Which is a better option when comparing Dokan vs WCFM Marketplace? Both are popular multi-vendor plugins. But which offers more for the price?
Multivendor marketplaces have grown in popularity in recent years. These online platforms allow multiple users to sell various goods and services, where each sale garners a commission for the owner of that site. eBay, AliExpress, and Amazon are great examples of multivendor marketplaces.
Unfortunately, developing a successful online marketplace isn’t as simple as setting up a website. Many different factors need to be evaluated when establishing such a platform. Advanced resources may be required for assistance with payments, displaying products, and other essential features.
A good plugin that has all the features you’ll need to get up and running is important, especially if you’re relying on WooCommerce. Dokan and WCFM are popular multivendor plugins packed with many features. So which option to choose between Dokan vs WCFM Marketplace?
Dokan vs WCFM Marketplace
Dokan is a very popular WooCommerce based WordPress plugin. It allows users to create their own unique online marketplaces where buyers and sellers can connect to process transactions for various physical and digital goods and services.
All important tasks can be accomplished with the tools that Dokan provides. People who rely solely on WooCommerce to build their stores often spend countless hours and more money than necessary on plugins and extensions just to complete a few very basic functions.
WCFM Marketplace is also WooCommerce based plugin. It comes with an impressive amount of features. You can easily establish and keep your online marketplace thriving with WCFM Marketplace‘s functions.
You won’t need to worry about any admin panel complexities since everything can be managed from the frontend. It allows you to see an overall view of your store and perform tasks such as tracking sales reports, creating coupons, adding products, and much more. The plugin has free and paid versions. For more info, you can check WCFM Marketplace review and WC Vendors vs WCFM Marketplace comparison.
- Free Version Available
- Manage Products
- Auction Products
- Bookable Products
- Add Variable Products
- Downloadable Products
- Grouped Products
- Run Limited Time Discount
- Tax Options
- Trusted Vendor
- Shipping Tracking Integrated
- Frontend Dashboard for Vendors
- Vendor Verification
- Frontend Product Management
- Backordering System
- Stock Management
- Store Ratings
- Vacation Mode
- Vendor Store Widgets
- Store Contact Form
- Subscription Products
- SEO Options
- Product Image and Gallery
- Vendor Withdraw Options
- Seller Reports
- Coupon Creation
- Cross-sells and Up-sells
- Admin Announcements for Vendors
- Custom Store URL
- Social Media Profiles
- Store Logo and Header
- Individual Vendor Stores
- Order Email Notifications
- Storefront Widgets
- Payment Gateway Options
- Fixed Commission for Vendors
- Multiple Commission Types
- Product Level Shipping
- RMA Functionality
- Wholesale Section
- Mobile App
- WPML Support
- Free and pro (starts from $149/year for 1 site)
- PayPal, Bank Transfer, Stripe, Skrill, and Wirecard
- WCFM Marketplace
- Free and pro version in a form of individual extension bundles (starting from $11/year for 2 sites)
- Cash Pay, bank transfer, Skrill, PayPal and Stripe.
With Dokan, all WooCommerce features are included on the frontend. Vendor dashboards can be used for adding items, creating coupons, tracking order status, managing stores, and viewing reports.
You can always make necessary changes and manage all essential functions. Vendors can evaluate their store’s success by checking information that appears in the Reports tab.
Frontend dashboards are not provided for site administrators. Instead, users will need to navigate through a cumbersome WordPress backend with many unnecessary menus and options.
With WCFM, you can run your marketplace entirely from the frontend. WordPress upgrades, changes in theme, installing specific plugins, and other maintenance and development duties will still require you to complete those jobs from the backend.
WINNER: Both Dokan and WCFM Marketplace provide a frontend experience for vendors. But Dokan doesn’t provide the same for site admins.
Dokan provides in-built SEO features for all vendors. Dokan uses a form similar to the Yoast plugin. Tags, categories, user and market information, are retrieved automatically from that form and used to optimize search engine results.
In WCFM, vendors are provided with social and SEO associated settings for their stores. Available setting selections include Twitter Image, Twitter Description, Twitter TItle, Facebook Image, Facebook Description, Facebook Title, Meta Keywords, Meta Description, and SEO Title.
WINNER: Both plugins offer some basic SEO optimization features but nothing significant. I suggest you use a third-party SEO plugin for any advanced needs.
Dokan storefronts can be adjusted whenever you wish. Any of the four current templates can be integrated into your changes with a single mouse click. The ability to add storefront support, tag social addresses and networks, receive reviews, add Google Maps and display coupons are a few options.
