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Written by
Anton Boykov
October 9, 2023

Shopify vs Magento (2023) - Which is Best for eCommerce?

Shopify and Magento are two of the most popular eсommerce platforms. Find out which one is better than the other and right for your business.

Online store owners are constantly striving to separate themselves from the rest of the pack. It all starts with your choice of ecommerce platform. If you don't have a high-quality platform, much of your effort will be in vain. Two of the most widely used ecommerce platforms are Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce). Find out which one is superior to the other and is the better choice for your business. Our article has all the information! Check it out.

Which is better for eCommerce - Shopify or Magento (2023)?

If you are planning to start an online store, you may be wondering which platform is the best option for you. There are many different ecommerce platforms available, but two of the most popular are Magento and Shopify.

The right ecommerce platform can make it easier to manage your store, add products, process payments, and provide customer support. The wrong platform can make it challenging to do all these things or may not offer the needed features. Both Shopify and Magento have their advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, it is important to analyse your needs and the needs of your store before selecting the platform that best suits you.

Quick Overview

Shopify is a Canadian ecommerce company headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario. It is also the name of its proprietary ecommerce platform for online stores and retail point-of-sale systems. Shopify was founded by Tobias Lütke, Daniel Weinand, and Scott Lake after attempting to open an online store. All three founders discovered that the platform they were using was inadequate. So they decided to create their own solution, and Shopify was born.

Shopify is now one of the most popular ecommerce platforms in the world. Over a million businesses use Shopify to power their online stores, making it one of the most popular ecommerce platforms on the market. We at Fourmeta have been a proud partner with Shopify for several years, helping businesses to get exceptional results through our customer-centric and data-driven approach to ecommerce.

Magento, now known as Adobe Commerce, is a leading ecommerce platform that is utilised by businesses worldwide for the development and management of online storefronts. Magento was founded by Roy Rubin and Yoav Kutner in 2007. The duo created the platform as a part of their development firm, Varien Inc., after identifying a gap in the market for a robust, flexible, and open-source ecommerce platform. Their mission was to empower businesses of all sizes with the capability to create engaging, personalised ecommerce experiences.

In 2011, the platform was acquired by eBay and became a part of eBay's X.commerce initiative. However, in 2015, the platform was spun off into an independent company again. During this period, Magento gained a lot of traction in the market due to its flexible architecture, scalable solutions, and vast community of developers, which contributed to its ongoing development and improvement.

Magento was then acquired by Adobe in 2018, becoming a cornerstone of Adobe's expanding suite of digital marketing and customer experience management solutions. Since the acquisition, the platform has been rebranded as Adobe Commerce but continues to operate under the core principles of its original Magento framework.

Now that we know about the history of the two ecommerce platforms, let's look at how they compare in terms of features and performance. We will break it down in stages and answer the following questions:

  • What is the key difference between Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce)?
  • How do Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce) compare in various fields?
  • Which one is right for your business?

What Sets Them Apart?

Shopify is a SaaS (Software as a Service) platform, while Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an open-source platform.

Shopify is a fully hosted platform, so you don’t have to worry about hosting your own store. Shopify is a turnkey solution. This means that you pay a monthly fee, and everything you need to run your online store is included: the features, the functionality, the designs, etc. As a result, there are no hosting fees, no set-up fees, and no need to worry about updates or maintenance.

Magento (Adobe Commerce), on the other hand, is a self-hosted platform. This means you must find a web hosting provider and install the Magento (Adobe Commerce) software yourself. You will also be responsible for maintaining and updating the software and setting up your hosting and security measures.

Magento (Adobe Commerce) is thus more difficult to use than Shopify. This is because Magento (Adobe Commerce) offers more customisation choices and requires more technical knowledge to set up and use. On the other hand, Shopify is designed to be user-friendly and can be set up and used with little to no prior experience.

Now that we have looked at the key difference between Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce), let’s compare them in various fields.

