Posted: 7 Minute read

Amazon FBA vs Shopify

When it comes to selling products online, your choice of platform is almost endless. However, two of the most popular platforms to retail goods on are Amazon FBA and Shopify. The question is, which one is right for you? And, what are their respective pros and cons? Keep reading to find out…

What’s the difference between Shopify and Amazon FBA?

So, what’s the difference between Shopify and Amazon FBA? Are they all that similar? 

The key differences boil down to:

  • Control - with Amazon FBA, you have limited control over your own store and listing. Amazon has strict rules covering the way in which products can be merchandised and listed. You also have limited control over your store’s theme and other settings. Shopify on the other hand provides you with almost limitless control over your store, and the ability to endlessly customise it.

  • Fees - Amazon FBA can entail a variety of fees. These can include referral fees, fulfilment fees, storage fees and more. Shopify? You simply pay for your monthly plan.

  • Audience - Amazon has one of the largest ready-to-purchase audiences in the world. Shopify? Well, you’ll be starting from scratch…

In short, Amazon can provide you with access to millions of potential customers, however this access comes at a cost. You’ll be tied into the Amazon ecosystem, subject to myriad fees and charges and will ultimately have only limited control over how your products are merchandised and retailed. 

Shopify, however, provides you with a far greater degree of control over your online presence (and perhaps most importantly), the opportunity to make a much healthier profit on each item you sell. 

The key features of Amazon FBA and Shopify

These are the top ‘at-a-glance’ differences between Amazon FBA and Shopify. However, we’ve taken a closer look at some of the key features of each platform below. 

Ease of use 

Shopify is the leading e-commerce platform on the market and it’s easy to see why. 

The platform’s simple, user-friendly, self-hosted design features make it an excellent place to start for entrepreneurs looking to launch a business online with very little technical knowledge. 

At its core, Shopify gives merchants everything they need to build a premium store on their own. 

Like Shopify, Amazon is a hugely popular platform and where many entrepreneurs find themselves when they're just starting out. 

Amazon gives merchants the ability to sell their products immediately. However, listings and product descriptions can be time-consuming because of the regulations, fees, and back-end logistics merchants need to familiarise themselves with. 


Shopify comes with fantastic in-built features, with over 60 themes to choose from, you can have your online store looking the way you want it in no time. And, by utilising Shopify’s deep app ecosystem, you’ll end up with a super customised store. 

Not only that, but Shopify offers a great range of learning resources, jam-packed full of industry insights and solutions, taking care of any technical hurdles you might run into. 

With Amazon, you can sell almost anything you like and add different product imagery, but the overall design remains in Amazon’s control. 

On the plus side, it comes with some notable features such as FBA and protects customers with easy refunds, so you don’t have to worry too much about building trust or loyalty with your customers. 

Payment gateways 

With Shopify, you have tons of payment methods to choose from. 

This is a helpful feature for online retailers looking to scale their business globally. Because customers are more likely to buy from you when their chosen payment method is available.

Also, Shopify’s payment gateway, Shopify Payments, eliminates transaction fees which mean more profit for your business. 

In contrast, Amazon does not allow sellers to accept certain payment options, like PayPal. 


Unsurprisingly, both Amazon and Shopify operate globally, which means both are optimised for speed and security. In particular, Shopify gives you SSL certificates, ensures seamless browsing and offers 24/7 customer support should any issues arise. 

Amazon also offers merchants a secure environment to sell with a whole host of services such as cloud solutions, backup services and risk management. 

But although from a customer’s perspective Amazon can seem very reliable, they still have to be vigilant when it comes to scams and fraudulent accounts. 


Shopify not only appeals to small independent businesses but also to giant organisations like Nestle and Kylie Cosmetics. This is because Shopify is an easy way for brands to scale without limits, with endless customisation possibilities and innovative functionality options. 

Amazon, too, is appealing to large and small sellers. Small businesses that can’t afford to sell on large platforms are drawn to Amazon’s reputation, its international market and ready-made customer base.

It might seem like Amazon is a no-brainer, when you consider its global reach and intuitive catalogue system which makes searching for products a breeze. After all, customers are there to find a specific product, which means your chances of connecting with a new customer are very high.

However, ironically, this is also Amazon’s greatest downfall. Because it only highlights products and not specific dealers or brands, it has specific restrictions on how you can sell your products. If you don’t abide by these strict rules, which include a lot of competition-oriented policies, you risk suspension from the platform. 

For any business to make it big on Amazon, you’re going to have to overcome negative reviews, a lot of price fluctuations, and the constant battle of losing your customers to your competitors. 

Which is better? Shopify or Amazon FBA? 

Choosing which platform to go with will depend on your business objectives and what you’re looking to get out of your e-commerce platform. 

You’ll want to look at the above comparisons and determine which works best for you. 

Overall, Shopify is one of the best platforms for entrepreneurs looking to start their own business and looking to create a store that embodies their branding. If you want to have your own online store (what brand doesn’t these days), more control and complete flexibility, then Shopify is the solution for you. 

Can I Use Both Shopify and Amazon FBA? 

You don’t have to choose between Shopify and Amazon. You can choose to use both. 

With Shopify, you can easily integrate Amazon. Simply connect your Amazon account to reach Amazon customers instantly. This allows you to attract even more customers from both sides of the spectrum. 

Which is cheaper? Amazon FBA or Shopify?

On a basic plan, Shopify costs £25 a month (as of January 2024). Whilst Amazn’s Individual Seller Plan is only £25 per month, this does not include the additional fees and charges you are likely to incur.  

When comparing the costs of the two platforms, ultimately, Shopify gives you more bang for your buck. Not only do you get a high-quality e-commerce store, but you also get unlimited products and many other outstanding features to help you scale. 

Final thoughts

There’s no denying that Amazon has its benefits, including its global pre-made audience, although this can come with hidden, and often significant, costs. 

On the other hand, there’s Shopify – an intuitive, fully-hosted platform that’s quick and easy to use. It provides you with all the key components you’d need to scale, without being confined by rules and regulations. 

Ultimately, the choice is yours. 

But, it’s a choice that you shouldn’t take lightly. We suggest you consider how much time you have available, how much control over your business you desire and how quickly you want to grow. 

Here at Velstar, we champion Shopify as the go-to technical solution for entrepreneurs. 

It offers unrivalled security, support and flexibility, allowing you to focus on what’s important: growing your business. 

Shopify has been built with merchants in mind. We believe it is a truly unique platform that understands the value of your time and money. 

So, if you’re interested in hearing more about Shopify or want help integrating Amazon onto your Shopify store, get in touch with our team of experts, we’d be more than happy to help.

Learn more about Velstar’s Shopify development services now

For more exclusive Shopify insights, news and resources, explore the Velstar blog



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