SHOPIFY VS WOOCOMMERCE: WHAT TO PICK FOR YOUR ONLINE STORE IN 2021?

In 2021, the landscape is changing. A lot has changed in the E-commerce world over the last few years. One of the most significant changes is that Shopify and WooCommerce have evolved to offer their customers more features. So which is better? In this blog post, we’ll be discussing which platform is best for your business: Shopify or WooCommerce? Both have their pros and cons that will affect different businesses differently.

WHAT IS SHOPIFY?

Shopify is a Canadian E-commerce company founded in 2004. They offer an online and offline platform for businesses to sell their products or services through third-party apps like themes, marketing, payment processing, etc.

Their software enables small businesses to easily build an online store, from design to payment processing and inventory management.

This platform also allows customers to purchase products on your site via mobile app or desktop device by using Shopify’s credit card reader, SwipeStox integration, etc. This means no more time spent printing out order forms!

WHAT IS WOOCOMMERCE?

WooCommerce is a free E-commerce plugin for WordPress. It helps individuals and small businesses set up their online stores in minutes, with no technical knowledge needed.

It’s easy to customise your site, add product options such as size or colour, create coupons and promo codes that encourage people to buy more than one of something; it also has built-in compatibility with popular payment gateways like PayPal Standard, Stripe, etc.

The WooCommerce platform comes bundled with all necessary features, including email marketing integration (for orders), an affiliate program for marketers who send customers from their sites over yours automatically get a commission on the sale without requiring any work on your end – both simple tools make running an online store significantly easier!

SHOPIFY VS WOOCOMMERCE – A DETAILED REVIEW

In this section, we shall take a look at how Shopify and WooCommerce stand on specific requirements and which is better suited for your needs.

Pricing PlansShopify Plans

Shopify’s basic plan starts at $29 per month, and you can upgrade to the $79 plan and the Advanced plan for $299 per month.

Furthermore, Shopify offers its own Shopify payments solution, which costs 2.9%+30 cents per transaction.

WooCommerce, on the other hand, is open-source and freely available as a WordPress plugin.

For those who want extra features such as their own hosted checkout page or more advanced features like affiliate marketing programs and coupons/promos codes, they can sign up for WooCommerce’s paid plans that range from $15-$299 per month. A benefit of using WooCommerce is that you can easily find free alternatives to paid extensions.

Winner: Shopify and WooCommerce tie. One costs more than the other, but both have their pricing plans to suit different needs.

 

SUPPORTS MULTIPLE LANGUAGES

Shopify’s templates are designed for English-speaking customers while offering a translation service if you’re not in the US or Canada. They also allow their users to create their theme if desired.

Shopify, however, offers different language options and translations for countries in Europe like Sweden or Germany.

WooCommerce’s interface is a bit clunky at first, but the plugin itself can be translated into any language you want! However, there are not as many themes that match your chosen locale.

Winner: Shopify is more versatile and can be translated into different languages.

 

PAYMENT GATEWAYS AVAILABLE

Shopify Payment Gateways

Shopify offers a wide array of payment gateways such as Stripe, Apple Pay, etc.

WooCommerce Payment Option

WooCommerce has PayPal Standard and the option to use their own custom checkout page, which allows you to specify your gateway. Some customers have reported difficulty in getting PayPal to work with WooCommerce.

Winner: Shopify has more payment gateways, but it’s also a paid service.

 

CAN YOU HOST YOUR OWN WEBSITE?

Shopify does not allow customers to self-host their store on a different domain or server than the one they provided; however, they will provide the URL for your store.

WooCommerce allows you to “Self-Host” and offer assistance with any technical difficulties you might have during this process.

Winner: WooCommerce gives customers more freedom to host their website if they choose to do so on a different domain or server than what Shopify offers.

 

CAN YOU DESIGN YOUR OWN STORE?

Shopify has a variety of templates and designs to choose from. It also offers the ability for customers to create their theme if they do not like any of those provided by Shopify or would prefer something more unique.

WooCommerce does not offer this option because WooCommerce is an open-source plugin that is freely available for WordPress.

