Shopware vs. Salesforce: The big comparison of e- commerce store systems

by Meike Müller

Anyone who wants to create an online store is faced with the big question of which store system is the best choice. There are many providers on the market, all of which offer good solutions. However, they usually differ in some aspects as well. In this article, we would like to compare the e-commerce systems Shopware and Salesforce to highlight the weaknesses and strengths as well as the most important features. So if you are faced with the decision whether to use Shopware or the Salesforce store system for your own online store, you are in the right place!


Reading time 10 min


This is what you can expect in this article:


A brief overview of Shopware

Shopware is a German company that was founded in 2000. Shopware has developed e-commerce software that is popular among German store owners. Namely, with the Shopware store system, merchants have a flexible and scalable solution. Unlike many other e-commerce platforms that are offered as cloud solutions, Shopware offers both cloud-based and self-hosted versions. This gives businesses the option to choose between a turnkey solution and one that allows for more customization and control. In addition, the store system is suitable for both B2C and B2B stores.


Salesforce and the Salesforce Commerce Cloud

What is Salesforce? Salesforce is an American company that was founded back in 1999. Salesforce became particularly well known for its CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software, which allows users to build and manage customer relationships. In the course of time, other Salesforce products came onto the market, such as the Salesforce Commerce Cloud. This is a cloud-based e-commerce platform solution that helps companies create and manage online stores. The Salesforce solution for store owners or future store owners is suitable for both the B2C and B2B sectors. So if you are looking for an online store solution for your business, Salesforce might be the right choice.


The big functionality comparison

You want to create your own online store and are looking for a suitable platform? In our functionality comparison, we take a close look at important aspects of the Shopware store system and the Salesforce Commerce Cloud. You can see at a glance what the two e-commerce systems have in common or what makes them different.


