Commerce Anywhere—Multi-Channel Ecommerce on Shopify vs. Magento

It’s becoming increasingly important to go to your customers and early adopters, instead of waiting for them to come to you. In its continued bid to become the centre of your mult-channel ecommerce ecosystem, Shopify has deployed a suite of integrations to ensure that you can enable ecommerce on any 3rd party marketing site, blog, social network or marketplace—all powered by a single Shopify back-end.

Shopify’s Sales Channel SDK allows you to add commerce to any mobile app, marketplace, or website. Shopify handles the hard parts—like payments, shipping, taxes, inventory, analytics, and more so you can connect with your customers wherever they are.

Shopify merchants can also deploy commerce capabilities to Facebook and Pinterest immediately after starting their store— with just a few clicks from within Shopify. Other 3rd party integrations include popular marketplaces like Amazon, Houzz, Ebates and Wanelo.

Shopify’s Buy Button functionality enables merchants to add ecommerce to any website using only a snippet of code—no custom development required. Embedded products, collections, and even a seamless, on-site shopping cart can be added in a couple of minutes.

The JavaScript Buy SDK is a lightweight library that allows you to to retrieve products and collections from your shop, add products to a cart, and checkout—without leaving the other site.

While it may be possible with extensions or custom solutions, Magento currently lacks integration to common social channels and marketplaces. As the number of channels expands, on-premise platforms such as Magento are going to have a hard time keeping up. Integrating with any one of these channels requires custom integration and development.

In a world where retailers are increasingly leveraging more channels, managing all of these one-off integrations with Magento can become cost prohibitive so is very often simply ignored.

To a build a beautiful custom site with Shopify Plus, all that is required is knowledge of HTML, CSS, and Liquid—Shopify’s intuitive, powerful templating language.

Shopify also maintains an enormous library of themes, which can almost entirely remove the need for lengthly and costly custom design.

Managing basic content and presentation on Magento 2 requires an in-depth knowledge of the platform architecture. The skills required to develop a front-end experience on Magento 2 are much higher than they were in Magento 1.x.

Magento 2 requires knowledge of its complex component architecture and directory structure as well as knowledge of PHP and a myriad of other technologies for basic changes or customisations.

Magento 2 is built for developers and, as a result, requires developers for even basic changes to the look-and-feel. This not only slows the implementation time but adds lengthy development cycles and costs when all that is required are basic changes to the customer-experience.

Brands focused on speed shouldn’t require a development project and testing cycle for basic content changes. As the time-to-market for brands becomes an increasing focus, on-premise platforms will have a hard time keeping up.

Shopify is extremely agile and it is often possible to take a site from concept to launch within 2–3 months—or less.