When it comes to driving sustainable organic traffic to your eCommerce store, investing in SEO is like planting seeds that grow into a flourishing garden. Shopify and WooCommerce are the two most popular platforms to start an eCommerce website. But between WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO: Which one will win? Let’s find out!
WooCommerce vs Shopify: An Overview
Before digging down to WooCommerce SEO vs Shopify SEO, let’s spend a few minutes learning more about what Shopify and WooCommerce actually are.
WooCommerce is a WordPress plugin built for creating eCommerce stores. To use WooCommerce, you’ll have to create a WordPress website and install the WooCommerce plugin to your site.
So, technically saying, WooCommerce is not an eCommerce platform like Shopify. However, it is still a top-choice solution for millions of store owners thanks to its open-source nature.
Regarding SEO, WooCommerce has many SEO features that let you fully optimize your web store for search engines.
Shopify is a robust, easy-to-use eCommerce platform that empowers ordinary people to launch and run online stores quickly. With its user-friendly interface and extensive range of features, Shopify provides a seamless experience for both beginners and experienced store owners.
Unlike WooCommerce – the WordPress plugin, Shopify is a standalone solution that eliminates the need for separate hosting and technical expertise.
Shopify offers various stunning, customizable themes and a rich app store, allowing you to level up your store with out-of-the-box features.
Regarding SEO features, websites built with Shopify have high speed – a Google key ranking factor. Plus, you can optimize your product descriptions, URLs, and meta tags to improve your search engine rankings within clicks. Compared to WooCommerce, Shopify offers a more user-friendly interface and streamlined SEO setup.
Check out our comprehensive WooCommerce vs Shopify comparison to get deeper insights into these two platforms.
WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO: 7 SEO Factors Comparison
Round 1: SEO apps and plug-ins
If you’re using Shopify, you’ll find a wide range of Shopify SEO plugins in the Shopify App Store. These apps offer lots of features such as keyword optimization, page speed optimizer, and more, all designed to boost your store’s visibility on search engines.
And if you’re working with WooCommerce, you’ll have access to WooCommerce SEO plugins like Rank Math to access SEO functionalities like keyword optimization, meta tag management, XML sitemap creation, etc.
Though Shopify has multiple SEO apps and tools, the massive SEO plugins of WordPress still bring WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO to a higher level.
Verdict: WooCommerce wins
Both Shopify and WooCommerce have many SEO apps and plugins. However, WooCommerce SEO plugins are still on the winning side.
Round 2: Speed
In July 2018, Google officially confirmed loading speed as a ranking factor. That makes speed the next factor we compare between Shopify vs WooCommerce SEO.
Regarding speed, Shopify has proven to be a more reliable option. The platform is designed to provide fast-loading pages, ensuring a smooth and seamless user experience.
Shopify’s infrastructure is robust and optimized for speed, allowing your online store to handle high traffic volumes without sacrificing performance.
On the other hand, WooCommerce is a plugin for WordPress. So, the performance hinges upon various factors such as hosting, theme, and additional plugins, which require careful optimization to ensure optimal speed.
Verdict: Shopify wins
Shopify websites have higher page speed than online web stores hosted by other platforms, including the self-hosted WordPress with WooCommerce plug-in.
Round 3: Mobile-friendliness
Did you know that as of January 2023, 60.67% of web traffic is from mobile? Plus, according to Google, if your website isn’t mobile-optimized, Google won’t rank your pages somewhere high on mobile devices.
Therefore, mobile-friendliness is one of the keys to helping you rank higher on Google search results. And it’s also another factor we’ll discuss when it comes to SEO in WooCommerce vs Shopify.
Shopify offers a wide range of visually appealing themes that are well-optimized for mobile devices right out of the box. Customers can browse and shop seamlessly on their smartphones or tablets without glitches or layout issues.
On the other hand, with WooCommerce, the story is a bit different. While WordPress themes are highly customizable, many aren’t initially optimized for mobile devices.
As a WooCommerce user, you may need to invest time and effort in finding a highly optimized theme or tweaking the CSS to ensure your website looks great and functions smoothly on mobile.
Verdict: Shopify wins
While most Shopify themes are built with mobile architecture in mind, WordPress themes aren’t. Again, between WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO, Shopify wins when considering a website’s mobile-friendly aspect.
Round 4: The ability to customize page URL
Customizing your website URL is crucial for your eCommerce business because it helps improve your website’s visibility. A website with a well-optimized URL can rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs) than a non-customized URL.
Now, when it comes to Shopify and WooCommerce, both platforms allow you to customize your website URL. However, WooCommerce offers more flexibility and control over the customization of URLs compared to Shopify.
