Do you want to skip the read and get right to my winner? Shopify is our Winner within this Volusion vs Shopify eCommerce comparison platform test.
Introduction: Who Do You Turn To For Your eCommerce Needs – Volusion or Shopify?
With so many eCommerce platforms to choose from, today’s online store owners are spoilt for choice. This Volusion versus Shopify platform comparison pits the perennial favourite against an industry veteran, in a head-to-head clash of eCommerce solutions.
Even if the former is considered the gold standard for building online stores, you shouldn’t stop exploring your options. Knowing what defines the Volusion vs Shopify competition can help you make better decisions on which builder is best for your needs.
In this comprehensive guide, we show you what Volusion or Shopify offer and present a side-by-side comparison to where they stand in terms of ease of use, features and functionality. Of course, we included support and pricing!
To make things easier to understand, we have our verdict at the end of every category in this Volusion vs Shopify review.
Volusion vs Shopify Overview:
In this review, we compare Shopify and Volusion – two dedicated eCommerce solutions. Now, just to give you a general idea for our Volusion vs Shopify review, here’s where both platforms currently stand:
Considered one of the oldest online website builders as it’s been around since 1999, Volusion is also considered one of the first eCommerce-specific builders. As of January 2021, it hosts over 30,000 online stores.
On the other hand, Shopify easily boasts of hosting over one million online stores in 175 countries as of January 2021 – and mind you, these are the official figures as industry watchers say that there could easily be over 3.5 million sites built and hosted on the platform.
Together with a user-friendly building platform, this builder also offers a slew of eCommerce solutions for payment, marketing, shipping, and store management.
Ease of Use:
When considering whether to use Volusion or Shopify as your online selling platform, ease of use is a key factor.
We will tackle this criterion and start with our side by side Volusion versus Shopify comparison:
Even in its V2 iteration, Volusion isn’t exactly the easiest platform to use. To illustrate, the UI is divided into front-end and back-end functions – and you can’t easily jump from one or the other. In other words, there aren’t any shortcuts.
This doesn’t help first-time online merchants, because learning how both sides of the platform work can take considerable time.
On the other hand, unlike Volusion Shopify’s UI was built to be easy to use right out of the gate. Log on, and you can easily see the features menu on the left and the customisation tools on the right.
Even if your knowledge about site builders and even online store building is a tabula rasa, Shopify won’t give you any grief as everything is laid out in front of you, within reach and intuitive.
Winner – Shopify! Easily – Within the Shopify vs Volusion ‘Ease of Use’ category.
Features and Flexibility:
In terms of features and flexibility, when considering Volusion vs Shopify, the latter has the edge. Here are a few key pointers on both.
What exactly do you get from Volusion or Shopify at their most basic subscription packages?
For Volusion, expect these built-in features:
- Access to Volusion’s site builder
- Unlimited bandwidth and online storage
- Secure checkout supported
- Access to Advanced Editing Tools
- 1 Staff Account
- Zero transaction fees
- Social media integration
Meanwhile, here are Shopify's key out-of-the-box features:
- Shopify’s drag-and-drop site builder
- Add up to 100 products
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Secure checkout enabled
- 2 Staff accounts
- Able to sell on Amazon and eBay
- Free SSL certificates
- 0.5 to 2.0% transaction charges
It would seem that between Volusion vs Shopify, both platforms provide parallel out-of-the-box features. Some differences exist, though with Shopify or Volusion, including SSL certificates and transaction fees.
Themes and Templates:
Any website worth its salt needs to look great to attract leads. Therefore, between Volusion versus Shopify, which platform has better design options?
Volusion offers a minimal selection of themes and templates to work with: only 45 themes, of which only 11 can be used for free. You need to pay $180.00 to gain access to each of the premium templates. Many of Volusion’s templates are industry-specific, which means certain functions only apply to certain businesses.
Thus, finding a theme that works for your business might be more challenging than you might expect.
Shopify offers a more extensive range of template choices. Specifically, there are over 100 themes/templates available on the platform, practically all of which can be customised per your specifications.
Premium templates are also more reasonably priced than Volusion's, with the range pegged as low as $99 per template. (Custom templates are, of course, more expensive.)
That said, Shopify has the edge when it comes to this Shopify versus Volusion thematic templates comparison.
While site-building has become easy due to templates, having the ability to tweak your site to reflect your brand is a must. So in this Volusion vs Shopify platform comparison, who takes the cake in customisation?
What Volusion lacks in aesthetics, it makes up for in functionality. Indeed, users can customise their sites with an array of proprietary tools that can enhance the customer experience in their online stores. For example, you can use calculators to determine the costs of shipping and handling and document generation tools for customer service contracts.
Shopify offers design customisation options, but it tends to get wonky when customising user experience. For example, you can only customise up to 100 variants for products with multiple variations – and that can be frustrating if your products have more than that.
Still, when Volusion vs Shopify is placed side by side, Shopify provides better customisation options.
