When it comes to launching a digital store, the choice of the right web design software becomes a priority. The final decision should basically depend on several issues.
Is it going to be a small website with baseline functionality or a huge digital marketplace to sell and promote via numerous channels? What budget are you ready to invest? What degree of programming awareness do you possess? You need to clearly understand the kind of software you need to build an online store. Ecwid and WooCommerce belong to the most widely used eCommerce systems that may come in handy for different webshop types depending on their sizes and goals.
Ecwid – is a popular eCommerce plugin used to create small online stores from scratch. It also lets users integrate a ready-made shop into an already existing website. The plugin works great for selling and promoting via social networks and other channels and it’s also good for small stores with baseline requirements.
WooCommerce – is another well-known eCommerce plugin specially designed for WordPress. It works as a separate add-on for your already existing website. The plugin proves to be the best solution for WP-based digital stores with its own product management system and extensions to set a fully-functional project.
Despite the fact that both eCommerce plugins are used for the same goal, they notably differ in terms of website building approach and project customizability. It’s high time to review the platforms to see how they work and to define, which one is better in references to the ease of use, features, design, and other crucial points.
Ecwid vs WooCommerce: General Overview
Ecwid allows starting and managing web stores with no programming skills and web design expertise. The online shop builder is easy to use for everyone. One of its undeniable highlights is the fact that it can be integrated with the biggest website builders and CMS to sell both digital and physical goods. The system can be used either on websites or with POS solutions. This is a really great option for small and medium digital stores.
Launched in 2000, the plugin now enjoys popularity with hundreds of thousands of entrepreneurs and store owners around the globe. According to recently reported data, the number of web stores powered by the software has overcome 1,150,802 projects. This is really an impressive achievement. Ecwid comes with advanced eCommerce functionality that does not compromise with convenience and simplicity.
WooCommerce ensures 100% design customization freedom, being an open-source WordPress plugin. It focuses on the development and further promotion of small-to-large feature-rich web stores. What’s more, it is perfect for growing shops with thousands of products to sell. The plugin has numerous extensions to integrate and create new sales channels. In the end, the customization process might be tricky for newbies.
The plugin was first introduced to the market in 2011, having become one of the most widely used eCommerce extensions. Experts report that over 4,414,537 digital stores have already been launched with WooCommerce and many more are currently under construction. The extension is free, easy to set up and use, irrespective of the degree of coding proficiency.
Ecwid and WooCommerce are two popular and feature-laden eCommerce plugins. They both serve the same goal, offering enough flexibility and customization options. Ecwid, however, is easier-to-use as it was initially created with the needs of beginners in mind and it offers a rich toolset to get started with your eCommerce project.
Ecwid vs WooCommerce: Which One Is Easier to Use?
Ecwid resembles well-known SaaS website builders, especially in terms of functionality and user focus. The plugin offers subscription plans to its users. It also has a free package with no trial periods. If you sign in, you have access to a free plan forever with a chance to upgrade. To get started with Ecwid, you only need to sign in. Just enter traditional email and password info or skip that stage and get access to the Ecwid dashboard with the help of Google, PayPal or Facebook account.
Once the registration is completed, you may choose from two options – adding a new store to an already existing website using HTML code or launching a new project from scratch. The starting process is the same for both options. You need to identify some website information as well as preferences and key business objectives. When you are done, the system will transfer you to the Ecwid dashboard where you may set up the store. Here you may add products using the integrated drag-and-drop functionality, indicate item names, highlight descriptions, depict prices, upload product images, divide them into categories etc. The good news here is that Ecwid lets users sell both online and physical products thanks to integration with point of sale solutions.
Ecwid is an easy to use plugin even for beginners. Every new subscriber will be guided by an intuitive installation wizard right from the start. In addition, the system has its customer support team and offers several ways to get in touch. The bad news here is that different plans come with a specific set of options. To contact Ecwid support team, you may use Live Chat, which is available in all the subscriptions or phone/priority support meant for premium plan users only. Additionally, paid subscribers can make use of a separate Free Customization feature. It means that the platform’s specialists will handle all the process to create, fine-tune, integrate, and deploy your online shop.
WooCommerce requires more time to be explored and mastered before used for web store development purposes. As an open-source plugin, it implies more time and technical background to be installed properly. Getting started with WooCommerce is a bit more complicated, as it is a plugin rather than an independent eCommerce platform. To use it, you need to have an operating WordPress website.
To start using WooCommerce, you are expected to register a domain name, pick a host, install WordPress (if you don’t have it yet), pick and fine-tune a suitable theme, install/activate Woocommerce plugin and finally set up a store with it. Mind that working with the WP plugin might be a bit more time-consuming. Moreover, at some point, you might also need technical skills and coding knowledge, although WooCommerce does not require any special skills to set it up. Instead, it comes with step-by-step installation prompts that will guide you through the entire fine-tuning process. It includes several general stages where you will need to indicate baseline store parameters, define preferable payment methods, set shipping and tax policies, indicate currencies, add products and specify their categories/parameters etc. As soon as you are done with that, you are welcome to publish the project.
