Trying to find the right platform in order to start your online store and sell your stuff or dropship products and receive money but you still don’t know which platform to use?
In this 3dcart Vs. Shopify Comparison I will show you the best platform to choose in order to have a safer and more reliable store and better support.
I will be comparing here between 3dcart and Shopify for starting ecommerce stores with thirteen different points that are related to: design, flexibility, customizability, functionality, sales, marketing, payments gateway options, store and inventory management, and more.
Spoiler: Shopify is offering a 14-day trial, and anyway, it is the number 1 platform for building ecom stores and it beats 3dcart as it has better value of money, better support, more apps, sales channels, and it is easier to manage stores and inventory with it. And the pricing plans are almost the same but the value in using Shopify is better.
The Main Difference between 3dcart & Shopify
Both Shopify and 3dcart are platforms that allow you to create your own online store without learning how to code.
Shopify’s headquarters are located in Canada, and 3dcart’s headquarters are located in USA.
While 3dcart was founded long before Shopify, yet Shopify has acquired more popularity over the years because of its better customer support, ease of use, more flexibly in designing and managing online stores, and the more comprehensive solutions to sell products through the dropshipping model in particular.
Now, let’s go with the specifics about the difference between Shopify & 3dcart when it comes to using both of them for e-commerce online stores.
3dcart Vs. Shopify Comparison: 13 Points to Decide Which Is Better
1 – Professional Look, Customizability & Flexibility
Both 3dcart and Shopify provide you with a professional look for your online store, and both provide many themes that you can choose from, free and paid, but due to its popularity, Shopify attracts more developers that would create themes for their stores, which gives you more options to choose from compared to 3dcart.
And some of these themes might be developed by the platforms themselves, like the Out of the Sandbox themes for Shopify, or they might be developed by independent developers.
And many of these themes come already customized for certain markets, niches or products.
In general, it is easy to do changes on themes for both platforms, 3dcart and Shopify through the front end editor, and both allow for doing changes in the code of the theme.
However, Shopify seems to have a wider range of customization and convenience in doing so, especially with themes like Flex theme that allows for doing custom css customizations through the front end editor.
2 – Functionality & App Store
Both Shopify and 2dcart have an app store that contains thousands of apps that would help you add certain features or functionalities to your online store such as: email marketing, abandoned cart, sales channels, upsells & cross-sells, discounts, …etc.
In general, without using apps, Shopify offers more functionalities in building and managing your store than it is with 3dcart, and they keep adding new features.
And even with the apps, once again, Shopify app store have more apps, both free and paid, better pricing for the paid ones, and the apps they provide are used by more store owners compared to 3dcart apps, and thus, more user reviews.
While with the 3dcart App Store, many of the apps are either not reviewed by anyone, or have only few reviews.
3 – Ease Of Use
Both Shopify and 3dcart are easy to use from the backend, but because of the layout and color consistency, Shopify is a bit easier to use in managing your store than 3dcart, add to that the more available functionalities and apps.
And this applies to many aspects of managing the ecommerce side of your store such as: adding products and collections, managing inventory, adding payment methods, creating discount coupon code, shipping preferences, …etc.
Here’s a look at Shopify’s store manager dashboard:
And here’s the 3dcart store dashboard:
4 – Products to Sell
Both 3dcart & Shopify allow you to sell physical products and digital downloads and receive payments for both of them.
However, when it comes to digital products, for Shopify stores, you need to add a free app that will give you this functionality, while with 3dcart you can activate this feature without an app.
In addition to that, with 3dcart, you can add a serial number and license key to the digital products you sell, especially software programs.
5 – Dropshipping & Print On Demand
Dropshipping is a legitimate business model that allows you to list products on your store that you still don’t own inventory for, and sell them to people who would pay you, and then you go and pay the original merchants their price and ask them to ship the products directly to the end customer without you touching anything.
