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Choosing the Right Ecommerce Platform for Your Business

30 October 2019 | 0 comments | Posted by Michael Dehoyos in Shopaholics

Deciding on the right eCommerce platform

When it comes the time to create your eCommerce website, you need to select the right online store, which involves many decisions.

  • How much time and money are you willing to spend to customise your website?
  • What platform will be the most customer-friendly for your audience?
  • What would managing the back end look like for you?

Choosing the right eCommerce platform is essential because they build your online store and give you all the functions you need for online retail. It’s necessary to understand which one is right for your business, and it’s a crucial choice when starting.

Factors to consider

Ecommerce platforms are not all the same; they are made for different businesses and audiences, like big or small businesses, different budget points, customizability, etc. When choosing a platform, think about the size of your business and how established it already is, the products you’re selling, your target audience, whether your presence is online-only, and your budget.

Some platforms are free with minimal start-up costs, whereas others operate on monthly fees or a commission on products sold. Below are some of the most popular eCommerce platform options, which are an excellent place to start when deciding which is right for you.

Big Cartel

This is one of the most well-known eCommerce platforms for small businesses, independent artists and musicians. Whether you’re short or big, you can use Big Cartel’s full-sized platforms even if you’re not in the creative industry.

As explained by Yvonne Moore, a tech writer at Australia2Write and 1 Day 2 Write,

“it’s a great tool for beginners, especially if your knowledge of web design and technology is less than ideal. The downside is the limited functionality that comes with simplicity, so it may not be the best option if you want your business to grow in size and complexity in the future.”

Shopify

Shopify has more than 500,000 shops online and has rave reviews from its users all over the world. The focus of this platform is integrating social media so that consumers can shop on their mobile devices, and it’s great for businesses with casual shoppers. Many companies start their Shopify online store by connecting it with Facebook and selling via that application.

There are hundreds of themes, extensions, and plugins so you can customise your shop and the pricing structure is highly functional and straightforward. The downsides are that once you start customising, you have to pay for every extension as they are not free, and you need to pay a transaction fee for every order.

Magento

Magento is undoubtedly the most popular eCommerce platform and is the clear choice for businesses that sell in high volumes and have a broad range of different products. Magento is used by a quarter of the world’s online stores, including major brands like Coca Cola and Burger King, as well as small businesses.

Roger Thompsen, an email marketer at Write My X, warns that -

“The main issue with Magento is that it’s one of the more complicated options to establish initially and manage throughout the process, especially without a technical background. Most businesses circumvent this by purchasing managed hosting, which means that professionals manage the platform for you.”

BigCommerce

BigCommerce is another well-used platform with more than 55,000 online shops, including small and large businesses like Ben and Jerry’s or Toyota. Unlike Magento, BigCommerce’s appeal is the simplicity of use and accessibility for those without a technical team to help them.

You can integrate BigCommerce into other platforms like Google, Facebook, and more, and it has many useful features like analytics, coupons, and newsletters. The negative side of the platform is that you will probably need to pay for a premium theme since there are not many free ones to choose from that will meet your needs.

WooCommerce

This is not a standalone platform but rather the eCommerce plugin for WordPress that is most frequently used. WordPress is, without a doubt, the most used website building platform out there, so WooCommerce benefits from the WordPress brand and flexibility.

The plugin is free, so it’s perfect if you’re already using WordPress, but as mentioned, it’s not standalone, and there are fewer options to customise your online store.

About the author

Michael Dehoyos, a content marketer and editor for Next Coursework and Academic Brits, helps small businesses develop their online presence through website hosting, eCommerce, and marketing suggestions. His work can also be found on BritStudent.

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Recommended reading

If you enjoyed this post and have time to spare why not check out these related posts and dive deeper down the rabbit hole that is shopping and eCommerce.

Tags: eCommerce , Online Retail, Guest Post

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