3rd Party Integrations:
Who doesn't like a fully functional online store? The ability to integrate with third-party apps expands your site's functionality exponentially. Therefore, integration is an important criterion in this Volusion versus Shopify comparison.
It’s easy to say that Volusion isn’t as ready for integration as Shopify, seeing how it currently lists only 22 apps among those integrated with its platform. But take a closer look, and you’ll find Zapier on the list. Zapier enables Volusion users to integrate numerous apps and productivity/payment platforms with their online stores.
It’s a bit more cumbersome as you have to work through Zapier to link your site with an app, but it does help enhance your site. Also, if you’re up to the challenge, you can take advantage of Volusion’s API to create your own custom integrations and extensions.
Unlike Volusion Shopify doesn’t need an app like Zapier to work with most third-party integrations. Indeed, its App Store offers 5,758 apps, ranging from standard integration solutions for social media, WordPress, email marketing, various payment portals, and the Google Drive productivity suite.
Hands down – in this Volusion versus Shopify comparison on integrations capability, Shopify is the runaway winner.
All Volusion-built stores are all hosted on the platform’s own servers. However, users have the option to host their sites on a subdomain or a totally different DNS host altogether. Also, bandwidth and storage are unlimited across all subscription packages.
Shopify sites are hosted across a content delivery network (CDN) with servers located in different international locations. Like Volusion Shopify's subscription packages allow for unlimited bandwidth and storage.
Volusion has its own Import/Export facility that allows users to back up their information in external files. But what’s disappointing about this is that those on the Personal subscription can’t use this. Also, the system does a daily backup for each hosted site.
Therefore, if something seriously screws up your site, you can ask them to restore your site for free. This only applies for the first time, though.
Like Volusion Shopify’s system automatically backs up its users’ site information daily. This feature significantly reduces any anxiety as if any issues come up, you only lose a day’s information. However, it can be worrisome if yours is the kind of business that experiences fast turnovers daily. As a result, you may need to consider automated backup on your end to protect critical data. Fortunately, there are many available apps for that like Rewind.
How is moving house like with Volusion or Shopify?
For those moving their sites to Volusion, you will need to source a third-party solution to ferry over your entire store.
Shopify has its own proprietary tool called Store Importer that helps users move in sites and stores built on other platforms.
Winner – Shopify! within this ‘Feature and Flexibility' Volusion versus Shopify comparison.
Whether you choose Volusion or Shopify, or any other platform, the availability of eCommerce tools is absolutely crucial to making the most of your online presence.
Volusion offers a variety of dedicated eCommerce tools, but we found the following items stand out in terms of functionality:
- In-house analytics considered a cut above what most eCommerce platforms offer, presenting users with valuable insights on both customer behaviour and trending products.
- Inventory solutions that allow users to keep tabs on their stocks in real-time.
- Customisation options for product pages.
- Visual customisation becomes easier with Volusion's advanced CSS editor.
- Gateway and payment processing via several channels, including credit/debit cards, cash on delivery, wire transfer, and third-party portals like Amazon Pay, PayPal, and Stripe.
- A PCI-certified checkout process that is both stable and secure.
On Shopify’s side, the following items can easily be considered its strongest draws for eCommerce:
- A highly effective inventory management tool that enables users to go over their stock in real-time;
- Individual customer account set-up facility;
- Easy updating process for both your online store and blog;
- Access to over 70 payment processors, as well as being able to process multi-currency transactions;
- Client analysis tool for understanding customer behaviour based on spending and location;
- Native payment gateway – Shopify Payments.
Winner – Draw! within our ‘eCommerce Tools' Volusion versus Shopify comparison. Both platforms offer an extensive equal choice.
SEO and Mobility:
Both Volusion Shopify already have SEO tools built into the user interface. Also, both enable users to create sites optimised for mobile screens, but where do the differences lie?
Here are highlights of the Volusion versus Shopify SEO & Mobile functionality;
Volusion’s UI has built-in SEO-enhancing features, making it easier to provide more effective metadata and keywords to make your site easier to find online.
While Volusion can help you optimise your online store for mobile devices, it doesn’t offer a platform for editing and managing your store even if you’re away from your desktop.
Approximately 3.2 seconds – and, unfortunately, Volusion’s average page speed falls slightly below that at 3.5 seconds on desktop and slower still on mobile.
SEO tools are also built into the Shopify UI, autogenerating canonical tags for sites to prevent duplicate search results. Likewise, sitemap.xml and robots.txt files are also generated as you create your pages.
Stores built on Shopify are meant to work smoothly on both desktop and mobile screens. For those who need to be up and about, downloading the Shopify Mobile App to Android and iOS phones or tablets is a great help. You may not be able to make changes on your site, but you can check on orders and inventory on the go.
Clocking in at 1.3 seconds on desktop and slightly slower (just marginally) on mobile, shops built with and hosted on Shopify can now easily claim to be the fastest loading online.
