Shopify or WooCommerce: Which Is The Best Platform To Sell Online in 2020?

Should you dropship with Shopify or WooCommerce in 2019 and beyond? Choosing the right eCommerce platform is more important than you think when dropshipping so in this video, I go in-depth on the PROS and CONS of both platforms. I made 5-6 digits on each platform so I don’t have bias towards a particular platform but I do have a lot of knowledge to share! Enjoy!

If you want a further in-depth look into the two platforms to choose from, check out the comparison below beyond the video.

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Starting an online store has never been easier in 2018 and beyond. By far the two most popular solutions are Shopify and WooCommerce.

Deciding which one you should choose for your dropshipping business largely depends on your personal needs.

Both platforms offer attractive design, different shipping rates, payment gateways, technicalities and marketing amplification; as well as different apps and plugin stores to further extend and improve your dropshipping store.

In this post, we’ll take a look at Shopify dropshipping and WooCommerce dropshipping, comparing features, and help you as best as I can to determine which one is the best eCommerce platform choice for your new dropshipping store!


Let’s Start with Shopify Dropshipping

Let’s start with the absolute basics: what is Shopify?

It’s an online platform that enables you to build an dropshipping store without any coding whatsoever, or even technical know how.

Shopify guides you step by step to make your life that much easier.

If you’re completely new to dropshipping and eCommerce, then Shopify is a very attractive option – it allows you to get everything up and running really, really quickly.

If you’re interested in how to get this all set up and running, be sure to check out my completely free dropshipping tutorial below.

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WooCommerce Dropshipping 

As I mentioned in the video, in order to start WooCommerce dropshipping you need WordPress and web host, such as Bluehost.

WordPress is insanely popular and is an open-source platform. It’s estimated that WordPress runs up to 30% of the Internet!

However, WordPress wasn’t built specifically with dropshipping in mind. Rather, it’s designed to be an all-in-one solution for building websites and sharing content.

That’s where WooCommerce comes in and saves the day. WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin that adds a host of ecommerce features to any WordPress site, including things like a shopping cart, product pages, inventory management, etc.

Both WordPress and WooCommerce are free. Yes, you will need to spend a bit of money on things like WordPress hosting and my recommendation is Bluehost, but it’s a requirement to get the website up and running anyway.

If you’re interested in how to get this all set up and running, be sure to check out my completely free website tutorial below.

How To Create A Website & Make Money Passively!

Without further ado, introducing Shopify dropshipping.


Shopify Design

Shopify makes it so easy to create an amazing looking online store.

If you don’t have an appealing website, people won’t buy from you. It needs to look like a legitimate online eCommerce store.

Without these elements, you can be pretty sure you won’t succeed in ecommerce.

At the time of writing, Shopify offers over 50 professionally-approved and designed store themes. Ten of which are free, the rest are paid starting from $140USD. These themes are super easy to implement and look amazing from the get go.

Shopify outsources its designs to designers and developers to ensure all these themes are updated to align with the ever-changing world of  the Internet. The advantage of this is that the theme stays updated, but the disadvantage is that they’re expensive.

On top of this, Shopify makes it s o easy to change most of the design options. Although, it is limited in terms of customisation.

If you’re an advanced developer, you can use Shopify’s specialized ‘Liquid’ language to make more significant changes. This isn’t necessary; only if you want to really go deep into your site.

Shopify Pricing 

A common question I get is “Hey Ethan, which Shopify plan should I go for?” Honestly, if you’re a complete beginner, save your money and stick to the Basic Shopify Plan at only $29 per month.

When should you upgrade your plan though? Simply when you’re receiving a large number of orders – over 100 a month and more as your customers are charged lower credit card surcharge rate the higher the plan.

You also get access to more staff accounts, which of course is an important element when scaling and hiring more Virtual Assistants to manage your store.

At the second tier, “Shopify” you do get access to their abandoned cart recovery tool, which may justify the increase in monthly fees again pending how many orders/traffic you’re seeing come through.

Of course you can download a paid app to cover this tool, but Shopify’s in-built abandoned cart recovery is significantly better than all third-party apps available.

Before you make your decision, feel free to sign up for a full Shopify trial on any plan you choose with this link here.

Shopify Out Of The Box

You’ll get the following as default features:

  • Unlimited products
  • Unlimited file storage
  • Automatic fraud analysis
  • Embedded Oberlo integration
  • Credit card payments
  • Multiple languages
  • Adjustable shipping rates and taxes
  • Customer profiles
  • Drop shipping capabilities
  • Manual order creation
  • Discount codes
  • Blog module
  • Free SSL certificate
  • Mobile commerce optimization
  • Editable HTML and CSS
  • Daily backups
  • Site stats and product reports
  • Fully featured mobile app
  • Product importing via CSV files
  • Different product variations
  • Print orders
  • SEO-ready site structure
  • Individual product reviews
  • Facebook selling module
  • Social media integration
  • Physical and digital products in the store
  • Unlimited traffic to your store

Shopify User Interface

One of Shopify’s greatest strengths is ease of use. It’s intentionally designed to make things quick and easy. All you need to do to get started is go to, go through the signup wizard process, and you’re done.

After that, you can take your store live and begin selling. It’s really that simple.

The Shopify dashboard makes it easy to get a feel for your store performance, as well as any issues you need to be aware of. It’s also easy to adjust settings like shipping, taxes, handling new orders, giving refunds, and more.

