The Best ECommerce Platforms to Sell Your Products on the Internet
In today’s evolving digital landscape, finding the perfect ecommerce platform to create your own online store can be daunting. There’s no shortage of online selling platforms promising to catapult your annual sales through the roof.
But before you commit to anything, do your research. Or better yet, as your trusted digital marketing and web design partner, Social Firm is here to simplify the process. We’ve compiled a list of the top ecommerce platforms based on a combination of platform features and capabilities to help you decide which is best for your business.
On this journey, we’ll look specifically at seven leading online selling sites: Shopify, BigCommerce, Wix, Squarespace, Weebly, Volusion, and WooCommerce hosted by Nexcess.
By examining the unique qualities of each online selling platform, we aim to provide valuable insights that will empower you to make the right choice to help grow your business and enable you to sell online.
Shopify is one of the most popular ecommerce platforms in the world and for a good reason. It’s incredibly user-friendly, offering various customizable templates that accommodate any business size or type.
With its robust features, including inventory management, SEO tools, and many apps, Shopify makes creating a professional-looking ecommerce store easy.
One of the standout benefits of using Shopify is its comprehensive set of features. From inventory management to SEO tools, Shopify equips sellers with everything they need to run their online business efficiently. With built-in inventory tracking, you can effortlessly manage your product catalog, update stock levels, and receive notifications for low inventory.
Additionally, Shopify’s SEO-friendly structure and tools enable you to optimize your store for search engines, improving your chances of ranking higher in search results and attracting more organic traffic.
There’s an App for That
Shopify’s extensive app ecosystem expands its capabilities even further. The platform offers a vast selection of apps that integrate seamlessly with your online store, allowing you to enhance its functionality with additional features and services to sell online.
Whether you’re looking to integrate email marketing tools, implement customer reviews, or streamline your shipping process, Shopify’s app store has a solution for every requirement. This flexibility empowers sellers to tailor their online stores to their specific business needs, ultimately providing a superior shopping experience for customers.
Another significant advantage of using Shopify is its reliable customer support. With 24/7 assistance available via live chat, email, or phone, you can rely on Shopify’s support team to address any concerns or issues that may arise while setting up or managing your online store.
This round-the-clock support ensures you feel supported in your ecommerce journey and can quickly resolve any obstacles hindering your business’s growth.
Pros for Shopify:
- User-friendly backend
- A solid choice for DIY websites
- Turn-key online merchant service
Cons for Shopify:
- Design options are limited and inflexible
- SEO options are limited
- Fees can add up as your transactions grow
- Limited blogging functionality hindering SEO output
- Exiting Shopify is difficult
BigCommerce is a robust ecommerce platform that caters to larger businesses with more complex requirements. It sets itself apart by offering a wide range of built-in features, reducing the reliance on third-party apps.
With BigCommerce, you can access a comprehensive suite of tools immediately, including advanced SEO capabilities to optimize your online store for search engines. Hence, you gain visibility and increase the likelihood of potential customers finding your products.
Multi-Channel Selling Feature
One of the standout features of BigCommerce is its support for multi-channel selling. With the platform’s seamless integration with popular platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon, you can effortlessly expand your reach and tap into new customer bases.
This multi-channel approach allows you to reach customers where they already spend their time, enabling you to maximize your sales potential and diversify your revenue streams. By leveraging BigCommerce’s multi-channel capabilities, you can establish a strong presence across various platforms and drive more sales without the hassle of managing separate systems.
While BigCommerce may have a steeper learning curve than other ecommerce platforms, its scalability is crucial for growing your business. As your business expands, BigCommerce can accommodate your evolving needs, providing the flexibility to handle increased traffic, product catalogs, and sales volume.
The platform offers a reliable infrastructure to handle high traffic and transactions, ensuring a seamless shopping experience for your customers even during peak periods. With BigCommerce, you can focus on scaling your business without worrying about the limitations of your ecommerce platform.
Pros of BigCommerce:
- The entry-level plan boasts a relatively large set of features
- The multi-storefront feature is excellent for running multiple stores
- Developer friendly platform
- Solid built-in SEO features
- Great for large stores with many products
Cons of BigCommerce:
- Themes are limited and too similar
- Minimal design options overall
- Advanced reporting tools are costly
- The blog is small and doesn’t allow RSS feeds
- Can’t set intelligent rules to categorize inventory
Wix is among the more user-friendly ecommerce platforms and offers a seamless ecommerce site-building experience making it an ideal choice for those seeking simplicity and ease of use.
