The Harsh Realities of Online Commerce
Its not as though they are harsh, its just that reality may not be what you may have come to expect. This article is about your expectations vs reality in the world of eCommerce. Your expectations probably conflict with reality when it comes to running your own website with WordPress and an e-commerce solution. WordPress is free open-source software. HOWEVER…
e-Commerce solutions are not exactly given away for free. You may ask; but what about Woocommerce and the dozen or so other open-source solutions? Are those not free?
Sorry to burst your bubble, but, no! They are not COST free.
Shopify vs Woocommerce, the two most popular e-commerce solutions for the small business are quiet different in this way. Shopify is a one-stop PAID solution vs Woocommerce open-source FREE software.
This is a common misunderstanding to some people about open-source software. Its free to download. After that, you’re on your own. If you want it to work, you often need the professional help of the developers – that is how they make a living.
Some developers have not mastered the art of business or they may come from a culture very alien to yours. So you may encounter some weirdness in your dealing with them. That weirdness can feel like you are being scammed. Its happened to me. But at the end of the day, this ecosystem of open-source requires that you understand that, or you should use a paid-up-front all-in-one solution like Shopify.
If you want to get philosophical about it, this is exactly how Apple and Microsoft became what they are today. There were always free open-source operating systems (Unix, CPM, DOS) to run your computer, but enough people wanted a one-stop solution that worked right out of the box and had a friendly interface that you could use within minutes – no huge learning-curve (but you had to PAY up-front).
The battle rages which is the better business model. But now you know how to think rationally about the cost of your online e-commerce options.