Which E-Commerce Platform Is Most Popular with Tactical and FFL Websites, WooCommerce or Shopify? Here’s What the Latest Data Shows
A recent review of integration in inquiry data from BluePaymentAgency.com showed a roughly 2:1 ratio of tactical website owners who chose WordPress and WooCommerce vs. tactical website owners who chose Shopify Inc. as their e-commerce platform.
WooCommerce and Shopify Inc. dominate the e-commerce market. WooCommerce is a WordPress e-commerce plug-in used by over 6,500,000 websites, according to stats published by the data and usage company BuiltWith. Shopify Inc. is a hosted, all-in-one e-commerce platform with a gross merchandise volume of over 42 billion dollars in Q3 of 2022 alone, based on Shopify’s public reporting.
According to Blue Payment Agency, an anonymized snapshot of 50 website integrations and inquiries showed that of sites that used one of the two major platforms, 40 percent of tactical and FFL sites used WooCommerce, and 20 percent chose Shopify as their solution.
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Although the data released by Blue Payment Agency focused on tactical and FFL sites using either Shopify or WooCommerce, many other site builders are commonly used by tactical and FFL site owners looking to accept payments for legal tactical items and FFL sales online. According to Alex Roy, president of E-Commerce 4 IM LLC, the parent company of Blue Payment Agency, “The only other platform with more than 10 percent usage among our data set of tactical and FFL integrations and inquiries was Wix, with 16 percent, and after that, BigCommerce, Squarespace, and GoDaddy made up the vast majority of the rest – not counting GunBroker, which is our most common integration.”
Choosing wisely among e-commerce solutions is essential for new tactical and FFL website owners. Alex stated that, “other than seeking qualified legal advice up front and ensuring that all firearms are shipped only to other licensed dealers, setting up the right website builder out of the gate is one of the most important decisions a tactical or FFL business owner can make. Website owners must ensure that the payment gateway works well with the shopping cart they choose.” Additionally, continued Alex, “business owners should read the allowed use policies for all their vendors, as tactical sites are sometimes caught up in those policies. Certain site builders, including Shopify, have significant restrictions in terms of which FFL transactions are allowed. Others, like Weebly, prohibit weapons. Again, though, policies change, so sit with an attorney and read your vendors’ terms carefully.”
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The choice of an e-commerce platform often affects site owners’ other decisions. For example, for a business looking to pick between the “big two,” Shopify and WooCommerce, compatibility is essential. According to Alex Roy, Blue Payment Agency offers an online application with built-in “if/then” logic that facilitates a payment gateway setup process based on a number of factors, including whether or not the seller is an FFL or a non-FFL selling less-regulated tactical items like knives and prepper supplies. Built to save website owners time and frustration, their quick, web-based process helps businesses find payment processing that fits their products and their shopping cart.
Blue Payment Agency is a tactical- and FFL-friendly payment gateway provider based in Maine that focuses on placing US-based businesses with the appropriate payment gateway for their e-commerce website. According to their site, BluePaymentAgency.com, their goal is to help tactical website owners accept online payments easily. To learn more about their tactical and FFL payment gateways.