Which is the best e-commerce platform for your business? This is a question that many business owners ask themselves. There are many popular platforms out there such as Shopify Plus and Salesforce Commerce Cloud, but which one should you choose? In this blog post, we will analyze each of these platforms to help you decide which one might be best for your business.
What is Shopify Plus?
Shopify Plus is an e-commerce platform that was built for scaling businesses. It provides all of the tools necessary to build, market and sell your products online while also providing many features you would expect from a standard e-commerce solution such as product management, marketing automation, order fulfillment options, etc. It is one of the best e-commerce platforms for large brands that want to scale their businesses.
Shopify Plus Features
Shopify Plus breaks down their main features into three categories: Sell, Manage, and Integrate. Let’s explore all three.
With Shopify Plus, you gain access to features and tools that increase your online store’s conversion rate, customer retention rate, and revenue. In particular, you get:
- Automated personalized product recommendations and a custom checkout. (No need to spend $100k on a custom checkout!) Your store will also have built-in fraud prevention and bot mitigation.
- Local payment methods, one-click checkout, and digital wallets to maximize sales.
- Personalized discounts, shipping rates, bundles, and recommendations.
Shopify Plus also has a big focus on omnichannel presence. You are able to unify your online and retail sales to drive more revenue and offer a better customer experience. That includes selling on Facebook, Instagram, and through Messenger.
There are 20+ channels and marketplaces Shopify Plus integrates with such as Facebook and Google Shopping too. Localized global e-commerce tools allow you to expand into new markets.
You know running an e-commerce brand can cause a lot of headaches. Say goodbye to that. Shopify Plus helps you manage your business, not just the storefront.
The platform helps you spend less time managing your business while getting more done. How? Here are a few features:
- Build custom capabilities and automated workflows to save time and energy.
- Use event scheduling to make sales less stressful.
- Add personalized shipping, discounts, and offers at checkout for each customer.
Shopify Plus brands have saved a whopping 22 million hours using its automation features and have a 20% higher average order value. Not too shabby, right?
You’ll also be pleased to hear it includes advanced reporting and analytics. This helps you see your performance across all channels, segments, regions, and always stay on track for growth. With its built-in analytics, you can:
- Analyze key performance metrics and download reports.
- View data across all integrations and apps you have connected.
- Better understand your customers behaviour to increase conversion rates.
You use many different tools to sell and manage your brand. Shopify Plus has hundreds of possible integrations to make your life easier for this reason. They are also built with modern APIs to make it easier for developers get involved.
You’ll be pleased to know the Salesforce commerce cloud platform has a large library full of integrations by default too, including Google analytics and data warehouse. The key difference here is that you have more control over which apps or plugins can access your information in Shopify Plus compared to sales force Commerce Cloud. One of the reasons why this might matter is that some third party apps may not sync up exactly how you want them to on each e-commerce platform.
Shopify Plus Pricing
$2,000 USD/month. That’s how much Shopify Plus costs. In fact, look at the pricing page on their website. It literally says, “The value of your commerce software should be crystal clear. Like selling in 90 days for $2,000 a month kind of clear.” With Shopify Plus, you don’t have to worry about ongoing hosting/infrastructure, fees, upgrades, or outsourcing changes. It’s all built into the platform.
You can also start selling on Shopify Plus in less than 90 days compared to the 12–18 months of other platforms. With the $2,000/month plan, you gain access to:
- A 60% faster checkout and 18% higher conversion rate on average.
- Built-in video, augmented reality, and 3D media on product pages.
- Localized shopping experiences.
- Advanced and custom checkout.
- Unlimited products, transactions, and 99.99% uptime.
- Manage storefronts, staff accounts, and workflows from one location.
- Fast integration with your tech stack.
- Easily migrate customer and product data into your store.
What is Salesforce Commerce Cloud?
Salesforce Commerce Cloud (SFC) scales with your business by allowing merchants to launch new stores quickly without any coding or development experience required. SFC can be used to manage sales across multiple channels including brick & mortar locations which allows retailers to provide their customers with seamless omni channel experiences. You will have insights into customer behavior thanks to its advanced analytics capabilities which allow you store owners.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud Features
These are some of the main features of Salesforce Commerce Cloud.
B2B and B2C capabilities
Salesforce commerce cloud is an enterprise-level platform that can be used for both business to business (BtoB) and business to consumers (BtoC). For example, if you are selling products in multiple countries or want to sell only certain items wholesale.
The BtoB capabilities include creating different accounts per user, managing users by role across the entire organization, customizing currencies based on size of company/location worked at/etc., integration with accounting software like QuickBooks online.
It also allows businesses to create their own product catalogs through customization; this includes setting up unique attributes depending on what they need it for. Commerce Cloud has its own POS system which integrates into SalesForce as well as other point of sale systems like Square and PayPal.