Winner: Shopify has more design options and the ability to create your theme if you do not like their default ones or want something unique that’s not a template offered by them.

 

OFFERS AN AFFILIATE PROGRAM

Shopify offers a simple option where they can integrate with an existing affiliate program of your choice. WooCommerce, however, does not offer an option for an affiliate program, and you’ll have to manually create one by yourself.

Winner: Shopify offers a simple way to integrate with any preexisting affiliate program you might already use or want to use in the future.

 

CAN SELL PHYSICAL AND DIGITAL PRODUCTS

Shopify does not offer the option to sell physical products with their plan. You have two options: either you can go for a paid Shopify Plus or WorkSpace subscription and use this as your storefront OR create an extension like Product Options, Wholesale Pricing, etc., that will allow you to add these features.

WooCommerce offers the option to sell both physical and digital products.

Winner: WooCommerce offers a website and allows customers to sell their products physically by allowing them to create extensions for Shopify that will enable this feature.

 

IN-APP PURCHASES?

Shopify does not offer in-app purchases while WooCommerce does – even though you’ll have to manually integrate this feature yourself. However, third-party apps can simplify the process if your website begins generating large amounts of revenue. You will also be required by law to provide certain information for your customers before the purchase is finalised, like the price of goods and the total amount they will be charged.

Winner: WooCommerce as it offers in-app purchases which are not available with Shopify – even though this feature might have to be manually integrated by yourself if you run a website generating large amounts of revenue.

 

DROPSHIPPING

Shopify does not offer drop shipping while WooCommerce does. However, there’s one catch here when using Dropzoom extension: unless you’re doing business from the USA or Canada only, then you’ll need to set up a separate shop on another platform (eBay, Amazon, etc.) where people can buy products and ship them directly into their customers’ hands without any intermediate steps. This means storage and shipping costs that are not included with the extension.

Winner: WooCommerce as it offers drop shipping which is unavailable from Shopify

 

CUSTOM DOMAINS

Shopify requires that you buy their domain for people to reach your site via custom URL, while WooCommerce has an option where you can have both of them at once and redirect one URL to other automatically, so they do match. Winner: WooCommerce allows users to access any page within their website without first visiting the default web page or using a different address like subdomain.com/page-name/. They also offer the option of having both domains at once and automatically redirecting one URL to the other, so they do match.

 

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

 Shopify Customer Support options

Shopify offers both chat and email support, while WooCommerce is only available via the latter option.

Winner: Shopify for offering a more diverse customer service that includes live chats with representatives as well as an opportunity to send them an email at any time of day or night.

 

THE FINAL VERDICT: SHOPIFY VS. WOOCOMMERCE

Shopify is an excellent option if you wish to build an online store with your domain name and need minimal customisation. You can also sell both digital and physical products on the site. However, features like in-app purchases are unavailable for you unless you upgrade to the paid Shopify Plus or WorkSpace subscription.

WooCommerce is perfect for people looking into building their website from scratch while still integrating third-party extensions – which includes dropshipping! However, they have one catch when using Dropzoom extension: unless you’re doing business from the USA or Canada only, then you’ll need to set up a separate shop on another platform (eBay, Amazon, etc.) where people can buy products and ship them directly into their customers’ hands without any intermediate steps. This means storage and shipping costs that are not included with the extension.

We hope this article helped you decide which option is best for your online store!

Want a professional website design and development service?

Call or write to Litmus Branding, a website design company in Ahmedabad that provides digital marketing services.

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DON’T JUST SIT THERE! START INSTAGRAM MARKETING

Did you know that 80% of people on Instagram follow one or the other business? Think about what that could do to your marketing stats! Haven’t started yet? Well, what are you waiting for? Here’s all you need to know.

WHY IS INSTAGRAM SO POPULAR?

Well, the first and the most obvious reason is its ease of use. It’s just over 10 years old and has overtaken some of the oldest social media platforms mainly because it’s so simple to operate – just click and add an image. But this is also what deters many from using it – after all, there’s only so much you can do with an image right? Wrong. We’ll tell you why in a bit – but before that, there are a few other reasons why Instagram has taken the world by the storm.

