Looking for the right platform to start your eCommerce business? We can help with that! Here is what we think is the top eCommerce platform based on your needs.
What is the Top eCommerce Platform?
So you want to start an eCommerce business. That’s great, because online shopping has proven to be today’s consumers’ preferred way to shop. Digital marketing has evolved to be more eCommerce-centric, helping you drive sales, create brand awareness, and build an online community of customers.
However, the very first step in starting your online store is picking your platform. The good news is that there are a bunch of different providers to choose from. On the flip side, having a variety of options can make it harder to make your decision. To help you out, we’re sharing some of the best eCommerce platforms for you to consider based on your business, goals, and needs.
For small businesses and small budgets: Shopify Lite and Weebly
There are a lot of upfront costs when starting a business. If you’re a small scale business or simply don’t have a lot of money to invest in your company, try Shopify Lite. For just $9 per month, you can make your existing website or blog shoppable. With Shopify Lite, you can add “buy” buttons to your website so people can make purchases on your current site. Not only is this option great because of its low price, but it also saves you the time of having to set up an entirely new website. If you’ve been in business a few years with an established site and are starting to get into eCommerce, this is a great starting point.
If you don’t have any money in your budget for a website, you can take advantage of Weebly’s free plan. Prepare to be blown away by Weebly’s feature-rich free plan, which includes unlimited items, a tax calculator, coupons, SEO, lead capture, and even customer support via phone or email. The drawback is that you can’t have a custom domain and Weebly will be advertised on the bottom of your webpages. However, those are pretty small inconveniences when you consider all that you’re getting while not paying a dime.
If you have a small budget to spend on your site, Weebly’s Personal Plan allows you to have an online shop with a custom domain for a monthly $9 fee (or $72 annually paid upfront).
For eCommerce newbies: GoDaddy
Today you don’t have to be a computer whiz to have a thriving eCommerce shop. However, you will need some computer skills to set up and manage your online store’s backend. If computers aren’t your thing and you’re not confident in your ability to maintain a website, GoDaddy is another great top eCommerce platform. The beauty of GoDaddy’s Ecommerce is that it builds your website for you. You answer questions, and GoDaddy uses that information to set up your store. It’s definitely the most efficient option for getting your online store off the ground as quickly as possible.
On the downside, there isn’t that much flexibility for customizing your shop’s design. Due to this limitation, GoDaddy isn’t the greatest solution if you want a really dynamic, unique website with amazing branding. But, if you want to start selling ASAP with minimal work, GoDaddy could be right for you.
For bigger businesses and those who want a lot of features and flexibility: Shopify and BigCommerce
In the eCommerce world, Shopify and BigCommerce are considered the gold standard website platforms. Some of the biggest brands in the world trust these companies with their online business. To be honest, you really can’t go wrong with either Shopify or BigCommerce. They’re both well suited for stores with a lot of products and sellers who have their sights on scaling their businesses. They’re also the best options if having a well-designed website with lots of features and the flexibility to customize it to your liking is important to you.
Both platforms are pretty comparable in terms of pricing and features. Shopify Basic is $29/month, and BigCommerce Standard is $29.95/month. Both plans are pretty similar, though there are a few key differences that will help you determine which platform is best for you. If you have an international customer base, you’ll appreciate some of the Standard plan’s features such as real-time shipping quotes (including international carriers) for customers and automatic currency conversion.
For high-volume sellers, you’re better off with Basic because BigCommerce’s Standard plan caps sales at $50,000 per year. If you exceed that amount, you have to opt for BigCommerce’s next plan, which costs $79.95/month.
Another factor to consider when choosing between Shopify and BigCommerce is the transaction fee. In the Basic plan (and Lite plan too), Shopify charges a 2% transaction fee. BigCommerce, on the other hand, doesn’t charge any transaction fees for any of their plans.
Both Shopify and BigCommerce offer free trials (fourteen days for Shopify, fifteen days for BigCommerce). If you’re having a hard time choosing between the two, you can try them out.
There are many eCommerce platforms out there, but Shopify, Weebly, GoDaddy, and BigCommerce are considered the most established and reliable. If you choose any of these platforms, you can rest assured that you have a secure, functional online store. Which you decide is the top eCommerce platform to use is entirely up to you and your goals for your new business