Yearly ecommerce revenue in India is expected to grow to over 90 billion dollars by 2025. More and more businesses in India are starting to use the internet to sell products.
There are a number of options for Indian ecommerce businesses when it comes to platforms and software. Of course, there is Shopify, which includes support for Indian businesses.
Then there is Zepo. Founded in 2011, Zepo is designed to help Indian businesses sell products to customers around the world.
Zepo claims to be one of the top ecommerce platforms in India and that it has helped over 3,000 businesses set up successful online stores.
In this article, we will compare Shopify with Zepo and see how they stack up against each other.
Zepo has a fairly simple signup process. To start, you simply have to click the Get Started button and enter your name, email address, and password.
Then, you can proceed to set up your website or use Zepo’s shipping and management services (more on them later).
To set up your store, simply fill out your store name and details, add product categories, and proceed to add products.
Shopify India has a pretty simple signup process as well. Like Zepo, you only have to enter your basic information before you can proceed to choosing a theme and setting up your online store.
Shopify India and Zepo have very similar sign up processes and both are very simple.
Zepo will take you through a short guided tour of how to set up your store, add products, set up shipping, and use their marketing tools.
The store editor is a bit simple compared to Shopify, but it does allow you to build a basic store. You can change the theme, choose different colors for your store, change your font, and add images.
In the editor, you will see a live example of how your store currently looks, which will help you avoid having to switch tabs and reload pages.
Shopify has everything you need to build a shop and start selling online. It’s simple to pick a template, add your products, and start taking orders.
Shopify is a fully-featured wysiwyg content management system and the website builder is very easy to use. Also, Shopify integrates a blogging system that can help you engage with your customers.
The website editor will have a main dashboard with a menu where you can access all of your tools. You can see your reports, track your sales, check your inventory, add and manage products, see customer lists, and much more.
The Shopify page builder has more features than the Zepo page builder so it wins in this category.
Zepo has plenty of free themes that you can choose from. There are over 100 themes available altogether.
You can easily customize each theme, as mentioned earlier. In addition, for a small fee, you can have the Zepo team customize your theme for you according to your requests.
Shopify has over 100 themes you can choose from. Some of these themes are free while others are paid. There are far more premium themes than free themes but the free themes are also very valuable.
You can access them all from the Shopify themes page. Discovering ideal themes is easy; simply use the left-hand menu to sort themes based on industry or category. You can sort themes based on different factors.
You can sort according to theme architecture, price, number of products, layout style, product page, homepage, navigation, marketing and social media, or by industry.
Zepo and Shopify feature over 100 themes. However, the winner here is Shopify as the platform features more options to sort themes.
Zepo’s products (Zepo Marketplace and Zepo Courier) integrate with many other third-party platforms and ecommerce solutions, such as Shopify, Amazon, eBay, Magento, and Woocommerce.
However, the Zepo website builder is fairly simplistic and doesn’t have an option for adding plugins.
Shopify has a large app store with hundreds of apps and plugins to choose from. Since Shopify is one of the most used ecommerce solutions, you will find integrations and plugins for most popular third-party services, such as Aweber, Constant Contact, Paypal, Zapier, Omnisend, and many others.
In addition, there are hundreds of apps and plugins in various categories to help you improve your store and promote your products.
Here are the main categories in the app store (most categories have a wide range of sub-categories):
- Finding products
- Places to sell
- Store design
- Sales and conversion
- Orders and shipping
- Inventory management
- Customer support
- Trust and security
Zepo has support for third-party platforms but there are more integrations than apps. On the other hand, Shopify has hundreds of apps in an exclusive App Store.
Zepo Couriers has many shipping options to choose from for Indian businesses. You can ship products locally, to Indian addresses, or internationally.
You can ship products to over 15,000 pincodes in India.
After you sell a product and are ready to ship it out, you can see a list of different shipping couriers and compare the prices.
There are a number of couriers available to choose from:
Once you choose a shipping courier, schedule a pickup and print out the shipping label. The product will be picked up by the courier service before the cutoff time for the day.
You can get email notifications and SMS messages updating you on the status of the product delivery for every step. Return shipments will also generate reports so that you stay updated.
