Comparing E-commerce Platforms
With there being an ever growing amount of websites and tools that can be used to build an ecommerce site, we thought that it might be helpful to go through them and give you some information about the pros and cons of each. We will being going over the most requested platforms from our customers as well as few do them yourself options. If you have any questions or enquiries about anything mentioned give us an email and we will be happy to help!
Shopify is one of the two most popular choices when it comes to ecommerce options, and is one of the most requested by our customers. Shopify is a diverse tool that allows both non-professionals and professionals alike to create sites with it. They offer a free web design tool that can be installed onto any site, coming with a wide range of over 100 prebuilt themes for easy use. Another option is for a web design and development company to design and build a completely custom theme, Shopify have a range of web design companies available on their website but this is also a service we provide. Also available they have a wide range of plugins and extensions to suit a wide variety of needs.
Shopify is a great tool for companies that have small budgets and aren’t looking for any custom functionality with their ecommerce site due to the limitation with the tool. With Shopify as well there is a monthly cost, starting from $29 upwards to $299 with a varying amount of features such as abandoned cart recovery and report builders. Also without using Shopify payment you will have an additional fee on top of every purchase meaning it might cost a little bit more than you expected.
WooCommerce is the most popular ecommerce plugin for WordPress and is completely free to use. With a large amount of free themes and plugins being on WordPress, WooCommerce is a very versatile tool and is highly customisable within the plugin as well as through custom themes and plugins available through a web development company. Also being in WordPress you can still use the same functionality as a standard WP site.
Being as diverse as it is, WooCommerce supports both physical and digital items, such as eBooks or music. The plugin has multiple options for payments and shipping and comes with Stripe which is allows users to pay for goods online.
With most things WordPress there is a large community of users from which you can go to, to get support and advice about using WooCommerce and a plethora of other plugins. WooCommerce has support of its own through its website as well as a wide selection of documentation to help you through the many options and functions that it has too offer. With this though WooCommerce can be complicated for first time users but once you get the handle of it can be very easy to use. Same with the addons for the plugin, with large community support theres a wide variety of plugins available so it can be quite hard to be able to tell which ones you should and shouldn’t be using.
Magento is known for being highly reliable and scalable being used by brands such as Burger King, Coca Cola and Huawei, the platform is focused towards medium sized business and upwards. This is largely due to the fact that the platform is very complex and requires a very competent developer or multiple for you to get a high quality website from it.
Magento though does have a great user experience with easy to use and manage backend for all your products and orders. Also due to its open source nature there is no limits to how much it can be customised, meaning that any custom feature that you require can be easily coded in by a web development team as well as integrating a fully custom design. With it being open source there is over 9000+ plugins/extensions available as well to add more features to your site with some allowing you to sell on social media platforms as well.
A factor to consider with Magento is the difference between their free version and their enterprise versions. Obviously with a free version you dont get as many features as you do with the enterprise version but you do get a hefty price tag of $20,000 a year. The free version still can be highly customisable though but doesn’t come with as much support as the enterprise version, getting a Magento website built through a web development company though would still provide you with support through the company.
OpenCart is a lightweight application thats great for small businesses, with an easy to use user interface making it easy to learn and manage, coming with a variety of payments as standard. The software is free and open-source with a wide variety of user made plugins for you to use. OpenCart in comparison to other Ecommerce website tools is generally cheaper than other platforms to develop, but does come with quite a few less features in comparison.
If you need any help deciding which ecommerce site tool is best for you, please get in touch and we will be more than happy to help you and potentially make your ideal web shop.
« How We Started Our Digital Careers – Sam, SEO Executive | Managing Your WordPress Website »