In my time working as a content marketer, I've had experience working with a lot of (arguably too many) CMS platforms and website builders. While I can honestly say you'll probably be able to get the job done no matter which one you choose, it's still important to do your due diligence when making your decision.
Wix and Shopify are two website builders that are particularly popular among eCommerce businesses. So I created a fake company on each platform and dug deep into testing to compare their features and offerings. Based on that testing, here are my findings on Wix vs. Shopify.
Wix vs. Shopify at a glance
When it comes down to it, you can use either Wix or Shopify to create a powerful and unique online store, but Shopify was built for eCommerce and Wix wasn't.
Wix is better for small businesses and creative bloggers who value user-friendliness and don't require advanced, scalable eCommerce tools.
Shopify is better equipped to support medium to large eCommerce businesses with a sales mentality, extensive inventory, and a multinational customer base.
Ease of use
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Drag-and-drop editor; user-friendly blog interface
⭐⭐⭐⭐ Advanced customization requires coding knowledge
Inventory and fulfillment
⭐⭐⭐ Fewer inventory and fulfillment features; original purpose wasn't eCommerce
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Advanced inventory features; has its own fulfillment network to carry out orders; highly eCommerce-oriented
⭐⭐⭐ Multilingual support; limited international shipping; POS system limited to the U.S.
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Advanced multilingual support; facilitates end-to-end multicurrency payments; advanced international shipping
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Easily create an aesthetically pleasing blog; easy access to Semrush keywords
⭐⭐⭐⭐ Blogging is doable but isn't its core focus; offers fewer advanced features
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Built-in email and ad marketing with option to upgrade to Wix Ascend; advanced SEO is user-friendly
⭐⭐⭐⭐ Built-in email and ad marketing with option to upgrade with integrations; advanced SEO requires some technical knowledge
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 14-day free trial; plans don't get as expensive as Shopify's
Business Basic: $27/month
Business Unlimited: $32/month
Business VIP: $159/month
⭐⭐⭐⭐ 3-day free trial; pay $1/month for first 3 months; transaction fee goes down as you upgrade your plan
Shopify Plus: Starts at $2,000/month
⭐⭐⭐⭐ Has 300+ integrations; integrates with Zapier
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Has 6,000+ eCommerce integrations; integrates with Zapier
⭐⭐⭐ Can only be used in the U.S. and for specific types of businesses; POS hardware is expensive
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Can be used in any country
POS Lite: free with any Shopify plan
POS Pro: $89/month or free with Shopify Plus
⭐⭐⭐⭐ Phone support during business hours; 24/7 chat support; email support; online forum support
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 24/7 support via phone, chat, and email; online forum support
Shopify is hands-down the more scalable eCommerce solution
When it comes to scaling for eCommerce, Shopify doesn't play around. The platform is first and foremost optimized for online selling. For one, its shipping and fulfillment benefits are unmatched. Not many website builders and CMSes can boast owning their own fulfillment network, but Shopify can.
Assuming your business and product offerings meet certain eligibility criteria (e.g., the product can't be alcohol), Shopify will take care of fulfillment and returns. If you're a decently sized business with a lot of orders to fulfill, you can say goodbye to a pretty massive headache.
Plus, Shopify partners with several carriers to offer shipping discounts up to nearly 89%, which tend to increase as you upgrade your plan.
Shopify also offers over 6,000 eCommerce-specific integrations to help facilitate functions like international dropshipping, inventory management, and even customer retention.
Meanwhile, Wix offers 300+ integrations—a fraction of those offered by Shopify. Why the discrepancy? Since Shopify positions itself as the more eCommerce-oriented solution, significantly more stores use it, making it more profitable for app developers to create apps compatible with Shopify.
While Shopify offers more integrations than Wix, both platforms integrate with Zapier. So whichever platform you choose, you can integrate it with the rest of your favorite apps, automating your workflows and keeping your business running smoothly.
Zapier is a no-code automation tool that lets you connect your apps into automated workflows, so that every person and every business can move forward at growth speed. Learn more about how it works.
Ultimately, if you're an eCommerce business with a large inventory, sell many variations of your products, and/or sell to an international customer base, Shopify is likely better equipped to meet your needs.
Wix is more flexible when it comes to site design
Both Wix and Shopify make building an aesthetically pleasing website with eCommerce functionality relatively easy, but Wix goes above and beyond with its flexibility and extensive template offerings.
While Wix initially presented me with a few pages of themes designed specifically for websites in my industry (making me feel very special), I was also able to explore Wix's entire library of 800+ templates. As someone who spends 30 minutes staring at restaurant menus before choosing something, I did feel some decision fatigue. That said, I appreciated Wix's comprehensiveness—it truly has something for everyone.
Plus, all 800+ Wix themes are free. This is more than I can say about Shopify, which only offers 11 free themes and 122 themes total. Most paid themes cost a one-time fee of over $300, so if you're at all price-sensitive when it comes to web design, you may score Wix higher.
