Magento vs. Shopify

Shopify offers you a fully-hosted platform with a variety of capabilities, set pricing and is known for its user-friendliness. Magento, on the other hand, gives you the choice between Commerce and Open Source, both praised for their vast feature sets and customization abilities.

February 15, 2017
Reading Time
4 Minutes
Design, Development, E-Commerce, UX
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magento vs shopify banner graphic

Magento vs. Shopify: Which Platform is Better for Email Automation and Recommendations?

The world has seen its fair share of epic battles: David versus Goliath, Muhammad Ali versus George Foreman, Microsoft versus Apple. Now, two tech heavyweights duel for domination of the digital retail market. In the red corner, Magento, the world’s most popular e-commerce software, used by more than 200,000 merchants. In the blue corner, Shopify, a platform used by big-name brands like Google and Tesla. While Magento boasts more users and a bigger market share than its opponent, Shopify still packs a punch. But which software should be crowned champion?

Round 1: Email Automation

Email automation is a powerful weapon for any marketer, providing brands with knockout campaigns that target lucrative prospects. Seventy-nine percent of top-performing companies have used marketing automation for more than two years, while the majority of users think it’s worth the price. 

As a Magento user, you’ve likely seen an abundance of email automation add-ons and extensions — MageMonkey, SMTP Pro Email, Springbot — that capture leads and boost sales through highly targeted email campaigns. Follow Up Email, from Aheadworks, is one of the most widely used, providing a hulking suite of automation tools: shop cart tracking, coupon tracking, email templates, analytics.

Shopify offers a treasure trove of email automation apps, too. While its store is much smaller — Shopify has just over 100 apps, compared to a whopping 5,000 on Magento — you’ll find all the big names, such as perennially-popular MailChimp, possibly the Mike Tyson of email automation, and lesser-known extensions like Klaviyo and iContact. If you’re looking for marketing automation with bite, you can’t go wrong with Email Automation from Beeketing, which does everything it says in its name. Just like Follow Up Email on Magento, you can create powerfulYou can create compelling, personalized campaigns that send sales into the stratosphere, with marketing messages that are less likely to end up in the Trash folder. There

Email Automation from Beeketing, another email automation app, sends an email to your customers 30 minutes after they make their first order. Just like Follow Up Email on Magento, there‘s no coding, the app works on both desktop and mobile, and you get a glut of customization options.

Winner: Shopify

While it It‘s more expensive than its Magento contender — prices start from $19 per month, compared to Follow Up Email’s $149 yearly subscription — Shopify’s Email Automation by Beeketing delivers a sucker punch: but merchants could see a hefty 50 percent email response rate after using this app, and customers are 250 percent more likely to convert. It’s the Mike Tyson of email automation. 

eCommerce Email Marketing by Soundest displays a customizable pop-up on your web pages so you can collect subscribers. This email automation app turns new visitors into subscribers and takes just a few seconds to set up.

Round 2: Recommendations

Even if you don’t install any extensions, Magento’s native functionality personalizes your online store so consumers see a list of recently viewed and compared products, which usually appear on the right sidebar of a catalog page.

Shopify’s native feature set is just as impressive: merchants can use product tags to recommend related products. However, if you crave more functionality, head to the Shopify App Store, where you’ll find must-have add-ons like LimeSpot Personalizer and Also Bought. Both of these do what Magneto’s native recently-viewed tool can’t: consumers Consumers can see a list of recommended products based on their preferences and interests.

Personalized Recommendations, also developed by Beeketing, takes focuses on upselling and cross-selling to a whole new level. You can promote products that consumers might like based on their purchase history and behavior. Using The app uses super-smart algorithms , the app and suggests relevant products to the right customers: cart recommendations, recently viewed items, your store’s best sellers. Unlike some extensions on Magento’s marketplace — Majik Product Recommendations and Frequently Bought Together, to name just two — Shopify’s Personalized Recommendations comes with no subscription fee. The app costs you nothing if you make no money and analyzes the behavior of customers for more efficient marketing. 

Findify Search & Recommendations is another option. “[We use] data science and our unique machine learning algorithms to automatically generate personalized recommendations, in real time,” they say on their store page.

Product suggestion apps are becoming increasingly popular among marketers. A huge massive 31 percent of e-commerce store revenue is generated from personalized product recommendations, according to a study. Also, conversion rates of consumers who click on product recommendations are more than five times higher than those of customers who don’t click on these suggestions.

Winner: Shopify

Unlike some extensions on Magento’s marketplace — Majik Product Recommendations and Frequently Bought Together, to name just two — Shopify’s Personalized Recommendations comes with no subscription fee. In fact, the app costs you nothing if you make no money. Personalized Recommendations might prove extremely lucrative, too: the app could generate an extra four percent of sales.

Unanimous Decision

If you’re a merchant who is contemplating a move to Shopify, expect the same functionality you’re used to with Magento: stress-free CMS content management and impeccable design, all backed up with a reliable, speedy, MySQL database. You’ll find a bounty of plugins that turbocharge your marketing and sales strategies, too. Email Automation and Personalized Recommendations, both from Beeketing, , so you can optimize your online store so you can and generate a bigger return on your investment. Now, making the switch to Shopify won’t leave you down for the count.


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Michael Bower

Gamma Waves

We leverage our expertise in Shopify Plus to craft high-performing stores and unlock growth potential for businesses of all sizes. Here, we share actionable insights and industry trends to empower and inspire you as you navigate the e-commerce landscape.

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