Zepo Couriers can also be used as a standalone product, even if you do not use a website set up by Zepo. As mentioned earlier, Zepo Couriers integrate with a number of third-party platforms.
You can use Zepo couriers if you sell on:
- And many other Indian platforms
Zepo Couriers also integrates with many ecommerce software solutions, such as Magento, OpenCart, and Woocommerce.
You can even use the Zepo Couriers plugin on Shopify to use Zepo’s shipping options if you are an Indian business using Shopify.
Shopify also has robust shipping options. Shipping can be managed from your shipping dashboard.
However, not all Shopify shipping options are available in India. For example, Shopify Shipping, which allows you to order and print labels from Shopify, is only available for products sent from fulfillment centers in the USA and Canada.
However, there are some apps that Indian businesses can use. For example, there is “Shiprocket – Shipping in India.”
Shiprocket works with thirteen local couriers, such as FedEx, Aramex, Blue Dart, Delhivery, DHL, Gati, and more. You can ship products to over 26,000 pincodes in India.
Other features include inventory syncing, shipment tracking, notifications, third party platform integration, insurance coverage, and more. Of course, you can also use Zepo Couriers with Shopify.
Number wise, Shopify has more shipping options than Zepo. However, Zepo shipping options are about enough for any Indian merchants.
Zepo doesn’t feature a native analytics platform which is one of its major drawbacks. If you want to get in-depth analytics as a Zepo user, you have to use Google Analytics. The eCommerce platform integrates seamlessly with the Google platform.
Google Analytics is the standard for measuring analytics for stores so this integration is very valuable. You can track your store sales, conversion rates, bounce rates, traffic sources, and multi-channel funnels to name a few.
Shopify has a native analytics and statistics dashboard. This dashboard allows you to track recent activity, traffic, online store speed, and transactions on your store.
From the Overview dashboard, you can access all of this information. Live View is available to view reports in real time. Notably, the higher your Shopify Plan, the more reports and metrics you get.
You can also use third-party analytics services like Google Analytics to get more in-depth metrics about your business.
Shopify has a native analytics dashboard while Zepo only uses Google Analytics. You can also use Google Analytics with Shopify so the platform is the clear winner.
Zepo Marketplace is an all-in-one solution for managing products that you sell across multiple marketplaces. Like Zepo Couriers, it integrates with many third-party platforms and ecommerce solutions, such as Voonik, eBay, Jabong, Amazon, Flipkart, and Snapdeal.
Zepo Marketplace is perfect if you are selling on more than one platform. You can track your sales and sync your inventory across multiple channels at once.
All orders can be processed and managed from one centralized dashboard.
Zepo Marketplace is also great for tracking your expenses. It integrates with accounting services such as Tally and Busy.
You can also get automation reconciliation reports, check penalties, and claim unpaid orders from your dashboard.
It also helps you get listed on marketplaces. Provide your product details, get approved, get your documents processed, get listed, and get SEO-optimized content for more organic traffic.
Zepo Marketplace also has an advertisement service. You can run ads on top ecommerce marketplaces for more visibility. Zepo will give you a free consultation for marketplace advertising.
Zepo Marketplace integrates with all of the couriers mentioned earlier in Zepo Couriers. You can ship your products with Fedex, Blue Dart, Aramex, Delivery, and Dotzot.
It also integrates with Amazon FBA, F Assured, and Snapdeal Plus.
Shopify Channels allows you to manage and sell products on multiple channels from one single Shopify dashboard. You can sell on Amazon, eBay, Instagram, Facebook, and any other channel with automatic syncing.
With Shopify Channels, you can sell your products on Wholesale channels and most notably, you can sell on Handshake. You can create a Buy Button and embed it on any website page to sell.
In addition, Shopify features hundreds of apps in the native App Store. With these apps, you can connect and sell your products on so many more platforms.
Zepo and Shopify feature useful tools that you can easily manage your store with. However, if you need more selling options, Shopify is better thanks to the apps.
Zepo Marketing is an all-in-one solution for marketing and promoting your ecommerce store and products.
From one dashboard, you can run product ads on multiple advertising platforms, including social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.
