Inside this article
In today's article, we will compare two of the most used platforms when creating an online store or eCommerce shop so you can choose between using PrestaShop vs WooCommerce.
Both platforms share some similarities that make the process of choosing one harder. For instance, both are open source and self-hosted.
This allows users to create, modify, and customize their online stores to their liking and needs. Both platforms come with an easy-to-use interface and offer the help of WooCoommerce or PrestaShop experts to develop the website.
Plus, both of them have a marketplace or store where you can find plugins or addons to add new functionalities to your online store, saving money and time in the development department.
These are the general features of PrestaShop and WooCommerce, but knowing this isn’t enough to make a decision.
We have investigated the advantages and disadvantages of each and prepared comparative tables to provide a visual summary. We have also come up with a list of additional criteria that may be relevant in the medium and long term.
Benefits of using PrestaShop
Opening your online store in PrestaShop has a series of advantages that may interest you. These are some of them:
- Customizable and scalable. Because it is open-source, you can create and modify your online store as your needs grow or change
- Price. It’s free to download and use; you just need your own server, domain, and IT team
- Pre-created addons, themes, and templates are available through the PrestaShop marketplace
Benefits of using WooCommerce
Choosing WooCommerce brings a number of benefits to online stores:
- Visual. Its design is very intuitive and you will find it easy to use, especially if you are already familiar with WordPress
- Fully customizable, because it’s an open-source platform
- Free to download and install (server and domain not included)
- Scalability. You can add new features and functionalities with their plugins —or the creation of custom developments— as your business grows
In this comparative table, you can see a summary of the benefits that PrestaShop and WooCommerce have.
|Fully customizable||Fully customizable|
|Free to download and install||Free to download and install|
|Pre-built addons, templates and themes||Pre-built plugins|
Opening your online store in PrestaShop involves a series of inconveniences, some of its drawbacks being:
- Few free additional functionalities (themes, modules, and addons). This can quickly build up, especially once your business grows and you need to create custom developments or install many addons
- The interface is a bit more complex than WooCommerce’s
- Translations are automatic, but not perfect
- You need to monitor traffic changes and how this affects your server
- You need to invest time and resources to create and modify your online store, and make sure that your data and customers’ data is secure
Using WooCommerce to create your online store has some drawbacks. These are:
- Relying on plugins for your growth can mean compatibility problems in the long run. To avoid this, you’ll need to develop your own plugins, which can be costly
- Unless you outsource, you need to monitor traffic changes and how this affects your server
- Creating and modifying an online store involves an investment in time and resources
- The security of your data and your customer’s data depends entirely on you
In this comparison table, you can see a summary of the disadvantages that PrestaShop and WooCommerce have.
|Few free additional functionalities||Relying on plugins for your growth can mean compatibility problems in the long run|
|You need to take care of the server and traffic changes||You need to take care of the server and traffic changes|
|You need to invest time and resources for the creation and modifications||You need to invest time and resources for the creation and modifications|
|Security depends entirely on you||Security depends entirely on you|
|The interface is a bit more complex than WooCommerce’s|
Now you have an overview of the advantages and disadvantages of PrestaShop and WooCommerce. However, there are still more criteria that you must consider before you can responsibly choose a platform for your online store.
Additional factors to consider before choosing your platform
These two platforms offer many advantages and you may be considering migrating from your current platform to one of these.
It’s important to consider what the current needs of your business are, what the needs of your business may be in the future, and what you are looking for in an eCommerce platform.
The following factors are relevant in the medium and long-term, so we invite you to reflect on them and take them into account when comparing platforms.
Creation and maintenance cost
Both PrestaShop and WooCommerce are free to download and use. However, you may need plugins or addons to improve the function of your online store and boost your growth.
If you decide not to install pre-built developments like PrestaShop addons or WooCommerce plugins, you’ll need to develop your own, with the costs and time this incurs.
Eventually, both come with costs, but WooCommerce is easier. There are platforms like Shopify that come with everything in exchange for a monthly payment.
Ease of use of the platform
When we talk about ease, of course, we are talking about something relatively subjective and that depends entirely on the capabilities of a person. However, if you already have a WordPress page, you will probably find it much easier to use WooCommerce than PrestaShop.
If, on the other hand, you do not have a WordPress page, it may still be easier for you to work with WooCommerce than PrestaShop, but the difference isn’t as big as when you compare WooCommerce and PrestaShop vs Magento, for instance.
Scalability of the online store
Because they are both open source, they are entirely modifiable and you can set up your online store with the features and functionalities you need.
Once your business starts to grow and you need to add new functionalities, you can rely on WooCommerce plugins or PrestaShop addons. Consider the potential compatibility problems between them, since in some cases it may be worth it to develop your own solution.
You can rely on WooCommerce or PrestaShop developers for this, or try to do it yourself if you are familiar with basic coding.
Migration to another platform
To avoid future headaches, you should think carefully about the best platform for you. If you still regret choosing a platform, you should know that both PrestaShop and WooCommerce are migratable through a specialized migration tool or with the help of a migration expert.
Creating a store in a self-hosted solution like PrestaShop or WooCommerce entails an investment of resources such as time and money, so it’s best to be sure before starting to create your online store.
Both platforms are open source, so both can be modified and fully customized. They both come with pre-configured themes to speed up the process of opening an online store.
This customization can be carried out in two ways: through custom developments or through addons or plugins. Sometimes you can even find them for free!
Order management, shipments, and returns
When it comes to order management, shipments, and returns, you may notice that this aspect is often left unattended by sellers and eCommerce platforms.
Simply analyze each platform to see how they take care of other tasks like marketing or taxation, but in terms of shipping, none offer a complete and adequate solution for managing shipments and returns.
And, although both PrestaShop and WooCommerce have some tools and functionalities for order management, these are not enough to have a flawless logistics process.
If you want to streamline everything that happens after the sale: shipping, incident management, returns, cross-selling and upselling strategies, start using Outvio.
Whichever platform you ultimately decide on, Outvio meets all the logistical needs that these don’t.
As we have explained above, the two platforms are widespread and frequently used to open and manage online stores. Your choice will depend on the criteria that you consider most important for the specific case of your business and the situation in which you find yourself.
Think about the priorities of your brand, the tastes and preferences that you and your customers have, and try to anticipate the needs that will arise when your sales continue to increase.
This article is a summary of everything offered by PrestaShop and WooCommerce. We hope that your questions have been resolved. If not, or if you simply want more information, you can read more on PrestaShop or WooCommerce.