Shopify Plus vs Demandware

Shopify Plus or Demandware?

Shopify’s enterprise platform offers easier setup, better pricing, thousands of apps, integrated payments, and more.

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Why Choose Shopify Plus vs Demandware

Feature comparison table between Shopify Plus and Demandware

Key features



Subscription pricing No Yes
App store with hundreds of apps No Yes
Detailed sales reporting Yes Yes
Integrated payments No Yes
Blog CMS capabilities No Yes
Reliable hosting Yes Yes
Custom online store Yes Yes
Custom domain name Yes Yes
Mobile app access to online store Yes Yes
Omni-channel capabilities Yes Yes
POS system No Yes
Merchant success program No Yes
Fulfillment network No Yes
Documentation Yes Yes
PCI-DSS compliance Yes Yes
Bot protection via integration Yes
Reliable Uptime 99.9% 99.98%
International customer support In 18 languages In 21 languages

7 Things Shopify Plus Can Do vs Demandware

Reduces time to market

Shopify excels when it comes to time to market. Its well-documented APIs and liquid front-end template language allow merchants to create a beautiful online store quickly and easily. On Demandware, merchants must seek approval for site customizations, which can prolong time to market and give their competitors a chance to pull ahead.

Multi-store actions

Merchants signing up for Shopify’s plan for enterprise merchants – Shopify Plus – get access to the Shopify organization admin. Organization admin allows you to view and access multiple stores from a central location. You can even create automation workflows and copy them from one store to another directly. On Demandware, merchants can get a centralized view of products across multiple stores, but they can’t create and implement workflows from the same admin.

Vast app ecosystem

Shopify and Demandware both offer app integrations. Shopify has over 6,000 apps that are easy to install and span various categories. On top of that, there are technology solution providers and recommended partners for Shopify Plus merchants, including partners like Klaviyo, Trustpilot, LoyaltyLion and TapCart. Demandware offers a much smaller range of integrations and modules with third parties through its LINK marketplace. Bespoke integrations and customizations come at a higher cost for most retailers due to the smaller ecosystem and restrictions around some integrations.

Store design flexibility

On Shopify, you can design your ecommerce site any way you like. You can choose from dozens of themes, customize the content, and brand your website your way. Shopify’s themes are also fully responsive, meaning you don’t have to optimize them for mobile separately. Demandware, on the other hand, doesn’t offer website themes, so any design changes must be done on the custom level.

First-party POS system

Shopify offers a first party POS system called Shopify POS that allows merchants to accept payments in-person. Store owners using Shopify Plus get free access to Shopify POS Pro, which offers smart inventory management, unlimited registers, powerful in-store analytics, and more. Although Demandware also lets merchants sell to customers on the shop floor, it requires a third-party connector to integrate with POS hardware. And the hardware will need to be purchased from someone else. Shopify sells its own card readers, and there’s even a powerful mobile app to turn your tablet or smartphone into a portable POS.

One platform for all commerce

Shopify allows merchants to sell B2B and direct to consumers from a single platform. With Shopify Plus, you can set up a branded and password-protected wholesale store with B2B-only products and custom prices. This means you take orders from both consumers and B2B buyers and manage them in one place. With Demandware, merchants requiring both B2C and B2C capabilities must invest in a B2B solution separately, making it infeasible to carry out both commerce operations.

Better pricing and terms

The contract term for Shopify Plus is 12 months with a minimum fee of $2,000 USD/month, scaling dependent on payment gateways and revenue. With Demandware, merchants need to commit for 3-5 years.

Why Merchants Prefer Shopify Plus vs Demandware

Ideal for SMBs

Shopify is a more affordable solution, particularly for small and mid-level online retailers requiring a certain amount of scalability to meet their consumers' ever-growing demands. With a user-friendly admin and less maintenance overhead, merchants can streamline tasks like catalog management, product content, and checkout optimization for their ecommerce business. With Demandware, merchants have to spend more time maintenance, so it's more expensive for SMBs to run projects on this platform.

Automation tools

One of the biggest upsides to Shopify is access to its premier automation tools, built to save energy and time on routine tasks so merchants can focus on the strategies required to grow their business. These include Shopify Flow (a visual builder with “if this happens, then do that” functionality) and Shopify Launchpad (a scheduling tool that allows you to put events like flash sales on autopilot) for Shopify Plus merchants. Demandware, on the other hand, doesn’t offer any such tools out of the box.

