PrestaShop vs. Magento – 2021 Comparison

Magento and PrestaShop both have their similarities, but it’s important to consider the differences when deciding which system will work better for you.

Nowadays there are many articles online comparing the stats or UI of both systems. Still, there are none so far to compare essential things you should consider and focus on.

I’ve been doing quite a bit of web development in my time, and as such have had the opportunity to work on many different projects. This means that when it comes down choosing which framework or tool is best for you – there can be some confusion about what exactly matters most!

In this article, we will explore the following:

PrestaShop Stats vs. Magento Stats

First release year20072008
Sites using itover 250kover 180k
Open sourceYesYes
Free license for personal useYesYes
Free license for commercial useYesYes
Community forumYesYes
SupportOnly paidNo
Constant updatesYesYes
Quick security patchesYesYes
PCI complianceYesYes
Various payment optionsYesYes

Which is faster? PrestaShop and Magento will have the same speed and resources usage (CPU, RAM) when installed. But later on, Magento is designed to deal with load a little better.

For the past five years, the popularity of both platforms has been decreasing. The leading cause for this is that there are many SAAS (Software As A Service) alternatives online like Shopify or Wix that allow building ecommerce businesses with zero tech knowledge.

PrestaShop (blue) and Magento (red) five year trends
PrestaShop (blue) and Magento (red) five year trends

Such SAAS services do not allow customizations even if you would have any developers to do them.

PrestaShop and Magento Addons

Addons countalmost 4kalmost 4k
Price rangefrom free to up to 800 USDfrom free to up to 1200 USD
Common price range50-150 USDfree to 150 USD

It is worth mentioning that Magento has SEO support out of the box, while PrestaShop has minimal support for SEO when installed. PrestaShop needs some (usually paid) addons to get clean URLs, sitemap, and google analytics tracking code install.

PrestaShop and Magento Themes

Themes countalmost 3k11
Price rangefrom free to up to 800 USDfrom free to up to 500 USD
Common price range50-100 USD30 to 150 USD

With 11 themes, this is super bad for Magento. But there are 400 Magento themes on the ThemeForest project (and almost 1k themes for PrestaShop).

Biggest Differences Between Magento And PrestaShop

Magento search uses ElasticSearch technology. For this reason, search is not only a few times faster than PrestaShop, but it is closer to Google a-like search. On the other hand, PrestaShop search is just a full-table-scan search in the database comparing each entry for keyword and filter matching.

Magento requires tech skills. It is a very rare case when you can run your Magento store without a developer. At the same time, there are dozen of online stores that never had developers modifying them.

PrestaShop is more user and budget-friendly. PrestaShop hosting is cheap (5-20 USD/month) to start, and set up a store with payment processing does not require your tech skills.

Magento can be scaled because of their great nodes infrastructure. Unfortunately, scaling can only be done by an experienced developer or agency. PrestaShop can only be scaled “vertically” by buying bigger/faster servers. More on PrestaShop scaling can be found in PrestaShop weaknesses article.

Big Lies About PrestaShop and Magento Hosting

There are two very big lies on the internet related to hosting.

Magento has cloud hosting, and it is super expensive. The fact is that Adobe provides hosting, and you don’t have to choose one. Official hosting from Magento does not offer any technical benefits – the setup of such infrastructure would need you to delegate this job to developers, so your costs are even higher.

In short: PrestaShop and Magento hosting prices are very similar. They are 5-50 USD/month for a typical ecommerce store.

Many hosting companies (a2, BlueHost, etc.) provide one-click-install solutions so that you don’t need to configure things like the database yourself.


So, what will you choose? The decision between PrestaShop or Magento can be tough. If popularity is what matter most to your business, choose Magento. But  if you want is a user, budget-friendly tool, Prestashop is the asnwer. It also has more themes and addons, has bigger community, and you can run store quickly without the need of a developer.