Stan Store vs Shopify: Which is Best for Online Selling?

I’m often overwhelmed by the number of ecommerce platforms and online selling tools actually available to companies today. It seems like there are hundreds of options out there – some a little better known than others.

Shopify is typically my go-to choice for ecommerce selling, thanks to its omnichannel capabilities, ease of use, and excellent scalability.

However, Stan Store, a lesser-known competitor in the ecommerce space, could be a great choice if you’re looking for a simple way to sell courses and similar products through your social media link in bio. So, Shopify vs Stan Store: which option is best?

Here’s everything you need to know to make the right choice.

Stan Store vs Shopify: Quick Verdict

Shopify is clearly the more comprehensive ecommerce solution overall. While it allows you to sell through social media (like Stan Store) on its Starter plan, the platform also includes tools for building a full online website, managing your business, and even offline selling (Shopify POS).

Stan Store could be a good option if you don’t want an entire business website, however, or specifically want to sell online courses, thanks to its built-in course builder.

Stan Store Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Included course builder
  • Excellent analytics and reporting tools
  • Integrated email marketing capabilities
  • Simple interface with a one-click checkout
  • Integrations with various third-party tools

Cons:

  • No integrated website builder
  • No support for physical product selling
  • Expensive pricing for what you get

Shopify Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Comprehensive website builder with themes
  • Omnichannel selling capabilities (with a POS)
  • Built-in SEO, marketing, and blogging
  • Link-in-bio options with analytics
  • Business, inventory, shipping, and order management
  • Tons of integration options

Cons:

  • Takes more time to set up than Stan Store
  • Pricing can be more expensive

Stan Store vs Shopify: Pricing

I’ll start with a quick look at pricing, since that’s usually one of the first things most business owners ask about when they’re looking for an ecommerce tool.

Stan Store Pricing

I actually assumed Stan Store would be a lot cheaper than it is, since it’s basically just an advanced link in bio solution, similar to Shopify Starter ($5 per month). However, it does include a few extra features, like a booking calendar and course creator.

You can try Stan Store for free for 14 days, after that, the basic plan “Creator” starts at $29 per month for subscription selling, unlimited courses, email and newsletter options, analytics, calendar bookings, and a mobile-optimized creator store for your social media accounts.

stan store pricing

The more advanced Creator Pro plan, for $99 per month adds to those features with unlimited “funnels” for sales, discount codes, upsell offers, payment plans, affiliate payments, and pixel tracking. That seems quite expensive, but it’s a lot cheaper than buying all the tools you’d need to replicate Stan Store’s features separately.

Shopify Pricing

Shopify’s “Starter” plan is clearly a lot cheaper, at $5 per month, but it doesn’t include a course builder, bookings, or various other tools. The full Shopify plans, which include access to the platform’s website builder and business management tools start at $39 per month for the Basic plan.

There’s also the Shopify plan for $105 per month, with 5 extra staff accounts, and the Advanced Shopify plan for $399 per month with enhanced chat support, advanced analytics, and 15 staff accounts. You can also apply for the Enterprise level plan (Shopify Plus), with pricing starting at $2,300 per month.

Shopify vs Stan Store: Feature Comparison

Notably, although Shopify and Stan Store offer similar features, like the ability to sell through social media and create email campaigns, Shopify is a lot more robust.

You get a bunch of tools with Shopify that aren’t included with Stan Store, like shipping and inventory management, a website builder, blogging tools, SEO capabilities, and more.

Additionally, while both platforms integrate with third-party solutions, Shopify has a much larger online marketplace, packed with thousands of integrations. So if you’re looking for scalability, Shopify is the better choice.

The Key Features of Stan Store

Mobile optimized store page

Stan Store allows users to create a mobile-optimized store page, with a one-click checkout, which they can share on their social media accounts. Notably, this isn’t a full website, but it does give you a way to list all of your products, take bookings, and accept calendar requests.

Course building and selling

If you’re selling online courses, or training sessions, Stan Store is a great solution. All plans include support for creating unlimited courses to sell online. You can also sell subscriptions, and access to one-off training sessions.

Marketing tools

Stan Store’s marketing capabilities are a bit basic compared to Shopify’s, but I do like their email marketing solution. It allows you to create newsletter campaigns and automated campaigns that help to increase conversions.

Sales tools

Unlike Shopify, Stan Store doesn’t have it’s own built-in payment processor, but it supports solutions like PayPal, and gives you a one-click checkout option. You can also access affiliate payment management tools, payment plans, discount codes, and upsell offers.

stan store apps

Reporting and analytics

Stan Store’s analytical and reporting tools are one of the best things about the platform. They give you comprehensive insights into customer behaviors and actions, like how far students get in your courses. There’s even support for pixel tracking.

Shopify’s Core Features

Website builder

Unlike Stan Store, Shopify gives you a full website builder, with dozens of free and paid themes to choose from, an integrated blog, and tons of customization options. You can add your own domain name, adjust your branding, and more.

Omnichannel selling

With Shopify you can sell any kind of products, including courses and subscriptions (Via integrations), on various channels. As well as selling on your own store, you can connect to social media and marketplaces like Amazon, and sell in-person too.

Sales tools

Shopify has far more advanced ecommerce and sales tools, from tax calculation solutions to an integrated payment processor. It also supports multiple external payment processors, upsell and cross-selling offers, promotions, gift cards, discounts, and more.

Marketing tools

Like Stan Store, Shopify offers a basic email marketing solution, as well as a chat tool for customer service. You can create campaigns on your store for sales, create blogs for content marketing, and connect with social media and email integrations.

Business management

Shopify will ensure you can effectively manage every aspect of your business, from setting up shipping and delivery rules, to monitoring employees, managing inventory and orders, and more.

Reporting and analytics

Like Stan Store, Shopify offers some excellent reporting tools, which can give you insights into your finances, top-selling products, customer behavior, and various other crucial metrics.

Shopify vs Stan Store: Simplicity and Customer Support

Finally, let’s take a look at how easy these solutions are to use, and how simple it is to get support when you need it. After testing both platforms myself I’m happy to say both Shopify and Stan Store are very user friendly. Both make it easy to create pages, manage product offerings, track metrics, and integrate other tools with your ecosystem.

However, since Shopify gives you a full omnichannel commerce platform and website builder, getting set up does take a little more time.

You’ll need to invest a bit of effort into designing your store, configuring settings, and keeping everything running smoothly.

Luckliy we have a guide on how to design a Shopify store to help you get started, and a massive list of Shopify stores for inspiration.

The good news is that the company gives you plenty of support along the way with in-app tool tips and guides.

There’s an excellent Shopify community online if you want to ask other store owners questions, and you can watch videos or read blogs created by Shopify for more information. Plus, the company offers chat, phone, and email support if you need direct assistance.

Stan Store takes a lot less time and effort to set up, but it doesn’t offer nearly as much support. There’s a decent help center with a lot of handy resources for beginners, and the interface is intuitive.

stan store help

However, you can only contact the team via email if you have any issues.

Stan Store vs Shopify: Finishing Thoughts

I already knew Shopify was a fantastic platform when I started this comparison, but I was pleasantly surprised by how impressive Stan Store is. It’s definitely more than just a link-in-bio tool, with its integrated course builder and useful analytics.

Unfortunately, the platform still doesn’t compare with Shopify in terms of overall functionality, scalability and performance.

I’d really only recommend Stan Store to solo creators selling online courses through social media. Shopify is better if you want to build a comprehensive online presence, and sell a variety of different products.

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