To get assistance when working with WooCommerce, you need to be registered on the plugin’s official website. There you will find a typical help center with a contact form to fill in describing the issue. The traditional ticketing system is another way to contact the WooCommerce support team.
In terms of ease-of-use, Ecwid looks a bit easier to set up at first thanks to its product drag and dropping feature. The rest looks almost the same. Both solutions require additional integration with existing websites, while Ecwid also lets you create a web store of your own.
Ecwid vs WooCommerce: Design and Flexibility
Ecwid and WooCommerce have some great features to offer, when it comes to eCommerce website development. While the WooCommerce plugin is available in its baseline version, you may opt for different extensions to make your store more user-friendly. On the other hand, Ecwid comes with some built-in tools to grow sales and target audiences through various platforms. To find out, however, what system has more to offer and what differs them from each other, it is reasonable to compare the major parameters of both platforms. Here they go.
Ecwid comes with a powerful integrated eCommerce functionality provided out-of-the-box. The plugin can be easily integrated into an existing website to give it eCommerce focus. As mentioned above, the platform can be integrated with POS systems to sell digital and physical goods both in online and offline modes. What’s more, it has a separate mobile point of sale app. The application lets you manage all the inventories in real-time mode on the go.
Due to the CSV file import/export option, it is easy and secure to transfer products, if you decide to move to Ecwid from another platform or switch to any software of your choice. Just like popular website builders, the plugin offers multilingual support, making it possible to choose from 50 languages. This allows translating your digital store to the required language with regard to specific location/web design preferences.
Regardless of its integrable nature, Ecwid also lets you start a standalone web store that comes with powerful design customization options. It mostly works well for small and medium shops, letting you create and customize appealing show windows with impressive product presentation. To make the required settings, you should reach the control panel. This is where you can set up multi channel support features, social network integrations, payment details, abandoned shopping cart parameters and other web store management options.
Ecwid brings endless opportunities to market and promotes your products. First of all, the platform lets you sell products via the biggest online marketplaces and social networks including Amazon, Google Shopping, Facebook, Instagram, and more. Shop owners may benefit from multiple sales channels that may be used simultaneously or separately. These include social media platforms, popular marketplaces, POS apps etc.
Mind that the majority of the above listed Commerce features are available for premium plan subscribers. Free plan users will have to deal with baseline settings, which are quite limited.
WooCommerce lets you start feature-laden online stores, using the available set of features. The plugin implies manual product catalogue creation and items upload, automated price/currency set up, opportunity to set up filters for easier search of the required products. The software can be integrated with Stripe and PayPal, making it possible to adjust payment details.
When starting a web store with WooCommerce, you will also be able to manage user registrations, apply analytics/stats tracking tools, adjust tax/shipping parameters, discounts special offers, show window characteristics and other features that guarantee rewarding shopping experience.
The plugin itself does not require coding proficiency, but some skills will still be preferable for further web store management and customization.
WooCommerce offers a list of extensions that include WooCommerce Points and Rewards, Bookings, and other tools to not only promote products but also keep your customers engaged.
The plugin may also be integrated with Amazon, eBay, etc. You will have your catalog listed on major digital marketplaces. The extension is available for free. However, you will need to pay a monthly fee for the integration service. Users will also be able to integrate their shops with social media platforms, enable smart coupons, email marketing, and other promotion instruments.
When it comes to eCommerce, both platforms deliver an extensive range of tools, features and settings. These are enough to run a feature-laden online store. Ecwid, however, has more to offer to its subscribers as it provides two ways to get started with your eCommerce project. WooCommerce, in its turn, is meant for WordPress websites and, thus, its feature set is restricted to this application only.
Ecwid does not have a built-in blogging engine. Starting a blog with the system will be impossible. This is one of the downsides of the software as blog availability allows for more effective communication with customers and quality web store management.
WooCommerce won’t let you connect a blog to your web store by default because of the absence of the blogging engine. If you need the one, though, you will be able to connect it by means of integrating third-party blog plugins created for WordPress. Some of the recommended options include Easy Social Sharing, Jetpack, UpdraftPlus, Elementor, Everest Forms, WPDiscuz and more.
As to blogging, neither Ecwid nor WooCommerce include blogging platforms by default. WooCommerce subscribers, though, will have an opportunity to connect a blog to their digital stores via third-party integrations.
Integrations and Special Features
Ecwid looks quite flexible in terms of integrations. The system can be connected with several leading website builders and CMS. Apart from WordPress and Joomla, users may connect a ready-to-use digital store with their sites built on Wix, Weebly, Squarespace, Adobe Dreamweaver, etc.
