Looking for ecommerce software? Here's how Shopify and Storenvy stack up.
Matthew Taylor and Mark Hammersley
Last updated 21o August 2020
4.8 Stackupp rating
$ 29.00 / month
Best forSmall and medium-sized retailers that need a fully-hosted solution that’s easy to customize.
3.6 Stackupp rating
$ 14.99 / month
Best forsmaller, independent retailers that want access to an active marketplace along with the freedom to design their own store.
Can't decide between Shopify and Storenvy?
Find the best platform for you with our side by side comparison of Shopify and Storenvy. See how each platform stacks up across ease of use, design, support and value for money.
Let the comparison begin. Don't worry, we'll guide you.
With over one million users, Shopify is one of the most popular hosted ecommerce platforms on the market.
Shopify has gained a reputation for being extremely beginner-friendly, allowing retailers with no coding or development experience to build and manage a professional store with unlimited products.
If you’re looking for a solution that’s ready-to-go, easy to set up, and isn’t going to cost you an arm and a leg, then Shopify could be the way to go.
Notably, Shopify offers features as part of its basic package, like multi-channel selling, that are often only available on higher-level plans on competing platforms.
Use Shopify if you’re just getting started or are transitioning your small or medium-sized store to a new ecommerce platform.
Storenvy describes itself as a “social marketplace”. Shoppers can like listings, add items to “collections”, and message sellers directly. As an option for online retailers, Storenvy sits between marketplace-only platforms like eBay and self-managed solutions like Shopify and Magento.
One of the great things about Storenvy is that it allows users to build their own fully-customized store, with an array of more advanced features, that can be hosted on a unique domain. This is in conjunction with listings on the main marketplace.
Pricing is also very reasonable, with a forever-free plan and relatively low monthly costs for premium packages.
you’re a small or medium independent retailer (less than 5000 listings) looking for an easy-to-use solution that will provide access to an established marketplace.
Our first comparison criteria, ease of use. Why? Because it’s the most important.
Think about it. You don’t want to invest a lot of your precious time setting up an online store and tweaking the design only to find out that it’s a pain in the butt to manage day to day.
We take a look at how simple the Shopify and Storenvy platforms are to run.
Ease of use is one of the areas where Shopify really shines. All users have access to a website builder and intuitive content management system. Adding products is a doddle. And all orders are managed from an automatable fulfillment dashboard (which connects with popular fulfillment solutions). SEO and mobile responsiveness are both taken care of.
“I have built two websites using Shopify and it was a great experience. They have someone available all the time if you run into problems. I’m not a web designer and I was able to figure it out without any lengthy tutorials.”
“I've had a great experience with this platform and I highly recommend it!”
“I honestly don't know why there are so many bad reviews about Shopify. It is an absolutely amazing platform with an even better support team. I think people need to stop being so negative as there is nothing more you can ask from them.”
Storenvy is one of the easiest-to-use solutions we’ve reviewed. People with little design and technical experience will find it particularly appealing. It’s a browser-based solution and a central dashboard provides access to various areas for managing store operations, including orders, marketing, marketplace listings, storefront design, and so on. The website builder - which allows for limited CSS and HTML changes - is also very intuitive.
The initial set-up can be a little complicated, but overall we found that managing day-to-day tasks was straightforward.
"Storenvy is super customizable and I really appreciate that. Etsy is bigger and a bit more well known, though."
"I've been on Storenvy for awhile now and it's pretty simple."
"I like Storenvy! It's free to make a store and list stuff, but they take a processing fee."
Powerful features are great, but we all know first impressions count. So, do Shopify and Storenvy templates actually look any good? See for yourself. We outline each platforms design options, plus showcase a few real life examples.
There’s no doubt that Shopify offers some of the most beautifully-designed templates on the market. There are over seventy templates to choose from. The downside, however, is that most themes cost around $180. At the time of writing, Shopify offers eight free themes.
The design features in the website builder are intuitive and suitable for people with no coding background. Making tweaks to colors, buttons, images etc. is a doddle. What’s more, it’s possible to make straightforward CSS and HTML additions.
