Want a successful online store? Use one of these: WooCommerce, Magento, Shopify, or Prestashop
Building an online empire is difficult.
With the world at your competition, there are many factors that you have to take into account that build to your success. But the platform that supports your site is possibly the most crucial element in having an efficient and lucrative online store!
The significance of having a quality eCommerce platform becomes more relevant each year — Statista.com projects e-retail sales to account for over 22% of worldwide retail sales by 2023, an almost 10% difference from their 2019 data.
In order to be sure you’re capitalizing on this important investment, you need to understand a few key areas your platform should excel in:
Navigation: The platform needs to provide a simple and easy-to-navigate interface. Your consumers shouldn’t be hassled to click through tabs and links just to locate what they’re searching for. Additionally, the admin view on your end should be just as easy to edit and maintain. What good is a platform that you feel you can’t control and customize?
Device compatibility: Your clients will be reaching out to you on a number of digital devices — smartphones, desktop computers, tablets, or other handheld devices. Your eCommerce platform should be able to smoothly transition between each of these devices without looking like a new site entirely. Customers are looking for ease of use, which includes being able to find and interact with the same information across their devices.
Security & Support: Whether it’s data or payment options, an eCommerce platform needs to provide quality security features. Providing multiple forms of payments is great but useless if their information is stolen. Of course, even with efficient security, there may be problems. Your choice of platform needs to have a customer support team that’s readily available to help solve problems you or your customers are running into.
What to compare in eCommerce platforms
Your Needs: Regardless of how well your business does in the future, you need a platform that’s going to take care of you today. Finding an eCommerce platform that provides you with the fundamentals of running a digital store and leaves room for you to grow is a major asset.
Your Price Range: It’s a fine line between overpaying and pinching pennies. While you don’t want to be paying for too many services you’re not even using, it’s no use if you’re missing crucial features by riding on a free trial. Find a good balance between extra costs and great deals.
You’ve probably heard of one of these 4 eCommerce industry leaders
When searching “eCommerce Platforms” in Google, you get about 170,000,000 results in 0.68 seconds. In fact, there are hundreds of different platforms out there to choose from. However, Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento, and Prestashop have been leading the industry for several years. Here is some basic information you need to know for each of these eCommerce platforms.
Developed to be a full-featured online platform, Shopify is a common name known around eCommerce businesses. Unlike a plug-in that is added to a website, this is a software as a service (SaaS) platform. This means you won’t own the software directly but rather pay monthly to use it and create your own online store. For beginners and those without technical or coding, this is an easy-to-use choice that allows you to set up a functioning shop within minutes.
WooCommerce is an eCommerce plugin for WordPress sites that makes it easy for both large and small businesses to run an online store. Not only is the setup simple and easily customizable with the help of various plugins, but it also has SEO and analytical assistance. Aside from needing to purchase the domain name, WordPress and WooCommerce are both free to use that make it a great choice for creating an online store on a small budget
Owned by Adobe, Magento is offered as both an open-source version that is free to download and use(called Magento Open Source) and a premium step up with cloud-hosting (called Magento Commerce). When setting up your own shop, you’ll need to have a bit of technical knowledge or a developer on hand. However, for large businesses or those more experienced in the eCommerce world, this is a reliable platform that provides scalability and customization.
Mostly popular in Europe, Prestashop is a content management system that helps businesses break into the eCommerce world. Another open-source platform that allows you to manipulate and customize the code to your liking, Prestashop is most known for its easy-to-use interface and user-friendly back-end. Similar to WooCommerce, after you’ve paid for the domain name, this is a free platform to download and use. However, additional apps and plugins may come at a higher price, so it’s worth comparing this platform with others
Making Your Decision
Finding an adequate eCommerce platform can be one of the more challenging decisions made in your journey to business success. This decision may feel daunting at first — eCommerce is only continuing to grow and falling behind could mean losing business in some industries. However, when finding a place to start you want to be sure you’re dipping your toes into familiar waters instead of jumping into a potentially discouraging investment.
Having extensive information on your eCommerce choices will help you narrow down your decision. While these are just 4 of the more commonly used platforms, you can use these guidelines as characteristics to look for when searching further for more choices. You’ll need to perform your own testing to find the right fit for your eCommerce business. With these pros and cons as guidelines, though, you’ll be able to review and compare even more choices at your own pace.