When it comes to creating functional online stores, Shopify and Volusion might be the first eCommerce platforms that spring to mind. In this head-to-head comparison, we are going to be comparing Shopify versus Volusion so you can decide for yourself which one is better.
If you run a business, then chances are you face the necessity to launch an online store at some point. Being an inexperienced user as you probably are, to build an eCommerce website with no coding skills might bring lots of headaches. That is when DIY eCommerce website builders like Volusion or Shopify come in handy. But here is another problem - which one to choose? You don't need to go on Wikipedia to find the answer. Everything you need to know about these two companies is here.
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Shopify is by far the most popular, flexible, multi-functional, and user-friendly eCommerce-specific web builder. The company allows its customers to create a scalable eCommerce website without the need to write even one line of code. Its out-of-the-box readiness is impressive since the platform offers everything you need for launching an effective store from the start. Moreover, it has a great variety of built-in features and lots of add-ons and apps that make it easy to customize your site. The fact that more than 800,000 merchants are using this eCommerce platform tells a lot. It may seem that there is no need to do the in-depth comparison of Shopify and Volusion since Shopify is an obvious winner. Nevertheless, it is not for everyone. And that is exactly when Volusion enters the game.
Being one of the oldest all-in-one eCommerce platforms on the market, Volusion also helps you create and manage an online store by providing you with a great deal of cool advanced eCommerce features and tools. It has somewhat tricky design features, which makes it more difficult to use. About 30,000 online stores have chosen this platform since 2002 when Volusion launched the eCommerce functionality. Volusion has put the focus on such things as analytics and customer insights. At the same time, it loses points when it comes to versatility.
As you can see from this overall review both builders have their strengths and weaknesses, so let's go through the key differences and similarities to find out which platform wins in the Shopify vs. Volusion face-off.
It has to be mentioned that both Volusion and Shopify have easy-to-use backends to offer. Still, let’s take a closer look at which one is easier.
Volusion is generally easy to use, to say the least. Not only is it convenient for experienced web designers, but also for complete newbies. There is nothing difficult about the overall process of website development. It is intuitive and user-friendly. The dashboard is quite informative so that pretty much everyone can master all its functions quickly. However, some of you may find the dashboard to be too overloaded with various tools, sections, and data which have to be explored before you start working with the service. If you have anything to do with web development, this will only work in your favor. Being an inexperienced user, such diversity may become a real challenge.
Thanks to the recent improvements made in 2018, V2 now offers wider functionality and additional assistance such as a step-by-step wizard when it comes to daily operations, which is great. As well as that, there is a mobile version that makes it easier to manage your business on the go.
Long story short, Shopify is much easier to use for many reasons. First, it has simple and convenient editing tools. Second, it won't be a problem for you to find such things as the "undo" button. Third, its interface is overall clear and simple. Fourth, Shopify has the perfect balance between power and ease of use. Even if you are a complete beginner with no coding skills, it won't be a problem to figure out what to do to set up your site on Shopify. You may like to check out reviews from people who have had a chance to work with Shopify and scored whether it was easy or difficult for them to complete certain tasks. Spoiler Alert! Most reviews are positive.
In fact, Shopify is so good and simple that around 90% of its users said with absolute certainty that they would recommend it to their friends. Moreover, when it comes to Shopify and Volusion competitors like BigCommerce and Wix eCommerce, people claim that Shopify is still the easiest web builder to go with. What we are trying to say here is that if there was a head-to-head comparison of all platforms such as Volusion vs. Shopify vs. BigCommerce vs. Wix vs. Squarespace, Shopify would be the winner in the category of simplicity one way or another.
Both big hosting eCommerce platforms have various tools that allow you to create, design, and edit your website’s pages according to your needs. Both have a live drag-and-drop editor that helps you customize your content blocks and interface without the need to do manual coding. Both have WYSIWYG editor, intuitive interfaces, and convenient dashboards.
However, in terms of customizability and flexibility, Shopify is way ahead of Volusion. But if you are not obsessed with the website design, but are rather data-oriented, the Volusion website builder fits the bill. On the other hand, if you want your online store design to be one of a kind, you won’t do without Shopify Storefront Editor. To make things easier and clearer for you, Shopify has added a smart function. During editing, your screen is divided into two parts: one of them is where all the edits are made and the other one displays the changes.
The assortment of third-party integrations Shopify offers is rather remarkable. There are more than 2000 application options that come along with social media and plugins responsible for shipping, marketing, and accounting. Although the variety of add-ons in Shopify is quite big, it is both good and bad since Shopify relies on applications too much. For most of them, you have to pay extra. But if you want to extend your website functionality, Shopify is the one to go with. Even if you are a user of WordPress, it is possible for you to ingrate a Shopify Buy Now button for only $9 a month.
At the moment, there are 72 applications and plugins that Volusion V2 integrates with. Due to the fact that Zapier is one of those apps, Volusion users have a chance to connect to other software services, but they will have to pay for this. All in all, we do really hope that the Volusion app marketplace will be developed in the near future.