And both Shopify and 3dcart allow you to sell with the dropshipping model with ease, thanks to the many apps that you can add to your store in order automatically import products to your store and to automatically fulfill the orders when they come in.
However, Shopify have the edge here as it has many more options for finding dropshipping suppliers, especially with the Oberlo app that allows you to integrate your store with AliExpress, one of the biggest retailers in the world.
Also, Shopify allows for the integration of many print on demand services through dedicated Shopify apps in order to sell t-shirts, hoodies, mugs, …etc. with custom designs that you create, like Printful, Pillow Profits and others.
while 3dcart seems to only integrate with Printful for this purpose and have only few options for dropshipping.
And in general, most of the Shopify dropshipping and POD apps have many reviews from store owners, which is not the case for 3dcart apps because not many store owners use them.
6 – Inventory Management
You might need to manage your products in bulk in order to make changes on prices, shipping, discounts, quantities, …etc.
And Shopify allows you to accomplish many of the related tasks with ease and without 3rd party apps, but also, it offers a wide variety of apps that would allow you to do many of the tasks with ease. Especially when it comes to integrating with sales channels and with dropshipping suppliers.
And 3rcart offers many apps for Inventory Management as well, but there are expensive and they are not used by many merchants and thus, don’t have as many reviews as Shopify apps.
Shopify beats 3dcart and most of the other ecommerce store builders out there in this point.
7 – Partner Program & Affiliate Program
Both 3dcart & Shopify offer an affiliate program and a partner program that allows you to make money with them without starting your own store.
The affiliate program allows you to promote these platforms to potential users (online store owners) and get a commission if someone starts using theme using your own affiliate link.
Shopify’s affiliate program pays you a commission of 200% of the monthly fee that your referral pays to them, and 3dcart pays you 300%.
And when it comes to the Partner program, both allow you to build stores for others and manage them as a service that you sell to store owners, and you get money this way by charging your clients for building and managing their stores, and you get a monthly recurring commission from Shopify and 3dcart from whatever your client pays to them. (Shopify pays 20% monthly commission, and 3dcart pays 30%).
And while 3dcart commission rate might be higher for every sale or client that you bring, but it is better in my opinion to utilize the Shopify affiliate and partner program because they offer a better overall service and customer support, which makes it easier to convince your referrals to use them and stick with them.
And there are many other ways for making money with Shopify like developing themes and apps for example.
8 – 3dcart Vs. Shopify Pricing
The major pricing plans for Shopify and 3dcart are very similar.
Shopify offers three main plans for building your fully-functional online store.
Shopify has three main plans that are priced at $29/month, $79/month and $299/month, while 3dcart offers four plans, three of them are priced almost the same like Shopify’s main plans, and one costs $19/month.
But in general, Shopify pricing is more justified when comparing the equal plans because they provide more functionality, flexibility and better support.
And if you think of the $10/month that you would save if you choose 3dcart’s lowest plan, then that would be negligible if you aim to create a business that would generate a full-time income, especially that you would have a better and more reliable platform when using Shopify.
Don’t over-analyze and overthink things and look for the lowest price if you want to build a long-term business.
3dcart offers a 15-day trial, while Shopify offers a 14-day trial.
However, Shopify offers a unique plan that is called Shoify Lite, which offers you the ability to add a Buy Now button and receive payments to your website or Facebook page without building your own independent store, and it costs $9/month.
The only thing that might be better with 3dcart is that they give you ad credit for Snapchat ads of $150, and for Bing Ads of $100.
In my opinion, Shopify offers a better value of money and it is better to go with their plans and not think about saving few bucks if you want to build a full-time income generating business.
9 – Transaction Fees
The only downfall with Shopify is that in addition to their monthly fee, and in addition to the fee charged by the payment gateway that you use to receive payments, Shopify also deducts a small transaction fee (0.5%-2% based on your plan) on every order that you receive in case that you use any payment gateway other than Shopify Payments, such as: PayPal, Stripe, 2Checkout, …etc.
