You have a lot of options when it comes to selecting an ecommerce platform. So why choose Drupal Commerce?
PRO #2: Drupal is Incredibly Flexible.
Because Drupal is open source, anyone can adapt the code – which also means anyone can develop new modules. There is an entire community of developers building new functionality for the platform.
If you are going with a proprietary system, it better have every feature you’re ever going to need. And you probably don’t even know what features you will need a year from now or two years from now. If you think your business model is ever going to grow and change, go with something that’s open source that you can control.
PRO #3: Drupal Does Not Tie You Down.
You risk being stuck in licensing agreements when you use proprietary systems. It is totally possible that the company could turn around and say, “Hey, it used to be $100 a month, but now it is $200,”and you have no say in that. They are in control.
Drupal puts you in the driver’s seat. Power is in your hands.
PRO #4: Drupal Can Handle Complex Customizations.
Drupal works for even the most complex checkout systems. Take ordering phone plans. Buying a phone service is not like buying a regular commodity. You have to choose a plan, there are monthly costs, there are different choices per plan, and as you buy certain things you get access to more choices… This kind of complexity would be nearly impossible to do in another framework.
So what’s the catch?
CON #1: Drupal Requires Some Tech Savvy.
Drupal is not a do-it-yourself project unless you have some technical expertise. It requires a lot of configuration out of the box and getting it set up properly can be challenging. If you want something built quickly, and you want to do it without a web developer’s help, Drupal is not the way to go.
CON #2: Drupal’s third-party Support Isn’t the Best.
Drupal is modular and open source, and if you need lots of integrations with other systems, you can always build them. But if you want to drop in a module that just works, you might not find what you are looking for. The major stuff you would want is there, but second tier-type modules probably aren’t. This is getting better all the time, but it is still a weakness.
The Bottom Line — Drupal Commerce Versus Other Ecommerce Platforms
At the end of the day choosing the right platform is always going to depend on your goals and what you want to accomplish with your website. If you just started selling products online you probably don’t need anything custom done on your website and would be better off using a simple platform like Shopify, Magento, or Woocommerce. All these platforms have basic ecommerce functionality out of the box that will get you up and running in no time.
On the other hand, if you have a growing business that requires a lot of custom functionality, then Drupal Commerce will probably be your best option. Even if you are just starting out you need to consider using the platform that can grow with your business, not hold it back. The last thing you want to do is start with a basic commerce platform and then realize down the road it doesn’t have the functionality that you need in order to grow your business.
The Power of Drupal Commerce
Here are some examples where Drupal Commerce can Excel over other basic commerce platforms:
- Unique Product Types: If you sell unique products like donation, licensing and custom built products most commerce platforms like Shopify and Magento won’t have the functionality you will need to sell these types of products. Drupal Commerce is going to be your best bet without overcomplicating things and trying to reinvent the wheel with other platforms.
- Product Pages: Most commerce platforms like Shopify and Magento have standard products pages and category pages that have very little customization options. Drupal Commerce on the other hand, because it is open source has the ability to customize the product and category pages to your heart’s desire!
- Integrations: Most platforms like Shopify, Magento, and WordPress already have plugins that integrate with a lot of 3rd party softwares and services, but if there is a service or software that you want your website to integrate with and they don’t have the plugin to do so, you are out of luck. On the flip side with Drupal Commerce you have the ability to easily customize existing modules or even build custom modules that can integrate with your website.
To back some of these points up, here is a great article comparing Drupal Commerce to Magento, one of the leading ecommerce platforms today. Also, I found another Agency in Australia explaining why using Drupal Commerce for custom built websites is better than using a platform like Shopify. Once again, both these article emphasize my point… choosing the right eCommerce platform for you always depends on what your goals are.
So What Commerce Platform Should I Choose?
Figure out what your short and long term website goals are. Now look at your goals and read the points above and ask yourself the question “Which platform is going to provide the functionality and customizations I need now and in the future?”
To learn more, check out our High Five episode: “The Pros and Cons of Drupal Commerce.”
I hope you enjoyed this article on why you should use Drupal Commerce. If you are interested feel free to check out our entire section dedicated to Drupal Commerce and how we use it to build some of the best ecommerce websites.
If you have anything else to say, please share your opinion in the comments section. Your opinion matters, unless it is a Spam.