July 06, 2017

A serious look at WIX vs Shopify for your business

One thing I want to say at the start of this article is that I think there are minimum service standards that need to be applied when you’re serious about running an online business, whether it’s a side hustle or a serious store.

We work with clients of all sizes, including micro businesses, and we take the position that it doesn’t matter your size or budget, it’s possible to have a fantastic, leading edge online platform and presence without compromising on service, scalability, security and world-class features.

Looking at the big picture (here comes the TL;DR, WIX is an attractive, simple all-round website builder with an additional eCommerce capability. Shopify is a specialist eCommerce platform. From an online trading perspective, there is no question that Shopify is a far better option.

Both offer free trials so you can do your own due diligence, but you will quickly see this differences between WIX and Shopify, which we’re going to unpack in detail now.

Support

Shopify offers solid 24/7 support and beats WIX hands down, with Wix offering limited support.

Online Store Functionality

Shopify wins this one by a country mile. WIX has an eCommerce add-on, and one online review we saw described it as “adding wings to a car, it just doesn’t work”. Shopify is the clear leader and has amazing store management features and excellent product functionality.

Ongoing Management

WIX is pitched as being really easy to use and build, which is true up to a point. However, if you want to go further and customise it, the design often breaks and it’s messy and complex. WIX is pretty easy to use, but it’s too rudimentary to really get into it at a business level and have it evolve as you do. Shopify is a total breeze to build and customise, and if you do want to get specialist developers in, there are plenty of great ones around, like us at The Hope Factory!

Customisation

Shopify is great for developers who want to get in there and implement their own CSS and HTML code, and the Liquid programming language is a breeze for developers. WIX was designed for basic users with no design experience, meaning it’s very hard to customise, and we’ve found it easy to break.

Payment Gateway Options

Shopify offers over 70 payment gateways, including the big ones like Stripe. WIX lags behind with less than 10% of that.

Themes

Shopify is leading just about everyone on the market with their themes, not only the quality, but the variety is amazing. WIX has plenty of themes too, but not as many and we don’t think they look at good. And eCommerce specific themes are lacking for WIX but it’s the Shopify bread and butter.

Shopify Apps

Apps

Apps are nifty pre-built bits of code that give you extra features and functionality without needing to build them from scratch. Shopify is, again, a winner with a massive app marketplace and a plethora of options. WIX has less than 20.

Bricks & Mortar Integration

Shopify has a great Retail Plan and hardware to get you trading in stores, markets and events. You’re on your own with WIX.

WIX has certainly carved out an audience and has a role to play in today’s online world. It’s fine if you need a very simple site that doesn’t transact, like an online portfolio, as it’s a good option and it’s easy to use for beginners.

However, our direct experience of WIX is that it is easily hacked, hard to customise (for example, it breaks very easily when being customised), has poor support and is not a viable choice for eCommerce businesses.

In our world, we’re serious about eCommerce and driving sales and revenue for clients. We believe that there are basic standards for web platforms to meet, and even on a service basis alone, WIX isn’t a contender. Shopify wins this bout, hands down.

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