There are numerous decisions that an eCommerce store owner has to make. Starting from the products that you will offer, pricing strategy, budget, your payment process, etc. But the most important decision that you need to make is, which platform you are going to use to create your store.
Now there are a lot of factors that one needs to consider before deciding on a platform and cashing out on it. To simplify things, I’ve covered 6 amazing platforms that you can use.
Let’s dive in!
6 Major eCommerce Platforms
Best known all-round eCommerce platform in the market, Shopify is a Canadian company that started in 2006. Using Shopify is extremely easy since you can set up your online store successfully in just 15 minutes without the help of any web developer.
The two main criteria for judging any eCommerce platforms are: if it gives the users the ability to create a professional-looking website and the second is if it is user-friendly. And Shopify excels in both of these areas. Shopify is super easy to get started with, and you can create a digital store that’s even with minimal experience and design skills because they have an extremely user-friendly and intuitive interface.
Shopify offers you everything you can think of including – branding tools, design resources and a long list of plugins that allow you to customize every aspect of your store. Be it plugins for email marketing, plugins for sales and conversion optimization, etc. You can also search for specific plugins that you’re interested in.
Shopify also has a 24/7 customer support along with a comprehensive virtual help center in case you get stuck anywhere. You can see why Shopify scored top marks in this area. Put simply, Shopify was designed to help people build an online store without any professional help. It covers all selling bases and over 100 themes to choose from, isn’t that AMAZING!
Shopify gives you access to multi selling channels so you can easily integrate your store with Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon.
The only con that I found with Shopify was that you have to pay a transaction fee for every sale.
Pricing – Monthly packages starting at $29, $79 and $299.
Wix is a great website builder for smaller or more boutique online stores. You can create your store on your own just like Shopify. The best part about Wix is that you can simultaneously create your store and business website here. When you sign up for a Wix eCommerce site, you get the same excellent design options as the regular website builder plus 500 pre-loaded themes for your ease.
It helps you to centrally control and automate a range of business functions, from promoting your business with marketing emails to giving customers help and support with chatbots. You can also easily create multilingual sites with Wix, ideal for users in bilingual countries.
You can easily browse various templates for different products that you might plan to sell, such as fashion and clothing, jewelry, arts, and crafts, etc.
One of the most important things that I loved about Wix is how seriously they take secure payment gateways.
Wix will soon offer Dropshipping too with Modalyst, which happens to be a global dropshipping software. Above all of this, Wix has a built-in marketing toolkit called Ascend by Wix that’s great for connecting with customers. It offers:
- Targeted email marketing campaigns to nurture quality leads
- Promo videos for your products
- Increase conversions and build customer loyalty with coupons
- Cutting-edge SEO tactics
Pricing – Start selling from $23 a month.
BigCommerce was started in 2009 and has been growing ever since. One of the best platforms for fast-growing businesses. Although it has slightly limited customizing options, however when it comes to the core functionality, that is a sales promoting platform, no other platform can match BigCommrce stride-to-stride.
BigCommerce has got excellent reporting and sales analytic tools, excellent inventory detail, and a wide range of sales channels it can integrate. It also doesn’t place transaction fees on the sales you make, unlike Shopify. BigCommerce helps you consolidate multiple storefronts, all in one place. When you set up a new channel, BigCommerce will automatically start importing your uploaded products to that platform. WOW! – That way, you can avoid the tedious task of making changes again and again.
- Checkout customization
- Mobile optimization
- Digital wallets
- Cross-channel commerce
- Advanced search
- Customer groups
- Cross border fulfillment
- No transaction fee
Pricing – Start selling from $29.95 a month for a standard plan
WooCommerce is specifically designed for WordPress is the most used platform all over. A quarter of online stores are powered by WooCommerce alone. An easy to use platform that lets you sell pretty much everything.
Getting started is simple, choose from an array of professional themes and access over 400 official extensions. One particular feature WooCommerce is famous for is its built-in blogging, which is great for reaching your audience and bringing in organic traffic, considering how crucial blogging is in generating revenue. Optimization of your digital store is easy with WooCommerce so it’s hard to go wrong with this platform. Adding a shopping cart has never been more breezy I’d say!
Some of its features:
- get real-time shipping rates with the USPS extension
- integrate various payment gateways
- Add WooCommerce Subscriptions to let your customers subscribe to your product or services.
Pricing– Free for standard features on a self-hosted WordPress site; from $29 for additional extensions.
One of the oldest eCommerce platforms. Launched in the year 1999. While it doesn’t have the same level of brand equity as other companies like Shopify, WooCommerce, and Magento, it’s certainly respectable and a quality product, you can have my word on it “E-commerce for everyone” is their motto, and they emphasize big time on user-friendliness.
In offer, they have responsive themes and a comprehensive site builder that enable you to quickly build a professional site even if you are clueless about coding. How cool!
Volusion offers a streamlined system that allows you to quickly and painlessly add products, create keyword-rich product descriptions, and manage SEO. There’s a fulfillment and shipping management system so you can process orders and get them to your customers without much hassle. Volusion connects with a lot of popular apps like PayPal, Stripe, and Pinterest, which is nice. And I also like that they make it super easy to market your e-commerce brand. Besides that, they make it dead simple to stay on top of store metrics by syncing with Google Analytics And like any other quality e-commerce platform, you have 24/7 access to a team of experts who are located in Austin, Texas.
Pricing – Start selling from $29 a month.
Talking about Magento, it is a popular open-source platform. If you want to start a large scale enterprise, Magento is one of the best options available. Magento’s USP is its high level of customization known for its rich out-of-the-box features. It s also extremely scalable.
- Mobile Apps, Responsive Design, and Highly Secure
- Customizable and Scalable
- Multi-Lingual and Multi-Currency
- Easy store integrations with Facebook, Instagram, eBay, and other platforms.
- Easy checkout pages with various options like – guest checkout, one-page checkout, and one-step checkout
- High in pricing so not an ideal choice for small merchants
- Programming skills required
Pricing- Basic version is free; however, the Enterprise version can costs you a minimum of $20,000 annually.
Global e-commerce revenue has reached over $4.2 trillion in 2020 and is expected to climb almost double of it by the year 2023. That’s a huge jump from what it was just a few years ago in 2014. And that means there’s plenty of opportunity for digital brands out there.
The likelihood of success is choosing the right e-commerce platform to build your store on. With all of the choices out there, it can be a little overwhelming, especially if you’re brand new to the whole concept. Hopefully, after reading this post, you have a basic understanding of each of these platforms and what they have to offer.