Comparative Analysis: Shopify vs Magento (Adobe Commerce)

There are discernable differences between Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce). The platforms take divergent approaches to critical components. We will consider the following:

  • Pricing
  • Ease of use
  • Redesign
  • Performance and analytics
  • App store
  • Payment options
  • Features

At the end, we will issue a final verdict, taking into account everything that was discussed throughout the article. Let's take a closer look at each of the components.

Pricing

Shopify offers a simple pricing structure. There are three plans: Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify. Prices range from $32 to $399 per month, but if you opt for annual billing, the subscription drops to $24 and $299 per month for three months, respectively. For those looking for an even more economical option, there is the Starter plan, which allows you to sell products at events and through social media and messaging apps for $5 per month over three months. There are no hidden fees or long-term contracts. You can also try Shopify for free for 3 days, and your first three months with Shopify will only cost you $1 per month.

Contrarily, individuals interested in Magento (Adobe Commerce) must directly engage with the company to receive a specific quote. As per the information from various sources, pricing commences from $1,988 per month. In addition to the license fee, you will also need to pay for web hosting, set-up, and maintenance.

Regarding website templates and themes, the prices between the two platforms differ drastically. Shopify themes can range from free to $380, while Magento (Adobe Commerce) can charge up to $499 for some of their themes. And since Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an open-source platform, you will likely need to hire a developer, adding a few thousand dollars to your expenses.

Verdict: If you are looking for a simple pricing structure, then Shopify is the better choice. However, if you don’t mind a complex pricing structure and you are willing to pay for features that you need, then Magento (Adobe Commerce) could be a good choice. For our money, Shopify is the better choice. It is hard to beat with three inclusive plans, a hassle-free 3-day trial, and no long-term contracts.

Ease Of Use

Shopify is designed to be easy to use, with a simple, intuitive interface that even those without prior experience can follow. All you need to do is sign up for an account and follow the on-screen instructions. Shopify also offers 24/7 support if you need help. Shopify was built to be a platform inclusive of all skill levels.

Magento (Adobe Commerce), on the other hand, is not as user-friendly. While it has many features, it is not as easy to use as Shopify. You need comprehensive technical skills to set up your store and get it running. Magento (Adobe Commerce) also doesn’t offer as much support as Shopify does and lacks 24/7 support. You will have to rely on community forums for help if you run into trouble.

Verdict: Shopify is the clear winner when it comes to ease of use. While Magento (Adobe Commerce) does offer more features and personalisation options, it is not nearly as user-friendly as Shopify.

Redesign

Shopify offers a wide range of themes that can be easily personalised to match your brand. In addition, Shopify offers the advantage of quickly changing elements. Shopify provides a framework and gives you complete design flexibility. If you want even more control over the design of your store, you can hire a Shopify Expert.

Magento (Adobe Commerce) advocates for limitless adaptability and personalisation capabilities offered via a drag-and-drop builder and a content editing suite. The inclusion of a dedicated customer segmentation toolkit enables users to craft bespoke interactions tailored to distinct audience groups. Furthermore, the platform's product suggestion mechanism utilises shopper behaviour and product attributes to propose relevant items.

Verdict: Both Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce) offer many themes and templates. However, Shopify has the advantage of being easier to customise and make needed changes, as your business grows. You can still easily tailor your store with Shopify if you don't have coding knowledge. And since most of us aren't developers, Shopify is the winner.

Performance And Security

Shopify uses a Content Delivery Network (CDN) to deliver your content quickly and efficiently. Shopify also offers its customers a headless approach to ecommerce. With headless, the back-end is decoupled from the front-end, with API helping the two communicate. Headless ecommerce has the advantage of customisation and personalisation, where the front-end design is bespoke and jaw-dropping. And headless is adaptable to multiple devices, including desktops, laptops, and mobile devices.

Shopify also uses industry-leading security measures to keep your store safe from hackers. And if you need help, Shopify offers 24/7 support.

Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an open-source platform, which means it doesn’t have the same level of performance as Shopify. While Magento (Adobe Commerce) does offer you tons of possibilities, you have to remember that it is a self-hosted platform. This means that the performance of your host or server will tremendously impact the way your store runs on Magento (Adobe Commerce). The more products, apps, and plugins you have, the slower your site will load. This undoubtedly leads to lost sales. Furthermore, Magento (Adobe Commerce) also doesn’t offer as much support as Shopify does. 

