Here Are Some Practical Tips To Help You Choose The Best E-Commerce...

Here are Some Practical Tips to Help You Choose the Best E-Commerce Platforms

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by Alex Noah — 8 months ago in Business Ideas 8 min. read
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You’re looking to create an online store but aren’t sure which platform to use.

Well, search no further.

eCommerce was the driving force behind business growth long before the pandemic. It is important to shop online for a platform that will grow your business.

Is quality for eCommerce platforms expensive? It doesn’t necessarily. It all depends on your business needs and some key factors we’ll discuss here.

We compiled a list of the best eCommerce platforms to meet all user and business needs, whether they are big or small, novice or professional.

What You Need from the Best eCommerce Platforms

When searching for the best eCommerce platform, you must think about your customers and business requirements. Here are some key points to remember when searching for the best eCommerce platform.

1. Ease of Use

Your website is the first impression your customers get about your business. If they don’t like how it looks or it is difficult to navigate, they’ll leave. It’s as simple as that.

It is important to find a platform that makes it easy to create (e.g. intuitive drag-and-drop editor) and to set up your shop. A solution should provide you with many templates to capture your brand’s feel and enhance your UX design.

2. Features and Marketing Integration

It’s difficult to find a single software package that can help you create new revenue streams and grow your online business.

Today’s eCommerce market has made social media the foundation of marketing. You need a platform that seamlessly connects you to different platforms, social media channels, apps, and marketplaces.

The type and number of features that an eCommerce app offers should be matched to your business needs. It’s important to choose a platform that offers a broad range of features, such as plugins, shipping, managing products, analytics, business tools, and email marketing options.

Also read: The 15 Best E-Commerce Marketing Tools

3. Device Compatibility

Mobile commerce is a key channel for eCommerce shops. Did you know that mobile commerce will generate more than $3 billion annually by 2021? Customers have their smartphones at all times, so it is easier and more convenient for them to shop online via their phones rather than using laptops or desktops.

Make sure that your eCommerce platform is compatible with all operating systems.



4. Payment Methods and Security

You should first do a Geo-location analysis to determine which online payment options are available in your country before you make a decision on an eCommerce solution.

Your customers are your most valuable asset. They need to have easy, secure, and diverse payment options. This will ensure that their financial and personal data is safe.

Look for a platform that allows you to pay using multiple payment methods.

5. SEO-Friendly

SEO is an important element for online businesses to reach large audiences quickly and easily. It is important to make sure that your eCommerce platform is SEO-friendly.

6. Support

An online store’s greatest asset is its availability for customers around the clock. This also means that customers can search for support at any hour of the day for your products/services.

Your eCommerce platform should have enough tools to provide support at different hours — chat software chat-bots, contact forms, social media connections, etc.

You should also consider a service provider who offers excellent customer support if your tech skills are lacking.

Also read: Top 6 Tips to Stay Focused on Your Financial Goals

7. Pricing

Different pricing systems are available on eCommerce platforms. Some are extremely expensive while others are affordable. Some platforms allow you to check your clients monthly, others annually. Others only allow you to charge per transaction. It is important to choose an eCommerce platform that suits your needs.

These are Our Top Picks for The Best eCommerce Platforms:

1. Shopify

Shopify is the most well-known SaaS eCommerce platform. Shopify offers over 80 mobile-friendly and professional themes, some of which are even free. The templates are organized well and are easy to navigate. Each template comes with its own set of customizable tools which you can customize to fit your brand.

Shopify’s drag and drop editor is easy to use even for beginners. It’s easy to personalize and customize sections. The onboarding wizard will guide you through the entire store-building process, including adding products, payment options, linking domains, and other details.

Shopify is also hosted on Google Cloud. This means it is fast and doesn’t require any server maintenance or management. Shopify’s mobile app is a great way to manage your store from anywhere.

Marketing-wise, this package includes SEO and marketing tools, a blog platform, social media integration, and the option to use your domain name. You can even link your Shopify inventory to Amazon and eBay.

Other eCommerce features include inventory management, synchronizing online and offline stores via POS system, and discounts and coupons. You can also get automated store emails, one-click checkouts, tax calculations, and Google Analytics. Access to at least 55,000 third-party apps and languages can be made available for your store.

Fraud analysis is another great feature that you can use in order to detect suspicious orders or fraudulent orders. For certain products, automatic shipping rates can be calculated. You can also easily create custom reports. Shopify offers its own payment gateway that supports PayPal Checkout as well as 70 other payment options. Depending on the method chosen, transaction fees might be charged.

Shopify is affordable and available in three tiers. However, you may be charged extra for premium add-ons or premium extras. You can also choose to subscribe monthly or annually.

Shopify offers a free 14-day trial that allows you to test the service. However, Shopify does not offer any refunds after you sign up. Live chat, email, and ticket support are available 24 hours a day. You can also access a Knowledge base, community forum, and tutorials as well as FAQ sections.



Pros

  • Unlimited bandwidth, products, disk space, and bandwidth
  • 14-day free trial
  • A wide range of extensions and eCommerce features are available.
  • Drag-and-drop editor for mobile and a polished mobile app
  • Support available 24/7 via various channels

Cons

  • No refund policy
  • Transaction fees charged with external payment gateways
  • Higher plans and additional fees can make it more expensive
Also read: Best 10 Email Marketing Tools in 2021

2. Wix

Wix was originally launched as Flash Editor in 2006. It is used by more than 200 million people around the globe today. Wix is a popular website-building and hosting platform. Wix allows you to easily create an online store with a variety of features.

Wix’s intuitive dashboard makes it easy to manage your online store. You can manage and fulfill orders, view your website analytics, and manage payments. The Wix Owner app is also available for Android and iOS.

