What is PrestaShop?
Currently used by 300,000 merchants, PrestaShop is an open source eCommerce web application. But recently, a hosted version of the platform, called PrestaShop Ready has been released. It works on a monthly subscription fee.
(Recommended for small/medium businesses)
Easy to use
Despite the fact that PrestaShop offers a demo version to guide you through the setup process, it still might require some technical skills to dive into the code. You will also need to choose upfront which modules you want to add for your webshop.
After the setup, it is a fairly easy system to use on an everyday basis.
Ability to customize
It offers over 5,900 templates available in the PrestaShop official marketplace. Besides templates, you can also customize integrations and add-ons (modules) through the PrestaShop’s Add-ons Marketplace. Do keep in mind that sometimes with third-party modules – i.e. created by different developers, some modules may not work together and PrestaShop won’t be able to help you.
Small businesses would probably go with the hosted PrestaShop Ready, whereas medium would go with its open source solution. Since this latter requires more technical skills, a larger budget and most likely the help of a digital agency. Compared to its rival, Magento, which is built for heavy volume, PrestaShop’s capacity is lower, making it better for smaller projects.
PrestaShop offers three paid support plans ranging from 259€ to 699€ a year. In many cases, an organization will have a digital agency taking care of any issues, if not, the platform has also a wide community of users to rely on to solve issues through forums.
Compared to other CMSs, such as Magento for example, PrestaShop is a lighter CMS, making the website loads faster. Do note, some modules might not be compatible with each other, slowing down your overall website performance. As it is a light CMS, having a very large catalogue or hundreds of thousands of unique visitors a month, might also slow down the website.
Its popularity makes the CMS become vulnerable to attempted breaches. Typically, you will find most of the vulnerabilities are found within modules and themes, as they are not supported as thoroughly. Fortunately, there are solutions that could strengthen the line of defence. The PrestaShop Ready automatically comes with an SSL, the open source version does not.
PrestaShop uses technologies such as PHP and MySQL. As shown in the following diagram, PHP is used by 79.0% of all the websites whose server-side programming language we know. That means DanDomain can be programmed by plentiful PHP programmers and in a cheaper way, compared to Java programmers, for instance.
Downloading PrestaShop is free. But some modules and add-ons are expensive. The PrestaShop Ready solution requires a monthly subscription plus a 1.5% transaction fee if your turnover is higher than €3,000/month. As PrestaShop is PHP-based, the cost of external help from a digital agency will be about the same as a WordPress, Umbraco or Drupal developer.