WHY IS INSTAGRAM GOOD FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

Fair enough. What do you look for on social media platforms? Followers, who share your content right? At least that’s mainly what helps your business and brand grow. Your followers on Instagram can give you great insights about your audience – their age, preferences, likes, and dislikes, and so on. This data can help you narrow down your target audience and create your campaign and strategy around them. Besides, don’t forget Instagram is the easiest to use on phones which means you can click and share your experience on the go – literally – unlike say Facebook where you might want to add text to your post which can be harder on phones. Using the Instagram app you can easily share your own photos and those of people you follow on other platforms like Twitter, Flickr, Facebook, and Tumblr – straight from your phone. Voila! You are on at least 5 platforms with just a few clicks! Granted that you can only use photos but Instagram still lets you follow and be followed – which means you can take your followers to other platforms and attract followers from other platforms to Instagram – and that my friend is your cue to use it to expand your customer base.

HOW DOES INSTAGRAM MARKETING WORK?

Many businesses are already leveraging this great platform for business but if you’re wondering how a few photos can enhance your bottom line here goes:

SHARE QUALITY

Your content will only be shared if your followers truly love it and it generates a strong desire to share with friends. Remember there are millions of people on the platform and everyone’s posting almost every day. So if you want to get any kind of traction make sure your content is beyond awesome. You could – if you haven’t already – set up a regular Instagram account and give it a shot before you go pro. Follow a bunch of people and share their content. You’ll get a sense of what works and what doesn’t. Then you’ll know what you should or should not do.

BE HUMAN

Users are no longer happy with a great front. They want to peek behind the curtain to see what you are all about. Posting content in this vein – telling consumers how you care about them and the value you bring to them will make your content attractive and sharable. Why? Well, because those who view it will relate to it. When your content resonates with consumer pain points and brings a solution, that solution has far more value than content that tries to sell.

TALKING PICTURES

Instagram is an image platform. Quick shots taken from mobile devices may not do the trick. The point we’re trying to drive home is, your images should be of the highest quality that highlights the special characteristics of your product and convey your brand message and USP. Of course, the latest smartphones have great cameras and you can do a good job using those – but you need to make sure you get every element of photography – such as lighting, positioning, focus, and so on – right.

TELL STORIES

Using images already on Instagram you can create a sequence – a story – that conveys a message to your users. Instagram stories are essentially 30-second long slide shows that remain live for 24 hours. While you don’t need to spend a whole lot of time polishing your content for this, you should ensure that your message comes across. It’s a way to casually share something with your followers – and show that you are human. Your followers feel that they are experiencing the “real” thing and hence it generates great engagement.

ENGAGE

Posting high-quality human content is not enough. That will attract true followers. But it will not necessarily turn them into loyal consumers – or even one-off consumers. If your followers get answers to questions that arise from the content you shared, they can relate to your business and brand. They’ll feel valued and cared for and they’ll come back for more.

ACTION

Actionable posts tell users to do something. This helps generate comments and brings people tagged in these comments to view your content – and hopefully follow you. Of course, this opens the door for negative comments too – but look at the bright side – if you respond in a positive way it triggers a discussion about your business. If things begin to slide, you can stop responding and request everyone to use messenger for their complaints/feedback.

BE CONSISTENT

You don’t have to post every day. But whatever frequency you use – stick to it. Be consistent also with your colour theme, style, and other aspects – oops elements – of branding. Remember that people are viewing your brand across cyberspace and not just on Instagram. Consistency – not just on Instagram but elsewhere too – will help people recognize you so you’ll attract the right audience and do away with the rest.

CREATE CONTESTS

Another great way to generate talk about your content is to run a contest. The icing is that rewarding your most adherent followers – who win the competition of course – will encourage others to talk about it and participate next time. The contest could be anything from captioning one of your posts to creating a new one for you. Executing contests might require some dexterity but if done right they’re a great way to expand your reach..

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WHAT IS LOCAL SEO? HOW DOES IT HELP TO BOOST YOUR BUSINESS LOCALLY?

