New business owners are often faced with the same challenge: Shopify or WordPress? Investing time and money into learning a new platform is a big decision. The good news is both platforms are rock solid and a win for entrepreneurs and online business owners. Not sure how to decide? Here’s what to consider before you dive into building your next website.
Consider Your Business Model
There’s good news if you’re a service provider or offer a niche product. You really don’t need thousands of visitors each day, or even a month, to convert sales or gain leads. Depending on what you’re offering, you may only need a handful of visitors each week to earn the profit you’re looking for.
You’ll pay at least $29 a month in Shopify fees and possibly transaction fees if you decline to use their proprietary payments system. If you’re selling only a few high-end products a month, you may not need Shopify and focus on building out your sales channel on WordPress. The downside is WordPress isn’t as intuitive for sellers and isn’t a platform focused on ecommerce.
However, if you’re running a blog and selling e-products or physical products, you need traffic volume to scale. Shopify or WordPress both handle traffic well. However, there is an added layer with WordPress. You’ll end up paying for your own hosting. The hosting provider you choose should offer guaranteed uptime and customer service. The benefit of Shopify is the hosting is baked into the platform, and they’re accustomed to the high influx of consumer traffic, especially during the holiday shopping season.
Make It Design-Worthy
Whether you use Shopify or WordPress, you can make it a design-worthy experience that stands out from the competition. Both platforms offer done-for-you templates and plugins that can help with everything from design to customer service.
Here’s where things get a little more complicated. You need some coding experience to really dig into WordPress design and make it look as professional as possible. Shopify is easier to customize without any coding knowledge. However, you’re still limited without an expert stepping in. Why? Design isn’t just about design. You still need to focus on the user experience, test your efforts, study your analytics, and figure out which areas of your site are helping convert customers and which are dragging down your productivity.
Focus on the User Experience
So what is the User Experience (UX) anyway? UX is how a user interacts with and experiences your website, product, or service. Today we’re focused on UX related to your website and overall online presence. A Shopify or WordPress expert is invaluable when it comes to UX. Everything from page navigation to where to put your Buy Now buttons and how to customize your shopping cart are all part of the UX experience.
The results of focusing on UX can be impressive. Forbes reports that for every $1 invested in UX results in a return of $100 (ROI = 9,900%).
Strategize Your Content Goals
Every business with an online presence needs a content marketing plan to get noticed and scale. Content Marketing focuses on creating, publishing, and distributing valuable content to attract your ideal customers. It’s not as complicated as it sounds. A DIY product guide, blog post series on how to use your products, or interviews with customers about how your products or services have impacted their lives are all examples of content marketing. The idea is to provide value to attract and convert your ideal audience naturally.
Shopify or WordPress are both set up to create content. However, WordPress is generally a better choice if you’re creating in-depth, robust content. WordPress is also ideal if your business publishes white papers or an integral part of how you operate is by producing content. You can still create content using Shopify’s tools, but it’s better suited as a selling platform where content compliments your efforts.
Master Your SEO
While we’re talking about content, we should also focus on SEO. Search Engine Optimization is integral to gaining organic traffic to your site to convert more customers. SEO also goes hand in hand with content marketing. WordPress is generally better for SEO efforts. You have more control over your content and have access to pro SEO tools and plugins like Yoast.
Shopify is also equipped to tackle SEO and offers its own apps and plugins. However, it’s the platform is better designed for supercharging product sales. There are several caveats. Working with a Shopify developer or marketing expert can come up with an SEO plan for your shop. You can also incorporate more off-site SEO to see similar results on Shopify.
Shopify or WordPress: Which Platform Is Best For You?
Shopify or WordPress? There’s no right or wrong choice, but you should think through how you’ll use the platform. Shopify works best when selling hundreds of products and working to scale your shop. WordPress may be the better choice for a content-heavy site or service business looking to gain more local SEO traction.
Both platforms require some serious focus and expert touch to grow your business. Not sure where to start? Contact Digital Nomad Designs to learn more about our web design, SEO services, and other digital marketing solutions.