Winner – Shopify! when it comes to SEO and Mobility between Volusion versus Shopify.
Support and Resources:
Which provides more reliable help when needed – Volusion or Shopify?
A Volusion versus Shopify comparison when it comes to support and resources puts Shopify in a stronger position.
Users can easily take advantage of start-up guides and extensive onboarding materials for would-be e-entrepreneurs and marketing teams. In addition, their well-maintained info blog scores plus points for the platform as it offers information and advice on practically everything.
Where Volusion crashes, however, is customer support. Only top-tier subscribers get the full nine yards of customer service (online, phone, and social media; they don’t do email anymore). On the other hand, those on lower subscription tiers have to make do with the online live-chat – and even that has time constraints, as you can only use it between 7 am and 10 pm CST.
Need technical assistance ASAP? This is where Shopify shines, as it offers 24/7 customer support through phone, email, live chat, and social media.
Suppose you aren’t in a hurry and willing to do the research. In that case, their online help centre is a great resource to look into basic usage, third-party integration. A more advanced plan also offers an extensive knowledge base and directs users in need to a pool of design and technical professionals to lend a hand for site improvements.
Winner – Draw! when considering the Volusion Shopify Help & Support options, both offer high level services here.
Volusion Shopify Pricing:
Which offers better value for money – Volusion or Shopify? In this section, we compare Volusion versus Shopify in terms of pricing plans and cost.
The platform offers four pricing plans with monthly subscription costs. Its Enterprise plan, called Prime, requires a price quotation directly from the company.
Remember that you will save 10% if you opt for a 1-year contract. Also, bear in mind that SSL certificates aren't free in Volusion like with other platforms. You'll have to purchase them separately.
Shopify has three primary pricing packages;
Like Volusion Shopify offers discounts if you subscribe to a 1-year plan.
Moreover, if you have needs not covered in the three plans, Shopify offers two additional plans, Shopify Lite and Shopify Plus.
Shopify Lite does not support a site builder. It only provides a “Shopify Buy Button” you could connect to your existing site for $9 per month. Meanwhile, Shopify Plus is the platform's Enterprise Plan with bespoke pricing.
Winner – Draw. within our ‘Pricing' category for Volusion vs Shopify comparison. Pricing packages are the same with very similar inclusions.
Comparison Winner: Volusion or Shopify?
|Builder||Battle Score||Visit Official Website|
|Volusion||3 / 6||www.volusion.com|
|Shopify||6 / 6||www.shopify.com|
Both Volusion Shopify makes for sound options to establish your online store. However, all things considered, Shopify takes this comparative review.
It offers better value for money, an excellent user experience for both developer and customer, and speed and functionality.
Therefore, we declare Shopify the Winner within this Volusion Shopify platform showdown.
Remember, everyone's needs are different. Therefore, what we have found the better of the two may not be the best option for you. So please do your own research based on your businesses needs.
Conclusion and Recommendation:
Wrapping up, which platform do you go for – Volusion or Shopify? Based on this independent Volusion Shopify review, Shopify comes out the winner.
What is Shopify best used for?
While both Shopify Volusion are dedicated eCommerce solutions, Shopify is the more all-inclusive option. In other words, the platform covers the needs of all types of businesses, making it a clear frontrunner.
That said, one snag with Shopify is the transaction fees. Remember that transactions carried out using payment gateways other than Shopify Payments will incur fees.
What is Volusion best used for?
Volusion better suits businesses that require powerful data analytics to drive their competitive strategy. It's a feature that specifically sets it apart from Shopify and any other eCommerce solution in the market.
Volusion Shopify Alternatives:
There is a world of eCommerce options for you, outside of Volusion vs Shopify. Either Volusion or Shopify might not meet your needs as hoped. Therefore, do your own research. For instance, take a read about Shopify vs BigCommerce vs Volusion, and see how these platforms fare with their immediate rivals.
In other words, take other platforms besides Volusion or Shopify into consideration before fully committing. Other top eCommerce options to consider would be Squarespace, Square Online and WooCommerce.
Volusion or Shopify Final Word:
Nevertheless, that's it for our Volusion vs Shopify comparison. We hope we've enlightened you to make confident choices about which eCommerce solution to choose from now on.
Finally, we leave you with a recommendation regarding Volusion vs Shopify. Since they offer a 14-day free trial period, what's the harm in taking them out for a spin? Hopefully, after this test, you'll be better informed about which option is the best for your business.
That’s all for now:
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Not only the best tea/coffee maker on the team Sophie is our Chief Editor. Skilled across multiple marketing skill areas Sophie is our all rounder and a great asset to the team. Sophie is a website building trainer and tech writer who takes pride in helping small businesses and startups build their websites and launch their eCommerce platforms. Sophie is also the practical joker of the team and always wears a smile on her face. In her spare time she likes to spend her time with family. She loves going on holidays and spending time with friends.