Wix’s site builder is easy to use. It uses drag-and-drop technology. You can also choose from over 500 templates that are included in all plans. Even though the free plan has fewer features, it is sufficient for small businesses starting out.

Wix’s integrated points of sales allow you to sell products via Facebook, Instagram, and Amazon. Wix also offers a number of marketing tools that can be used to promote your business.

Wix allows you to go global with your online shop by providing advanced SEO optimization tools, multilingual storefronts, and a currency converter. Wix also supports many payment options, which may differ depending on where your target audience is located.

Wix support is available 24 hours a day. You can enjoy premium support and not have to wait in line to connect to an agent if you sign up for the VIP plan.

Pros

  • Drag-and-drop website builder
  • Free plan available
  • 500+ templates
  • A ton of built-in features

Cons

  • Limited support channels
  • You have to pay for premium support

3. Big-commerce

In 2009, Big-commerce was established and has served over 150 countries. Large businesses are increasingly using it due to its easy-to-use interface and extensive customization options. This platform allows you to have complete control over your online store management.

Big-commerce’s prices can be a little more expensive than other platforms. All price plans include unlimited storage, bandwidth, and staff accounts.

Big-commerce offers a free 15-day trial so that you can try the product before you commit to anything. All three plans include multiple sales channels, including an online storefront, POS and Amazon, eBay, Walmart, Walmart, and Amazon. Integration of social media (Facebook and Instagram), as well as Google Shopping. ).

These include a mobile-responsive site and a smartphone application.

Although Big-commerce makes it easy to manage day-to-day operations, such as stock monitoring and traffic analysis, it can sometimes be difficult to do the work behind the scenes. Big-commerce support is available 24 hours a day via phone, chat, and ticket.



Pros

  • Unlimited products, storage, bandwidth, and staff accounts
  • Accepts multiple payment options and currencies
  • Multiple sales channels and social media integrations supported
  • 15-day free trial

Cons

  • Slightly expensive
  • Customization of website needs technical skills

4. Magento

In 2008, Magento was officially launched. Later, it was purchased by eBay and then sold to Adobe. Each year, the eCommerce platform processes more than $100 billion in gross merchandise volume.

You can download and install Magento on your own server for free (community or basic). Magento offers an Enterprise version, which is self-hosted and doesn’t require installation. This service’s price depends on how big your online business is. The platform is extremely user-friendly and does not require any technical skills.

Magento and Shopify can be compared using AWS or Azure. It is highly scalable and provides reliable performance for your online shop. No matter where customers live, they will experience fast loading speeds. This is always a good thing for businesses.

Magento is packed with features such as inventory management, multi-payment options, built-in multilingual support, and SEO tools. Order processing is also possible. It is optimized for all devices, including desktops, laptops, and mobile phones as well as tablets.

It is easy to get help with Magento thanks to the large community. You can either get help for a fee or receive answers from developers through it. Magento has its own marketplace, where you can find a variety of themes and select from over 5000 extensions that will enhance your website.

Pros

  • Able to manage large shops that contain many products
  • Free community version
  • Feature-rich

Cons

  • The Enterprise version is costly
  • Themes and extensions are paid for separately
Also read: Best 10 Email Marketing Tools in 2021

5. Woo-Commerce

Woo-commerce was founded in 2008 as an open-source commerce solution built on WordPress. The company was originally called Woo-themes back then. However, the company was renamed Woo-Commerce in 2017 after the developers made the decision to concentrate exclusively on eCommerce.

This platform is primarily for small-to-medium-sized businesses. Setting up WooCommerce is easy if you already own a WordPress site. Woo’s interface doesn’t require any technical expertise to create a beautiful online shop.

Although the WooCommerce plugin is free, to create an online store that has all of its functionalities you will need extensions from WooCommerce. There are also some free add-ons that are available, although they are quite affordable.

Woo-Commerce accepts many payment options. These include bank transfers, credit/debit cards, and cash on delivery. However, there are other options such as PayPal, Stripe and Square, Amazon Pay, and Apple Pay.

Woo-Commerce’s dashboard makes it easy to update products and complete orders. You can also save time with the dashboard’s automatic tax calculations. Get live shipping rates from top carriers and print labels right from your home.

Woo-Commerce allows you to integrate multiple marketing channels, such as Facebook, Google Shopping, and many others. Woo-Commerce is compatible with all devices. It also has a mobile app for Android and iOS.

Pros

  • Built on WordPress
  • Free if you have a WordPress site
  • Lots of free and paid extensions
  • Highly user-friendly interface

Cons

  • Requires WordPress knowledge
  • Woo-Commerce updates don’t always work with WordPress

Which E-commerce Platform is Right for You?

You can see that no eCommerce platform is perfect and that the market is extremely competitive to meet different business needs. Prices can range from a few dollars per month to a large chunk of your budget. As we have said, the best eCommerce platform depends on your business’s needs and the type of eCommerce platform you choose.

This list can help you if you are still unsure and in doubt about which platform to use.

Also read: The Proven Top 10 No-Code Platforms of 2021

Platform Bests:

Shopify — For beginners with no or little technical knowledge. Startups and small businesses are also looking for an all-purpose platform.

Wix – Individual sellers and small businesses looking for an easy-to-use and versatile eCommerce builder.

Big-Commerce – Online retailers with large product catalogs and tech-savvy users are a good choice.

Magento – Large to medium-sized stores seeking scalability, driving sales.

Woo-Commerce – Users looking to build an online store with WordPress for small and medium-sized businesses.

Alex Noah

Alex is senior editor of The Next Tech. He studied International Communication Management at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

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