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Shopify or Magento: Choosing the Best

Thursday, July 29th, 2010
Posted in Joel by Joel Gross

In the realm of Ecommerce, it is getting tougher to decide which carrier should host your online store. Two currently popular names used in the emerging Ecommerce market are Shopify and Magento. Both these companies have a lot to offer, but it all really depends on what your Ecommerce needs are. Continue reading this post to find out basic information on both systems or read my full review of the top 4 ecommerce shopping carts or simply visit my favorite, BigCommerce.

Shopify Magento Comparison

Shopify Magento Comparison

If you are a novice in the Ecommerce industry and are looking for a light-weight set up to get you started off, then Shopify would suit your needs. This is because the front-end of Shopify is quite easy to use and does not take a lot of time getting used to. Magento on the other hand is an open-source Ecommerce platform, which means more versatility and flexibility for the end user. However, if you are an amateur at Ecommerce, then you will want to steer clear of Magento because you need to have proficient knowledge of CSS templates to have a visually pleasing website. Being complicating is not necessarily a bad thing because with all the options Magento offers, it’s worth being on a steep learning curve. If you are willing to spend lots of time on documentation, but also like to customize everything, then Magento is a good option. Just know what you are doing because modification can take days instead of hours if you don’t.

In terms of pricing, both Shopify and Magento are neck to neck. They offer similar packages at almost the same price. This makes the decision a tough one. The only catch to Shopify is that they charge a 2% fee on every transaction you make if you are on their basic plan. If you select any other plan besides the basic one, then you are charged 1% of every transaction you make. Magento on the other hand, does not have any hidden fees to keep your ecommerce active.

In eventuality, one can’t say that one is better than the other. It really depends on what you require as an online store owner. If you are relatively new, have few products, or don’t need a lot of customization for your store, then Shopify is right for you. On the other hand, if you have been in this business for a while, carry a large range of products, and need to customize all aspects of your online store, then Magento is more likely to please you.