Ecommerce has become one of the fastest growing sectors with the world’s changes in the past years. More and more businesses are transitioning towards online stores, making it quite competitive for newcomers.
If you are considering starting your online business and see eCommerce as a good opportunity, one of the first questions you could have is, “What is the best eCommerce platform?”.
The short answer is any from this list. For the long answer, continue reading and discover the differences between the most popular platforms.
Shopify became one of the leaders in the category of eCommerce platforms. Many agree that this is due to one thing – simplicity. Shopify has a beginner-friendly platform that allows anybody with elementary computer skills to create and launches their store in a matter of days.
On the other hand, it offers developers and advanced users flexibility to create unique and sophisticated stores. CSS and HTML changes are possible, and you can also play around with Shopify templates written in Liquid.
The way it works is that users who want to become store owners register and build their shop using an intuitive and straightforward interface and release it to the world. All of the backend work is done by the platform, as well as technical maintenance, servers, hosting, and similar things.
This service does come with a cost since the store owner must pay a subscription. It can be a monthly or yearly subscription. By doing this, the owner is relieved from all complicated technical work that otherwise should be done.
Additionally, Shopify offers a payment processor which also takes a commission that ranges from 2.4% to 5%.
Next on the list is a plugin for the most popular website platform. You maybe already know, but if you didn’t, WordPress is a widely spread platform that runs in the background of every third website on the internet!
Being a free and open-source platform, WordPress is used in all online industries, and it’s an intelligent solution for newcomers with lower budgets.
WooCommerce, as a plugin to this content management system, initially comes without cost. I say initially since, later on, you might want additional functionalities available from other plugins that can be paid.
Speaking about usability, WordPress and WooCommerce combination might come cheaper at first but can be overwhelming if the user is not that tech-savvy. However, as with Shopify, one can use many prebuilt themes and templates to make work easier and deploy their store faster.
One last thing to keep in mind is that with a combination of this CMS and plugin, you are responsible for hosting and domain costs, and maintenance.
This combination is excellent for users with decent experience who want to customize their stores and the experience it provides fully.
Returning to the turf of premade solutions, we come to Squarespace, a platform picking up tremendous momentum among newcomers to website building. As the name suggests, it allows users to build entire websites with drag-and-drop content blocks.
Speaking about quite an essential element from a marketing perspective, design, Squarespace offers plenty of attractive design options for your store. Keeping in mind simplicity and minimalism that is popular nowadays, at least when it comes to design, and according to many users, this platform offers one of the best design options in the industry.
The integrated inventory system into this platform is excellent and offers all the functions one might want. Keeping the inventory organized can be challenging, which might be very important if you are new to the eCommerce business.
The last thing to mention about functionalities is your excellent analytical overview of the platform. Keep in mind that Squarespace comes with a limited number of extensions and plugins compared to Shopify or the WordPress-WooComerce combination. Squarespace comes with different pricing plans, depending on the website’s needs.
To finish this list, we choose Wix, a platform similar to Squarespace. The approach is the same, build your website effortlessly without technical knowledge. Wix indeed delivers what it promises. It is beginner friendly platform that will help you create beautiful looking and functional stores.
What truly separates this platform from other similar platforms is the free plan that it comes with. You can find Wix on top of the most accessible and straightforward website builders lists.
However, if you want to support and access advanced features that come with extensions and customization, you will probably have to choose a paid plan.
Wix stores offer support for digital and physical products. Being beginner-friendly might be a great choice if one wants to transition from an already established offline business to a digital one.
The downside is that some users complained about the slow loading speeds of the sites built with Wix.
Choosing the best eCommerce platform to start your online business might seem terrifying and never-ending research. Depending on your plans, you might want to select one and decide for yourself later.
There are plenty of other things to consider, and spending excessive time getting the perfect platform is not the best idea. Hopefully, this list helped you to get a good overview of what is available.