The main difficulty arises when it comes to making “deeper” backend changes. Accessing and amending the Shopify backend requires specialized knowledge which many retailers don’t have.
Storenvy has a website builder along with an HTML and CSS editor. Users with coding experience can make virtually any changes they want. Non-technical users, on the other hand, have more limited control over their storefront. Using only the site-builder, it’s possible to change colors, text, banners, background images, and certain parts of the layout. Retailers have access to a range of themes, some of which have an extra charge (usually around thirty dollars). It’s also possible to purchase a custom domain name for your store.
While the design features aren’t out of this world, they’re very easy to use and among the best we’ve seen for an independent store that’s coupled with a third-party marketplace.
Everyone’s favourite topic - pricing. Let's dive in to see if Shopify or Storenvy offers better value for money.
Shopify offers great value for money. The basic package comes with a fantastic array of features, including unlimited product listings, 24/7 support, discount codes, and abandoned cart email automation. There are no set-up fees, and you can take advantage of a 14-day free trial. You’ll also get a discount when you pay for an annual plan.
The main downside to Shopify is that you’ll be charged additional fees for using any payment gateway other than Shopify Payments. While Shopify allows for a range of gateway integrations (including popular services like Paypal), it’s important to account for these extra charges before signing up.
Storenvy provides very good value for money, especially when compared to other ecommerce platforms, which can run up to hundreds of dollars.
There are three plans available. “Hobbyist” is free and allows for up to 1000 listings. “Plus” is $14.99/month and has additional features like discounts. “Pro” is $29.99/month and includes automation tools.
Payments are handled via either Stripe or Paypal, and associated fees apply. There are no additional fees for products sold through your store. If an item is sold via a listing on the marketplace, you will be charged 15% of the final sale price (which includes shipping).
Retailers can also opt in to the “Managed Marketing” scheme. If you decide to do this, Storenvy will advertise products on your behalf on sites like Facebook and Google, taking 25% of each sale.
If things go wrong (and they often do) you need to know someone’s there to help get you back on track. So, how does Shopify's and Storenvy's support measure up?
All Shopify plans come with 24/7 email, phone, and live chat support. Customer reviews are generally favorable when describing the quality of support. 24/7 email support is also offered in a variety of other languages. Shopify has one of the most active communities of users, and the forums are an excellent place to ask for help.
Customer service for sellers is a bit of a mixed bag on Storenvy. Technical support is via email or the contact form. There is no phone or live-chat assistance. What’s more, it can take up to twenty-four hours to receive a response. There are no premium support packages on the paid plans.
Reviews online of individuals who have interacted with the support team are mixed, with many citing poor experiences. That said, it’s important to remember that the majority of online reviews are from customers (not fellow sellers) and independent store-owners are often responsible for handling issues, so Storenvy isn’t always to blame.
Retailers also have access to extensive documentation and a Facebook community group.
The final say. Let's wrap up our thoughts on each platform.
Shopify is a model ecommerce platform - a fully-hosted, feature-rich retail solution at a reasonable price. Among the standout points are the intuitive site builder and content management system, the quality of the templates, and the complete package of features included even in the basic package.
A highly active online community, along with 24/7 support, makes it an ideal option for small and medium-sized stores that don’t have the resources to manage everything themselves.
It’s also notable that Shopify includes omnichannel selling (for social media and Amazon), discount codes, and a free SSL certificate as part of its value proposition. Retailers also have access to shipping discounts when using Spotify Shipping.
Here are two points before wrapping up. If you’re thinking of giving Shopify a test-drive, be careful to check the costs of using third-party gateways. Also, ensure you’re able to make backend changes if that’s something you need to do.
We think that Storenvy is one of the best solutions available to small independent sellers. It combines all the benefits of a fully independent store with access to an active marketplace. What’s more, additional services like “Managed Marketing” (Storenvy will market your products through third-party sites like Facebook) can be immensely useful to retailers without much advertising experience. It also has an excellent free plan and a fair, transparent pricing structure.
Larger retailers will find it insufficient for their needs and a more feature-rich platform like Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento, etc. will be preferable. That said, there are still opportunities for these retailers to take advantage of the marketplace.
Overall, we found Shopify to be the better ecommerce platform.
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