10 e-Commerce Platforms Compared
Setting up an online store? It’s time for you to check out the available e-commerce platforms online. But how would you know which one is the best for your needs? Below are some of the e-commerce platforms according to their satisfaction and recommendation from active users. Let’s see how each stacks up against one another.
Users agree that Shopify is simple, easy to set up, and doesn’t require much technical skills. Adding a product, editing options, and applying different themes are straightforward. There are many apps available that can integrate easily for customization. It’s really clean and easy to manage. So far, no complaints.
Active users say that this is easy to use, too. It’s easy to configure, simple to add, delete, and modify the inventory. It also allows users to keep track of the stocks plus it has metrics and sales graphs for reporting. Squarespace as a website builder has great templates to choose from. One limitation though is it only allows one monetary currency on its platform. And if you need something more than the default cart options, better hire a developer. Some users say that the platform needs to perfect its calculations for shipping rates for all plans.
Users recommend Big Cartel for smaller shops, especially startup users. It is a great platform for something really simple and easy to set up. It’s straightforward, handy for stock listing, easy to navigate and to customize the shop. These features make maintaining and shipping products a breeze for $9.99 a month. However, it lacks features and themes. You know when you’re on a Big Cartel site. You can only pay via PayPal and Stripe, and once you’ve reached 300 items, you’re maxed out. That’s a big downside! You’re being limited by what Big Cartel only allows you to do.
Users say that WooCommerce has plenty of add-ons to customize your shop. It has a great plugin architecture. It also has the great support from its dedicated online community. However, WooCommerce requires its users to have a knowledge in website building in order to understand its processes. Also, custom modifications require an advanced programmer.
OpenCart has plenty of extensions, either for free or for purchase. However, these are not plug-and-play. You need some IT experts to do the customization or programming you need to reach the desired feature. And since there are third-party extensions, they may clash with each other that cause you headaches.
BigCommerce provides excellent customer service as their tech support is 24/7 and very responsive. But once your annual sales hit over $300K, you will find the fee expensive. BigCommerce frequently increases their monthly fees based on increasing sales.
According to Magento users, this e-commerce platform has an unparalleled level of customization and freedom despite its huge learning curve. The user interface is not as easy and it’s complicated to set up. You will need a good PHP programmer if you intend to add anything beyond the default installation.
Although this platform has a lot of free and already installed modules, Prestashop users say that this is not user-friendly. This is not recommended for beginners or for those with less technical skills. Also, users complain frequently of bugs and can’t upgrade easily to newer versions.
Users of this e-commerce platform agree on one thing: Volusion’s support team is knowledgeable and one of the few best tech and customer support teams. However, the same users complain of limiting bandwidth. If you have a lot of web traffic, you’ll be charged for bandwidth overages. Other complaints: extra costs for email addresses, SSL certificate, service checks for credit card, SEO, etc.
Overall, Shopify is the pretty clear winner, with Squarespace close behind — but both companies are actually complementary. Shopify is a complete, robust solution that works for both small and large stores, while Squarespace is a simple, approachable platform that works well for stores just starting out. This is not a complete list of all e-commerce software currently available online, but they are the more popular. Furthermore, these are the thoughts of real, verified e-commerce users.