A “Store Setup” widget will be visible when WCFM vendors log into their store for the very first time. They can set up all important settings before starting to sell. Analytics Region, Vacation Mode, Store Invoice, Store Policies, SEO, Shipment, Payment, and Store are some available options to set.
WINNER: There is no clear winner here as both plugins offer a good amount of storefront customization options.
Cash on delivery, local pickup, bank payments, and check payments are some of the payment solutions that Dokan offers. You can also use PayPal, Stripe, and any other WooCommerce payment gateway.
All supported WooCommerce payment gateways are also compatible with WCFM. Some payment examples that vendors can take are cash payment, bank transfers, Skrill, Stripe, and PayPal.
WINNER: Because WCFM and Dokan are WooCommerce based plugins, they both support any payment gateway that works with WooCommerce.
Admins can use announcements when there are changes that could affect vendors. Adding new payment gateways and site features are a few common examples where announcements can be beneficial.
Dokan allows message text or weblinks that appear on vendor dashboards to notify about any important news. When vendors log into their dashboards, they can then view those details. Dokan handles announcements just like notifications. So, they are static, read-only messages for vendors.
WCFM Marketplace also provides the same feature, but site admins and vendors can have more involved interactions on WCFM sites. New topics (often identical to forums) can be posted for both parties to respond to. You can also create read-only announcements if needed.
WINNER: WCFM provides a more extensive announcements feature.
Earning, Sales Reports & Vendor Statements
Site administrators and vendors need to know how their store performs. They should be able to see performance updates every day, week, or month. That way, they can gain insight into which items are top sellers and what products aren’t fulfilling their potential.
Complete graphs are provided in Dokan sales reports. Sellers can filter results to examine specific information. They can inspect data on active and pending items, best sellers, earnings from particular products or orders, order and shipping statuses, and much more.
Dokan’s statements can also be exported easily. This may be necessary for users who want to connect those results with their current accounting software or prefer having physical records on file.
WCFM Marketplace allows both vendors and admins to see overall store performance. Product sales data for a designated period with multiple options viewable at any time.
Vendors will only be able to see results for their own store. On the other hand, Admins can see the reports for all vendors. Site admins can configure information visibility levels for each active vendor.
WINNER: Dokan and WCFM Marketplace provide stats for monthly sales, earnings, orders, etc. WCFM reports are a little more detailed and in-depth, though.
Vendor Management & Commissions
In Dokan, site admins can control and monitor all vendors. All active vendors on your marketplace can be viewed on the WordPress Users page.
It’s easy to adjust the selling capacities of different vendors when necessary. Via the dashboard, you can adjust vendor commission types and amounts. Commissions can be fixed or percentage-based.
Products can be published directly, or you can first review each vendor’s new product requests. That way, you can manually check each product before it is added to the marketplace to ensure only the best quality products are added.
You can also assign a trusted member status to particular vendors. Trusted members can add products without needing prior approval from site admins and can be eligible for other perks.
Vendors can either register themselves in the WCFM marketplace or be added by admins manually.
You can set commissions based on Percent, Fixed, Percent + Fixed, By Vendors Sales, and By Product Price. You can set commission rules per vendor, category, or product.
WINNER: Dokan provides more vendor management options, while WCFM performs better when it comes to commission options.
Current Dokan vendor payout methods are Stripe, PayPal, Skrill, Wirecard, and bank transfers. Site administrators assign the vendor’s withdrawal limits and amounts.
Vendor payouts are a little different for WCFM. They can use bank transfer, Skrill, PayPal, and Stripe.
WINNER: Both plugins offer a good amount of payout options for vendors.
Dokan provides tax support, and admins can set taxes from the backend. As vendors add or edit products, they can choose the respective tax classes. For more options, you can use the Dokan Global Tax addon, which can help you meet any sales or value-added tax requirements by setting up your tax rules.
I don’t see that the WCFM plugin comes with any built-in tax features except default ones that come with WooCommerce or which you can add via the third-party plugin.
WINNER: Dokan has in-built tax support features while WCFM doesn’t.
Dokan coupon management is available from the frontend. This system lets vendors create custom coupons for their customers at any time. You can set coupon elements such as usage limits, discount types, amounts, etc. Coupon discounts can either be a percentage or a fixed amount.
WCFM Marketplace allows vendors and admins to create coupons from their dashboards. Each store vendor can create different coupons.