Luckily, both website builders offer APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) which benefit you as a user since you receive the ability to develop various integrations and extensions for yourself.
The short answer is YES! Your goal is to make a robust and fully-fledged online store. The goal of both platforms Volusion and Shopify is to provide you with the best, most comprehensive and useful set of tools and features. Both these companies work hard to save their customers time and headache and give everything businesses need out-of-the-box without the necessity of looking for third-party apps and solutions.
The Volusion platform has a large number of basic marketing features that are already built-in. You don’t have to pay extra money for additional plugins and tools. Volusion drop-shipping integration will increase your sales potential. Not to mention a powerful marketing toolkit that works in favor of the effective promotion of the product and generate sales. With Volusion, it is super easy to keep your pages and products SEO-friendly.
Getting back to Shopify, things with marketing and SEO tools here are nothing worse if not better. When it comes to SEO, Shopify is definitely not a one-trick pony. It has a wide range of SEO and marketing tools that help you get found in search results, bring more traffic to your site, and as a result generate more sales.
In terms of sales features, both Shopify and Volusion carts allow you to conduct transactions, product uploading, and management as well as shipping products to customers. Reporting tools along with an abandoned cart tool are also there to make selling processes easier for you and your clients.
Shopify’s out of the box feature seems to be slightly lighter than Volusion’s. Chances are, you will need to purchase add-ons with more advanced features that can hit you right in the pocket. Nevertheless, quite a few business owners admit that the existing set of features that Shopify provides them with is enough. Besides, there are a few cool features like digital product selling and multilingual capabilities that come as a bonus. Moreover, thanks to the advanced POS (Point-of-Sale) feature, it is possible to sell products both online and in local retail stores. Shopify also offers its own POS hardware.
While there are many merchants who are still using V1, with V2 you can get a few new advanced features like storefront instant search, an application allowing mobile management, and a drop-shipping application. Still, the Volusion app store doesn’t have such a wide assortment of applications as Shopify has, so Volusion lags behind Shopify here, too.
Customer engagement solutions are crucial in terms of boosting sales. Both companies have something worthy to offer. Shopify, for example, allows its users to integrate their accounts with the ones they have in other services such as Amazon, Xero or Quickbox. This helps a company with increasing its customer base and boosting the volume of sales. Volusion also has some interesting customer engagement solutions such as email marketing, social management options, and the availability of clients' reviews at website pages.
In terms of analytics and data tools, Volusion is definitely ahead of Shopify. We’d like to single out amazing search term analysis, thanks to which you have an ability to keep track of what customers are searching on Google. This knowledge is useful since you can adjust your website in accordance with the relevant needs of your potential customers and get found on Google easily. Shopify also gives you the necessary analytics tools, however, they are not as impressive as the ones Volusion has.
If you are looking for fully responsive, comprehensive, and multifunctional templates, Shopify themes are exactly what you need. The collection of Shopify themes is impressive. You can choose between 51 paid template designs or opt for 10 free themes. No matter what choice you make, you will get the top-notch quality. If you are not completely satisfied with the suggested selection, feel free to look through the Shopify themes designed by TemplateMonster developers. They are truly eye-catching and elegant, but more importantly, they are easy to use and edit.
As we have already mentioned before, Shopify presents its customers with a super convenient and powerful WYSIWYG (abbr. for what you see is what you get) editor along with handy CSS/HTML editors. Their Sections themes can now be edited with the upgraded drag-and-drop editor.
Just to give you a general idea of what Shopify templates look like, we suggest that you check out Shopify Fitness Themes Bundle (which is perfect for building a fitness store) and Pureleaf Organic Shopify Theme (this theme meets all the needs and expectations of any organic store owner). The best thing is, these two beautiful themes are just the tip of the iceberg.
Speaking of what variety of templates Volusion offers, we must admit that there are not many of them. If to be more precise, you can find only 40 templates, 27 of which are paid. Depending on the template’s overall complexity, customization depth, and other parameters, you will have to pay from $50 to $180 for a template. Being fully responsive, templates developed by Volusion web designers are rather tricky to customize if you are a non-tech user. Volusion templates possess numerous menu layouts paired with Content Builder and multiple variations of the drag-and-drop editor. What does this mean? It means that you are able to create dozens of layout formats. Also, Volusion also has a user-friendly WYSIWYG editor. You can also make any of the templates unique by applying HTML/CSS skills.
In terms of customer support, both platforms offer decent service.
Volusion provides its customers with comprehensive how-to guides, all-around support articles, helpful instructions, and video tutorials. Also, you may find a useful FAQ section and an eCommerce blog that is constantly updated with up-to-date informative material. If you have inquiries regarding the use of the system, you will get personal assistance, which is provided by professional support specialists via email, phone, or Volusion live chat 24/7.
It must be noted that Volusion support varies depending on which plan you choose. Personal - online support, Professional - online and phone support, and only with the Business plan you get priority support. We believe that as a customer you should get treated the same despite which option you choose.