The fee depends on the Shopify plan you have chosen, as follows:
- Shopify Basic: %2 of each order’s value.
- Shopify: %1 of each order’s value.
- Shopify Advanced: 0.5% of each order’s value.
While 3dcart doesn’t charge any fee on any order that you get, you only pay their monthly fee and the transaction fee of the payment gateway.
10 – Payment Options
Both offer more than 100 payment gateways in order to help you receive payments from your customers, whether with credit cards or with PayPal, based on your country and they keep adding more options.
Also, both Shopify and 3dcart allow you to take orders online and receive payments offline in-person.
11 – Support
Although both, 3dcart and Shopify promise to offer 24/7 support for their users through phone and live chat, but it seems that 3dcarts live chat is not as reliable as it is with Shopify.
Also, Shopify’s documentation seems to be more comprehensive and have more guides on both, using Shopify and on creating an ecommerce business.
This is in addition the Shopify Academy that offers detailed video courses on different ecom business aspects and models that would help you succeed with your business even if you don’t use Shopify.
And overall, 3dcart has many complaints from their users about the usability and support and their overall rating on Trustpilot is a not that high (3.5 of 5), while Shopify is better in this area as their platform is more reliable and they offer a better support.
12 – Marketing & Sales Channels
Both platforms, Shopify and 3dcart offer you the ability to add more sales channels for your store by integrating your online store with other sales channels such as Facebook, Amazon, Google Merchant Center, …etc.
And both allow you to create Buy Now button and add it to your own WordPress website for example.
However, Shopify offers a wider variety as they offer integrating your store with Pinterest and Instagram.
Also, Shopify is better than 3dcart with email marketing as there are many more email marketing apps that can be integrated with your Shopify store in order to create automated email marketing campaigns and to send broadcast email messages as well.
And 3dcart also have many email marketing apps, but they are not used and reviewed by many users like it is with Shopify.
In addition to that, and without using any app, Shopify allows you to send abandoned cart emails, for free, to those who entered their information at the checkout but didn’t complete the purchase.
And when it comes to seo, even through 3dcart claims to be the best ecommerce platform in this area, but there is no evidence on that, especially that both platforms allow you to edit the meta title, meta description, alt description for images, URL, …etc.
Also, both allow you to create a blog where you can write relevant and helpful content and link internally to your products, which would help get more targeted traffic to your store.
13 – Store Analytics
While both, 3dcart and Shopify allow you to integrate your stores with Google Analytics, but the built-in capabilities of Shopify stores seem to be more comprehensive when it comes to tracking your store’s visitors behavior and see where your sales are coming from, which products are the most visited, added to cart, or purchased, …etc.
So, as you can see from this 13 points comparison, Shopify beats 3dcart in many areas, while 3dcart might be better in the fact that they don’t charge transaction fee on every order other than the payment gateway fee.
But overall, Shopify offers better value of money than 3dcart when it comes to ease of use, managing inventory, more functionality and addon’s, better customer support, more integrations and so on.
This makes Shopify a safer and more reliable choice compared to 3dcart for building and running your online store both, on the short term and on the long term.
Shopify offers a better value for money for what you pay.
Conclusion – Which One Should You Use for Ecommerce Stores: 3dcart or Shopify?
Shopify is the top rated ecommerce store building service and it beats 3dcart in almost every area.
Ease of use, more apps, better customer support, more selling and automation options and other factors make Shopify better than 3dcart for building your online store and for scaling your business.
In general, both offer a free trial, but in my opinion, it is better to start with Shopify’s 14-day trial because you are most likely to choose it at the end, so, why bother trying other platforms and waste time?
This is my conclusion of this 3dcart Vs. Shopify comparison.
If you have any question or if you have a different opinion, or if you have an experience that you want to share about any or both of the platforms, 3dcart and Shopify, then I would like to hear from you, please, let me know in the comments’s section below and I will be coming back to you asap 🙂