Verdict: When it comes to performance and analytics, Shopify is the better choice. With a content delivery network, headless architecture, and industry-leading security measures, Shopify can provide your store with the performance and protection it needs.

App Store

Shopify has an App Store with over 3,200 apps that can help you streamline your store. With apps for accounting, marketing, shipping, and more, the Shopify App Store has everything you need to run your store. It is great to know that most apps and plugins may be easily added with a single click.

Magento (Adobe Commerce) also has an App Store with over 3,600 apps. This number of apps is undoubtedly impressive. However, since Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an open-source platform, the quality of the apps can vary. Therefore, you want to ensure that the apps function and help your store, not hinder it. And since Magento (Adobe Commerce) doesn't have as much support as Shopify does, you may have trouble finding answers if you run into problems with an app.

Verdict: Both Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce) have App Stores with a large selection of apps. However, Shopify has the advantage of being easier to use and having better support, considering that most of us don’t have extensive coding skills.

Payment Options

Shopify offers many payment options, including credit cards, debit cards, and PayPal. Furthermore, it also supports various payment processors, with over 100 options. And Shopify also offers its own payment gateway, Shopify Payments. With Shopify Payments, you can immediately get started with credit card payments. In addition, there are no setup fees and no hidden charges, which is excellent.

Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an open-source platform, which means it doesn’t have as many built-in payment options as Shopify. Magento (Adobe Commerce) also doesn’t offer its own payment gateway. Instead, you will need to set up your own payment gateway or use a third-party provider. And since Magento (Adobe Commerce) is not as user-friendly as Shopify, setting up your payment gateway can be tricky.

Verdict: When it comes to payment options, Shopify is the better choice. With a range of built-in payment gateways and its own payment gateway, Shopify makes it easy to start accepting credit card payments.

Features

As we have said above, both platforms offer a diverse range of options for customisation and are rich in features. However, there are some key differences between the two platforms. Let's review some of the more prominent features:

  • Shopify offers a built-in blog, which is great for content marketing. Magento does not have a built-in blog, but you can add one with an extension or plugin.
  • Both platforms are excellent when it comes to SEO. Both Shopify and Magento help you drive more traffic from search engines. However, Shopify has a slight advantage because it offers built-in SEO features, such as automatic sitemaps and redirects. Magento does not have these features, but you can add them with an extension or plugin.
  • Magento beats out Shopify in terms of language support. With Magento, you can create a store in multiple languages. This is great if you want to sell to an international audience. Shopify also offers multi-lingual support, but you need to use a third-party app or plugin to do it.
  • Shopify offers a robust inventory management system that lets you track your products, orders, and stock levels. Magento also has an incredible inventory management system. However, it's slightly more complex to use than Shopify's. While both offer an unlimited number of products, Magento's server performance and speed can cause problems and lead to losing out on sales.

Verdict: Both Shopify and Magento are feature-rich platforms. However, Shopify is the better choice if you want an easy-to-use platform with built-in features. On the other hand, Magento is an excellent choice if you have some coding knowledge and want a highly flexible platform for international customers.

Closing Thoughts

Shopify and Magento (Adobe Commerce) are both great ecommerce platforms. They both offer excellent features and options for customisation. However, there are some critical differences between the two.

Final Verdict: Shopify is the better choice for most businesses. It is easier to use, has better support, and offers many features. Magento (Adobe Commerce) is an excellent choice if you have coding knowledge or if you have a large business with a healthy budget. However, it is not as user-friendly as Shopify and can be tricky to set up.

If you would like to migrate your online store from Magento (Adobe Commerce) to Shopify, or if you simply have an idea for a product and want to open a Shopify store, Fourmeta is here to help. For ambitious ecommerce businesses everywhere, Fourmeta is the ideal combination of Shopify design, development, and marketing. Check out our blog for more helpful information about Shopify stores, including recommendations, actionable tips, and advice. Don't hesitate to contact us and schedule a free consultation.

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