The quality support service is something Shopify can be proud of. Whatever Shopify lacks in other departments, it makes up in Customer Support. They have everything a user needs: huge community, online forum, informative tutorials, how-to recommendations, instructive articles, tons of different tips, and other useful materials. On top of that, you can find tons of interesting and useful videos on the Shopify YouTube channel. Live Chat and Shopify guru are there for you round-the-clock.
The best thing is, regardless of what plan you pick from Shopify, you are going to be able to get that priority rich support. As for our opinion, this undoubtedly makes Shopify a winner in terms of Customer Support since you don't have to be on the $299 plan to get whatever support you need. And if you are only a beginner and looking for help to get started, support is a very important aspect, agree?
Let’s take a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of each eCommerce web builder to help you decide which one you should use ultimately.
|+ Wide functionality
+ A great variety of free and paid high-quality templates
+ More add-ons and apps in AppMarket
+ Drag and Drop editor
+ Unlimited hosting for any of the plans
+ Great SEO tools
+ Ability to manage a site via mobile phone
+ Amazing customer support
+ A big number of video tutorials and training materials
+ Better credit card rates
+ Integration with Pinterest and other social platforms
+ Free SSL-certificate
|- You need 3rd party apps
(which basically means that a lot of the features, which Volusion already has, Shopify doesn't have and you need to add third-party apps)
- Fees for using a third-party payment gateway
- There are more paid templates than the ones for free
- More expensive
|+ Better out-of-the-box like gift cards,
built-in ratings, real-time shipping quotes
+ There are no transaction fees
+ Responsive templates
+ Drag-and-Drop editor
+ Affordable pricing
+ Monitoring of statistics data, sales, order features, etc.
+ Great built-in SEO tools
+ Better analytics
|- Bandwidth fees
(basically, if too many people come to your website, Volusion charges you for that)
- Limited functionality
(A lot of things are missing from Volusion and it's very hard to change that. In case you want to change something, you'll need a custom developer and custom coding.)
- Doesn’t have enough up/cross-selling features
- Considered to be quite a slow SaaS (software as a service) platform
All in all, even though Shopify is a bit more expensive and has other weaknesses, it still beats Volusion in a number of categories.
Whatever your budget is, you will be able to find a suitable pricing plan at both Shopify and Volusion eCommerce platforms. We are going to dig deeper so you know what you can get for the money you pay.
In general, Shopify is more expensive eCommerce software, but it is definitely worth the money since it is more flexible and offers tons of things that can help your business big time. Let's look at the pricing because this is a fair assessment in terms of Shopify being a little bit more expensive.
Shopify has three main pricing plans and two special plans. You can go with the first one, which is Basic Shopify which costs $29/month, with the so-called happy medium which is Shopify plan for $79/month, or Advanced Shopify for $299/month. Regardless of what option you choose, you always get an unlimited number of products. As well you get an unlimited number of file storage.
There is also Shopify Plus, which is the best solution for merchants who run large businesses, and Shopify Lite. Speaking of the latter, this plan will cost you only $9 a month though it only allows you to add eCommerce to your already existing website or Facebook page.
Unlike Volusion, Shopify charges you for any transactions made. In percentage, the commissions differ from 0.5% to 2%. By purchasing a more expensive plan, the commissions are reduced.
Truth be told, what Shopify brings to the table in terms of the features and benefits is worth the money you pay.
What are the prices for Volusion software? You will find four pricing plans in the Volusion store to choose from. Depending on what your needs are and how much money you are ready to pay, Volusion provides three standard subscriptions: Personal, Professional, and Business. You are going to be charged $29, $79, and $299 respectively. The fourth Prime plan is custom. Price-wise, the Personal $29/month plan is not that bad if you are a beginner. You might want to get started there. When it comes to the Professional plan, it is not going to be saving you really all that much in terms of what you are getting.
Also, Volusion additionally charges for such things as Design Audit or SEO-friendly URLs, etc. For instance, Volusion Google analytics training will cost you $200.
It is worth mentioning that you have an opportunity to pay monthly or annually. Annual plans work to your advantage since you save some money. The good news is, if you go with Volusion, you don’t need to pay extra fees for whatever money transactions are made in the system. And, as for our opinion, it is a big win-win.
Both eCommerce web builders provide their customers with a free trial for 14 days. After you have explored the systems features, tools, and options, you can get an upgrade to one of the paid suggested subscriptions of your choice. We must say that no review, no matter how informative it might be, will be able to substitute for your own experience. You should give both eCommerce builders a shot and decide for yourself which one suits your needs better.
We did our best to compare Shopify and Volusion so you could choose the platform that would help your business benefit the most. Whether setting up an eCommerce website is only a plan, or you already have one but want to move from Volusion to Shopify and vice versa, the information you have just read can be quite helpful. Both Shopify and Volusion are great eCommerce website builders, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Overall, we would go with Shopify since it is going to be a little bit easier to use, it is more advanced in terms of website customization options and offers a plethora of eCommerce features. Nevertheless, you may stumble upon comments like “Shopify sucks” which make it clear that there are people who are not completely satisfied with this service. We mean that you have to weigh all the pros and cons and make your own choice considering which platform is better for your business.
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