Low Pricing (weighted 11%)
9 USD/ month + 2.9% + 30¢ credit card fees
Upload an unlimited amount of products, but you don't get an online store. Instead you must use the Shopify Buy button to make sales. Manual order creation and discount codes are included.
29 USD/ month + 2.9% + 30¢ credit card fees
Upload an unlimited amount of products and receive an online store with this plan. A website and blog is included, along with discount code features. It comes with a blog and website.
79 USD/ month + 2.6% + 30¢ credit card fees
Upload an unlimited amount of products, and setup shop with an online store. Sell on Facebook and Pinterest, use a blog and generate professional reports. You also gain access to abandoned cart recovery.
179 USD/ month + 2.4% + 30¢ credit card fees
Upload an unlimited amount of products, and use the online store. Everything from the previous plans come along with this, with the addition of an advanced reports builder and real-time carrier shipping.
All plans have no transaction fees, a 14 day trial, unlimited storage, a point of sale and a nice retail package. You get 24/7 customer support, manual order creation tools, discount codes and fraud analysis features.
You don't have to pay money to download the Community Edition. However, if you'd like to upgrade to the Enterprise Edition, you need to request a quote. Magento is open source, so you have access to a community forum and mobile responsive themes. An app store comes with your account, and you can sell an unlimited amount of products. You must search for and setup your own hosting and domain name. The same goes for a CDN.
Design (weighted 11%)
Shopify and Magento are fairly even when it comes to their theme offerings, but Shopify has a few more with 116 premium ones and 21 free options. This looks like it may be a little better, but it has many very similar themes. However, all themes are super sleek and powerful, you can adapt the themes without touching any code, and you gain access to source code files if needed. An FTP account is not provided.
Magento Community Edition can connect to an FTP client, making it easier to edit files if you're an advanced user. However, the files can be more confusing than that of Shopify. The Magento Theme Marketplace has around 120 themes, some of which are free, while others are paid. You should expect to pay around $50 to $150 for a quality theme. Keep in mind that not all of them are vetted for quality, so Shopify is often a safer bet.
Frontend Features (weighted 11%)
The frontend is responsive for viewing on mobile devices, and it provides a nice checkout area and a minimalist design. It depends on the plan you choose, but you can integrate with Facebook and Pinterest, and a simple point of sale comes along with your purchase. You receive a website and blog, along with discount codes, real-time shipping and gift cards. Customer profiles are better in Magento, but you can improve them with tweaking.
The frontend is similar to Shopify in that it has coupon codes, a sleek checkout, gift cards and a customer dashboard. The built-in features include upsells and cross sells, related products, wishlists, quantity discounts, a saved shopping cart and an order status module. You can also incorporate zoomable images, re-orders and product reviews. Not all of these are built-in with Shopify, but an app can usually solve that. Finally, Magento is responsive.
Backend Features (weighted 11%)
Compared to Magento, Shopify provides a backend for both beginners and advanced users. Magento is more for developers, but you can learn it if need be and if you have enough time. Shopify keeps options to a minimum, but you can open up advanced features and customize certain parts of the source code. Similar to WordPress, the dashboard has tabs for checkout, payments, shipping, taxes, general settings and notifications.
The system also provides links and modules for support documents, videos and contact information. If you plan on adding a product, a few tabs show up for making gift cards, managing inventory, creating collections and more. Fields are offered for things like vendors, collections, pricing, SEO tools and shipping.
Although it may be confusing for beginners, the backend is extremely robust. Move around the dashboard with ease, and access reports and analytics right on the dashboard. This isn't as prevalent with Shopify. Manage payment processors, integrate with Authorize.net or PayPal, and even sell virtual products.
Along with product tags, you can sort customers, use marketing features, set unlimited product attributes and more. Making a product isn't that hard, but product pages for Shopify are more basic.
Marketing (weighted 11%)
Shopify has the basic essentials for SEO, with robots.txt and sitemap.xml files, Canonical URL tags, and editable meta descriptions, URLs and title tags. The setup for SEO is much cleaner, but it's not that hard at all with Magento.
Shopify wins by a slim margin in terms of social media, since you have access to product sales on Pinterest and Facebook. However, most other social media buttons and integrations require an app of some sort.
Generate a page to implement a newsletter signup form. It's not that powerful of a system, but you can integrate with big time solutions like MailChimp and AWeber. If you can't find what you need for a newsletter, go with an app. However, the built-in subscription management is not great.
Built-in promotion options
Discount codes and coupons come with your plan. You typically have to turn to the app store to find solutions for promotions, but that's still a huge advantage since you have the option.
Support of other selling channels
Sell through Google Products. It takes some development experience to make this integration, but that's no different than if you were to do it through Magento Community. Look at the app store to find options for selling through places like Amazon and eBay.
Magento provides powerful SEO features like SEO friendly URLs, meta info (like Shopify,) a Google sitemap and a handy Google Content API for expanding on your SEO customization. Both solutions can integrate with Google Analytics.
No social media features are included, but you can integrate just about any app you want to make your site social friendly.
Magento offers a newsletter subscription management feature, which beats out the integration from Shopify. You can integrate the system with coupon codes, but most people will still use a system like MailChimp to send out nicely designed emails.
Built-in promotion options
Magento Community wins in the built-in promotions category, since you receive features for upselling, promotional pricing, flexible coupons, related products, free shipping, product bundling and more. All of this is included, and you can also turn to the app store if needed.
Support of other selling channels
Custom coding and the app store is your friend when looking to sell through other channels. The Google Shopping API is available, but this takes some development knowledge.
Statistics (weighted 11%)
Reports are amazing. Magento has strong reports as well, but Shopify's are easier to access and understand. Check out your gross sales, along with traffic from locations, landing pages, referrers, devices and more. Order sales are shown by billing address, channels and hours. Gross sales are broken down by traffic referrer, SKU, product title and more.
Stats are easily viewable from the dashboard, which is one of the ways it stands out from Shopify. The other reports are super comprehensive, but more complex. Some of the reports include details like sales, taxes, refunds, invoices, low stock reports, abandoned shopping carts, product review reports, best viewed products and more. There's also an area to see what keywords people are searching to find your site.
Hosting & Security (weighted 11%)
Shopify provides hosting when you sign up for a plan. This means you get a secure hosting account and a domain for your site. ServerCentral hosting is an enterprise level hosting platform. Automatic backups and Level 1 PCI compliance is provided. It's much easier to setup hosting, as opposed to Magento.
Magento Community and Shopify are polar opposites when it comes to hosting. Although security is solid for both, you must look for your own hosting plan with Magento Community. This means you need to seek out a hosting company and pay from $3 to $50 per month, or even more. That's not a huge problem, but some might find it tedious. You also have to buy your own domain name. Other than that, it is PCI Certified and SSL security support is offered for the front and backend. You may also have to sign up for your own CDN depending on if you need it or not.
Extensibility (weighted 11%)
The Shopify app store (http://apps.shopify.com) has hundreds of options, ranging from accounting to email marketing. Some of them are free, while others you must pay for. The apps are the best part of Shopify, and they are much easier to install than with Magento.
Support (weighted 11%)
Shopify offers dedicated support with hired reps who are waiting for your call. Magento is not even close to offering the same kind of support. You can contact them on a 24/7 basis through live chat, email or phone. They even have a powerful blog, something called Ecommerce University, forums and a knowledge base.