Magento vs The World

10 Jan 2023

Having been in eCommerce for 10+ years, we've had extensive experience developing and maintaining the industry standard platforms: Shopify, Shopware, BigCommerce, WooCommerce and more. We love developing Magento - hence why we’re 6x certified developers for this platform. In this article, we explore the key differentiators between Magento and the other industry standard eCommerce platforms.

Magento vs Shopify

Shopify and Magento are among the biggest contenders for offering the best eCommerce sites, used by tens of thousands of online merchants globally. Both platforms provide a range of features and tools to help businesses create professional-looking online stores, manage their inventory and orders, and process payments. But there are some major differences for any online merchant to consider.

Here are 5 key differences

  1. Magento is an open-source platform, while Shopify is a proprietary platform. This means that anyone can access and modify the code for a Magento store. In contrast, Shopify stores are built using the tools and features of the Shopify platform. The result? Magento functional capabilities and performance are unlimited if you have the expertise.
  2. Magento is a self-hosted platform, meaning businesses using Magento must handle their hosting and manage their servers. In contrast, Shopify allows domain management and hosting for all its users, so businesses using Shopify do not need to worry about managing their servers. This is great for a quick and easy solution but the downfall is that your eCommerce platform performance is limited to their server capacity.
  3. Shopify has fixed pricing, which may seem cheaper, but it has extra costs as you need to pay for apps and themes, and thus it costs more money to utilise Shopify. On the other hand, Magento comes with various free themes by Magento marketplace, and the third-party app’s pricing depends on the specific business requirements.
  4. Magento is highly customisable. Shopify's beauty is that it isn't complicated and works well for small businesses that need a simple online presence. Flip the coin and this is not ideal for businesses that want to customise their service experience with functionality. Magento is a flexible platform that allows you to create personalised experiences to optimise your process, simplify customers’ decision making and use data insights to improve your operations. 
  5. Shopify has fewer payment gateway options than Magento and charges a transaction fee on each purchase unless you use Shopify Payments. Magento offers more than 150 payment providers and charges no transaction fees.

In summary, the big difference is in the scalability of each platform. Shopify lowers the barrier to entry for online merchants but is limited by it’s functional capability and performance.  


Magento vs BigCommerce

While Shopify does not have many built-in features, Magento and BigCommerce are known for their extensive functionalities.

This can make the decision between Magento and BigCommerce somewhat blurry. So, we’ve listed 4 key differentiators below to help!

  1. Pricing: BigCommerce currently offers four distinct subscription options, with the fees varying depending on your plan. In addition to these monthly subscription fees, you may incur additional costs like payment processing fees, shipping fees, and any third-party integrations or apps you use. Magento doesn’t charge any subscription fee to use the core platform. However, you will need to pay for hosting, domain registration, and any additional features or extensions you want to use. 
  2. Ease of Use: BigCommerce as a platform comes with a range of features & tools that are easy to set up & manage for an online store, even for non-technical users. Magento has a pretty intuitive interface but requires technical skills to streamline business processes. 
  3. Design Flexibility: Magento is an open-source platform that provides more flexibility for developers who want to make customisations or integrations that go beyond what the platform offers out of the box. BigCommerce, on the other hand, is a premium hosted platform, so you don't have access to the source code and are limited to the customization options provided by the platform. 
  4. Scalability: Another difference is that Magento is geared towards larger, enterprise-level businesses, while BigCommerce is more suitable for small to mid-sized businesses. Magento offers a range of advanced features and functionality that may be overkill for small businesses but can be very useful for larger enterprises.

Seeing a theme starting here? The common factor between all of the points above is the scalability of your eCommerce platform. Go big or go home


Magento vs WooCommerce

WooCommerce and Magento are associated with large companies that millions of customers use for their online work: WordPress and Adobe. Both platforms have free versions with large communities to share support with issues and how to fix them. WooCommerce accounts for the highest proportion of distribution with 29%, while Magento ranks third with 8%. But how do they stack up against each other? We’ve listed 5 key differences below:

  1. Features & Capabilities: Magento is a standalone e-commerce platform with everything in one place (an end-to-end Magento site), while WooCommerce is a plugin for WordPress. Magento is for building and managing an online store either plugged into your chosen CMS or from scratch. WooCommerce must be plugged into a WordPress website.
  2. Cost: WooCommerce is a free, open-source platform. Although WooCommerce is free, you still have to pay for hosting, domain name, security, SEO extensions, shipping & payments. Additional features like customer experience and marketing functions come as optional costs. However, its limitations come when scaling up the business to more customers and products.
  3. Scalability: Magento is a powerful, feature-rich e-commerce platform used by large and small businesses. It is known for its scalability, flexibility, and ability to handle a large volume of products and transactions. WooCommerce, on the other hand, is a plugin for the WordPress content management system that is designed to be simple and easy to use. It is a popular choice for small and medium-sized businesses due to its low cost and ease of setup.
  4. Security: The latest version of Magento comes with a two-factor authentication & is automatically PCI compliant. Additionally, Magento releases security patches periodically that keep your website safe. WooCommerce requires a manual installation of the PCI-DSS and an SSL certificate. This makes it significantly less robust when it comes to security and opens up agencies or businesses to technical debt. 
  5. Limitations: WooCommerce requires self-hosting & constant updates of core plugins and is vulnerable to security concerns if not maintained well. With Magento, the themes & third-party apps are difficult to implement while the system requires constant software updates.

The big consideration here is that WooCommerce is limited to Wordpress site which is a big consideration when you have plans to grow your business online.


Magento vs Shopware

Shopware is the leading platform in German-speaking countries with a growing European user base. On the other hand, Magento has been a popular choice for large businesses for years, and, with the rate of growth and adoption, it’s unlikely to change anytime soon.  But, you’re here because you’re probably weighing up your eCommerce options, right? Here are 5 easy differences between Magento and Shopware:

  1. Global Adoption: Shopware is the most popular and progressive platform among the German-speaking community. It has nearly 40,000 live websites with a market share of 4.70%. Magento is one of the most popular store-building platforms in the eCommerce industry, with almost 100,000 live websites on board. 
  2. Cost: Both platforms are free to download and use and offer paid options with advanced features. 
  3. Customisation: Magento Marketplace offers over 5000 extensions, and multiple vendors developing new plugins. Shopware is also customisable, but if you are looking for a ready-made custom solution, your choice is much narrower. Fewer developers work with this platform and create new plugins. Bigger community = more support and innovation.
  4. Support: Magento has a global community with more than 100,000 members. Shopware has 2 support options: (a) paid official support team and (b) community support which comes with additional cost. Something else to consider is the locality with Shopware’s community largely based in Europe. 
  5. Scalability: Shopware comes with a pro version that suits the needs of bigger customers but leads to additional costs. Magento is easy to scale up, and the system can process stores with up to 500,000 in the catalogue with the proper optimization. 

MageBinary x Magento

No system is perfect and not only do we acknowledge the pros and cons of each platform, we also acknowledge the limitations of Magento and overcome them. See how here

With 10+ years in this industry, we’ve innovated some of the highest performing eCommerce sites using Magento. We save our clients time, money, and headaches with our experience. Come and book a chat or coffee with us to learn more!