There are many debates and arguments online about what CMS (content management system) is ‘best’. And, of course, the answer will always depend on your business requirements, budgets and potential integration needs. If you speak with a Shopify specialist, of course, they will promote Shopify and again, with a Magento agency you will hear their arguments as to why that is better. We’re an agency that often has to build on top of existing platforms or integrate to complex logistics and we have experience in many CMS’ – so here is our take on why we think WordPress with WooCommerce is the best choice for ecommerce (certainly for our type of client base – those who are best in class).
By using WordPress plus Woo at your CMS we can build a bespoke front-end site for you that you can then develop as and when the business changes. We do not use existing themes, we design and build modules that are flexible for you to use (i.e. ‘drag and drop’ and repeat). This makes the system very easy to use and has the flexibility to be updated by our clients without the need for code knowledge. WordPress is the leading CMS (Content Management System) platform across the globe with more than 30 million live websites. By using this system over other options we can tailor the experience exactly how customers need, based on the digital strategy we have undertaken, for the best chance of a commercial uplift. This works perfectly for established businesses that want to bring their brands to life.
Hosted vs Self-hosted
WordPress with WooCommerce is a self-hosted solution whereas Shopify is hosted. This means that Shopify will cover your hosting and some maintenance but at a price both financially and control. WordPress and Woo can sit on your server and the code can be edited as you want it, it can be moved, or recoded as you change, unlike Shopify.
With added security measures we can ensure that the website is kept secure, dispelling some of the myths that WordPress doesn’t allow for secure websites. Most websites should be looked after under a maintenance contract to check vulnerabilities and update plugins regardless of the CMS choice.
There are thousands of tested WordPress plugins or pre-built Rest API’s that can mean adding functionality or hooking into your internal systems. We have experience in integrating with CRMs, PMS systems, Central inventory systems and booking systems, to name a few. We regularly build on top of existing plugins to customise the experience.
Because WordPress is open source, you will be able to make changes, grow your website and even hand the site to new coders without fear that anything has to be started again. Closed or bespoke systems will lock you into using them, and to move would mean rebuilding an entirely new site, including all its plugin functionality —a potential waste of investment.
WordPress is also favoured by SEO specialists as these sites index well using Yoast plugin.
WordPress is free, apart from plugin costs and hosting, you are just paying for the design and development, unlike many systems.
To finish up…WordPress really is a great system for clients that are looking for a website that isn’t just offering standard templates. If you are new to sites and want to manage it yourself without coders – then an off-the-shelf solution such as Shopify, Wix or Squarespace will do you well.