SEO is a common enough term in marketing. All search engine optimization services in India as well as overseas perform SEO as a part of their digital marketing to rank at the top of Google search results. But ranking at the top when a buyer from down the street, searches for a business, product, or service “nearby” or “in a particular location” is not necessarily implicit in your SEO. Enter Local SEO.

What is Local SEO?

Consider a scenario where a new set up boutique is looking for a conveniently located digital marketing and SEO service close by. The owner of such a business would naturally search for something like SEO Company near meEven if you rank among the top 10 in Google search or even among the top 5, you are still likely to be missed by this boutique because when a user adds the words near me or nearby, the Google algorithm prioritizes the geographical location when ranking the results. So even if you are located close to the boutique, another company may rank higher than you may.

Local SEO helps you rank higher not only within the industry but also within the location.

How does Local SEO help Business?

Geographical prioritization is not the only reason why you should add local SEO services to your regular SEO though that is important too if you want to increase your visibility and generate organic local traffic.

Traffic

The pandemic lockdown situation escalated the demand for locally available products and services. This ramped up the already fierce competition among local businesses. Business owners began searching for ways to drive online traffic their way. Pandemic or not though, whenever a person on the go searches for – say a restaurant or petrol pump – en-route, ranking among the top three locally available businesses is of paramount importance.

Retention

Once your consumer has found your business – and satisfied – he is likely to return for more. This is particularly important for businesses in residential areas such as DTP services and laundries. You will not only attract and retain customers living in the neighbourhood but are also likely to grab the attention of frequent fliers in your area – people who visit frequently – and require local services.

Competitiveness

Mobile users have a short attention span and they are likely to hit one of the top few businesses that show up in their search. Businesses that rank lower are unlikely to get business from passers-by looking for a quick fix like an insole for their shoe or a quick bite. To avoid being lost in a list of local businesses, it is important not only to be present within a certain radius but also to be among the top 5 if not 3 in Google local SEO rank.

Organic Business

The millennial user shares his experiences – both good and bad – on social media including Whatsapp. So when friend 1 asks friend 2 for a local service that is conveniently located – think beauty parlour or salon – your local SEO will come in handy to give you better word-of-mouth driving organic social media traffic – a definite plus for your business.

Alliances

Cross-selling and referrals are common among businesses located close to one another. If you rank among the top few businesses that show up in a local search, other – perhaps smaller – businesses in your area may approach you for references, cross-selling and other business alliances. This will not only increase your organic traffic but also bring in referral customers.

Vocal for Local

That’s not just a phrase coined by Prime Minister Modiji. There are many consumers out there, who believe in promoting local business. So if you want to shine and do your community, area, and hometown proud, you must let that shopping in your locality know. Moreover, you might just end up winning sponsorship to the local football team – giving your business huge visibility.

Trust

People searching online for businesses close to wherever they are; usually hit one of the first three that show up – not only because it’s easy to do but also because they instinctively trust Google Ranking. So if your business is up there, you are likely to garner the trust of the user on the strength of visibility alone. Of course, you must follow this up with quality if you want to retain the customer.

Google Pack

If you’ve ever searched for something like SEO Company near me, you would have seen that Google displays the first three entries differently. This is commonly referred to as Google’s 3-Pack. These entries are easier to connect because of direct links to their website and a map showing how to get there. This means that the user will not only see your business first, he can quickly get there too.

Near-Zero Cost

The millennium consumer lives a fast-paced life with little time to spend on shopping and stocking up. Operating through their phones, they are apt to do a quick search for local businesses. According to Midriffinfosolutions,, research shows that 80% of the disposable income in USA is spent within 20 miles of home. Local SEO is therefore important if you want to attract and retain local customers.

Ready to Buy

Although online shopping is trending, people still prefer to visit stores before actually making a purchase – particularly when it comes to essentials – perhaps because they need the items quickly. Reason notwithstanding though, the fact – says SearchEngilneLand –  is that 90% of all retail purchases are made at a physical store. Local SEO, therefore, assumes even greater importance than regular SEO.

Local SEO plays an important role in your marketing and branding strategies. LitmusBranding offers search engine optimization services in India. So if you are looking for local SEO services, contact us now.

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