WooCommerce vs Magento? You can’t think about the future of retail without factoring in the growing industry of eCommerce. There are an estimated 24 million eCommerce websites across the internet, with that number growing daily. To facilitate this web-based sales process, brands need to choose and integrate an eCommerce platform. Amongst eCommerce platforms, two choices are prevalent for users who prefer to host their own eCommerce platform. These two platforms are Magento and WooCommerce, and we’re going to use this article to examine both platforms and compare how they stack up against one another.
What is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is an incredibly popular WordPress plugin that is entirely free to use when building eCommerce functionality into a WordPress website. By itself, WooCommerce includes everything one needs to set up a basic online store. Its functionality can be enhanced by installing additional complimentary plugins or extensions, some of which are free. These can enhance a brand’s eCommerce reporting capabilities, warehouse inventory systems, abandoned cart recovery processes, payment gateways, product types, and more. It’s great for beginners but advanced enough for complex business types. WooCommerce is very intuitive to pick up if you’re familiar at all with WordPress. If you’re not, there is quite extensive support and documentation to help guide you through using the platform with ease.
What is Magento?
Magento is an eCommerce platform that’s less of an open-source community solution than WooCommerce is. Instead, the platform is more geared towards larger companies and corporations with in-house web developers. For smaller businesses, Magento provides a free Community Edition. At a premium, larger companies can acquire a more robust version of the software that can handle their higher rates of traffic, called their Enterprise Edition. Due to a steep learning curve, this platform may be considered more suited for use by developers but provides excellent customization opportunities when you’ve gotten the hang of using it.
WooCommerce vs Magento – Price
WooCommerce is free. It’s an open-source platform which means that anyone can download it and use it on their server of choice at no cost to them. Though there are options for premium enhancements, the majority of the functionality you’re likely to need for your business won’t cost you a cent more than your website hosting cost, which you should be paying anyway!
Magento offers a free Community Edition that is targeted at smaller businesses but has relatively limited functionality. Being geared towards larger companies, however, their most desirable offering is their Enterprise Edition. This option can prove fairly costly and isn’t ideal for small or start-up online stores. The pricing of their Enterprise Edition packages is only accessible via a conversation with one of their sales team.
Winner: This one goes to WooCommerce!
WooCommerce vs Magento – Security
WooCommerce is part of WordPress, so the security measures that apply to WooCommerce are part of a larger set of WordPress guidelines. While the platform itself has built-in security measures, it is also easy to enhance those security measures with added plugins and services. These solutions do not require custom coding knowledge.
On Magento, there are a series of dedicated security patches for the software that is easy to find and access. These may be difficult to implement for the general eCommerce user but provide the intended security when implemented by a user with web development skills.
Winner: For beginners and developers alike, WooCommerce.
WooCommerce vs Magento – Scalability/Performance
It’s challenging to compare WooCommerce and Magento by this metric. Every eCommerce store will perform differently depending on the frequency and volume of traffic directed towards it and the strength of the server and hosting plan that the site is hosted on.
Magento may have the edge here if your eCommerce store is large and handles high volumes of traffic. Because its Enterprise Edition is built specifically to facilitate scalability and store growth, the platform should have no problems handling larger stores. On the other hand, WooCommerce without any plugins should suffice for 95% of businesses’ performance needs but may need extra development planning for very large stores.
Winner: In most cases, WooCommerce.
WooCommerce vs Magento – Inventory Management
WooCommerce offers some incredibly intuitive inventory and product management options to its baseline user. These product management options are built to manage both digital and physical products. If you’re familiar with WordPress, setting up new products is easy, and these processes can be further streamlined with the use of open-source plugins, many of which are free. WooCommerce’s product management interface is simple enough for even the most inexperienced users. With MyWorks QuickBooks Sync for WooCommerce, store owners can also easily sync their inventory with QuickBooks for more advanced inventory management.
Magento, though less intuitive, does provide its baseline user with the more advanced product and inventory management options without the need for further additions to the program. Magento offers built-in options for product reviews, individualized product customizations, wish lists, advanced pricing rules, and grouped or bundled items.
Winner: In more advanced use cases, Magento.
WooCommerce vs Magento – Ease of Use
As stated earlier, WooCommerce is ideal for beginners in the eCommerce sphere. The visual interface of WordPress makes learning how to use the platform very intuitive and requires minimal coding. This means anyone can figure out how to set up an eCommerce store using WooCommerce without requiring too much additional help from a developer. There is also a wealth of WooCommerce and WooCommerce Plugin/Extension tutorials on the internet and a supportive WordPress community that is usually more than willing to answer any questions beginners may have. Facebook groups are a great place to go for help!
Magento is more customizable in some ways than WooCommerce, but this advanced functionality comes at the cost of ease-of-use for eCommerce beginners. It’s more code-focused approach to establishing a store means that it’s much easier for those with pre-existing web development knowledge to use. Once you’ve gotten past the steep learning curve, this platform is worth the time spent learning, but its advanced features aren’t essential to most beginners or small to medium businesses.
Winner: For accessibility and customizability, WooCommerce. Magento’s advanced options are useful but not accessible to the average user.
Every business is different, and if you choose the right eCommerce platform, it will grow and change alongside you as your business grows and changes.
That being said, in most cases, we have found WooCommerce to be the best choice for the majority of eCommerce store owners.