Fixed product and percentage discounts are the two discount types that vendors can create. Coupon limits, excluding specific categories or products, setting minimum and maximum spending amounts are some of the restrictions that can be applied to each coupon.
WINNER: Both Dokan and WCFM provide options to create coupons and set usage limits.
There may be times when a consumer decides to return a product to receive a refund, replacement, or for repair during the warranty period. That’s why many online sellers have established policies for return goods authorization (RGA), return authorization (RA), or return merchandise authorization (RMA).
Thanks to the Dokan RMA module, customized return and warranty facility services are available on sites that use Dokan. The site admin will need to set up the refund policy, buyer refund preferences, and available warranty conditions.
Each active vendor must configure conditions and warranty types from the respective dashboard. Vendors can opt to sell warranties as addons or with the initial products that their customers buy.
Dokan also supports selling warranties that are specific to particular products. Clients can go to their My Account page and ask for a refund. Refunds can be processed via store coupons or money. Just keep in mind that returns aren’t automatic. Vendors will either need to generate coupons to share with affected clients or transfer the proper amount to them manually.
WCFM Marketplace provides RMA functionality using the WooCommerce Returns and Warranty Requests plugin (Price from $79). This plugin comes with all features that Dokan provides and its RMA module. Other options included in this plugin that Dokan doesn’t have are the RMA code format specifier and return shipment tracking.
WINNER: Both plugins offer RMA functionality. Dokan provides it in the form of its RMA module while WCFM in the form of the third-party plugin (it is included in the WCFM Ultimate package).
Dokan Seller Verification module allows vendor verification. Vendors can be confirmed using their photo ID, telephone number, and social media profiles. Vendors will then receive a trusted badge after they’ve been successfully verified. Site visitors will see this badge that will appear next to the vendor’s profile.
WCFM provides the same feature as part of its Verification module. This module is part of the WCFM Ultimate package. You can decide what ID verification documents will be mandatory and optional for each new vendor request. This allows you to customize your vendor verification procedures as you see fit. Vendors can also have product limits imposed upon them until verification is completed.
WINNER: Both plugins offer a seller verification option.
Memberships and recurring payments are possible through Dokan’s Subscription module. You can set up various pricing tiers and membership levels.
WCFM offers membership via WCFM Membership which is a free WordPress plugin. You can set up unlimited membership levels with different pricing plans, capabilities, and commissions.
WINNER: While both plugins offer subscription feature, in Dokan, you will need to buy that module separately or buy pricing plans which come with that feature, while with WCFM, you get it for free.
Wholesale prices can be shown next to the regular prices of items on your marketplace site with the Dokan Wholesale module.
This option can be made available just to wholesalers or to all users. Each vendor can set minimum order quantities and wholesale prices.
WINNER: WCFM doesn’t have a built-in feature for the wholesale option, but it does offer integration with a free third-party plugin to add that feature to your marketplace. In contrast, Dokan offers it in higher pricing plans such as Business and Enterprise.
WINNER: I can’t decide who is the actual winner in this case. Having more addons available can be bad and good. Good because they extend features of the plugin but bad because it means those features are not built-in by default in the standard version, and you need to purchase them additionally.
While building your marketplace, you might require 3rd party vendor tools or APIs to provide additional features and highly specialized service to your customers or vendors.
Dokan provides third-party integrations. However, they don’t have as many options as WCFM, especially in the product types segment and a few others.
WINNER: WCFM provides integration with more third-party tools than Dokan.
Dokan allows customers to leave product reviews. Vendors can then approve reviews, put them in the trash folder, or categorize them as spam.
Reviews can either be approved manually or automatically on WCFM marketplaces. The review/manage page lets you delete, unapprove, and manage each received review.
Admins can deactivate vendors’ ability to manage their reviews. Vendors can disapprove or approve reviews, but only site admins can actually delete reviews.
WINNER: Both plugins offer the option for customers to leave product reviews and vendors to manage them.
Dokan is well known for its shipping ease. Vendors have complete control over shipping orders.
There are several Dokan shipping zones that vendors can pick from. They can also set flat shipping rates. Due to Dokan’s connection with the popular ShipStation platform, shipments are automatically handled.
WCFM provides the following shipping types for the store: Shipping by zone, Shipping by Country, and Shipping by weight.
Vendors can use their own store rules to override any shipping settings. Site admins can global shipping types from their dashboard.
WINNER: Both WCFM Marketplace and Dokan let vendors add different shipping zones, shipping methods, and shipping classes.
