to them. Basically, it allows more freedom in building a website than the ADI tool. The Velo by Wix is for greater functionality and more control over the design. But users need knowledge of coding to fully utilize its potential. When you work in Wix, you are working with both the desktop and mobile versions of your website.
In Shopify, you use a basic WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) tool to edit content in the back-end and preview them to see the changes. Its new theme editor, Shopify Online Store 2.0, uses a drag-and-drop interface to build websites. This tool is a bit restrictive and locks certain things so that your store design remains responsive and mobile-friendly.
So when it comes to ease of use, Wix is perfect for beginners while others will definitely like the simplicity of Shopify store builder.
Build An Engaging App For Free
The free version of Wix is ad-supported, doesn’t let you build your online e-commerce store, and prevents you from connecting a domain name to your website. You can use it as a temporary website such as for testing your website, for hobbies, for a birthday party invitation, or a small community garage sale. But the ads are prominently displayed on the website. The benefit of the free version is that it allows you to select from 800+ templates and includes hosting. You get 500MB of storage and you don’t need to provide credit card details.
The paid plans are divided into three categories.
Website plans- Starts at $14 per month (paid annually)
Business and E-commerce plans- Starts at $23 per month (paid annually)
Wix Enterprise plans- Starts from $500 per month (paid annually)
The online e-commerce store and the selling features are available on the Business and Enterprise plans.
In comparison, the Shopify store builder is pricier than Wix.
Shopify Lite- $9 per month
Basic Shopify plan- Starts from $29 per month
Shopify plan- Starts at $79 per month
Advanced Shopify plan- Starts at $299 per month
Even if we look at the basic e-commerce plan of Wix, it is available at $23/month when compared to Shopify’s $29/month. Shopify Lite only lets you sell through your Facebook page and gives you access to a Buy button to sell products on an existing website or a social media profile.
3. Inventory Management
Inventory management is neatly organized on Shopify. You have one common module to access the product creation page, inventory tab, or gift cards. It also has a powerful search bar to search products by name, collection, discount, or even customer name. With Shopify, you can upload multiple or single products and use tools for inventory management. You can track stock, automate purchase orders, get year-end inventory reports and manage user permissions and accounts. Shopify POS Pro syncs your online Shopify store in real-time for advanced inventory management.
Wix allows connecting your preferred inventory methods to your Wix store through open APIs. You can automatically set the inventory amount when you make a sale or even manually assign products an “In Stock” or “Out of Stock” status. Wix offers third-party software integration to help you take control of inventory management easily.
Want to view website traffic, customer shopping behaviors, or conversion rates? With Wix, you can choose to customize your reports on how you want to see them. The online e-commerce store data report is divided into three categories:
Sales report- To view revenue and sales information on an annual, monthly, or weekly basis.
Traffic report- To view website traffic by device, landing page, country, and location.
Behavior report- To view the most visited pages, what page users’ visited first and how they are interacting with the pages.
Shopify offers advanced reporting features but with upgraded plans. The data report on Shopify is exhaustive such as behavior reports, sales reports, retail sales reports, profit reports, finance reports, product analytics, live view, inventory reports, and so on. The Advanced plan allows you to create custom reports from scratch.
5. Payment Methods
Wix payment options are easy to set up and are secure. It accepts all traditional payment solutions including the “Buy Now Pay Later” solutions using Affirm, Afterpay, and Seezle integrations. It has a unified dashboard for payouts, chargebacks, and refunds and it charges no transaction fees for using a third-party payment gateway.
Shopify Payments is Shopify’s payment solution with no transaction fees. But merchants will be charged different credit card rates for each of the Shopify plans. And if you plan to use any third-party payment provider other than Shopify Payments you will be charged additional transaction fees.
6. Mobile Apps
Both Wix and Shopify have mobile apps to manage everything from order processing to tracking business data on the merchant’s mobile device. The apps are available to download and use on Google Play or App Store. The Wix app called Wix Owner allows you to access it with a QR code.
The Shopify app is a general-purpose app whereas the Shopify POS app is for merchants working in a point-of-sale context and helps to sync inventory or take payments using the mobile device.
Wix provides online e-commerce store owners with greater flexibility in SEO. You can customize meta tags, URL slugs, structured data, canonical tags, and much more. Wix provides SEO Wiz, a wizard tool for SEO recommendations.
Shopify auto-generates canonical tags to prevent content duplication. The themes also come with built-in social sharing and linking options. The Shopify store builder creates fully responsive sites that give an edge in indexing. Also, you can use the Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) feature even on product pages and not only on blog posts. Shopify automatically creates the 301 redirect any time you change a page or product URL that has to be done manually in Wix. But the disadvantage is some URLs come with a prefixed word such as /products/ or /posts/ after the domain name in Shopify. In Wix, you can create cleaner URLs that Google prefers.
Both Wix and Shopify provide SSL certificates, PCI compliance, and two-factor authentication. But Wix has the benefit that it periodically backs up the website.
In Shopify, you have to install a third-party app to export product data and save it on a hard drive or any other source from time to time.
9. Content Import & Export
You can import products through a CSV file in both Wix and Shopify. With Wix, you can only export 5000 products. Also, you cannot export digital goods. You have to make do with technical workarounds to export blog content out of Wix.
With Shopify, you can use a third-party installation to import or export all types of content including pages and posts.
10. Third-party app integrations
The third-party plugin integrations help online e-commerce store owners to improve the platforms’ functionality. Wix offers some 250+ app integrations mainly for marketing, selling online, media & content, designing, and services & events.
Shopify offers 5000+ apps including third-party plugins for almost everything from push notifications to no-code file uploading.
Wix is best for beginners or small online e-commerce stores. It is more preferred for business websites because of its ease of use, more SEO features, and wide range of templates. But remember, migrating from the Wix platform to Shopify is not easy. So, if you want to scale your business in the future, it is better to start from the Shopify store builder rather than starting on Wix and moving on to Shopify later.
If you want a comprehensive online e-commerce store, go with Shopify. It has fully responsive designs and good integration capability with third-party software. Moreover, a website on Shopify looks more professional and is scalable smoothly.
Whether your online e-commerce store is on Wix or Shopify, you can now build a mobile app from your website using Swipecart. It is easy to use and requires no coding knowledge. Create a world-class mobile app with Swipecart and give your customers a personalized shopping experience.