You already know choosing the right eCommerce platform for your online shop is essential – but when you first started selling online, you may not have known the benefits and limitations of different shopping cart systems.
As Irish companies get more experienced with trading online and technology evolves, many of them end up switching eCommerce platforms further down the line. This could be because they’ve outgrown the original platform they used, or they’ve realised a different platform has more features that they could use.
Whatever your reasons for looking into switching website platforms, if you’re selling products on WooCommerce, you might be considering moving over to Shopify.
As an Irish Shopify agency, many of the online retailers we help have already decided to migrate their website from WooCommerce to Shopify – so we’ve created this useful guide to migrating your online shop quickly, easily – and with minimal downtime.
Before we get into the nitty-gritty details of migrating a site, let’s look at the differences and similarities between the two platforms to make sure you’re making the right choice for your business.
What is WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is a customisable eCommerce plugin for the WordPress website platform. It’s home to 81% of all websites and 30% of the top one million e-commerce stores. It hosts nearly 4.5 million websites, it’s free to use and all you have to do is install it on your WordPress site.
You need to have a functioning WordPress site already up and running to make use of WooCommerce, as it’s not a standalone platform like Shopify.
In terms of functionality, there are over 6,000 WooCommerce plugins and addons you can use to make your eCommerce store perfect for your business. Most extensions for WooCommerce have a one-time payment so you don’t have to worry about continuous fees unless it’s for support or updates. The WordPress.org Theme Directory also has over 1,100 WooCommerce themes
Once the tricky setup is over, WooCommerce is a cost-effective platform that’s suitable for businesses big or small.
What is Shopify?
Shopify on the other hand may seem more expensive initially, but its support, updates, and user-friendliness are second to none. It’s also home to 21% of the top 1 million eCommerce websites.
Starting a new eCommerce store on Shopify is simple when you have the right team (like Ireland Website Design!) on hand to guide you through every step of the process.
Shopify gives you powerful options when it comes to plugins, extensions, themes and apps. There’s a range of analytics software available too that’s really helpful for monitoring the performance of your store and the behaviour of your customers.
Shopify is the ideal platform if you want excellent customer support and a friendly user experience.
Should you switch to Shopify?
Shopify has quickly catapulted itself as the leading cloud-based eCommerce solution on the market with a seamless online shopping experience for consumers, and an easy-to-manage admin dashboard for shop owners.
Here are just a few of the reasons our clients have decided to switch from a WooCommerce website to a Shopify website:
- – It’s an all-in-one eCommerce solution
- – Marketing features are built-in, run your Google Ads, Facebook Ads or Email Marketing directly within Shopify
- – Click and collect options are easy to set up – which is incredibly important right now with Covid
- – No costly updates/upgrades needed
- – EPOS is built-in and many 3rd party EPOS platforms are supported
- – API that allows some custom development
- – It’s super easy to use
- – There are a huge amount of apps and themes available
- – Excellent online security from hackers
- – Highly reliable with great uptime
- – 24/7 live chat, email & telephone support
- – No hidden fees – it’s a monthly fee that covers everything on your site
- – It’s a fully hosted eCommerce solution
- – Shopify sites are SEO-friendly from the get-go
Benefits of Shopify
There are so many benefits to using Shopify including their award-winning customer service team that’s available 24/7. This means you don’t have to worry about anything going wrong with your website!
Shopify has transparent pricing too so you know exactly what you’re going to get for the price you pay. Along with its user-friendly interface, Shopify also has a number of features to help grow your business such as:
- – Reliable hosting and security features, so you don’t have to worry about security breaches
- – Fraud analysis on all orders so you can feel safe fulfilling an order without worrying about expensive chargebacks
- – Smooth built-in checkout systems
- – Built-in analytics to help you monitor your business’s success
- – Over 4,000 apps for you to choose from and add to your site
- – Free resources with helpful tips on how to improve your store
- – A full blogging platform for your content
- – Search engine optimisation services are built-in
- – Social media integration so you can sell on Facebook and Instagram in a click
Shopify lets you sell in-store and online
Using Shopify you can sell in-store by synchronising your retail and online sales with the Shopify POS. This will help you simplify all your billing, accounting, and stock monitoring onto one platform
Shopify integrates with over 30 sales channels
With Shopify’s native integrations, you can easily update your Amazon, eBay, and 30+ other sales channels in a few clicks.
What does that mean for you? Less time updating each of your sales platforms, more time working on your business.
This is one of the main reasons why we like Shopify as an agency. With so much of the basic maintenance automatically taken care of, we spend less time fixing things and more time on helping our clients grow their eCommerce business through online marketing.
Is this the end of WooCommerce?
WooCommerce is brilliant when you have very custom requirements that Shopify doesn’t cater for.
Things to keep in mind when migrating from WooCommerce to Shopify
When migrating over from WooCommerce to Shopify you should make sure that you know what parts of your website can be easily carried over and what parts you’ll have to leave behind, or find alternatives for on Shopify.
Before you start migrating your site to Shopify make sure you’ve got the basic administrative settings set up on Shopify. This will make the switch from WooCommerce to Shopify a whole lot easier.
How to use the WooCommerce importer tool
Importing your store to Shopify got a whole lot easier thanks to the WooCommerce importer tool which can be added from the Shopify app store here.
This importer tool allows you to import all your products painlessly, making it quicker and easier to migrate your eCommerce store.
The WooCommerce importer tool makes switching from WooCommerce to Shopify as simple as possible.
Within a few clicks, you can now:
- – Migrate all your products
- – Transfer your customers and orders
- – Import product reviews
- – Generate account activation links for all your customers
- – Create URL redirects to fix broken links when you switch from WooCommerce to Shopify
What information is transferred from WooCommerce?
When using the WooCommerce importer tool, you’ll be able to migrate all the data from your products, variants, images, orders, and customer data that is accessible through the WooCommerce API.
If there is extra data that you’d like to transfer over it can be arranged, but it might not be transferred automatically – you might need a custom import.
How to use the WooCommerce import tool
To use the import tool you’ll need the API key from your WooCommerce site.
WooCommerce sites all have an API that lets other applications access their data. The WooCommerce Importer app uses the API to make a copy of your WooCommerce store and import it into Shopify.
Before using the WooCommerce import tool you’ll have to enable API on your WooCommerce site and generate a consumer key and secret (like a username and a password for the API).
Sounds complicated? When you work with our expert team of Shopify developers, we take care of all of this for you.
WooCommerce vs Shopify
Not sure whether you want to move from WooCommerce to Shopify?
Take a look at the pros and cons of each option below to see which platform suits your business more.
Both WooCommerce and Shopify are excellent eCommerce platforms suitable for online stores of any size.
If you’re thinking of migrating from WooCommerce to Shopify and want some help with the process then look no further. Our team at Ireland Website Design would love to help you make the switch!
We help retailers across Ireland streamline, simplify, and automate their websites and promote their companies online.
We also help retailers who feel WordPress is the perfect solution to their needs – we love helping clients with custom WooCommerce development! Our WordPress clients include Electro City, Soap Box Kuwait, and Greener Me.
Get in contact today and let’s see how we can help improve your online presence.