What are the eCommerce platforms that are out there? There are quite a few, but the major players are Big Commerce, Shopify, WooCommerce, Squarespace, and magento.com
Pro’s - Advanced reporting to track sales, follow trends and increase AOV. API available, built in. Great SEO features and capabilities. No transaction fees, even if you use a 3rd party.
Con’s - If you need help from support, it is difficult. User feedback about their CMS is that it is difficult to use, so probably not the most user-friendly to upload blogs or content pieces if you are looking to do that. No mobile app.
Pro’s - Provides a complete package where a beginner can set up their store and start selling in minutes. Great customer service. Fast web load time, that Google loves for your customers. The SEO is great for Shopify, you have the ability to give Google a lot of information about your product and services to ensure search rankings. Apps, apps, apps. There are a ton of 3rd party apps to help you scale your business.
Con’s - Want something completely custom, you will need a Shopify expert. It can take a little bit to get used to Shopify specific jargon that isn’t really used elsewhere. Cost. Depending on what kind of store you want, you could be paying up to $79 per month for using their platform alone, not including transaction fees.
Pro’s - The largest eCommerce platform by % in use today. It is mainly used as a free plugin with Wordpress, which is also a large percentage of the world’s website. (Some stats show almost 30% of the internet is powered by Wordpress)
Con’s - For all the reasons it is a pro, it can also be a con. WooCommerce is a plugin for Wordpress, so unless you have or want a Wordpress website, you can’t use WooCommerce. WooCommerce. If you are struggling to figure out Wordpress it may not be a good fit to learn a completely different platform for only eCommerce.If you want a very robust site, you will need to hire a specific developer for WooCommerce, which may be costly.
Pro’s - Templated designs that are sassy. Like beautiful. It’s an all-in-one-platform. Meaning it isn’t like Wordpress where you have to now learn WooCommerce. Your hosting and security is all handled by Squarespace. If you have a domain, that’s all you need, your subscription covers hosting too!
Con’s - The site looks great, but that doesn’t mean people are going to buy. The site layout isn’t built for sales, it’s built to look good, there is a difference. As far as being found online, your SEO efforts are very limited to what is possible. It’s technically eCommerce because you can sell online, but the ability for you to offer a more robust site is lacking. It’s very limited with function and features.
Pro’s - It’s open source, free and extremely flexible.
Con’s - Doesn’t provide a hosted solution. You have to purchase hosting and be a medium to advanced developer to be able to create your store.
If you want a simple, easy to use more basic store, Squarespace is probably the route to go. If you are looking for that middle of the road solution that is dependable and built to really sell, BigCommerce or Shopify. If you have a developer and really looking to build a 50+M business or have something very robust, Magento.
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