Dokan’s shipping allows vendors to send orders to customers no matter where they live. Clients can track each order through the Dokan Shipping Status system.
Using WCFM, vendors can mark each item as shipped and insert a shipment tracking URL. When orders are received, customers can verify the delivery status.
WINNER: Both plugins offer an order tracking feature.
The ability to contact a particular vendor to ask questions or address concerns about certain products before making a buying decision is important for some consumers. This is a great function that can confirm that the items offered for sale are genuine.
Dokan allows customers to send messages to vendors. A tab titled “Product Enquiry” will appear on the product page with the contact form included. Once submitted, an email inquiry is sent to the vendor.
WCFM Marketplace comes with product inquiry as one of its free in-built functions. When compared to Dokan’s offering, this version is far superior. Inquiry dashboards are made available to both customers and vendors. Messages are easier to manage and monitor with this system. People can rely on the same thread, and the replies can be seen on the respective product page.
WINNER: WCFM has slightly better inquiry form features.
Bookable items can be created through Dokan Bookings.
WCFM also has a booking feature. You can create and manage Bookable Products, and Bookings live from the site frontend.
WINNER: The booking option can be found in both plugins.
A ticket-based store support system is provided with Dokan’s Store Support module. When this feature is enabled, each vendor’s store page will have a “Get Support” button. You can manage each support ticket request from the vendor dashboard.
The threads can continue to grow as vendors and clients respond to messages. Vendors can close tickets and prevent future replies after a ticket has been successfully resolved. “My Account” pages allow customers to see all support tickets they opened.
WCFM also supports multiple support features. Queries can include attachments, and clients can specify support category, the priority of the request, and the product for which the ticket is being raised.
This system is based on orders (not products), so it can serve as a support system before and after sales.
WINNER: Dokan and WCFM both provide vendor support feature.
Theme & App
Dokan makes it easy to create an app for your online marketplace. There are apps for Android and iOS mobile devices. You can even white-label and implement custom branding.
There’s also a free Dokan theme independent of the plugin, which means that you don’t have to install the Dokan plugin to use the theme.
WCFM Marketplace has a section dedicated to WCFM Mobile Apps. This makes it easier for vendors to manage their store on the go.
WCFM Marketplace app example.
At this time, there are no official available WCFM themes. However, WCFM sites should be able to use any theme that works with WooCommerce. Check a list of themes that are fully compatible with WCFM Marketplace.
WINNER: Both plugins offer apps for the marketplace and work with most WooCommerce supported themes.
WPML is a popular WordPress multi-language plugin. According to Dokan’s official site, the plugin was compatible with WPML, but according to this announcement, it seems the development of Dokan WPML is currently off due to compatibility issues.
WCFM provides WPML supports, and WPML integration is a part of WCFM Ultimate. I don’t have any data about Dokan and WCFM support for other multi-language plugins.
WINNER: WCFM Marketplace is it provides WPML integration.
Dokan comes in a free and paid version. Complete online marketplaces with vendor withdrawal and order management systems can be created with the free version, even though the functionality is limited compared to the paid version. For more info, check Dokan free vs. pro comparison.
The paid plans vary in price and features. The most expensive choice is the Enterprise plan at $999 yearly. The least expensive plan is the Starter plan, priced at $199 per year.
As you move up to different paid plans, you’ll have access to more features. Some modules included in higher plans are seller verification, product duplicator, geolocation, live chat, and live search. There are also Lifetime plan options.
- WCFM Ultimate – starting from $49/yr for two sites
- WCFM Groups & Staffs – starting from $39/yr for two sites
- WCFM Affiliate – starting from $29/yr for two sites
- WCFM Delivery – starting from $29/yr for two sites
- WCFM Analytics – starting from $11/yr for two sites
- WCFM Product hub – starting from $11/yr for two sites
You can also purchase all addons starting from $168/year for two sites.
WINNER: WCFM is a cheaper option than Dokan and comes with most features that Dokan provides.
WCFM vs Dokan Conclusion
Which is a better option when comparing Dokan vs WCFM Marketplace? The decision may be difficult, especially when you take all features that each brings to the table.
The features you want and your budget will ultimately be the determining factors. Examine your financial standing and think about the kind of online store you desire.
WCFM delivers everything that Dokan offers at a lower price. Unless there is something you need that Dokan has and WCFM doesn’t, I would say go with WCFM Marketplace.
If neither of this plugins didn’t spart your interest, then check WC Vendors review. It is another great multi-vendor plugin.
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