Wix vs Shopify: what's the best ecommerce option?

Wix vs Shopify
(Image credit: Wera Rodsawang at Getty)

In this Wix vs Shopify article, we'll be diving into the two ecommerce options. Many ecommerce web builders offer customisable web templates for your virtual shop, content management systems (or CMS), and ecommerce integrations, such as payment processing, that make transactions happen securely.

Between Wix and Shopify, Wix is the go-to if content and design are key for your website, while Shopify is stronger in ecommerce-enabling features. There are, however, more subtle differences that distinguish the two platforms across storefronts, product management, and analytics.

In this article, we pit Wix vs Shopify, taking a close look at their top features and how well they perform, as well as their pricing and support, so you can find the right platform for your business. Be sure to also check out our best website builders article. 

01. Wix: The best website builder for just $3.54 / £3 per month

01. Wix: The best website builder for just $3.54 / £3 per month
Wix makes it quick and easy to get your site up and running. Choose from 500+ templates, add your own content, and you'll have your own site online, at a bargain monthly price.

02. HostGator: Simple to use and great value

02. HostGator: Simple to use and great value
Need to get a basic website online, fast? Hostgator is a great and affordable choice. Offering a drag-and-drop editor and 150 templates to choose from, it's easy to set up – no coding or technical knowledge required.

03. Squarespace: The best option for professionals

03. Squarespace: The best option for professionals
Squarespace puts the emphasis on beautifully designed templates that make your portfolio work look great, making it ideal for creative professionals. Plus it's easy to use, there are great SEO tools, and you can add an online store too.

01. Wix vs Shopify: Features 

Here, we compare Wix’s e-commerce capabilities with those of Shopify, focusing on aspects such as store design, product management, and sales tools.

Both website builders are well suited to users with little to no coding skills. On Wix, you get three main platforms to create your store: Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) for quick website design, the Wix Editor for more hands-on design, and the Wix Owner mobile app for basic web building functionality. A separate app, called Wix Velo, allows you to code your website. You’ve also got the Wix app market with 250+ third-party integrations. 

The Shopify builder is more straightforward, as you’ve only got one platform that manages products, orders, analytics, theme design, and HTML and CSS coding. The Shopify mobile app is available for managing your store on the go and you have around 5000 third-party integrations to choose from in the app store.

When helping you build your storefront, Wix prioritizes ease and speed: Wix ADI constructs your website after a short questionnaire or, alternatively, Wix Editor puts 500 industry-specific website templates at your disposal. Shopify prioritizes sales over visuals: boasting just over 70 designs, its themes optimize sales by getting customers from homepage to payment in one quick, smooth journey. 

You can create unlimited products on both platforms, but Shopify makes use of your data in better ways. For example, your products, orders, and customers are broken down and categorized, and you can track your inventory from supplier to shipping. This can be very powerful when managing a growing store. Wix’s inventory management is less refined, but it does have in-built functionality to handle event ticketing—which Shopify only offers via apps.

Shopify and Wix cover shopping cart basics well, featuring automatic tax calculation, customizable shipping rates, abandoned cart recovery, and automatic SSL certificates for privacy and security. However, Shopify excels by integrating double the number of payment processors compared to Wix—100 versus 50—significant when global customers want to use their favorite payment vendor. Furthermore, in-person POS payments are available in more countries than Wix, which only processes these in specific locations in the United States. 

Finally, for sales growth functionality, Shopify is your best bet. Whilst both offer marketing tools such as product reviews, gift and discount cards, and Google Ads credit, Shopify additionally offers inventory refills, a more comprehensive sales and inventory dashboard, and 4000+ ecommerce apps—versus Wix’s 50. That said, you can use Wix to create enticing website templates and sophisticated email campaigns and blogs, which suits brand-conscious entrepreneurs or the sale of digital products.

Wix vs Shopify

Pick a template that suits your online store (Image credit: Wix)

02. Wix vs Shopify: Performance 

Performing a task easily in a website builder means you can launch your online store more quickly, but it can also narrow the complexity of design and product management tools.

Wix's editor options are best if you're in a rush. Wix ADI produces a template for you within minutes after asking you a few questions, while Wix Editor gives you more control over the type of template and website elements you want. It is easy to customise your template with both options, but ADI is laggier and more constrained in the content changes you can make compared to Editor. For example, if you’re looking to redesign a product description, Editor lets you drag and drop content blocks and edit formattings such as font and color, while ADI offers preset product description designs in a limited number of layouts. Also, on both ADI and Editor, you can’t use another template unless you start over from scratch.

Shopify centers around managing products and sales. After answering a short questionnaire about the size and nature of your business, you create your first product and then product categories, inventories, and supplier relationships. Inputting product data, manually and via file import, can be slightly clunky, but you get that time back as larger sales volumes get processed easily.

If you require creativity and freedom when building your storefront, then Wix Editor is for you: the content changes you can make to your chosen design are truly endless. Shopify lets you preview multiple themes before publishing your website, but the content in each theme is more rigid. For example, if a theme contains a newsletter sign-up in the footer, you can’t delete it; you must select another theme with your desired elements.

In sum, Shopify is your main choice for product cataloging and sales functionality, while Wix better serves the design-conscious business with fewer products.

Wix vs Shopify

The performance of your ecommerce builder impacts your sales (Image credit: Shopify)

03. Wix vs Shopify: Support

Wix ecommerce users get priority over those on basic plans when submitting an online ticket. You can opt for 24/7 live chat and phone callback services, with the latter available in multiple languages, including Spanish, French, and Japanese.

Shopify support is also open 24/7, offering help by email, phone, and live chat. However, the platform connects you to a human in more clicks than Wix, as it aims to first answer your question via community forums and FAQs.

It seems Shopify’s only additional support channel is email communication, but Wix has a smoother support journey, so there's no clear winner here.

Wix vs Shopify

Premium ecommerce plans come with 24/7 customer care (Image credit: Wix)

04. Wix vs Shopify: Pricing and plans 

Wix's three ecommerce plans are Business Basic, Business Unlimited, and Business VIP, priced at $23, $27, and $49 a month respectively, when billed annually. 

Shopify's plans are Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify, at $26, $71, and $266 a month respectively, when billed annually. There's also a Shopify Lite plan, which excludes an online store but enables you to accept payments on third-party websites for $9 a month.

For most small and medium businesses, the Basic Shopify and Wix Business Unlimited plans offer enough features at a similar price level, including unlimited products, inventory management, payment gateways, and marketing and sales analytics. In terms of credit card processing fees, Wix and Shopify are on par with 2.9% + ¢30 per online transaction in the United States. 

Finally, if you're a student, Wix cuts 50% off its ecommerce plans, while Shopify offers free access to its platform without the ability to finalize actual payments.

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