Best E-commerce Platforms

Best E-commerce Platforms With Their Pros & Cons

The e-commerce industry is growing rapidly and experiencing a high demand in the market with more than 1 Billion Internet users’ base. So, if you are thinking to step into this field, this is the best time for a jump start.

However, when it comes to building a web store, few things should be taken into consideration. And, one of those important things is having a robust platform that not only suits your pocket but also, helps you stand out in the crowd.

The market is full of different platform and, choosing the best one can be a daunting task. Therefore, we’ve mentioned a list of best e-commerce platforms.

Each and every e-commerce platforms has its own specialties and features. So, it is necessary for you to recognize your business requirements before selecting any platform.

We’ve divided the list into two sections; (1) Hosted (2) Self-Hosted. Let’s check out the list to measure which one would be suitable for your business.

Best E-commerce Platforms Comparison for Online Businesses in 2018

Shopify: 

Founded in 2004, it has been helping small to medium scale businesses globally. It is flexible and easy-to-operate. Its user interface of the admin panel is simply amazing. The online store built on this platform can be easily customized. It offers you the ability to manage your products and inventory. It offers easy setup, faster loading speed, along with a secure payment gateway.

The Goods: 

  • An Impulsive cart recovery
  • The surplus of themes, plugins, and extensions
  • A mobile-friendly shopping cart,
  • The seller mobile apps and many other mobile-based features
  • 24/7 technical support via live chat/ phone/tutorials,
  • A powerful Shopify community forum

The Bads: 

  • Additional transaction fee you’ll be liable to pay if you not using Shopify Payment.
  • Plenty of useful and practical extensions require additional investment.
  • The most challenging downside is “Liquid,” Shopify’s own coding language

Magento

Founded in March 2008, Magento, being an open-source platform, offers highest flexibility, scalability, and reliability. This platform is free and is suitable for all sizes of businesses. It has plenty of features. It’s pretty similar to the WordPress and holds a strong community. It facilitates you to choose from thousands of themes and offers a plenty of extensions.

The Goods: 

  • Unlimited customization options
  • Usability and Manageability
  • Free social media extensions.
  • Thousands of plugins & extensions to make room for scalability.
  • Extensive resource library for demos, new plugins, store management

The Bads: 

  • To get an enterprise version you’ll need to spend at least $20,000/year.
  • If you’re not a programmer or doesn’t have a team of programmers, it’s not for you
  • If you don’t have programmers on staff, be prepared to invest in third-party programming costs.

BigCommerce 

BigCommerce is a cloud-based, user-friendly e-commerce solution that you can customize it slightly. It offers a comprehensive range of prices and packages customized to different kinds of businesses. It enables you to build beautiful, responsive web store even if you don’t any design knowledge. It provides a vast list of built-in features that comes really handy.

The Goods: 

  • There is no transaction fee.
  • Ease of store integration with Facebook, eBay, Google shopping etc.
  • Responsive themes & consistent user experience on desktop mobile as well.
  • Unlimited built-in features including coupons, shipping, tax, newsletters, and analytics etc.
  • Easy setup wizard, detailed guides, tutorial videos along with visual illustrations and demos.

The Bads: 

  • You may find it lacking some of the available support other platforms offer if thinking to build a store like Amazon.
  • With lack of free themes, it lags behind other e-comm platforms.

WooCommerce: 

It’s not like other e-commerce platforms. It’s a free WordPress plugin that is used for the development of eCommerce store/website on the WordPress platform. It offers a secure payment gateway along with a shopping cart. It’s easy-to-operate and based on open-source technology.

The Goods: 

  • Good shopping cart
  • Secure payment gateway
  • Unlimited product categories
  • It has an easy-to-manage admin panel
  • Extensive range of plugins and extensions of all sorts

The Bads: 

  • Lack of scalability is one of the biggest downsides of this platform
  • The integration of shopping cart completely with the system needs additional investment
  • If you’re unaware with the WordPress functionality, you can’t operate WooCommerce

OpenCart: 

This platform is free to use and easy to upgrade. It’s a lightweight e-commerce platform that is best suitable for those people who are familiar with the web development practices. It comprises a list of brilliant features including unlimited categories, multilingual, PCI Compliant, products, and manufacturers, over 20 payment gateways, reporting and so on.

The Goods: 

  • Easy to learn
  • Good documentation
  • straightforward and simple Interfaces
  • A good mechanism for order processing
  • A good set of features with powerful catalog functionality
  • Cost of setting up a store with OpenCart is quite approachable

The Bads: 

  • It’s not very easy to customize
  • It might be constricting for some businesses.
  • Zero promise of high performance unless the user opts for additional plugins
  • Caching needs to be added using an extension to improve the performance.

Wix: 

This e-commerce platform helps in developing a functional web store that will enable you to sell out your products. It is well-known for its simple website builder and a drag and drop interface. It can be easily integrated with advanced eCommerce tools in the store like social media, third-party applications etc. It offers ready-made templates and is best suitable for all small level enterprises that want to have a simple and clean online store.

The Goods: 

  • easy intuitive drag and drop option
  • Designer-Made Templates
  • Customizable Designs
  • Free and Reliable Hosting
  • Optimized Mobile View
  • One-Pagers
  • Drag n’ Drop Website Editor
  • Image Editor
  • Text Editor & Free Fonts
  • Add and Organize Pages
  • HTML Embed Code
  • Page Protection
  • One URL for website & mobile site
  • Easy-to-add blog

The Bads: 

  • You can’t switch templates
  • Sites based on this platform load slowly
  • Google is not a fan of Wix as it uses Flash technology
  • It is ideal if you don’t want to have an Amazon-sized store
  • you’ll have to add and customize all your content again from scratch
  • you’ll get Wix branding on your pages and in your URL (web address)

Conclusion:

As we have already said that every platform has its own specialties and features. None can fit the statement “one size fits all”. Therefore, you need to keep your business requirements in mind while selecting the e-commerce platforms for building your online store.

The pros and the cons are not listed here to criticize them but, it is for your help so that you can easily select the suitable one for your business. Don’t hurry, choose wisely!

About the Author: Mahi Singh

Mahi Singh is a senior Magento developer working for MagentoIndia, a leading provider of Magento development services for a global clientele. The company is based in India and offers a complete range of services including Magento design, development, migration, speed optimization, app development, maintenance and support and more. Besides being an expert in her domain, Mahi is a writer by hobby and loves to share her knowledge and insights online.

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