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Is PrestaShop Good for Large-Scale Ecommerce Shops

As you stand on the brink of launching your online retail empire, the choice of ecommerce platform is crucial. Amidst the plethora of options, PrestaShop emerges as a noteworthy contender, offering flexibility, scalability, and a rich feature set. 

But does it truly measure up for large-scale operations?

In this article, we dissect the merits and drawbacks of PrestaShop as a powerhouse platform for sizable ecommerce ventures. From its touted strengths to potential limitations, we aim to provide insights to inform your decision on whether PrestaShop is the right fit for your ambitious ecommerce aspirations. 

So, grab your metaphorical magnifying glass as we embark on this exploration of PrestaShop’s suitability for the big leagues of online commerce.

Introduction to PrestaShop

“Born” in 2007, PrestaShop is an open-source ecommerce solution that has since garnered a devoted following and cemented its status as a go-to option for entrepreneurs venturing into the realm of online retail.

But what exactly is Presta, and what fuels its popularity? 

At its core, PrestaShop is a robust ecommerce software that enables users to create and manage online stores with ease. Its appeal lies in its flexibility, user-friendly interface, and extensive customization options, making it suitable for businesses of varying sizes and industries.

One of PrestaShop’s key selling points is its open-source nature, which means the software is freely available for anyone to download, use, and modify. This accessibility has fostered a vibrant community of developers and enthusiasts who contribute to its evolution.

From small boutiques to large-scale enterprises, PrestaShop caters to businesses across the spectrum. Its modular architecture allows for scalability, meaning you can start small and grow your store over time without outgrowing the platform. Plus, its intuitive admin interface makes it easy to manage products, orders, customers, and more. All that, even with limited technical expertise.

In essence, PrestaShop is the Swiss Army knife of ecommerce platforms, offering a versatile toolkit to bring your online retail vision to life.

PrestaShop by the Numbers

In order to better understand PrestaShop’s place in the ecommerce world, we have to take a closer look at the market, the competition, and the types of clients that find it a suitable match. Luckily, we have some insightful statistics to help us gain more knowledge:

  • PrestaShop holds about 1.2% of the ecommerce software market. The leaders in the field are WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce. 
  • BuiltWith offers a lead list with over 672,000 websites using PrestaShop. It’s worth noting that the currently live websites are around 228,000. 
  • Many industries rely on PrestaShop for their ecommerce needs. Home&Garden, Apparel, and Food&Drink are the best-represented industries on the list. 
  • PrestaShop is the most preferred in Europe. The countries with the widest adoption of the CMS are Spain, France, and Lithuania. 
  • About 19.3% of PrestaShop-built websites sell up to 10 products. The large ecommerce stores with 25,000+ products are just over 1,100. 
  • Infosys, Fujitsu, and eBay all utilize PrestaShop for some of their retail and wholesale needs. 

As you can see, PrestaShop has established a firm footing in the ecommerce industry for quite some time. The CMS is very versatile and able to adequately serve both small and very big online shops. 

But we are here to focus on the latter. So, how does Presta pair up with big enterprises when we take into account its inherent characteristics? 

PrestaShop and Large Ecommerce Stores – Key Considerations

PrestaShop, renowned for its flexibility and scalability, is often a top choice for businesses venturing into the realm of large-scale ecommerce. But as with any platform, there are essential factors to consider when assessing its suitability for handling the complexities of expansive online operations.

PrestaShop Scalability

PrestaShop’s architecture and capabilities play a pivotal role in determining its viability for large online shops. The CMS flaunts a modular structure and robust framework that are designed to accommodate growth, enabling businesses to seamlessly expand their online presence. With over 220,000 active ecommerce websites globally, PrestaShop’s widespread adoption underscores its scalability potential.

When evaluating the ability to grow, it’s essential to consider how the platform handles increased traffic, products, and orders. By leveraging features such as caching mechanisms, performance plugins, and easily integratable functionalities, PrestaShop ensures that ecommerce websites can maintain optimal performance even during peak periods of activity.

IMPORTANT: Your hosting provider plays a key role in how well your PrestaShop store can scale as well. Make sure to choose a reliable host and a plan that allows you to easily add system resources like CPU, RAM, and disk space. A knowledgeable provider will ensure you have the perfect server environment to expand without any downtime. 

Performance Considerations

Performance is a critical factor for large ecommerce stores, as slow loading times and sluggish checkout processes can lead to higher bounce rates and reduced conversions. Not to mention that every second the website is unavailable, it can result in devastating losses in sales. 

PrestaShop prioritizes performance optimization through various techniques, including image optimization, code minification, and content delivery network (CDN) integration.

According to a study by Akamai, a 100-millisecond delay in website load time can result in a 7% decrease in conversion rates. By implementing performance optimization strategies, PrestaShop can help large ecommerce store owners enhance the user experience and maximize their sales potential.

