WooCommerce vs OpenCart: Which One Is Your Right Solution?
eCommerce experts believe the prosperity and success of your eCommerce store depends upon the level of shopping cart flexibility you’re offering.
There are hundreds of thousands of eCommerce solutions available in the market. While choosing an eCommerce platform for your online business venture you should keep this in mind that this decision of yours will directly affect the future of your online business.
Among those thousands of eCommerce solutions, the two options that have become the center of the attention from a long time are WooCommerce and OpenCart.
Both the eCommerce solutions are powerfully designed to offer a decent shopping experience. However both come with ins and outs.
This raises the question,
“Which eCommerce platform should I choose? WooCommerce or OpenCart?”
This is certainly a tough decision to make for any eCommerce merchant especially when your whole business venture is dependent upon it.
If you’re confused between the two and unable to make a choice. Don’t worry.
In this article, we have done a complete comparative analysis on WooCommerce vs Opencart.
So sit back and relax. Read this article till the end to find your right eCommerce solution.
WooCommerce vs OpenCart: Overview
WooCommerce is an open-source WordPress plugin,launched in 2011 by WooThemes developers. It is designed to quickly turn an existing WordPress website into an eCommerce store.
In 2008, OpenCart’s story began. It is an open-source, PHP-based eCommerce platform. For decades, it has been around to simplify and streamline the store management process.
That was just a general overview.
Now it’s time to get a broader picture of the two most-popular eCommerce platforms.
So, let’s begin.
WooCommerce belongs to a very respectable company that has been around for a decade now. It possesses some powerful and advanced tools and built-in features to make the shopping experience engaging.
By every passing day, WooCommerce’s popularity is blossoming. It is one of the most preferred eCommerce solutions that is currently powering 3,252,126 live websites across the globe.
It is leading the race by taking 26% of the market share.
User-Friendliness is one feature for which OpenCart reportedly stands out among its competitors. It offers a bundle of optimal functionalities to easily setup and run an eCommerce business.
Considering the statistics, OpenCart is currently empowering 925,024 live websites globally, and accounting for 4% market share.
WooCommerce vs OpenCart: Detailed Comparison
1. Ease of Installation
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin. You can simply install it from the official WordPress plugin directory. It is a free open-source plugin.
WooCommerce is pretty easy to install. Simply head to the ‘Plugins’ section that you’ll find on the Admin dashboard. Click on ‘Plugins’. It will redirect you to the plugins section.
Besides ‘Plugin’, you’ll see the ‘Add New’ option. Click on it and search for WooCommerce in the search bar. Then click on the ‘Install Now’ button to install it.
Once you’ve installed it, just activate the plugin. After activating the plugin, you’ll be led to a wizard. It will ask you to fill in some basic information related to your business.
That’s it. Your online store is now ready for business.
To set up an online store on OpenCart you get two options. You can install it manually or use the easy one-click installer option that charges $3 to $15. However installing OpenCart is quite a complex process since it requires some basic technical skills.
The installation process of OpenCart can be pretty daunting for those who don’t have any technical skills.
When comparing the two, WooCommerce is much easier to install than OpenCart especially if you’re doing it manually. On the other hand, to install WooCommerce all you need to search for it and install it just like how you install other WordPress plugins.
2. Design and Themes
WooCommerce comes with over 2,100 free themes and over 30,000 premium themes. No matter if you’re looking for restaurant themes, SEO powered themes, business-specific themes, or eCommerce themes, WooCommerce has it all.
WooThemes is accurately aware about the significance of a web design. For that purpose, they’ve developed a platform that is compatible with most of the themes available in the official WordPress repository.
It means you can choose any WordPress theme you like and use it on your eCommerce store.
Apart from that, there are many themes that are tailor-made for WooCommerce. These themes are designed to enhance the beauty of your service/product listings. These themes are called Storefront themes.
Storefront themes are official WooCommerce themes that are built for online merchants to sell their services and products on an eCommerce-oriented looking store.
While the themes library of WooCommerce is remarkable and extensive, OpenCart’s themes library is very limited.
In OpenCart you get only 500 themes (free and paid included). The cost of the paid themes fluctuates between $60 to $70.
The advanced templates it offers allow users to modify the design and look of their online store quite efficiently. However, if you wish to completely customize your store, then it can be complicated for you if you have zero knowledge of CSS and HTML.
With sterling and responsive design, WooCommerce themes are definitely miles ahead of themes offered by OpenCart.
Unlike WooCommerce, OpenCart doesn’t offer enough free themes. Even the price of paid OpenCart themes are pretty much expensive if compared to premium WooCommerce themes.
If you’re looking for easily customizable and cheaper themes for your online store then you should choose WooCommerce.
One of the perks of WooCommerce is that it is a plugin of WordPress which is a highly customizable CMS platform. WooCommerce allows users to completely customize their online store according to their business objectives.