You will come across many third-party apps to integrate with your web store here. The choice is quite versatile, making it possible to pick from well-known apps and systems. These include Xero, LiveChat, MailChimp, 71lbs, Printful, Lucky Orange, Freshbooks, ShippingEasy, ShipStation, AfterShip, Zapier etc. The apps are mostly available to paid plan users.
WooCommerce is available for WordPress websites only and it cannot be used with other CMS platforms or website builders. On the other hand, you may install any plugin from the WordPress marketplace you need from analytics and monitoring instruments to user acquisition and promotion widgets.
At the same time, WooCommerce is compatible with multiple third-party extensions meant for WordPress. You may connect its official Facebook plugin, integrate leading POS systems including Square to sell physical goods as well. Popular plugin add-ons also include MailChimp integration, connection with payment (PayPal, Stripe, etc.) and shipping methods (United States Postal Services).
When it tackles the issue of integrations, Ecwid delivers a bunch of sales channels and extra features already integrated. You can also connect lots of third-party apps here to boost your web store performance. WooCommerce integrations are limited by the selection of WordPress plugins only. Despite their impressive amount you won’t be able to reach for third-party widgets.
Ecwid makes it easy to create responsive digital stores that run equally well on all types of devices. As for the design features, they mainly rely on the initial site appearance. As the system can be integrated with both CMS and SaaS website builders, the final look will depend on the platform you choose. Being a plugin, Ecwid does not offer any template choice options or abundance design customization settings. If you intend to use the software for standalone web store creation, it will offer you only one theme – Starter Site, which does not have extensive design customization parameters as well.
Custom Ecwid starter websites look very simple though stylish. Here we have the lack of customization features, as there is no access to the site source code. The problem can be solved when opting for open-source CMS to integrate your ready-made Ecwid shop. Likewise, it’s up to you to create appealing show window design, editing its look and products as you need. You can change the background, select the preferable color scheme combination and even shop for custom themes available on the web. The cost of these themes, however, is quite high and starts at $435.
WooCommerce users may choose from an endless selection of responsive WordPress themes. They include free and paid premium templates depending on your preference. Another great news is that WP-site code can be accessed right from the dashboard. You may change the structure, add new design features, create elements and icons for your website to let it stand out.
However, this will work only for experienced coders or web designers. Another way is to opt for more exclusive templates from the Premium list. In this case, you will need to pay from $29 to $300.
As to template design customization, coding skills are a must to create a truly remarkable web store theme. It is also desirable for you to have at least basic skills of working with WordPress files. The plugin allows making minor edits, using a built-in website editor. Need a high end unique design? Then go ahead to download the files to your computer and edit them there, having preliminary made back up copies.
When it comes to the design aspect, Ecwid unveils more customization options, especially when used with another CM or website builder. WooCommerce designs are more versatile and numerous, yet coding proficiency is required to work with them.
Ecwid vs WooCommerce: General Pricing Comparison
Ecwid has a free subscription to let its potential users test the built-in features. According to the terms of the plan, users can start a simple web store with up to 10 products only. Additionally, they get a few free options like live chat access, unlimited bandwidth, zero transaction fees, free start site development, mobile shopping cart, opportunity to sell on several platforms at a time etc. These features are definitely not enough to start a trusted eCommerce project. To get access to advanced features and design customization options, Ecwid allows upgrading to one of its premium subscriptions. Here they go:
- Venture Plan ($15/mo or $12.50/mo with the annual subscription) – lets you sell selling 100 products with auto sales calculation, discount coupons, Google Shopping, CSV file export/import etc.;
- Business Plan ($35/mo or $29.17/mo with the annual subscription) – allows selling up to 2500 products and get access to extra features like premium support, mobile management app, POS integration, wholesale pricing, custom invoices, marketplace integration etc.;
- Unlimited Plan ($99/mo or $82.50/mo with the annual payment) – makes it possible to sell the unlimited number of products and use premium features like custom mobile store app, priority support, Square POS integration etc.
WooCommerce is a free WP plugin with paid options and extensions. It is free to install. A baseline version provides only starter features to launch a small shop. If you want to create a growing eCommerce project you will need an additional extension that costs from $50 to $250 depending on your needs.
To go live with your eCommerce website, you will also have to invest into hosting and domain name. The cost will differ with regard to the plan you will go for, the terms it includes, the domain zone, your online shop size and some other aspects.
As to hosting, WordPress officially recommends Bluehost – an easy-to-use and feature-rich provider. They offer one-click WordPress installation, free SSL Certificate connection 24/7 customer support and other privileges depending on the terms of its plans. The cheapest Bluehost subscription currently costs $2.95/mo – that’s more than affordable solution for everyone.