For example, when you’re adding a product to your Shopify store, every option is available on a single panel so you don’t have to visit multiple spots on your dashboard when adding new products. This means you don’t have to hunt in multiple places for all the things that need to be included (description, specs, shipping, etc.) when you bring new products to market.

Shopify Customer Support

If technology is intimidating to you, Shopify does everything they can to make things easy.

Because Shopify wants to be an all-in-one solution, they make great efforts to offer first class customer care. You can reach a customer care specialist at any time, 24/7 via phone, email, or live chat.

They also has an extensive knowledge base that contains solutions to many of the most common problems.

If you’re worried about getting stuck or running into a problem, Shopify wants to set your mind at ease.

Shopify SEO Ranking

Basic SEO practices like meta data and site copy are no problem with Shopify. Assuming you’re adding in sufficient descriptions for products, home page copy, and other SEO-related items, you should be fine.

And when it comes to design, Shopify themes have a reputation for clean code and natural linking structures, both of which are important for search rankings.

Because Shopify stores are hosted on their massive infrastructure, pages load fast, which is another important element for SEO.

The only downside is that if you want to add a blog, it needs to be hosted on a third-party like WordPress.


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WooCommerce Design 

WooCommerce has been designed to work with the majority of the WordPress themes, which means that your design options are essentially endless. If you already have a WordPress site and a theme you like, WooCommerce can work with it. If you’re just getting started, you can pick a theme you really love and use WooCommerce to add ecommerce functionality.

There are themes that have been built specifically for WooCommerce, so if you’re having trouble selecting a theme, these are always a solid option. The Storefront Theme is the official WooCommerce theme and is a fine choice for your ecommerce store.

While Shopify has an impressive range of themes, WooCommerce can be incorporated into any WordPress theme, in addition to its own library. That gives it far more variety, not just in template design, but in site features.

Think about it. With WooCommerce, you can integrate any WordPress plugin into your eCommerce site. This creates a nearly infinite selection of possibilities.

Of course, this means you have to put more time into designing your site, and not all plugins are free. Most of the Shopify themes are well designed, and if you have no desire to mess with design, then Shopify might be a better option.

WooCommerce Pricing

Both WooCommerce and WordPress are free. However, you will need to purchase a few things like web hosting, a domain name, a theme (if you choose a premium one), and any premium plugins you might use.

Additionally, you’ll need to factor in the transaction fees from your payment gateway. Thankfully, these will only come into effect when you make a sale.

When it comes to price, WooCommerce is at least initially, the cheaper alternative. However, if you start purchasing premium themes and plugins, your costs will go up. Depending on the Shopify plan, you could end up paying about the same amount.

WooCommerce Out Of The Box

WooCommerce can do anything that Shopify can do, and then some. While it doesn’t necessarily have all the features Shopify has right out of the box, you can be sure that someone has developed a plugin for whatever feature you need.

Whether you want to sell on Facebook, implement email marketing, or study your customers behavior, WooCommerce can do it.

Here’s what you’ll get with WooCommerce:

  • Hundreds of plugins
  • Runs off of your WordPress theme
  • Payments via PayPal and Stripe built-in
  • Adjustable shipping rates and taxes
  • Complete control over your website and its data
  • Facebook ad and Facebook stores extensions
  • Unlimited products and categories
  • Inventory control
  • Mobile-friendly structure

WooCommerce User Interface

Once you get through the initial steps of setting up a WordPress site, working with WooCommerce is just as easy as working with Shopify.

The initial setup isn’t difficult, but it does take a bit longer and involve a few small technical details. If you’re uncomfortable when it comes to technology, you could have trouble at this step, but it’s really not difficult.

To get started with WooCommerce, you need to:

  • Buy your domain name.
  • Purchase web hosting.
  • Install WordPress.
  • Install the WooCommerce plugin.
  • Install any additional plugins needed.

If this intimidates you, there are hosting companies that specialize in WordPress that will take care of everything for you. Some companies even have 1-click WordPress and WooCommerce installation options, meaning you can get your store up and running with minimal technical work.

Once your site and WooCommerce are up and running, you’ll be taken through a setup wizard. It will help you set up things like currency settings, shipping options, payment gateways, and more.

WooCommerce Support

One downside of WooCommerce is that, unlike Shopify, WooCommerce doesn’t have a central customer support staff. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t find solutions to your problems.

Because WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin, you can get support on their forums or by creating a free account at

Additionally, Because WordPress and WooCommerce are open source, the developers who create the themes and plugins are available for support if you run into any issues.

WooCommerce SEO Ranking

This is one way that WooCommerce significantly outperforms Shopify. Hands down, WordPress is the best platform for blogging, which gives it a significant advantage for SEO. In fact, it’s not uncommon for Shopify sites to host their blogs externally on WordPress. Using a WooCommerce site on WordPress means consolidating these two crucial segments of the same brand.

WordPress’s blogging capabilities encapsulate both a comprehensive CMS for content management and specific SEO concerns like meta data. Again, good SEO requires effort, but with WooCommerce on WordPress, the option is there for those that don’t mind the legwork.

If you write outstanding blog content for the right keywords, you have a good shot at showing up on the first page of Google for particular searches, which can drive a massive amount of ecommerce sales.


OK, So…Which Dropshipping Platform Should You Use in 2019?

Without waffling on, the bottom line is, if you’re completely new to dropshipping then I highly recommend Shopify.

If you’re an intermediate or advanced dropshipping and/or own an eCommerce brand, then take your game to the next level with WooCommerce!

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