You can enhance the visual appearance and functionality of your WooCommerce store by using themes and WordPress ‘plugins’ also known as ‘extensions’.
Thanks to WooCommerce, there are plenty of eCommerce optimized plugins available. You can customize your online store using WooCommerce-specific extensions.
The best thing is the customization process is not complicated at all. With only a few clicks you can modify the design and functions without even tweaking a single line of code.
However, if you want to add a completely unique function to your store that you’re unable to find in the plugins market, what should you do?
As WooCommerce is an open-source platform, it means it gives you the freedom to tweak the codes to customize your online store. However, if you’re not good at coding then you can always take help from WordPress programming experts to configure your eCommerce store.
Whereas, OpenCart offers over 13,000 extensions to its users. From the massive collection of extensions you can choose any extension to improve the functionality of your online store.
Just like OpenCart’ themes, some extensions available for free while some are paid. Moreover, OpenCart is capable of accommodating multiple online stores on a single account.
Sadly, to thoroughly customize your store your coding game should be of next level. A standard user cannot handle the complexities on its own. You can hire a programming expert who can tweak codes to customize your store totally.
When comparing the customizability of the two platforms, we believe WooCommerce is relatively much easier to use and customize whereas OpenCart is a costly and difficult eCommerce platform to use and customize.
4. Payment Gateways
WooCommerce supports every payment gateway that your customer can think of. To add them to your store, you can simply download the plugin from the official plugins directory or get it from third-party plugins store.
Many popular payment gateways like, Stripe, PayPal, Amazon Pay and Klarna are free to use. However if you want to add some other payment gateways like SagePay or Worldpay then you have to purchase them. The price starts from $79 only.
Surprisingly, OpenCart has an extensive number of free payment gateways options. Over 30 payments are pre-installed in OpenCart. All the major ones including PayPal, Klarna, Worldpay, Amazon Pay, and SagePay are available for free.
Compared to WooCommerce, OpenCart offers more number of free payment gateways which you can add on your store to improve the customer shopping experience massively.
5. Documentation and Support
When it comes to support, Opencart offers tons of documentations, a support forum , video tutorials and a blog to its users. Users can take advantage of the support forum. The support forum is incredibly active which makes it easier to get quick solutions. However if you need further assistance then you need to pay for it.
OpenCart offers dedicated support for $99 per month. Generally speaking, if you’re looking for some basic customer support then you should go for Opencart. The customer service is quite impressive.
From installing to customizing your online store, OpenCart customer support is there to help you.
Unfortunately, there is no direct support in WooCommerce. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll be left stranded. For instance, if you’re facing any code-level issue, you can simply head to official WordPress forums.
The support community is extensive and people there are quite enthusiastic to help each other. Not only this but WooCommerce also offers support documents and video tutorials.
Another way to seek help is to submit a ticket on the official WooCommerce site. Your query will surely get a response within 24 hours, however the actual response time may vary depending upon the complexity of your question(s).
Just like WordPress, WooCommerce support community is wide-spread. There is no chance that you’ll be left stranded. What’s good about WooCommerce is that you can submit tickets for free. No matter how complex your query is the support team will solve it as soon as possible.
To get extra support from OpenCart you have to pay monthly charges and you can only submit a certain number of tickets.
WooCommerce and OpenCart, both are free open-source eCommerce solutions.
However, there’s a catch.
Most of the users often get confused that if these are free open-source platforms then why do we have to pay some amount to start running a store if they’re using any of the two platforms.
Well, while choosing any of these, you need to know that you have to pay some additional money to get a few basic things to run your online store. You’ll be needing a web hosting server, a domain name, and an SSL certificate.
Talking about the hosting provider, you have to pay them on a monthly basis which can cost you $10 to $100 monthly, depending on the hosting service and plan you are choosing.
Secondly you’ll have to pay for a domain name on a yearly basis that can cost you around $10. Lastly, for security purposes, you’ll have to purchase an SSL certificate. Some hosting providers give it for free while some can charge more than $1000 per year for it.
Apart from these basic expenses, you’ll have to pay for plugins and themes if you’re choosing the paid ones. Though using these premium plugins and themes will improve the functionality of your store. However they might break your budget.
Both eCommerce solutions are free. No matter, which solution you go for you still have to pay for some basic expenses to run your online store.
Coming back to the question,
“Which eCommerce solution is better? WooCommerce or OpenCart?”
Honestly, it totally depends upon you . Reading through the article you now have a clear understanding which eCommerce platform is your right solution.
Both eCommerce solutions, WooCommerce and OpenCart are excellent free open-source eCommerce platforms.
For WordPress users, WooCommerce is much easier to use as they’ll be already familiar with the technical aspects of it.
On the other hand, if you don’t want to use WordPress then OpenCart is the right solution for you.
We hope this article will help you in starting your online store.