Shopware vs. Salesforce - the comparison

Function Shopware Salesforce

E-commerce functions

Product data management With Shopware you can add product information, categories, media, variants and SEO info. A PIM (Product Information Management)) can also be integrated into Shopware to manage all data in the online store: Product information, media data, inventory, product categories, languages, etc. This is especially interesting for you if you have a wide product range or use multiple sales channels. There is the possibility to store product information like name, description, price, SKU and much more. Additionally, each product can be assigned to a category. Images, variants and attributes can also be added in Salesforce. But a PIM can also be used in the Salesforce store system.
Shopping cart and checkout As the store owner of a Shopware store, you can optimize the shopping cart yourself, for example with a one-page checkout or a guest checkout. Overview can be ensured with a progress indicator that helps customers understand which step of the checkout process they are in. The Salesforce store system has a streamlined and customizable shopping cart and checkout process. Features such as one-click purchasing and saving payment details for returning customers can be integrated.
Payment and shipping options A variety of payment methods, including PayPal, credit cards and SEPA direct debits, are available. Shipping options can be configured individually. A wide range of payment options are available. These can be integrated through third-party payment gateways. For shipping, there are custom options that you can set.
Discounts and promotions With Shopware, you can create various discount and promotions including percentage discounts, fixed amount discounts and limited time offers as well as create coupons. There is a promotion and discount management tool.
Ease of use    
Design customizability Themes are available and some can be added for free or for a fee. With a developer, of course, you also have the option to create your own design. The design can be well customized, but there are also ready-made templates.
User interface and navigation Intuitive and user-friendly backend for developers, frontend navigation is simple and can be handled well by any trader. User interface is customizable, backend provides access to the most important functions.
Mobile Responsiveness The correct and user-friendly display of your online store is possible with Shopware on all devices. It's the same with Salesforce. The platform even supports the creation of mobile apps and PWA (Progressive Web Apps).
Integration options    
Third-party integrations There is an extensive store for plugins and extensions provided by third-party vendors. Again, there are some partners that provide third-party applications with the Salesforce AppExchange.
API availability Shopware has a RESTful API that allows developers to access different areas of the store system and integrate external applications or platforms. Ladies such as products, orders and customers can be accessed this way. Salesforce also has an API that can be used for integrations.
CRM integration There is no integrated CRM solution. There are CRM extensions in the store that can be installed additionally. Commerce Cloud is a part of the larger Salesforce ecosystem. For this reason, Salesforce CRM can also be seamlessly integrated. This allows you to easily link your sales, marketing, and customer service data.
Marketing and SEO    
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) SEO tools are already in place such as SEO friendly URLs, meta information, breadcrumbs, canonical tags and automatic 301 redirects. Other plugins from the store enable further SEO function, but also analytics. Optimization of URLs, meta tags and support for rich snippets can be done directly in Salesforce Commerce Cloud.
Product ratings and reviews There is already an integrated system that allows your customers to submit reviews for products. You can then review and approve the ratings in the backend. With plugins that you can install additionally, you have more options for reviews such as a photo review or an automated email that prompts each customer to leave a review after purchase. With Salesforce, you have similar options. There is a product review option from within the system. Additional features and analytics can be integrated through third-party vendors.
Personalization and recommendations These features include: personalized content, audience segmentation, and recommendations created based on customer behavior. The personalization capabilities offered by Salesforce Commerce Cloud are particularly good. For example, there are AI-driven recommendations through the built-in "Einstein" feature. With this, you can offer personalized content, product recommendations, and even create personalized search results based on the customer's behavior, preferences, and history.
Reporting and analytics    
Sales reports Sales statistics are available in Shopware in the backend. For example, there you can find info about sales reports, orders by category, by customer, and more. Commerce Cloud offers detailed and customizable sales reports. There you can learn all about sales trends analysis, best-selling products and many other aspects.
Customer behavior analysis Basic analytics are included in Shopware. For more advanced analyses, plugins and integrations from Google, for example, can be used. In the Salesforce store system, there are integrated analysis tools with which customer behavior such as page views, purchase behavior, abandonment rates and personalized product recommendations can be analyzed.
Customer support, assistance and training There is a very active community that can be helpful in solving problems. Shopware also offers German support for a fee. Salesforce has a comprehensive customer support that is included as part of the contract. There are also online resources, documentation and help articles directly from Salesforce.
Resources and training materials Comprehensive documentation can be a help for developers as well as users. Shopware also hosts events such as Shopware Community Day or offers workshops. Shopware agencies can assist with Shopware implementation and management. There is an online learning platform at Salesforce called Trailhead, but also webinars, documentation and certification courses. Events and conferences are also held.
Pricing model    
License costs There are three models: Rise, Evolve and Beyond. Rise is available from 600 euros per month. The other two versions are charged individually. Salesforce also has three variants: B2C Commerce - Starter, B2C Commerce - Growth, B2C Commerce - Plus. Unfortunately, no prices are known here. These must be requested individually or are calculated based on the requirements and the gross volume of your store.
Additional fees In principle, there are no additional fees. About plugins that you can install for additional and individual plugins, further costs may arise. This also applies to some themes. Since you pay per function or per requirement, there are always additional costs, so to speak, if you need more functionalities.



Advantages and disadvantages of Shopware

To give you a final overview of the Shopware store system, we would now like to briefly present the advantages and disadvantages that you have to expect when you choose Shopware as your e-commerce system. In addition, there are also a few points that we have not yet addressed in the feature comparison, but which are particularly eye-catching and should be considered in your decision for a store system.

The advantages The disadvantages
  • With Shopware you can get direct support from a German support team in case of problems.
  • With the flexibility of the store system you can design your store individually. You can also easily add new features thanks to the open source code.
  • You can simply buy the many plugins already available in the Shopware Store, they extend your store with desired functions without the programming effort.
  • Another advantage is that Shopware's servers are located in Germany - so all data protection regulations and German laws are taken into account.
  • There are regular updates and the developers are constantly working on adding new features and extensions to Shopware. You can read about the new features online at: Shopware 6 Changelog
  • Depending on the version, running a store with Shopware is not always cheap You can use Shopware especially if your target market is in Germany or in Europe. For other areas Shopware is rather not suitable.


Advantages and disadvantages of Salesforce

Of course, you should also have an overview of what advantages and disadvantages come with the Salesforce Commerce Cloud e-commerce solution, which is why we have also filtered these out for you. Here, too, there are a few aspects that we haven't looked at yet, but could be interesting for your decision.

