“If your business is not on the Internet, your business will be out of business.”
Having an online presence is imperative if you want your business to grow and flourish in present times. Statistics reveal that sales figures on e-commerce websites have reached more than 80 billion worldwide. The number indicates that ecommerce is here to rule and this is a reason why every business nowadays, be it a startup or an established conglomerate, opts for an online store.
Creating an online store is now relatively easy, thanks to the numerous ecommerce platforms surfacing in the market. These platforms promise to provide businesses all the necessary elements required for opening an online business store.
Let’s take a look at the top 5 trending e-commerce platforms –
Shopify is no doubt the most popular ecommerce platform available in the market. With 100+ options for templates and 1500+ plugins for enhancing the functionality of the store, Shopify comes with a very simple setup process.
With Shopify, you can connect your store directly to your Facebook page and sell your products/services through the social media platform. The in-built shopping cart is mobile-friendly which is a big advantage keeping in mind the fact that a lot of purchases at present are carried out through mobile devices.
Shopify is a very good choice for beginners who have conventional requirements. There are different packages available that you can choose from according to your budget. There is also a 24/7 live chat support for help in case you encounter any problem.
This ecommerce platform can be used for stores of all sizes. The comprehensive in-built features that it offers make BigCommerce an ideal platform for users who do not have much technical knowledge or the time to go through complex codes.
The built-in features of BigCommerce include a wide range of templates catering to various designs for different industries, newsletters, coupons, 60+ payment gateways, tax, analytics, shipping etc. All themes both free and paid, work seamlessly on mobile devices too, providing a great user experience. You can integrate your online store with Facebook, Google shopping and Ebay among other sites.
BigCommerce is a good option when you have a full-fledged online store but do not want to get into the technical nitty-gritty of editing HTML or other codes and plug-in integrations. Unlike Shopify, there are no transactional fees in BigCommerce.
WooCommerce is a full-featured, free shopping cart plugin that is integrated with WordPress. If you have a business website on WordPress, you only have to install this WooCommerce plugin and convert the website into an online retail shop.
The best features of WooCommerce include in-built shipping costs, adjustable tax settings, elegant product presentations, notifications for stock management and customized emails for confirmation of order. There are various free and paid extensions available that help to integrate other beneficial apps to grow your business.
WooCommerce is a good option for small-scale business that have an existing WordPress site. It comes with a very instinctive admin panel that can be easily understood and managed even by a layman. However, if you do not have a WordPress site or are not familiar with the platform, it may be a bit painful initially as you have to build the WordPress site first in order to use WooCommerce.
With popular brands like Pepe Jeans, Liverpool F.C. and BurgerKing using Magento for their online stores, this ecommerce platform is often considered to be a market leader. It is well known for its scalability and reliability. Magento is powerful enough to manage a huge number of products, so you do not have to worry if you start small at the beginning with an objective to expand your store in the future.
Magento is easily manageable and being an open source platform, it is open to all kinds of customization. There are more than 9000 extensions and plugins available that you can use for scaling your business. Moreover, the free extensions allow social commerce, enabling you to sell your products/services on social media platforms.
Magento is a very good choice if you are thinking of launching or redesigning your ecommerce website. It is ideal for enterprise-level merchants selling a large number of products. However, the procedure of setting up the store and management is quite complex and requires high level coding skills. Therefore, it is not a very good choice for beginners.
A completely free ecommerce platform, PrestaShop can be used for developing high-end ecommerce websites at a reasonable rate. Being lightweight and easily deployable, PrestaShop works effectively even on slow Internet connections.
The best feature of PrestaShop that keeps it ahead of its competitors is the stunning back-office dashboard where you have access to every essential analytical data that will help you understand how your business is faring. In-depth information in the form of easily comprehendible graphs highlighting orders, sales, visitor activity, abandoned/open shopping carts and net profits are available. There are also numerous themes that you can choose from according to your preference.
PrestaShop is a smart choice for small businesses who do not aim to grow very quickly. This platform will keep the cost down, and not require a lot of investment on your part. However, as it is not a hosted platform, the software has to be downloaded from their website and you have to complete the entire installation process.
Therefore, the first step in ecommerce web development, is selecting the platform to build your online store on. It’s important to keep these 2 things in mind when you do choose – firstly, make sure the platform meets the short-term and long-term goals of your business and secondly, ensure that the platform is compatible with recent trends in the ecommerce market. To know more about the right ecommerce platform for your business, leave us a message and we will get back to you.