In terms of pricing, both solutions have free versions. However, they are not enough to set up a fully-functional store. You will need to opt for premium plans or extensions. The key difference is that Ecwid charges fixed monthly fees for the features included, while WooCommerce prices differ with regard to versatile parameters like hosting, domain, external extensions etc. This makes it more difficult to plan the budget.
Ecwid vs WooCommerce: Which One Is the Best for SEO?
Ecwid delivers baseline SEO settings, which are sufficient to promote a standard web store. Users can independently set up the parameters of their eCommerce projects. These include web page descriptions and titles along with product URLs that are automatically generated by the plugin, when you upload new products.
WooCommerce does not grant access to built-in SEO tools and settings. To set up your web store SEO parameters, you need to pick and integrate one of the SEO plugins created for WordPress websites. There are free and paid extensions to choose from with regard to your needs, budget, goals and web store complexity. The best plugin to go for is Yoast SEO. It allows filling out baseline SEO settings, namely metadata (titles, descriptions, keywords), setting up a human-friendly URL for your project, using the AMP plugin to add web store pages that load fast on mobile devices etc.
When reviewing the SEO aspect, Ecwid makes it simpler and more understandable to set up your web store optimization parameters. As opposed to it, WooCommerce requires extra integration of SEO plugins. This may pose a problem to beginners.
Key Differences Between Ecwid and WooCommerce
|Ease of Use:||Ecwid is a popular eCommerce plugin, which can be either connected to an existing website to give it eCommerce focus or can be used to start a new small/medium web store from scratch.||WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin, the area of specialization of which goes down to web store creation only. The plugin works great for small and medium online shops, granting access to eCommerce tools needed to start and manage eCommerce projects with no coding skills required.|
|Functionality:||The software delivers a pack of eCommerce tools and features out-of-the-box. This is what makes Ecwid an easy solution for all user categories. It offers versatile eCommerce integrations, design customization options, advanced web store/product management tools.||The plugin is rich in built-in eCommerce features. It allows starting/managing small-to-large online stores that differ in complexity, functionality and niche focus. The plugin also allows boosting your web store performance by integrating third-party WordPress plugins.|
|Design:||As an eCommerce plugin, Ecwid does not have its own template gallery. Instead, it offers one Starter Site theme users can customize to build a one-page standalone web store. At the same time, the plugin allows for CSS code editing, while web stores created with it have responsive design.||WooCommerce delivers freedom of web store customization, making it possible to edit HTML/CSS codes for deeper project set up. The plugin offers over 500 responsive eCommerce themes. Users can also browse and select external WP themes compatible with WooCommerce.|
|eCommerce:||Ecwid abounds in professional eCommerce features and tools. The plugin lets you effectively manage web stores/products/orders, use third-party/marketing extensions along with multichannel support and other niche benefits.||The software boasts high end eCommerce features as well. The plugin lets you compile and adjust product catalogues, manage user registrations, add and customize items offered for sale, set up payment/shipping/tax parameters, track web store statistics etc.|
|Blogging:||The plugin doesn’t have a built-in blogging engine and, thus, it makes blog connection impossible.||WooCommerce does not include a built-in blogging engine. To connect a blog to your web store, you should pick and integrate one of the blog plugins developed for WordPress.|
|Small Business:||Ecwid works well for small business websites that have an eCommerce focus.||The plugin allows launching small business projects, which feature distinctive eCommerce specialization.|
|Pricing:||The plugin has a free everlasting subscription and three premium plans. Their cost starts at $15/mo.||WooCommerce is a free plugin, but it still implies an opportunity for third-party widget integration (free or paid) to boost your project performance.|
|SEO:||Ecwid has limited SEO settings, which don’t provide sufficient web store optimization and cannot guarantee high project positions in the search engine results.||Online shops powered by WooCommerce are well optimized for the search engines.This is achieved by means of external SEO plugins integration. Yoast SEO is the best solution to try here.|
|Customer Support:||Live Chat, email communication, YouTube tutorials, informative blog, extensive knowledge base, community forum, priority phone support, 12 hours of custom web store development for annual plan subscribers.||FAQ section, extensive community, quick plugin installation assistance, tech email support.|
Which One Is Better for an Online Store: Ecwid or WooCommerce?
Choosing the right solution mainly depends on your web store requirements, specialization and goals you intend to achieve in the long run. Both Ecwid and WooCommerce make it possible to launch and manage feature-rich eCommerce projects and both of them offer a range of niche-specific tools that ensure quality result.
While WooCommerce mostly works well for WordPress websites and its functionality is limited to this implication only, Ecwid can be chosen for any type of eCommerce project. What’s more, it offers two ways to get started with your web store. You can either connect the plugin to the existing website created with CMS/website builder or start a new online store from scratch. The plugin also offers fixed pricing and a toolset that will come in handy to non-techies willing to sell through multiple channels using simpler website building platforms. These are only some of the features that give Ecwid prevalence over its competitor.