That said, Shopify's themes are all fully responsive, meaning they're already optimized for both desktop and mobile. When switching to a mobile view, Shopify adjusts the page, so elements still look great.
Meanwhile, you may have to optimize Wix's mobile layout yourself by adjusting individual elements. But I did find Wix's mobile setup tool very user-friendly when customizing the basics, like headers and navigation menus.
After using Shopify's blocky, rigid theme customizer for a couple of my clients, I felt like a butterfly emerging from a cocoon when playing around with Wix's flexible drag-and-drop editor. In Wix, you can add elements like text, images, buttons, boxes, and more anywhere on the page by just dragging and dropping it where you want it.
While some may like the structure of Shopify's section-by-section block editor, I'm personally a huge fan of the flexibility Wix offers to those who want to give their site a creative spin.
The better platform for marketing depends on your audience and initiatives
Both Wix and Shopify offer excellent email marketing campaign tools. Wix allows you to send newsletters to 200 subscribers per month free of charge. If that's not enough, you can upgrade to Wix's paid email marketing tool, Wix Ascend, which offers premium features.
Likewise, Shopify's built-in email marketing option allows you to send 10,000 emails per month at no cost. You can expand this functionality by installing third-party integrations like Omnisend Email Marketing & SMS.
Each app also has its own built-in marketing email templates to give you a running start. Here are a few of Wix's options:
And here are Shopify's:
If your marketing efforts are SEO-focused, each platform has its own unique pros and cons. Generally speaking, blogging is Wix's specialty. Not only is its blogging interface user-friendly and powerful, but it also offers built-in SEO tools (some of which are thanks to its partnership with Semrush).
It even allows you to add three related posts for each article by hand. This is especially helpful for delivering content that your readers really want to see, lowering bounce rate. It's also good for SEO, as it communicates to Google that the related posts are associated with the blog post they appear on, creating a web of related content.
Both Wix and Shopify make it easy to adjust SEO basics within blog posts, like URL, title tag, and meta description. But Wix's partnership with Semrush allows you to view Semrush keyword data from your dashboard. Plus, it unifies all of your sitewide SEO tools under one tab to keep things user-friendly—a feature Shopify lacks.
One area of SEO where both platforms struggle is URL structure. Both platforms add their own unnecessary elements to product page URLs, which cannot be removed: "/collections/" or "/products/" for Shopify, and "/product-page/" for Wix. Shopify also forces blogs into categories with a "/blogs/CATEGORY/keyword" structure. This hinders SEO performance, as it's best practice to keep a post's target keyword as early in the URL as possible.
While both platforms offer multilingual site options, only Shopify will automatically translate the end of your URL to the user's language. For example, Wix will leave a product page URL slug as "/pretty-flowers/" on the Spanish version of the site, whereas Shopify will translate it to "/flores-bonitas/". If you cater to an international audience, Shopify's SEO features may win out over Wix's.
Shopify vs. Wix: Which should you choose?
Here's the bottom line: If I were making a creative blog and wanted to do some selling on the side, I'd choose Wix. If I were building a website for eCommerce purposes for my medium to large business, I'd choose Shopify.
That's not to say Wix isn't equipped for eCommerce or that Shopify doesn't have the tools needed to design a creative blog—rather, these aren't each platform's greatest strengths. Consider each platform's reputation in tandem with your business's size, financial limitations, and needs to make your decision.
Shopify vs. Wix FAQ
Choosing a website builder is a major decision. After all, nobody wants to go through the hassle of migrating their whole site to a new CMS. Refer to the common questions about Wix and Shopify below as you decide which platform is right for you.
Which is cheaper: Shopify or Wix?
While Wix's pricing options don't go nearly as high as Shopify's, the cheaper option depends on what plan you choose (depending on your business goals) as well as whether you pay monthly or annually. Each option's basic plans are priced comparably, each slightly under $30 per month (if you pay annually), but you'll pay significantly more for Shopify Advanced at $299 per month (if you pay annually) than for Wix VIP at $159 per month.
Shopify offers a 25% discount on its plans when you pay annually, whereas Wix doesn't offer this same discount. Shopify also reduces the percentage of each sale it takes as you upgrade your plan, which Wix doesn't do.
Is Wix better than Shopify?
Wix is arguably better than Shopify in some areas, such as flexibility and quantity of free template offerings, but it falls behind Shopify from an eCommerce perspective.
Which is better for SEO: Shopify or Wix?
Both Shopify and Wix have their pros and cons when it comes to SEO. Shopify is better for multilingual SEO, but Wix provides better keyword assistance and more user-friendly access to sitewide SEO.
Don't let choosing between Wix and Shopify keep you up at night. Just be mindful of your business's primary goals, and choose whichever platform caters to them best.