ShopWired vs Shopify in 2020 – Unbiased Comparison

If you are a UK based business then ShopWired maybe a good alternative to Shopify. In this ShopWired vs Shopify article, find out how the two compare.

Whilst I primarily use Shopify with my clients, I am also a ShopWired Partner and will recommend it to clients where I think it will suit them better. So my aim is to make this article an unbiased comparison of the two platforms.

The most common scenario I come across where ShopWired is discussed, is with clients who are already on Shopify and are considering migrating to ShopWired. The reasons for this are usually cost based or there is specific functionality they are after that Shopify doesn’t provide e.g. wholesale.


Quick comparison

Here’s the short version of things to consider when comparing ShopWired vs Shopify.


Shopify Pros

  • With over 4,000 apps available, Shopify has a huge eco-system offering extra functionality (way more than ShopWired)

  • Again due to the huge popularity of Shopify, many 3rd party services have an integration (e.g. a large number of POS systems, eMail services etc. etc.)

  • No product or turnover limits on any of their plans

  • Shopify is more holistic/omnichannel. With its own Point of Sale system (which runs on tablet or mobile), POS hardware (Tills, Barcode Scanners, Card Readers etc) and its own eMail platform. Therefore needing less 3rd party services, which helps to keep things simple and keep costs down

  • Shopify also has its own app (iOS & Android) which allows you to do many admin tasks from your mobile


Shopify Cons

  • If you need a number of 3rd party apps to get the functionality you need, the cost of these can quickly mount as many charge a monthly fee and some can be quite expensive

  • Again on cost, Shopify charges a transaction fee on every sale you make on their platform. This ranges from 2.2%+20p to 1.6%+20p depending on which plan you are on

  • Shopify does not have wholesale functionality (unless you are on Shopify Plus), so you’d need to pay for a 3rd party app

  • Shopify has fewer free themes than Shopwired and the premium themes are more expensive than ShopWired’s. Although there are a lot more to choose from


ShopWired Pros

  • No transaction fees. Lets say you are a mid-sized retailer who does 1,000 sales per month at an average price of £35. Shopify’s fees would cost you well over £800 p/m. Shopwired would cost you just £120 p/m on their Premium plan (+ approx £300 in card processing fees from whichever card payment processor you have chosen). That’s a significant saving

  • White Glove service. Shopwired have a dedicated UK support centre and will also do site design customisation for you (for a fee). And I have to say I have found their support to be excellent & better than Shopify’s (which is OK but not great)

  • Apps are cheaper. The most expensive app they have is only £5 p/m and they are free if you are on the Premium plan or above

  • Certain functionality is available that Shopify does not have e.g. Trade accounts, Shop to Shop sync, Product filtering, Product bundling, full control over URL structure, sub-categories etc.


ShopWired Cons

  • Lack of 3rd party support

  • Lack of extensibility

  • Lack of community

  • Theme customisation is definitely harder, particularly now Shopify is rolling out what it calls ‘sections everywhere’ which will allow you to easily tailor the look and functionality of most parts of your site

I can summarise the cons of ShopWired up by simply saying because ShopWired is a much smaller player than Shopify, there is a distinct lack of support for it in terms of 3rd party integrations.

If you want to connect to; Amazon, a Point of Sale system, an eMail platform (other than MailChimp) or various other systems commonly used by merchants then it’s either just not possible or requires custom coding work.


To sum up

As you can probably tell from the above deciding between Shopify vs Shopwired is not totally straightforward, if you are not an expert on both platforms.

It requires a detailed knowledge of the exact functionality and features you need and then the availability of those features on either platform and any associated costs.

You also need a good understanding of your likely transactions costs (for Shopify), the number of products you have and your annual turnover (for ShopWired).

9/10 times I find that Shopify wins because of its flexibility and the sheer number of services it can integrate to. But if you process a lot of transactions on your online store, definitely don’t need to connect to any of the 3rd parties that ShopWired doesn’t support or need trade accounts etc. then ShopWired may well be a better option.

Both platforms are excellent, but knowing your specific requirements is key to choosing the right one. As always, if you need help deciding between Shopify or Shopwired or want help migrating from one to the other, then please contact me.

Want to chat about Shopify vs ShopWired?

2 thoughts on “ShopWired vs Shopify in 2020 – Unbiased Comparison”

  1. After looking at the two platforms to consider the differences it appears to me that some reviews, are shopwired bia, particularly when taking the price into consideration. Shopwired price being £29+vat which totals around £35 per month for the lowest package. in comparison shopify is $29 which is around £21.50. However, the % of transaction fees do inflate the overall cost in fairness.

    Nevertheless, over a 12month period shopify would cost £258 + of course 2% transaction fee, where as Shopwired would cost £431.40 per year though notransaction fees. would you say that is fair to say or am i incorrect?

    • Hi James – yes that comparison sounds accurate but you do need to factor in transactions costs & the costs of any paid apps you are going to need. I think to some extent the way to look at it is, both are affordable/relatively cheap, so the main deciding factor isn’t cost but which platform best suits your needs.


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