Zepo Marketing lets you use advanced targeting so that you can attract the right audience. Ad Analytics with real-time reporting is another useful feature.
Zepo Marketing also has a social media management solution, which allows you to use their brand position strategy to grow your follower count. Again, detailed reports and performance metrics are available.
When you use Zepo Marketing, you will get a personal account manager who will be your point of contact for all of your marketing needs.
Your account manager will give you advice and guidance on running your advertising campaigns, optimizing your product listings for SEO, running email campaigns, and setting up SMS campaigns.
Shopify has over 1442 different apps under the “Marketing” category in the app store. There are many different sub-categories as well, including:
- Customer retention
- Email marketing
- Sales and discounts
- Ads and retargeting
- Social media marketing
- Content marketing
- Marketing analytics
- Product feeds
- Affiliate programs
- Contests and giveaways
You certainly won’t be lacking when it comes to marketing and promotional tools when using Shopify.
Also, as mentioned, Shopify Channels allows you to sell products on social media.
Once again, Shopify’s strength is in its App Store. With over 1442 marketing apps available, there are more than enough channels to market and product your store and products.
Zepo has an in-depth knowledge base complete with how-to articles for setting up your online store and using Zepo Marketplace, Zepo Marketing, and Zepo Couriers.
There are also FAQs lists for each product to help you out with common problems.
To contact Zepo support, you can either:
- Fill out the form on their website
- Send them an email
- Call their support hotline
Shopify also has a robust help center where you will be able to find all the information you need to set up and run your store.
You can also ask the Shopify community on the public forums and get help from other users and moderators.
There are four ways to contact Shopify support:
- Live chat
- Twitter direct messaging
Shopify and Zepo are equivalent in terms of resources with an informative help center and knowledge base respectively. However, Shopify is the winner for direct customer support.
With Zepo, you can choose from three plans for their full ecommerce solution, which includes all products.
You can also choose from different plans for each individual product: Zepo Website, Zepo Couriers, Zepo Marketplace, and Zepo Marketing.
Unfortunately, Zepo does not offer transparent pricing on their website. Instead, you have to fill out a short form to arrange a callback in order to find out pricing details for each plan.
Shopify has a number of available plans to choose from:
- Shopify Lite: $9/month. Add products to your website or blog, sell on Facebook, chat with customers on Facebook Messenger, and accept credit card payments
- Basic Shopify: $29/month. Set up your online store, sell unlimited products, get access to 24/7 support, and more.
- Shopify: $79/month. More features (such as gift cards) and better rates for shipping and payments
- Advanced Shopify: $299/month. More features and better rates.
- Shopify Plus: Starting at $2,000/month for large stores with custom needs.
- Easy to sign up
- Over 100 themes
- Third-party integrations
- Good marketing management
- Multiple shipping channels
- Good customer support and resources
- No apps
- Pricing isn’t transparent
- No in-depth analytics
- Easy to sign up
- Over 100 themes
- Third-party integrations
- Apps and plugins
- Good marketing management
- Reliable analytics
- Multiple shipping channels
- Good customer support and resources
- Less features for basic plans
- Majority for apps are paid
- Both Zepo and Shopify are eCommerce platforms
- Both are easy to sign up
- Both Shopify and Zepo feature themes
- They both support third-party integrations
- They both offer marketing and promotion tools
- Both Shopify and Zepo have reliable resources and customer support
- Both feature multiple shipping methods
- Shopify supports more apps and plugins and Zepo
- Shopify supports more shipping methods than Zepo
- Zepo is focused on India but Shopify is global
- Shopify has native analytics while Zepo relies on Google Analytics
Shopify remains one of the most popular ecommerce solutions in the world. It offers a better website builder than Zepo, more options and flexibility in terms of add-ons and integrations, better customer support, and transparent pricing.
However, Zepo may be a better choice for you if you operate a business based in India, as it has developed solutions specifically for your market and has better local shipping options.
Tom loves to write on technology, e-commerce & internet marketing. I started my first e-commerce company in college, designing and selling t-shirts for my campus bar crawl using print-on-demand. Having successfully established multiple 6 & 7-figure e-commerce businesses (in women’s fashion and hiking gear), I think I can share a tip or 2 to help you succeed.