Top reasons to choose Shopify over another eCommerce platform for your store?
A lot of merchants that come to me are looking to migrate their existing store from Magento, WooCommerce etc to Shopify.
Usually, they have realised they are spending more time and money dealing with technical issues or paying a high monthly fee for someone else to deal with them and just want something that works, is hassle-free and is easy to use.
Others have already done their own research and decided Shopify looks like the best option, whilst others don’t know which platform to pick.
I have worked with numerous platforms in the past but now almost exclusively use Shopify as I have found it to be the best all-round option for the vast majority of store owners. Here’s why:
If you are thinking of migrating to Shopify from your current platform, you may be interested in my Migrating to Shopify Guide
The short version of why Shopify is probably the way to go:
Hassle free hosting and security
Shopify takes care of all the hosting, security etc for you as part of their monthly fee
Features & App Eco-System
There are very few limitations as to what you can do with Shopify. It comes with loads of features built-in and where it doesn’t, there are a vast number of apps that extend its functionality
Ease of use
It is very simple to use and navigate around the Admin interface. Particularly if you are coming from something like Magento you will notice a huge positive difference.
More than just an eCommerce store
Shopify can be used as more of an all in one solution. It not only works as your online store but it can also act as your in-store point of sale system, your central point for managing other channels such as Google Shopping, eBay, Amazon, Facebook, Instagram. It can also handle your stock control, suppliers, purchase orders etc.
The detailed version of why Shopify is probably the best eCommerce platform:
Scale & 3rd party integrations
One big advantage Shopify has is its sheer scale, which means that lots of 3rd party solutions have an integration to Shopify. That means lots of choice as to what Point of Sale solution you want to use, what payment provider, what backend warehousing solution, what courier service etc.
Dedicated 24/7 support team
There is a customer support team at Shopify that you can call or email with any query. So you’re not totally alone if you get a fraudulent order, chargeback or some other sort of issue.
Shopify comes with decent built-in reporting covering; finances, traffic, sales, customers, marketing, inventory etc. It also plugs into accounting packages such as Xero.
Extremely fast servers
Shopify takes care of all the technology behind the scenes, you don’t need to worry about hosting, site performance, scaling to meet demand or anything else to do with that stuff.
Built in CDN
Without going into exactly what a CDN is, let’s say just it speeds up the delivery of your website to an end-user wherever they are in the world and with most other platforms you need to pay extra for it.
Free SSL certificate
Shopify automatically gives you an SSL certificate, which again, on self-hosted platforms is something you’d have to pay extra for.
No more costly upgrades
All Shopify powered stores are updated automatically and always up to date with the latest security requirements.
Add more sales channels
Shopify has various built-in integrations that allow you to easily sell on Facebook, Instagram, Google Shopping, eBay and face to face through Shopify POS. All with Shopify acting as the master so you just create your products in Shopify and then ‘push’ them to these other channels and everything is kept up to date including inventory and all orders come into Shopify.
Over 4000+ extensions/apps
With over 4000 apps you can add to your store, you can extend Shopify’s functionality to achieve most things.
Large choice of themes both free and paid
At the time of writing Shopify offers nine free themes built by themselves and 64 paid themes built by 3rd parties on the Shopify Theme store. All themes that go on the Theme Store are vetted and approved by Shopify so you know they are well built, regularly updated and come with support.
Open and modern technology
Technically Shopify is very well built using modern technology and has APIs for almost everything, so if you need some very specific piece of functionality not covered out of the box or by any existing Apps this can usually be achieved.
Taking Payments Is Easy
Shopify has its own payment solution, which means you can take credit and debit card payments instantly, with no third-party accounts needed. It also supports things like PayPal, Apple Pay and Google Pay out of the box. Alternatively, it can also plug into a huge number of external payment gateways, should you need to.
Built In Fraud Analysis
Because Shopify has its own payment gateway, it also has built-in fraud detection and it will flag all orders as Low, Medium or High risk. You can then choose what to do in each case e.g. contact high-risk orders and ask them for further proof.
Value For Money
When you add up the costs of hosting, SSL certs, payment fees etc, that you incur with most other providers. Then Shopify usually represents good value for most merchants with plans starting from just $29 (USD) a month. The Basic Shopify plan gives you everything you need to get started with eCommerce, and you can upgrade at any time as your business grows.
Your store comes with a mobile app, allowing you to manage your store on the go, from wherever you are.
All Shopify stores come with the ability to have an unlimited number of products, so no matter how big your store gets you’re covered.
The built-in discount engine allows you to create a variety of discount types such as money off, free shipping and Buy One, Get One promotions without the need for a developer.
Electronic gift cards are now available on all plan levels. Customers can purchase gift cards for your store, allowing others to spend the value on your shop. They work online and via the POS app for use in your physical store if you have one. You can see outstanding balances etc. from within Shopify.
Shopify offers numerous free apps that extend the functionality of the platform, here’s a quick selection of the most commonly used ones or you can see all of them on the Shopify App Store.
Shopify has its own free customer reviews app or there are an extensive number of 3rd party ones available.
Shopify has their own free chat app, which allows customers to start a conversation with you directly on your website.
Shopify has their own outbound/marketing email solution but if you need something more sophisticated most of the popular 3rd party services have an integration.