WooCommerce provides a built-in feature to customize your URL for individual product pages, categories, and tags. You can also change the permalink settings and create your custom URL structure. All you have to do is navigate to Settings > choose Permanent link and change it into anything you like.
On the other hand, Shopify only allows you to customize the URL for the product and collection pages, but you cannot change the URL structure. This limitation can be frustrating if you want more control over your URL customization.
Take product pages, for instance; your Shopify products will all begin with a fixed permanent URL handle, as shown below:
Verdict: WooCommerce wins
While both Shopify vs WordPress SEO offer URL customization, WooCommerce provides more flexibility and control over the customization of URLs, making it a better choice for businesses prioritizing URL customization.
Round 5: Automatic XML Sitemap Creation
XML sitemaps are essential files that act as roadmaps, guiding search engine bots to effectively discover and index your web pages.
However, if you have thousands of products, creating XML sitemaps manually for all of them might sound like an impossible and tiring task. Thus, let’s discover SEO for WooCommerce vs Shopify regarding XML sitemap creation.
Shopify automatically creates and maintains a sitemap that includes all your published pages, products, collections, and blog posts. This hassle-free approach saves you time and effort, especially if you’re not tech-savvy or don’t have the resources to manage sitemaps manually.
In contrast, WooCommerce requires a plugin to handle XML sitemap creation. Several reliable plugins, such as Yoast SEO, allow you to generate XML sitemaps effortlessly.
While this gives you more control and flexibility over the sitemap generation process, it requires some initial setup and periodic maintenance to ensure the sitemap remains current.
Verdict: Shopify wins
Shopify takes care of XML sitemap creation without you having to do anything, while WooCommerce requires a plugin that might cost you some extra bucks and time to set up.
Round 6: 301 Redirects
301 redirects act as signposts, guiding search engines and users to the new location of your content, preserving the SEO value, and ensuring a smooth browsing experience for your customers.
With Shopify, you can easily create redirects manually or import URL redirects to do it in bulk. But be noted that Shopify URL redirects only work for broken links. If a URL still works, you cannot redirect your customers to another page.
WooCommerce, on the other hand, will automatically create some basic redirects if you, for instance, make some slight changes to your product title. However, WooCommerce doesn’t help much with sophisticated redirects. So, you might need a plugin for that.
Verdict: It’s a tie
In this WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO round, it’s a tie since both Shopify and WooCommerce only support basic and manual redirects. Both platforms require you to install apps or plugins for more complex redirects.
Round 7: Blogging
Blogging features are the next factor we’ll discuss in this WordPress WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO battle.
Regarding blogging features, Shopify provides a user-friendly interface with built-in blogging functionality. This makes Shopify a perfect choice if you’re looking for a simple way to start blogging on your eCommerce website.
You can easily create and publish blog posts, optimize them for search engines, and even schedule them for future releases. However, Shopify’s blogging features may feel limited for advanced bloggers who crave more control over their content’s structure and design.
On the other hand, WooCommerce offers a powerful and flexible blogging platform integrated with your online store. With WordPress, you can use many SEO plugins like Rank Math, helping you fine-tune your content to rank higher in search results.
Verdict: WooCommerce wins
Clearly, Shopify’s blogging features cannot even come close to that of WooCommerce. WooCommerce inherits WordPress’ fantastic blogging features with advanced customizations from the smallest elements of your blog posts.
WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO – Which One is Better?
Between WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO, both platforms have pros and cons. Shopify provides efficient SEO features that you can quickly customize within clicks.
WooCommerce is more potent regarding SEO capabilities; however, the learning curve is steep as it might require some technical skills.
If you’re a blogger who wants to enable e-commerce features for your blog site, WooCommerce is a brilliant choice since it has awesome SEO capabilities. But if you want to launch a pure eCommerce store that you can scale up later, Shopify is still our recommended platform.
Shopify is easy to use, and well-packed with miscellaneous built-in sales and marketing features. And though Shopify’s SEO features aren’t as advanced as WooCommerce’s, with its efficient SEO tools and a bunch of SEO apps, you can still be doing fine on the search engines.
Whether you choose Shopify or WooCommerce, you can start building customer trust by adding reviews with Ryviu.
Ryviu is a famous platform that allows you to add reviews to Shopify or WooCommerce sites, import reviews from various marketplaces, and showcase them on their eCommerce websites, enhancing trust and social proof for potential customers. This is an ideal choice if you run dropshipping on WooCommerce or Shopify. It can seamlessly integrate with different functional plugins like WooCommerce Amazon payments, etc.
All in all, between WooCommerce vs Shopify for SEO, WooCommerce offers you more advanced customizations. Meanwhile, Shopify gives you essential SEO features that are easy to configure. But Shopify is still our top pick if you want to scale up your eCommerce store in the long run.