With its intuitive drag-and-drop interface, even individuals with limited technical skills can create stunning online stores. Wix provides a wide selection of attractive templates explicitly designed to sell products online, allowing users to customize the look and feel of their online stores to align with their brand identity.
Moreover, Wix offers essential features like mobile optimization, ensuring that your store looks great and functions nicely across all devices, from desktops to smartphones.
In addition to its user-friendly interface, Wix provides a range of features to support online selling. The platform includes built-in SEO tools, empowering users to optimize their store’s visibility in search engine results and drive organic traffic.
Wix also offers a vast library of apps that seamlessly integrate with your online store, providing additional functionality and enhancing the shopping experience for your customers. From inventory management to customer reviews, an app is available to suit various business needs.
Furthermore, Wix offers an affordable pricing structure, making it an attractive option for small businesses or individuals just starting in the world of ecommerce.
While Wix may offer a different level of robustness than platforms like Shopify or BigCommerce, its simplicity, affordability, and user-friendly nature make it a compelling choice for beginners or those with limited technical expertise for selling online. With Wix, you can quickly set up your online store, customize its appearance, optimize it for search engines, and provide an enjoyable shopping experience for your customers.
Whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur or a small business owner, Wix provides a cost-effective and accessible platform to launch and grow your online business.
Pros of Wix:
- Great for DIY websites
- Easy drag-and-drop editor
- Hundreds of app integrations
Cons of Wix:
- Storage limits on all plans
- Minimal analytics
- Extremely inflexible design options
- SEO options are present but somewhat limited
- Exiting Wix is hard
- Store navigation and product organization are clunky and limited
- Slow loading times at times
Squarespace is a popular ecommerce platform that caters to creative businesses aiming to present their products in visually captivating ways. Renowned for its stunning and design-oriented templates, Squarespace allows users to create a visually appealing online selling site that reflects their brand aesthetic.
The ecommerce platform provides a range of features to support businesses in selling their products effectively. From inventory management to customizable promotional pop-ups and banners, Squarespace offers tools that enhance the overall shopping experience for customers.
Squarespace understands the importance of search engine visibility and provides built-in SEO tools to optimize your online store for better search engine rankings. These tools assist in improving the discoverability of your products, driving more organic traffic to your store.
Another valuable feature Squarespace offers is an abandoned cart recovery, which helps to recapture potential lost sales making it an appealing option for smaller businesses with more straightforward needs, as it provides essential ecommerce functionality in an aesthetically pleasing package.
While Squarespace may be better suited for smaller businesses with more straightforward requirements, its emphasis on design and user experience makes it a compelling choice for those looking to create an attractive online presence for their products.
Pros of Squarespace:
- Beautiful templates for attractive online shops
- Helpful features like inventory management and promotional pop-ups
- SEO tools to improve search engine ranking and traffic
- Abandoned cart recovery for recovering lost sales, suitable for small businesses
Cons of Squarespace:
- Best only for small businesses with simple needs
- Lacks advanced customization compared to other platforms
- Potentially expensive pricing plans for large catalogs or high transactions
- Fewer third-party app integrations, limiting functionality and automation
Weebly, powered by Square, is another user-friendly ecommerce platform for small businesses to start selling online. With its intuitive drag-and-drop online store builder, Weebly makes it easy for users to create online stores without advanced technical expertise.
Weebly offers a range of customizable themes, allowing online sellers to tailor the appearance of their stores to match their brand identity and create a unique online presence.
The platform includes essential functionalities such as inventory management, so sellers can easily track and update their product stock levels. Additionally, Weebly offers integrated shipping labels, simplifying the shipping process by allowing sellers to generate labels directly from the platform.
Sell Ebooks and Software with Weebly
Another notable feature is the ability to sell digital goods, making it suitable for businesses offering digital products like ebooks or software. Moreover, with Square’s payment processing seamlessly integrated into Weebly, accepting customer payments becomes a seamless experience.
In many ways, Weebly ticks all the boxes. It’s a user-friendly ecommerce platform that caters specifically to small businesses. Its drag-and-drop ecommerce website builder, customizable themes, built-in features like inventory management, integrated shipping labels, and the ability to sell digital goods make it a suitable choice for businesses looking to establish an online presence and sell their products effectively.