It’s also worth noting that PrestaShop’s performance monitoring tools enable businesses to identify and address performance issues promptly, ensuring optimal website performance at all times.

IMPORTANT: Choosing one of ScalaHosting’s Managed VPS plans will give you access to unique tools like SPanel and SShield, which will allow you to constantly monitor your site and server and proactively tackle performance and security issues.

Customization and Flexibility

PrestaShop offers extensive customization options, allowing businesses to tailor their online stores to meet specific branding and functional requirements. With over 5,000 modules and themes available in the PrestaShop Marketplace, companies have access to a wide range of tools and resources for customizing the outlook and functionalities of their ecommerce websites.

The availability of third-party integrations means you can easily add various payment gateways, shipping providers, and marketing tools to streamline operations and enhance customer experience. New add-ons are configured in just a few clicks and can significantly improve the UI/UX of your online store. Moreover, PrestaShop’s open-source nature allows you to customize your project to the tiniest details, helping you implement unique features and functionalities that will wow your visitors right from the get-go.

IMPORTANT: If you are looking to apply advanced customizations to your online shop, go for a VPS plan with root access to the server. A shared hosting package will not give you the necessary permissions to tweak the actual server, as you are just one of many clients on the same machine. 

Multi-Store Management

This one is especially important for large ecommerce projects. Multi-store functionality in PrestaShop enables businesses to manage multiple online storefronts from a single administration panel. 

It is absolutely crucial for streamlining operations and improving your overall brand efficiency. The feature is particularly beneficial for large ecommerce operations with diverse product catalogs and target markets. Clients from different countries are driven by different factors, and any successful international business should be able to address that.

According to a study by Statista, 41% of global retailers plan to expand their presence across multiple channels in the next two years. PrestaShop’s multi-store feature caters to this trend, allowing businesses to effectively scale their operations and reach new audiences.

Got a great spot in the US retail market? That’s great, but what about Europe, what about the Asia-Pacific region? So many untapped markets are just waiting for the right brand to make an impression.

With PrestaShop’s multi-store feature, businesses can centrally manage inventory, pricing, and promotions while tailoring each storefront’s design and content to suit specific audiences, thereby maximizing efficiency and driving sales growth.

IMPORTANT: To activate the multi-store option, simply log into your PrestaShop backend and navigate to Store Parameters -> General. Inside, you will find the Enable Multi-Store feature with a YES/NO box next to it.

Backend Management and Administration

PrestaShop’s intuitive backend interface and comprehensive administrative tools simplify the management of large inventories and customer groups. From inventory management and order processing to reporting and analytics – PrestaShop pushes all the right buttons to give big brands a competitive edge.

But that’s just scratching the surface of what Presta can really do for you.

Advanced functionalities such as batch processing, automated order fulfillment, and real-time analytics are there to help you make informed decisions and optimize performance across all aspects of your ecommerce operations. Additionally, PrestaShop’s extensible architecture allows businesses to integrate third-party tools and services to simplify their backend management capabilities and automate some of the crucial workflow processes.

IMPORTANT: You will find over 1,000 plugins in the Administration section of the PrestaShop Marketplace. The popular client choices include Google Analytics, Stats Dashboard, and Merchant Expertise. 

Security and Compliance

Security is a paramount concern for large ecommerce stores, given the sensitive nature of customer data and financial transactions. PrestaShop implements stringent security measures, including SSL encryption, secure payment gateways, and regular security updates, to safeguard against potential threats.

According to a report by Cybersecurity Ventures, global cybercrime damages are projected to reach $6 trillion annually by 2021. By prioritizing security and compliance with regulations such as GDPR and PCI DSS, PrestaShop helps large ecommerce projects mitigate risks and build trust with their customers.

Moreover, PrestaShop’s security features protect client data, transactions, and sensitive information, ensure a safe shopping environment, and foster long-term relationships with your audience.

IMPORTANT: Your hosting provider is just as important to securing your PrestaShop website as your own efforts. To help you build a wall around your online premises, ScalaHosting offers a ton of free extras and tools – the SShield security monitor, SSL certificates, anti-spam and anti-malware filters, DDoS protection, and many more. 

Limitations and Challenges for Big Ecommerce Stores with PrestaShop

As we can see, PrestaShop is quite versatile and able to serve small startups and large enterprises with the same efficiency. However, like any platform, Presta is not perfect, at least not out-of-the-box. Let’s delve into some of these hurdles and explore potential solutions:

Problem: Performance Limitations

While PrestaShop is pretty lightweight and runs fast, there are some limitations as to how big you can grow. Without further customization or scalable resources, the CMS can deliver a decent performance, but only for smaller online shops. 

Solution: Starting off with your hosting plan, a cloud VPS solution will guarantee you always have enough CPU and RAM to accommodate a rising number of visitors. Getting a CDN can also help with this predicament, especially if your store is serving an international audience. Consider some site improvements as well – content caching and code optimization often do wonders for your page loading speeds.