One big value proposition that Commerce Cloud offers is its use of artificial intelligence. If you want this type of technology to grow your e-commerce brand, you won’t get it from Shopify.
Commerce Cloud is the only e-commerce platform that uses artificial intelligence. This technology helps to manage business data, forecast revenue growth, and improve product recommendations. Artificial Intelligence also takes into account customer behavior when making decisions on what products they should be selling more of or which ones are not performing well in sales. You can use this same software for marketing purposes too by generating personalized email campaigns based off your customers’ buying habits and demographics information.
As an e-commerce brand, you must use content marketing to increase awareness, drive traffic, and generate sales. Content marketing helps to engage and retain your customers. It is a great way to establish thought leadership in your industry, communicate with prospects and generate sales leads .
In particular, Salesforce Commerce Cloud includes content management features such as:
- Content management system: CMS Workspaces is the place to be for all things creative. You can create, administer, and distribute everything your consumers see, read, and enjoy right here. To keep your material contemporary and relevant, update it as needed.
- Cross-department collaboration: Customized content experiences can now be tailored to each consumer segment thanks to the flexible combination of multiple capabilities.
- Templates and visualization: It’s simpler than ever to create and manage content across brands, geographies, and beyond thanks to content templates and visualizations. Promotional banners, blog articles, and lookbooks can all be created, published, and updated in a matter of seconds.
- Several formats: Create websites, news stories, social postings, emails, and any other type of content you can imagine. With a single click, start new initiatives and create customized material as needed.
- Integrations: With tools like Page Designer and Experience Builder, you can quickly connect content across portals and shops. With prebuilt designs or developer-friendly technologies, you may speed up the launch process and decrease development time.
- Native CRM: Customers can contact you any time, anyplace, and on any channel. Salesforce CMS is built directly on the globe’s #1 CRM, so customized experiences may be provided at every stage of the customer journey.
- Headless APIs: With a hybrid CMS, you can create content once and deliver it natively to commerce sites, portals, or mobile apps. Share content across touchpoints via headless APIs for a smooth customer journey.
Inventory and order management can be a headache. With Salesforce Commerce Cloud? Smooth as silk. You’ll have complete visibility over your inventory, orders, and cash flow. You gain access to a visual workflow to automate fulfillment, payment capture, supply chain, and invoices. Shopify Plus does not have this.
You can also create omni-channel fulfillment journeys to optimize for speed and cost. Offer in-store pick up, curbside pickup, and online shopping for your customers. Inventory history can be viewed within the click of a button too. Scaling inventory and order management has never been this easy.
Refunds, returns, and exchanges can be performed by customers when they want them to save you time and improve customer satisfaction. This is achieved with Commerce Cloud’s self-services features.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud Pricing
Alright, how much does Commerce Cloud actually cost? It depends if you choose the B2B or B2C version. Let’s start with the B2C version. According to the Salesforce website, you have to contact them for a custom quote. Pricing, however, is based on gross merchandise value and order volume. Thus, the larger the brand, the more you’ll be paying.
Additionally, these are some of the different features between the editions:
- Starter: 1 site, 2 price books, and 750k credits.
- Growth: 5 sites, 10 price books, and 1.2m credits.
- Plus: Unlimited sites, unlimited price books, and 2.0m credits.
You can extend the software’s capabilities with three different addons:
- Salesforce Order Management: $0.50/order billed annually.
- Commerce Portals: $1/login/month billed annually. or $2/member/month billed annually.
- Salesforce CMS: $10,000/organization/month.
This is considerably more expensive than Shopify Plus especially since you don’t have to pay for add-ons with Shopify.
B2B Commerce also offers three different tiers to choose from with different features including:
- Starter: 1 storefront, 7,500 products, but no multichannel orders.
- Growth: 5 storefronts, 75,000 products, and multichannel orders.
- Plus: 10 storefronts, 750,000 products, and multichannel orders.
There are also a considerable amount of add-ons compared to the B2C version of Commerce Cloud. Check them out here.
Final thoughts on Shopify Plus vs Salesforce Commerce Cloud
Shopify Plus and Salesforce Commerce Cloud are two excellent solutions for e-commerce brands looking to take it to the next level. Nonetheless, it can be daunting trying to choose between the two. Afterall, you want to get the most bang for your buck and not have to backpeddle and choose something else.
Shopify Plus is billed at $2,000/month flat. You get everything you need from a professional storefront, inventory management, marketing features, and more. If affordability is something you care about, Shopify Plus is the better decision.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud, on the other hand, is more expensive month to month. Not to consider you’ll be paying extra for add-ons which Shopify Plus has built in for the most part. Although Salesforce has two separate solutions, B2C and B2B, depending on your needs. Brands with extensive fulfillment, agile, and customization needs will find Commerce Cloud ideal.
If you need media buying experts to help grow your Shopify or Salesforce store, apply to become one of our clients today.