But there are still more ecommerce platforms you’ll want to consider.
Pros of Weebly:
- User-friendly interface with a drag-and-drop feature for easy site build
- Customizable themes for brand personalization
- Integrated features to manage inventory and shipping that streamline day-to-day operations
- Ability to sell digital goods like e-books or software
- Seamless payment processing with Square integration
Cons of Weebly:
- Limited scalability, making it less suitable for those looking for extensive growth or requiring complex ecommerce functionality
- Dependency on Weebly hosting leaves businesses with limited control over server maintenance and performance optimization
- Limited design flexibility compared to more advanced ecommerce platforms
- Transaction fees on specific pricing plans can impact profitability
- Limited third-party integrations can restrict customization
Volusion is a comprehensive cloud-based ecommerce platform that offers businesses a complete package to establish and grow their online presence. The ecommerce platform boasts many impressive features, starting with its rich content editor. This tool allows businesses to create engaging product descriptions and content to captivate their audience.
While Volusion may not offer dedicated blogging functionality, its content editor allows businesses to showcase their products effectively and provide valuable niche market information to customers.
Another noteworthy feature of Volusion is its robust SEO management capabilities. The platform provides tools and features that help optimize online stores for search engines, improving visibility and attracting organic traffic.
By implementing effective SEO strategies, businesses can increase their chances of ranking higher in search engine results, thereby increasing their online presence and driving more potential customers to their stores.
Pros of Volusion:
- Known for its user-friendly interface, it’s easy for beginners to set up and manage their online store.
- An excellent array of built-in features include inventory management, payment gateway integration, and SEO tools.
- Volusion provides 24/7 customer support through phone, chat, and email.
Cons of Volusion:
- While Volusion offers a range of pricing plans, there are additional costs, such as SSL certificates and premium themes.
- Compared to other platforms, Volusion offers less flexibility in terms of design customization.
- Volusion has no built-in blogging tool, which can be a downside for businesses using content marketing as part of their strategy.
WooCommerce on WordPress
Last but certainly not least is WooCommerce, a robust ecommerce platform that functions as a plugin for WordPress websites.
As an open-source solution, WooCommerce offers unparalleled customization options, making it an ideal choice for businesses with specific requirements other platforms may not meet. With WooCommerce, you can sell any product, customize every aspect of your online store, and seamlessly integrate with a wide range of services to enhance functionality.
One of the standout features of WooCommerce is its extensive customization capabilities. As a WordPress plugin, it leverages the flexibility and versatility of the WordPress platform, allowing businesses to tailor their online stores to their exact specifications.
With access to a vast library of plugins, themes, and extensions, WooCommerce enables businesses to create unique and visually appealing storefronts, implement advanced functionalities, and provide a personalized shopping experience to their customers in online marketplaces.
Whether customizing product pages, implementing various payment gateways, or integrating third-party services, WooCommerce offers the flexibility to meet the specific needs of businesses across different industries.
Pros of WooCommerce:
- WooCommerce is an open-source platform, which means you have complete control over your store and can customize and modify it as you like.
- Seamless WordPress integration makes it among the most popular and influential content management systems available.
- WooCommerce comes with a wide range of features and hundreds of extensions, including various payment gateways, shipping methods, and marketing tools.
- Being open-source, WooCommerce has a large community of developers and users. This means you can find many resources, tutorials, and solutions online.
- WooCommerce is scalable and can handle stores of all sizes, from a small local shop to a global online marketplace.
Cons of WooCommerce:
- Technical knowledge is required. If you’re unfamiliar with WordPress or coding, you might need help setting up and managing your store.
- WooCommerce is free, but many of its themes, plugins, and extensions are not. These costs can add up.
- As an open-source platform, there is limited support. You’ll have to rely on community forums or hire a developer if you encounter problems.
- Depending on your hosting provider and how many plugins you use, your WooCommerce site could be faster, affecting user experience and SEO.
So, Which Ecommerce Platform is Best for Your Business?
Choosing the best ecommerce platform for your business depends on your specific needs, budget, and technical skill level. Each has unique features and benefits, so it’s worth exploring each one and seeing which is the best fit for your business.
At Social Firm, we’re proud to help businesses navigate these decisions and set up successful online stores. Our team of professionals is here to help. Contact us today, and let’s start bringing your online selling dreams to life.
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