I have created dropshipping stores with both AliDropship and Shopify. Both of these eCommerce platforms are awesome in their own ways.
I’ll explain the primary differences between the AliDropship plugin vs Shopify for creating your own dropshipping store.
How Does Dropshipping Work with AliDropship and Shopify?
Both AliDropship and Shopify are eCommerce platforms. They both enable you to source products from AliExpress.
If you are not familiar with AliExpress, it is one of the largest online retailers and does as much if not more sales volume than both Amazon and eBay.
AliExpress is made up of businesses primarily based out of China. Their prices are often so low that dropshippers are able to have huge profit margins.
For example, some items are marked so low that you could mark them up five to ten times and still provide an amazing deal for your customers.
Oberlo enables you to import products directly from AliExpress into your Shopify store. The Oberlo app works exclusively with Shopify. It cannot be used on any other platform.
AliDropship is a WordPress plugin that also lets you import products from AliExpress into your store.
You do not need to install any other apps with AliDropship as it has all of the features necessary to create your store.
AliDropship Plugin vs Shopify for Dropshipping?
Using Shopify for Dropshipping
There are many aspects of Shopify I do like such as:
- Professional looking store themes
- User-friendly interface
- Fast and secure (Free SSL)
When you add in the Oberlo app, it is easy to import products from AliExpress. The downside of Shopify for many new dropshippers is the costs.
Shopify’s basic plan starts at $29 a month. The basic plan for Oberlo starts at $29.90. That is $60 a month to operate your store.
This doesn’t include other apps that you may want to install to help streamline your store’s operation.
Some successful Shopify dropshipping stores operate with 30 or more additional apps:
Many of these additional apps have monthly costs as well. Before you know it, you could be spending hundreds of dollars a month to maintain a Shopify store.
Using AliDropship for Dropshipping
I sought out a WordPress alternative to Shopify in order to lower my costs. I didn’t have much of a budget to begin with and since WordPress is free, I would already save some money.
Finding the AliDropship plugin was exactly what I was looking for.
Right off the bat, I would save money because buying the plugin is only a one-time fee versus Shopify’s basic $29 a month.
Another plus is that there are no additional plugins to buy to create your dropshipping store as AliDropship includes all of the essential features such as:
- Search and import products
- Auto updates product information
- Pricing automation
- Fulfill orders automatically
- ePacket shipping filter
- Auto order tracking
- Built-in themes
- Product customization
- Unlimited number of products
- Product variations
- WooCommerce support
- Built-In Image Editor
- Discount coupons
- Product reviews
- SEO product tags
- Abandoned cart
- Email lists
- Live statistics
- Payment gateway integrations
- Inventory management
- All-in-One dashboard
- Cash-back system
- Free updates and support
What About Web Hosting, Payment Gateways, and Store Themes?
I’ll tackle each of these concerns one at a time. As far as web hosting with Shopify goes, they include hosting with all of their plans.
When you use the AliDropship plugin, you will need to use your own web hosting provider.
I recommend using AliDropship’s web hosting as it is very low cost (starts at $48/year) and is perfectly configured for the AliDropship plugin.
Shopify does provide free SSL with all of their plans. When you use AliDropship’s web hosting, it too includes free SSL.
Shopify supports many major payment gateways as does AliDropship. Both options let you start processing credit card payments right away.
Shopify can process credit cards on its own and AliDropship can be connected to your PayPal account until you are ready to offer another payment gateway
Shopify definitely wins in this category as most of their themes are designed nicely and they have a wide variety of themes to choose from.
Keep in mind that most of the store themes cost in order to use them. Some Shopify themes can cost over $100.
AliDropship’s store themes are free to use.
There aren’t that many to choose from as of this writing. However, I don’t doubt that the AliDropship team is working on releasing more themes. They are constantly releasing new add-ons and features.
My Choice for Creating a Dropshipping Store
My winning choice for creating a dropshipping store is the AliDropship plugin. I choose AliDropship for two main reasons:
- I retain 100% ownership of my store since it runs on WordPress
- It saves money in the long-run (no monthly fees)
Keep in mind that there are some expenses with running an AliDropship store.
You will need to pay for your payment gateway fees depending on which service you use to process credit cards. You’ll also have your web hosting fee.
Overall, running an AliDropship dropshipping store is very low cost in comparison to the hundreds of dollars a month you could pay with other platforms.
I truly enjoy using this plugin as well as the company overall. They are super responsive when contacting them with any questions. They also put out tons of helpful content on their blog.
I hope this post has been helpful in clarifying the differences between using the AliDropship plugin vs Shopify for dropshipping.
Both eCommerce platforms work well and will serve your needs. It really comes down to your preferences and budget.
Do keep in mind that any dropshipping store requires advertising. Either platform you choose will have advertising costs associated with it.
You do have to promote your business. However, by not having monthly store fees by using AliDropship, your savings can be put towards your marketing budget.
What do you think about dropshipping in general? Which platform appeals to you most? Leave your feedback in the comments below.