Integrated payment feature

Shopify has an integrated payment solution called Shopify Payments. Shopify Payments helps merchants avoid third-party activations and deliver seamless payment experiences. On Demandware, you need to integrate a third-party payment processor to start accepting payments. Shopify offers the only integrated payment solution that allows eligible small and large retailers to go from setup to selling in one click.

More suitable for international commerce

Shopify allows merchants to deliver hyper-localized shopping experiences their customers expect, in multiple languages and currencies, all from one backend. Shopify also allows you to use international pricing to set price adjustments by region or country through the store admin. Although Demandware also lets merchants sell internationally, it only offers country-specific price adjustments and local payments via plug-ins and APIs.

Merchant success program

On Shopify Plus, merchants get specialized support from industry experts, Shopify partners, and resources. This includes the assistance of dedicated launch and solutions engineers. The launch engineer guides your data migration and store setup, while the solutions engineer ensures your existing business tools integrate seamlessly with Shopify. With Demandware, merchants need to take help from independent consultants and specialists, who can be costly to contract.

Own fulfillment network

Shopify invites US-based and Canadian-based merchants to apply for the Shopify Fulfillment Network (SFN). Merchants accepted into SFN get access to a dedicated network of fulfillment centers that enable lower shipping costs, timely deliveries, and a remarkable customer experience. On Demandware, merchants can only fulfill orders via third-party logistics companies. And the possibility of Demandware creating its own fulfillment network seems highly unlikely.

Bot protection

Shopify’s bot protection is an out-of-the-box solution that protects Shopify Plus merchants from auto-purchasing bots. It combines Shopify’s exclusive Checkpoint solution that requires buyers to complete a unique challenge and verify themselves as a human before they can enter the checkout with industry-standard protection – e.g., stopping known bots from completing checkout. Merchants can schedule protection to be activated in advance for peak periods, such as holiday sales or new product drops.

Built for the future

Shopify allows ecommerce entrepreneurs to build for tomorrow. Over the years, Shopify has made significant upgrades to its customization options and design experience for merchants. These include 3D product rendering, real-time product recommendations, AR and VR apps, and native video as integrated features in Shopify. Other innovative features like live stream shopping are available via apps.

We’ve been able to build something in 3 years that a lot of brands haven’t actually gotten to in 10 years.

Chioma, Cee Cee’s Closet NYC

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Which is better: Shopify or Demandware?

If you’re looking for an ecommerce platform with easy configuration, a range of apps, and reliable security, then Shopify is a much better option than Demandware. Although Demandware has improved quite a bit in these areas, the features provided still have a bigger learning curve than those present in Shopify.

What does Shopify have that Demandware doesn’t?

Unlike Demandware, Shopify allows you to change your website theme without needing to touch code. Shopify also has a Merchant Success Program for Plus merchants, allowing you peace of mind that there will be someone to support you during the setup phase. On Shopify, you can go from building to selling in one click by getting paid with Shopify Payments. Compared to Demandware, you can sell B2B and direct to consumers from one platform using Shopify. Shopify also offers bot protection to help you avoid broken or fraudulent orders.

Shopify vs. Demandware: which is cheaper?

Shopify could be cheaper than Demandware for some merchants. For example, retailers making a few thousand dollars each month could sign up for basic Shopify plans that start at $29.00 USD/month when paying yearly. For those making $100,000-$800,000 a month, the Shopify Plus platform is available for $2,000/month. Once you make more than $800,000 per month, Shopify starts charging a variable fee based on your monthly revenue. Merchants can expect to pay around $0.25% of their monthly turnover. Demandware, on the other hand, is purely commission-based, charging merchants 0.75%-1.25% or more of their monthly revenue.

How to migrate from Demandware to Shopify

You can migrate your Demandware data to Shopify through the Store Importer app, a tool that lets you move important business information like products and customers into Shopify quickly. Those using Shopify Plus can use the Transporter app to import product, order, and customer records into their Shopify store. Exclusive to Plus merchants, this app accepts CSV files for each of these records, processes them, and then integrates them as objects into Shopify. Both apps make it easy to migrate from Demandware to Shopify.

Page last updated: April 20, 2021