Problem: Tackling the Learning Curve

Sure, PrestaShop is an open-source application that is quite user-friendly, especially compared with similar ecommerce solutions.  But when you are building an online shop for the first time, there are still quite a lot of mechanics that might overwhelm you. Integrating various modules and themes, optimizing the performance, and learning new functionalities are all examples of things you have to master.

Solution: To start things off, PrestaShop is a CMS with quite a lively community – a sure sign that you will never be alone with your potential problems. You can find thousands of video tutorials and guides around the web, and the specialized forums are full of friendly developers who are always glad to help. Furthermore, you can outline a regular backup and update strategy to ensure you are not missing an important addition to the app. 

Problem: Inventory Management Challenges

Managing extensive product catalogs, stock levels, and inventory across multiple warehouses can be cumbersome with PrestaShop’s native capabilities. Big ecommerce stores often require advanced inventory management features, such as real-time synchronization, automated replenishment, and multi-location support.

Solution: Integrate third-party inventory management systems or dedicated modules to augment PrestaShop’s native capabilities. You can then implement centralized inventory control solutions that synchronize stock levels across multiple sales channels, warehouses, and fulfillment centers in real time. To reduce manual interventions and errors, you can also leverage automation tools to streamline order processing, inventory replenishment, and backorder management.

Problem: Cybersecurity Threats

Big ecommerce stores are prime targets for cyber threats, including data breaches, malware injections, and payment fraud. PrestaShop’s open-source nature exposes it to potential security vulnerabilities, necessitating robust measures to safeguard sensitive customer information.

Solution: Prioritize security best practices, such as regular security audits, timely patching of vulnerabilities, and implementing SSL encryption for safe data transmission. Utilize reputable security extensions and firewalls to fortify PrestaShop against malicious attacks and unauthorized access attempts. Don’t forget about human errors – educate your staff members on phishing awareness, password hygiene, and social engineering tactics to mitigate insider threats.

Problem: Serving Mobile Users

With the proliferation of mobile devices, big ecommerce stores cannot neglect the perfect user experience across all kinds of screens and devices. PrestaShop’s default themes might not always provide optimal responsiveness out of the box, leading to subpar mobile browsing experiences.

Solution: Adopt mobile-first design principles when customizing PrestaShop themes or developing new ones. Prioritize performance optimization techniques, such as responsive image scaling, touch-friendly navigation elements, and accelerated mobile pages (AMP). 

Test website responsiveness across different devices and browsers, promptly addressing layout inconsistencies or usability issues. Consider investing in Progressive Web App (PWA) technologies to deliver app-like experiences on mobile devices, enhancing engagement and conversion rates.


In conclusion, examining PrestaShop’s suitability for large-scale ecommerce reveals strengths and considerations for businesses operating at this level. The CMS offers a robust platform with a range of features for managing substantial product catalogs, handling high transaction volumes, and facilitating complex customization. Its open-source nature allows for extensive flexibility and scalability, empowering businesses to adapt and expand their online presence efficiently.

For businesses already leveraging PrestaShop at scale, maximizing its potential entails a strategic approach. This involves prioritizing performance optimization, leveraging available plugins and integrations judiciously, and staying informed about updates and advancements within the PrestaShop ecosystem.


Q: Is PrestaShop better than WooCommerce?

A: It depends on your needs. PrestaShop offers a comprehensive ecommerce solution with extensive customization options, making it ideal for businesses seeking scalability and built-in features. WooCommerce, on the other hand, integrates seamlessly with WordPress, providing limitless flexibility with a large ecosystem of plugins

This makes Woo more suitable for users who are already familiar with the main CMS. Ultimately, the choice between the two platforms comes down to your specific requirements and preferences.

Q: How to make my PrestaShop store faster?

A: Here are a few key aspects that can boost your PrestaShop store loading times:

  • Optimize Images and Files: Compress images and minify CSS and JavaScript files to reduce page load times.
  • Use Caching: Enable PrestaShop’s built-in caching mechanisms or use third-party caching plugins to store frequently accessed data, improving performance.
  • Upgrade Hosting: Choose a reliable PrestaShop hosting provider with optimized servers for PrestaShop to ensure fast response times and uptime.
  • Reduce HTTP Requests: Limit the number of elements on each page and consolidate CSS and JavaScript files to minimize the number of HTTP requests required for loading.
  • Update and Optimize PrestaShop: Regularly update to the latest version of PrestaShop and optimize database tables to ensure efficient data retrieval and processing.

Q: What are the pros of PrestaShop?

A: PrestaShop offers a comprehensive ecommerce solution with a wide range of built-in features, including multi-store management, easy geolocalization, and support for various payment gateways and shipping methods. Its open-source nature allows for customization freedom, helping your business tailor its shopping website to your specific needs. Additionally, PrestaShop benefits from a large community of developers and users, providing valuable resources and support for merchants.

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