There are various questions in your mind before starting an eCommerce website. Like how your online store will look like? Which interface will be easy to help customers shop? How much time and money do you have to spend in modifying your website? And how you can easily manage your website backend? And that’s where an eCommerce platform comes in.
So, in this post we will discuss what is an eCommerce platform? Which factors to consider while choosing an eCommerce platform? And which are the top 10 eCommerce platforms for your business.
What is an eCommerce platform?
An eCommerce platform is software used to build an online storefront. It contains all the features that are needed to run an online store.
Choosing the best eCommerce platform is important and you need to understand which one will better suit your business.
Factors to be considered while choosing the Best Ecommerce Platform for Your Business.
- Whether your business is a startup or an established enterprise.
- Budget for the startup.
- Whether your business will have a brick and mortar location.
- What will be the size of your business?
- Type of products you want to sell online.
- The market you want to reach.
Top 10 eCommerce platforms for your business
BigCommerce is among those sharks that rule the sea of eCommerce today. Its easy interface allows you to customize your online shop without requiring any technical knowledge. BigCommerce has become widely popular because of the BigCommerce themes. BigCommerce themes are advanced, buyer-centric and contain every feature that a buyer needs. It has its own theme store from where you can get free themes or premium themes to start your online store. Also you can do a free trail with BigCommerce, its standard plan starts with 29.95$ per month.
woo commerce is a free word press plug-in that allows you to run your online store on word press platform. It is affordable, robust and has additional features that you can add on. . Also woo commerce is mobile-friendly that allows you to turn your store into a mobile app. You can get the basic theme for free but other themes range from 39$ to 139$. Woo commerce works well for retailers with revenues from startups to million dollars
Shopify is the best eCommerce platform for small to medium size businesses and is used by 500,000 online retailers. It does not require any high-tech knowledge to operate. It has all the features that are required to launch a full eCommerce store. This includes shopping cart, flexible payment options, content management system and reports and analytics. Also your data is safe and secure as it is hosted on shopify’s own secure server with daily backups. It also offers 24*7 monitoring and Payment Card Industry compliance so that your credit card data is protected. It also offers free themes or you can also choose paid themes ranging from 140$ to 180$. Shopify also has an updated version known as Shopify plus, that provides enterprise level capabilities without high costs and long leading time. It differs from shopify as it has no transaction fees and provides 200TB of storage and also allows you to launch quickly. This platform is customizable and can be modified to match your brand image. It’s the best alternative for medium to enterprise level businesses that want to increase online sales. It offers 24/7 email and phone support. Shopify plus has a monthly package that costs 2000$. Also there is a discount of 10percent when you pay whole year cost at once.
Open cart is simple, open source shopping cart system that is free to download and install. It can be hosted on any server that meet its system requirements .This system is best if you are tech-savvy that is know more about modern technology and doesn’t require custom features. You can use over 10000 commercial or free themes and modules. You can get extension packages with support for as little as 39$.
PrestaShop is highly customizable and is available in 40 languages. Its basic features are free to use and also the easy setup makes this eCommerce platform perfect for smaller businesses. It is free to download and install but themes, extensions and hosting will cost you. Themes cost ranges from 70$ to 150$.
Magento community edition is an open source eCommerce platform with a focus on scalability and growth. It has no monthly subscription fees but annual license for Magento enterprise edition 2.0 start at around 22,000$. It offers thousands of templates built by designers and also an integrated shopping cart. One can also choose secure payment options from popular payment gateways. Also Magento gives its customer, access to their purchase history and package tracking. You can also manage multiple eCommerce websites from one Magento account. This platform allows you offer promotions and discount codes and market your site effectively using Magento’s extensive SEO tools.
Wix is one of the basic eCommerce platforms, making it great for brand new online stores. It has a super simple setup with 72 free themes. It offers basic options that support enough features for small sellers to get started. Wix online store hosting is one of the most affordable hosting, starting at just 20$ per month.
Lightspeed is one of the most superior POS and eCommerce software. With this you can create a multichannel shopping experience for your customers and bring them back frequently. It’s one of the advantage is that it gives you unlimited bandwidth usage. Also it comes with great SEO and marketing features. LightSpeed onsite gives hold to all the online retailers to have command over both their physical and online store. Its basic plan starts from $59 per month, but if you want to expand your business then it has an advanced plan starting at $99 per month and if you want to take your business to the next level then it has a professional plan with $199 a month.
SquareSpace is the all-in-one eCommerce platform to build a beautiful website. It’s easy to customize templates are designed by world class designers to help create the most classy online store. But you might need a little practice on the SquareSpace editor before you jump into designing your site. The style Editor gives you tremendous options to edit fonts, images, sidebars and everything without any coding knowledge. Its basic plan starts from 26$ per month.
Weebly is an easy to use platform and offer the basic tool that is needed for a functional store. It was founded in 2006 with about 40 million customers. Weebly has a simple dashboard and allows you to upload products in bulk. So, it is good for the one looking for a simple store with marketing automation built in with a monthly cost of $38. Weebly has three price plans, and they all support eCommerce, the higher two (Business and Performance) are better suited for eCommerce businesses. The reason behind them is that the starter plan is lacking in many relevant eCommerce features like custom shopping cart, coupons, and inventory management. Also, you can’t sell digital goods on it. For physical goods, you are restricted to 25 products with a 3% transaction fee.