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CBD Websites Made Easy

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There’s no getting around it: CBD is officially everywhere you’re looking, especially online. CBD’s popularity has skyrocketed, transforming from a niche alternative health treatment to a worldwide craze. There is a whole array of revolutionary CBD products, from lattes to makeup, bedsheets, pet treats, and even bath bombs.

Now, this industry’s growth shows no sign of stopping anytime soon. Quite the contrary, with CBD sales being expected to reach $80 billion by 2030. So, with that much money on the table, it’s no wonder that CDB sellers are popping up everywhere online. Where online exactly? On popular CMSs like Shopify or WooCommerce.

This article explores the ins and outs of starting your own CBD shop on either of these two CMSs.

Shopify For CBD Explained

Shopify is a content management system (CMS) that allows you to start, grow, and manage your own online business. It’s a subscription-based software that allows you to promote, sell, and receive payments for your CBD products from anywhere in the world.

Now, Shopify makes it simple to enter the eCommerce world, even if you don’t have any experience selling online. The eCommerce platform allows you to manage products, inventory, payments, and shipping easily, and you also don’t even have to worry about the hassle of hosting because the platform takes care of that. What’s more, Shopify even allows online sellers to use their own domain name and connect it to Shopify from their store’s admin or buy one through the platform if you don’t have one yet.

Simply put, Shopify makes it simple to start and manage your own online store and get your share from a thriving industry like CBD. There’s really no coding or development needed, and there are many other pros.

Pros for CBD sellers
  • Launching your own online shop is easy. There’s no need for developing skills or help to get our CBD business only as Shopify’s subscription comes with web hosting, store themes, and easy-to-integrate features. 
  • Shopify plans are customized, allowing you to scale your plan as your CBD business grows.
  • CBD is linked to marijuana which can make online sales a bit tricky. Yet, Shopify is based in Canada, which means that it is not subject to US federal law. 
Cons for CBD sellers
  • At Shopify, you may experience some payment restrictions. Even if the eCommerce platform is cannabis-friendly, some of the gateway payments provided are not. This includes PayPal and Stripe. 
  • Selling CBD products on Shopify comes with specific transaction fees. The platform takes up to 2.9% of each sale you make and $0.30 per credit card transaction. 
  • The biggest con of using Shopify for your own CBD online store is that you’re not really in control of your site. The platform can close down any site at any time, and you may not even get a warning before. Plus, sellers who use Shopify are subject to the platform’s results and regulations .

WooCommerce For CBD Explained

WooCommerce is essentially a great alternative to Shopify for creating and managing your own CBD online store. WooCommerce is a free WordPress plugin that allows sellers to transform their WordPress website into an eCommerce store that offers the same functionality as Shopify. More precisely, sellers get all the tools they need to sell their products from anywhere in the world and manage their brand.

Yet, there’s a big difference between having an online shop on Shopify and WordPress. More precisely, with WooCommerce, online shop owners have complete control of their websites. There’s no such thing as WooCommerce shutting your site down.

WooCommerce functions as a set of open-source files, meaning that it can be installed on a number of hosting platforms. That’s one of the main reasons why WooCommerce is a full-featured Shopify alternative for setting up a CBD online store and beginning selling.

Pros for CBD sellers
  • There are no subscription fees. WordPress is free for everyone. 
  • WordPress allows you to use cannabis-friendly payment gateways as there are a few that offer plugins for WP. 
  • WordPress supports all sorts of plugins and themes that allow online store owners to customize the appearance of their CBD sites as they like. Plus, WordPress also offers the possibility to customize the functionality of a website or even create a custom theme for it from scratch. 
  • WordPress offers a lot of flexibility through its code, plugin support, and themes. Sellers can constantly change their websites to meet the growing needs of their CBD online business. 
Cons for CBD sellers
  • Setting up an online shop on WordPress involves a few more steps than setting it up on Shopify. Sellers need to: buy a domain, sign up for hosting, install a default WordPress version, buy a theme and install all sorts of plugins to handle promotion practices, install WooCommerce plugin, and lastly, configure their eCommerce store from details to payment gateway integration and products.
  • There’s no support offered for all the things mentioned above. CBD sellers who want to sell on WordPress need a website designer to help them with all the technical parts of setting up your online shop.
  • WordPress plugins and themes require frequent updates. 

Payment Gateway Integration

Whether you decide on using Shopify or WooCommerce as your eCommerce shop platform, it’s time to figure out a crucial aspect: how will you be accepting payments?

Know that CBD is classified as “high-risk,” so using popular payment gateways like PayPal or Stripe is not a good option. In fact, many CBD sellers had their accounts closed without notice or their funds frozen.
Recently, it has become easier to sell CBD products on Shopify, but sellers are required to use a payment gateway other than the platform’s default payment processor. Shopify’s default payment merchant is underwritten by Stripe, a US-based company that does not support the processing of CBD products.

So, although Shopify has support for stores that sell CBD products on the platform, the payments system still doesn’t support these products. To be able to sell CBD on the eCommerce platform, you’ll need to use payment gateways from third-party payment processors. For WooCommerce, you’ll also need to use a third-party payment gateway processor, but the main benefit is that you’re in complete control of your website, so no one can shut it down for selling “high-risk” products.

What are your options?

Getting paid for your online CBD products can be a bit tricky on both Shopify and WooCommerce. Yet, don’t despair. There’s a very viable payment solution you can use to get paid: Viva Wallet.

The leading CBD-oil friendly payment gateway for selling CBD products is Viva Wallet, and you can use it whether you set up your online CBD store on Shopify or WooCommerce:

Using Viva Wallet on Shopify

If you’ve decided to start your own CBD store on Shopify, Viva Wallet can be the payment gateway solution you’ve been looking for. One of the key benefits of using Shopify and Viva Wallet is that the recent partnership with PayPal, allowing CBD sellers to integrate PayPal via the Viva Wallet for their Shopify stores. Yet, this option isn’t available for WooCommerce stores.

All you have to do is to enable PayPal as the payment option by linking your PayPal account with your Viva Wallet account. Keep in mind that all customer payments using this option will be deposited to the PayPal account, not the Viva Wallet account.

Using Viva Wallet on WooCommerce

CBD stores on WooCommerce can also use Viva Wallet as a payment gateway solution to get their money for their products. The partnership between WooCommerce and Viva Wallet has led to an extension that allows CBD merchants to accept payments instantly. While unlike Shopify, you are yet to be able to connect to PayPal, you can however set up a subscription model for accepting payments. This you cannot do if you use Shopify.

To set up subscriptions, you will need to purchase the ‘WooCommerce Subscription’ plugin to enable this feature.

Wrapping Up

While both Shopify and WordPress are great options for selling your CBD products online, there are specific differences between the two you should consider before deciding which one is right for your online business.

Essentially, while Shopify offers a simpler alternative to start an online store (Technically speaking), WordPress doesn’t have additional fees and provides more cannabis-friendly payment gateways options.

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