Thanks to the growth and popularity of online stores, many entrepreneurs are establishing e-stores as days go by and more are asking for the best online business platforms to subscribe to for providing better customer services to online shoppers and making more profit from an online business. Here is a review of Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce and Ecwid to guide interested online business owners on which is best to select for creating a fascinating online store.
Shopify is a complete ecommerce platform with all that a user needs for running their business (asides products and money). It does the hard work of creating all that the owner needs from scratch to finish while giving the owner the control of the look and feel of the online business
Integrated security and speed for hosting
Online stores need to be fast because of irregular traffic and security for credit card details of customers. You risk losing your customer when your page is slow. There are studies that peg visitor’s patience when vising a website at 4 seconds.
Moreover, there has to be secured systems for processing customer’s credit cards for safety of customer’s credit card details and meet the PCI compliance. Some stores use third-party payment gateways such as Google Wallet and PayPal & that sometimes don’t work fine when the store isn’t well set up.
Shopify gives you the opportunity to delegate this aspect of your online business to professionals who can tackle the aspects of caching, PCI compliance, hackers and other related issues
Available Components for Proper setup on online store
Shopify has all the necessary components for properly setting up an online business without needing to upgrade before having access to.
Normally, getting all the components for creating an e-store is always a problem but Shopify has demystified this.
Integrated payments, easy process for adding and removing products, customization of store and implementation of analytics for tracking the store are all available on Shopify.
Readily available Support
Shopify has an amazing customer support that is readily available for e-store owners and developers when creating e-store with Shopify. This is in contrast with other platforms as databases of FAQs, chat and phone support are available on Shopify. This is very important as creating and maintain an online store is daunting when there’s not one to turn to for info.
Allows for Effective Marketing
Unlike most Do-it-yourself platforms for online store creation, Shopify include important processes for marketing your online store. There’s meta descriptions and title tags for SEO of the e-store.
Shopify e-stores come with incredible user interfaces that can be improved easily. There are different collection of free and custom-made theme that could be gotten from Shopify marketplace.
Has App Store
Shopify has various built-in features for creating a functional and beautify online store. To satisfy the needs of storeowners for additional features, Shopify has an app store where so many other features are available and could be integrated to a Shopify platform. Moreover, Shopify provides a buy button that could be used by storeowners to sell products on different platforms other than their website.
Shopify remodeled their pricing in 2014 to fit into the context of other web platforms. However, add-on and monthly price could be expensive when compared with other platforms.
Wacky Blogging Software
The blogging software on Shopify is not quite the best in town and may be improved, although is comparatively superior to those of its competitors. Blogging is important for boosting sale on online store.
Complex Terminologies in Settings
Terminologies in the settings makes it difficult to tweak the Shopify online store. For example, ‘categories’ is ‘collection’ in Shopify and changing such common words may cause confusion.
Store Cannot be moved
Like many hosted platforms, Shopify doesn’t provide users the option of moving their store to another platform. The best they get is moving their product description and nothing more.
Could be difficult to set up
Shopify has gone a step further to make their setup easier with the introduction of their Shopify 2. However, the initial setup could still be difficult and requires some technical knowhow.
Could be difficult to customize
Shopify uses Liquid instead of the more popular PHP for their template. Shopify liquid may be difficult language for many people who are familiar with PHP.
Magento is an open-source e-commerce platform that runs on user’s saver. Using Magento, users are responsible for updates, maintenance and modifications.
Users can manage multiple store and vary pricing
Magento allows multiple store management with multiple pricing. This gives users the opportunity varied the pricing for same products from customers to customers. For instance, prices of products can be slightly lower for staff and higher for VIPs. This feature is exclusive to users of Magento and is yet to be available on other ecommerce platforms.
It allows integration of third party for importing products, analyze the performance of the website and customize template.
Mobile device friendliness
Magento online stores are exceptional for their compatibility with mobile devices as customers of the store owners can visit their Magento store with their phones and have quality experience.
Business can Grow with it
Magento allows users to expand products as their business begin to grow. Up to 500,000 products can be placed on the Magento platform and several transactions can be carried out on the platform.
While Community edition of Magento is free, Enterprise and Premium versions are expensive. Premium, suited for bigger businesses, could cost up to $50,000 per annum. Also, adding third party payments is very expensive.
Lack of Support
There is lack of support when managing or developing the Magento e- store as online forum for Magento is poorly monitored and contains spam. Thus, for whatever assistance a user needs using Magento, they get to pay a lot of money to developers or consultants.
Hosting Magento store requires a dedicated and reliable server instead of the traditional hosting platforms and must be hosted on server that you are good at using. It requires a lot thinking and skill to optimize and is bulky, increasing the risk of the website crashing.
Magento Store Load Slowly
It is difficult to customize Magento store because its loading time is slow.
Difficult to Import from Other online store
The sluggishness of Magento also makes it difficult to move store from other online store platforms to Magento.
WooCommerce is a popular online store provider that can be hosted anywhere. It is a plugin that works perfectly with WordPress for creating an online business.
WooCommerce is free to download and use.
Allow for Sales Expansion
As business is growing, WooCommerce online store can grow with it by allowing the incorporation of more products.
Store can be Customized
WooCommerce gives users the control to customize their store as they wish using the customization option.
Easy to Use
Users do not need coding knowledge to use WooCommerce as it can be easily integrated to a WordPress site.
WooCommerce store comes with the feature that allows your customers to rate your products
Only WordPress Compatible
WooCommerce plugin can only work with WordPress.
Requires Hosting Fee
To use the WooCommerce store, users need to pay hosting fee.
Ecwid can seamlessly integrate into existing websites and transform them into online businesses with shopping components.
Easy set up
Ecwid plugin can be easily installed and there are various instructions and tutorials available on the internet for guide. By pasting Ecwide HTML code, Ecwid plugin is installed.
Payment Plan is More Affordable
Unlike WooCommerce, Ecwid pricing is comparatively more affordable.
Ecwid offers various add-ons that can make the users’ website appear amazing. Also, users can translate the language of their store to more than 40 languages.
Allows for Partial Marketing
Ecwid includes different add-ons including Zapier and MailChimp for newsletter.
Can work with Major Platform
Unlike WooCommerce, Ecwid can work with major platforms including Drupal, WordPress and Wix.
Ecwid provides users with adequate support for managing their online store. There are support forums, emails, videos, live chats, depending on a users’ plan. It even has an extensive FAQ database to solve users’ problems. Whatever the payment plan, some form of support is available.
Unlike Shopify, Ecwid does not provide users with options to optimize website for SEO.
Likely problem with around the hour support
Users may find it difficult to get 24 hours support from Ecwid customer service personnel. While Live chat is for users on expensive pricing plans.
Limited Apps in Ecwid App store
Unlike Shopify, Ecwid app store have few apps for customizing the website.
There’s nothing like right choice when choosing an online business platform. Selection can only be based on user’s budget and objectives.
However, Shopify is recommended when selecting a complete ecommerce provider because it has numerous advantages. Also, users with existing websites can select Ecwid because of its value and comparative advantage over WooCommerce and Magento.
Join Shopify here.