Magento Commerce vs Shopify Plus – Which to Pick?

There’s no two ways about it – having a successful, scalable and streamlined ecommerce platform is a vital part of online retail today.

If your business has been let down by your ecommerce platform, you’ll be well aware of the headaches this can bring. The effect is palpable, with resources stretched and the potential for negative feeling from your existing or potential customers.

As such, those ecommerce platforms that consistently perform well, meet the needs of clients and deliver across all fronts are rising to the top.

Two such examples are Magento Commerce and Shopify Plus. Though slightly different in terms of what they deliver, both platforms have carved a reputation in the retail industry for being capable of meeting the needs of clients and allowing them to flourish in today’s retail ecommerce space.

If you are considering upgrading to one of these major players, there are a few things to factor in.

“With the selection of a new ecommerce platform comes considerable investment, so it’s important to consider a few key points,” says Rob Williams, CEO of Williams Commerce. “Does the platform fulfil your immediate requirements and provide headroom for growth? What does the platform provider’s roadmap look like, and is there sufficient vision to support your plans going forward? Is there a strong developer community, and are skills readily available? Can you find an ecommerce partner to form a long-term relationship to complete the initial project and ongoing support? What does the platform security look like? Do you have any risk that you need to be aware of as a merchant? All of these factors should be considered before making your selection.”

With this in mind, what might Magento Commerce and Shopify Plus bring to your business?

Magento Commerce

Previously known as Magento Enterprise, Magento Commerce is a highly flexible ecommerce platform that allows companies to create truly engaging shopping experiences for their customers.

The Magento platform is highly customisable and supports third-party integrations, allowing users to really craft their ideal ecommerce offering in line with their brand, key aims and customer requirements.

Magento Commerce has helped many companies transform their sales numbers and realise significant growth. Thanks to the platform’s scalability and use of cloud technology, Magento Commerce grows with businesses and continues to meet requirements moving forwards.

Additionally, the platform supports quick decision making, experimentation with new business models and offers business intelligence capabilities that allow users to gain a better understanding of their business. There is also a strong developer community around Magento ecommerce.

“Magento Commerce is a strong selection for B2C and B2B businesses,” says Rob Williams. “It can suit all types of retail through to complex B2B businesses. In our view, it’s ideal for companies with US$1million revenue and above, and with a desire to invest in and tune their ecommerce offering.”

Companies such as BiocareMacfarlane Packaging OnlineJust Hype and countless others have taken advantage of Magento’s capabilities to revolutionise their ecommerce website and engage with more shoppers.

Shopify Plus

Shopify Plus is a scalable and customisable multichannel platform that allows retailers to expand their business.

Users can automate campaigns and product releases. They can customise their storefront, checkout and backend with ease, and add or update products on their site without using coding. That helps to make Shopify Plus very accessible for a wide number of staff within a business.

It’s also easy to launch sales channels across marketplaces, social media and mobile.

“Shopify Plus would primarily be of use to B2C, straightforward retail companies,” says Williams. “It’s a great option for high-growth businesses that require flexibility and the ability to automatically scale to meet peak demand.”

Comparing the Two

Though both excellent platforms, there are a few things that separate Magento Commerce and Shopify Plus.

Magento Commerce has more product options for users to select from, including simple products, configurable products, downloadable products, bundled products, virtual products and gift cards.

Shopify has just two types of products, but that does make it more suited for standard product catalogues for example.

Magento Commerce has a multi-store architecture, which is an excellent feature for larger businesses as it allows for the management of numerous brands and stores from a single interface. This also helps to support companies’ internationalisation efforts.

Shopify Plus does allow for multiple stores but lacks the streamlined multi-store architecture of Magento Commerce.

There is also native support for B2B merchants with Magento websites, making it an appealing option for companies in this sector.

Both are strong on the mobile front, and though Shopify Plus is generally not as costly, the Magento Commerce platform has a string of benefits that make this a viable and appealing option on the ecommerce platform front.

Making a Decision

Both Magento Commerce and Shopify Plus can change a retailer’s ecommerce fortunes substantially. Ecommerce is a developing and changing entity, so having a strong partner to support you moving forwards is a great option.

This kind of decision shouldn’t be rushed. Whichever path you go down, base your decision with your overarching business goals and your strategy.

Williams Commerce has helped scores of businesses adopt ecommerce platforms from Magento and Shopify. We are a Magento Commerce partner and a Shopify Plus Agency Partner, so are well positioned to advise on which may best fit your business.

If you’re ready to take a positive step in your ecommerce journey, why not get in touch with one of our experts?


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