The advantages The disadvantages
  • International payment methods are available
  • There are CMS functions for an individual blog
  • You can find sales reports in the Salesforce store system
  • You can manage multiple websites with Salesforce Commerce Cloud
  • Salesforce is a cloud solution and thus has high scalability
  • With Salesforce you get security, because high security standards are emphasized.
  • Just like with Shopware, running Salesforce Commerce Cloud can be expensive. If you need additional features, this will quickly cost a lot of money.
  • The flexibility of the store system can also mean that you have to dig deep to set up your store to meet your requirements.


Our conclusion

We hope you now have a good overview of the two store systems. In our opinion, it is not possible to say which is the better one. Overall, however, it can be said that both store systems have their advantages and disadvantages. You have to weigh up for yourself which platform is best suited for you. However, if you need help with this, you are welcome to contact us. We will go through with you what the best solution is for you.


FAQ: Questions and answers about e-commerce store systems

Here you can find answers to some frequently asked questions about Shopware and the Salesforce store system. The explanations may also help you to make a decision. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact us via our contact form or simply by phone.

  • What else is part of the Salesforce ecosystem?

    There's not just Salesforce Commerce Cloud, there's actually an entire ecosystem. These are all designed to optimize business processes and make them more efficient. For example, there is Salesforce CRM for customer management and sales automation, and other solutions that complete the ecosystem's range of functions. In terms of sales processes in particular, Salesforce offers tools such as CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) that help companies create quotes faster and calculate them more accurately. In addition, there are marketing automation tools such as Pardot, which make it possible to create targeted marketing campaigns and effectively move leads through the sales funnel.

    Depending on the size of the company, there are different requirements for the software. Therefore, the Salesforce ecosystem offers scalable solutions that are suitable for small startups as well as global corporations.


  • What is Pardot?

    Pardot is a marketing automation platform also developed by Salesforce. It offers custom solutions to make marketing campaigns more effective and qualify leads better. Thanks to its high customizability, companies can target their marketing strategies specifically to their audiences and business goals.

    For sales teams, Pardot is a valuable tool as it allows to better evaluate and segment potential customers based on their engagement and behavior. This enables sales teams to be more targeted and efficient by focusing on the most promising leads.

    In addition, Pardot integrates seamlessly with various commercetools. This allows marketing and sales teams to create and execute cross-channel campaigns. This cross-channel integration allows companies to deliver consistent and personalized experiences across touchpoints, from email marketing to social media to web content.


  • What is Demandware?

    Demandware was the name of the cloud-based ecommerce platform developed by the company of the same name. In 2016, Demandware was acquired by Salesforce. After the acquisition, Demandware was integrated into the Salesforce ecosystem and renamed "Salesforce Commerce Cloud." Through this integration, the platform became an important part of Salesforce's comprehensive offering, combining customer relationship management (CRM), marketing automation and now e-commerce solutions.


  • What is CPQ and how can companies integrate this process into their e-commerce experience when using Shopware or Salesforce?

    CPQ is a software tool for businesses that helps configure products or services according to customer preferences, price them accordingly, and create a quote. CPQ stands for "Configure, Price, Quote."

    CPQ is the ideal tool for companies that offer customized products or services.

    Salesforce offers its own CPQ solution, known as Salesforce CPQ. This is natively integrated with the Salesforce platform, making it easy for companies to bring together sales, service and e-commerce functions. While Shopware does not natively have a built-in CPQ solution, companies can integrate third-party CPQ solutions or custom-developed plugins to introduce the desired CPQ functionality into their Shopware store.

    For both platforms, integrating CPQ into the e-commerce experience improves customer satisfaction by giving customers the ability to configure products to their liking and receive a transparent quote immediately. At the same time, companies can ensure that they charge correct prices for complex products or services while remaining efficient.

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from 27.09.2023

Hello, my name is Meike. I take care of the EXWE back office and am responsible for our social media channels. All of our articles are meant to make your life easier and help you make decisions. Nevertheless, it can happen that something remains unclear, so: If you have questions about this article you can easily reach me at +49 231 93149827.

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