11 Best Ecommerce Platforms in 2022: Which is Right for Your Business?

11 Best Ecommerce Platforms in 2022: Which is Right for Your Business?

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as most entrepreneurs know building a business requires a lot more than simply having a good idea after all the best business idea in the world is useless if you can't provide your product to the people who need it the most and when it comes to selling online choosing the best ecommerce platform can make all the difference between growing a business that is sustainable and one that totally fizzles out in today's video i'm going to be comparing the 11 most popular ecommerce solutions currently available so that you can make the choice that's right for you we're going to be looking at the strengths and weaknesses of 11 different e-commerce platforms and i'll tell you what factors you should be considering when you're making this choice and make sure you stick around because at the end of the episode i'm going to be giving you a full rundown of what platforms i would recommend to which kind of business owner [Music] so first of all it's important that we understand what an e-commerce platform is and what it can do for us in a nutshell your ecommerce platform is how you sell your products to your customers but it doesn't stop there because a good system will also help you do things like manage inventory print your shipping labels or create a beautiful storefront and of course you need it to be able to integrate with other tools you're using in your business like your email marketing platform basically your ecommerce platform is the make or break factor in the success of your business if you're a product-based entrepreneur still there isn't one e-commerce platform that's going to be the best option for everyone because the right choice for you will depend on your priorities as a business owner and you need to remember that this decision is about more than just aesthetics yes of course you want your online store to look good but it's also important that it feels good and is intuitive for customers to use this system should also support you as a business owner because if you find it really overwhelming and confusing and complicated to use you're not going to use it and you're going to end up costing yourself a lot of time energy and money trying to do everything manually now even though every e-commerce platform tends to cover the basics like your product listings and your coupon codes not every platform is created equal so as you're making this important decision here are a few factors i think you should keep in mind the hosting type the integrations and the trial period there are two kinds of ecommerce platforms hosted and self-hosted so every website on the internet needs space on a server in order for people to visit it and hosting just means that's where your website lives so a hosted platform is an all-in-one solution that means they handle everything for you from all the software improvements to the security updates bug fixes etc and they usually come with an entire customer service team available to help you if you run into any issues a self-hosted ecommerce platform is exactly what it sounds like basically you're going to be using your own server space or renting space from a hosting provider in order to get your online store online in this kind of option you're going to pay less up front but usually will encounter more hidden fees or just additional hassle somewhere down the line because the thing to remember with these kinds of options is that you are responsible for everything on your website all of the security updates and software improvements those are on you and if you run into any trouble you may not get that much customer support especially depending on the hosting provider that you're working with for most people it's going to be a better option to go with an all-in-one hosted platform so that you can focus on the fun parts of your business and trust that your e-commerce is working smoothly in the background the single best way to evaluate whether a tool is right for you is to just try it out for yourself i think that this step is crucial because until you actually get into the behind the scenes dashboard of these tools you really don't know how it feels to use the platform it's really easy to be swayed by flashy marketing or screenshots on sales pages but those do not give you a true idea of how a software actually works and a hands-off demo or a video is not enough you actually need hands-on experience in order to figure out whether something is a good fit for your business so when you're choosing an e-commerce tool i suggest that you prioritize options that offer you a free trial period or at least a money-back guarantee you need the chance to test before you commit and don't be discouraged if you have to do a couple of free trials in order to find the tool that's right for you that's what these test periods are there for experimentation it is far better to invest extra time up front to test multiple platforms than to go all in on something that is not going to work for you long term lastly you want your ecommerce platform to be able to talk to the other systems you're using in your business no online store is an island and the right platform needs to be able to integrate with all of your other tools whether that's how you send newsletters your accounting software for how you manage your taxes or just a mobile app so that you can monitor your orders when you're on the go you might also need more advanced features like the ability to create an affiliate marketing program to start drop shipping products or create subscriptions that require recurring payments but even if you don't need those features when you're just starting your business it's a pretty good idea to make sure that the platform you choose offers them if you think you might want them in the future of course we want to be starting small and growing over time but you need to make sure that the platform you use can keep up with you so just keep that in mind so now that we have looked at those key features let's take a look at the 11 most common options available on the market right now and do a side-by-side comparison of their features and their price wix is a great option for beginners especially if you're not that tech savvy because the entire system is drag and drop and it's fully customizable in terms of the fonts and the colors and the overall aesthetic they have a lot of really great free templates that you can use for your site and then you can tweak them to match your own branding and a bonus building a basic website is free so you can test it out if you want to before committing but you won't get access to any ecommerce features which you probably need if you're watching this video once you upgrade to a business plan you'll be able to start selling on your own online store and use their features like custom shipping rates multilingual sites and currency conversions subscription products and digital product downloads and the wix owner app allows you to manage your store on the go and can even turn your phone into a mini pos system to accept payments wix is also working on growing both their built-in features as well as the tools available in their wix app market which offers integrations with many other apps that being said wix is missing a few key features for product based businesses including low stock alerts and other important inventory management options for larger stores many people also experience issues with their sites loading really slowly or not being fully responsive on mobile which are not great features to have in an online store so be careful about that and also even though i mentioned that the drag and drop functionality is very expansive so if you want to customize your store you can it can also be really overwhelming especially if you're not a designer and you don't really know how to make your brand standards consistent across every area of your website that being said if you are comfortable with website design and you want the ability to fully customize your store and if you don't anticipate managing a whole lot of products at once wix could be a great option for you shopify is one of the most popular ecommerce options in the world and for good reason it is a very robust platform that is constantly being improved upon to make your ecommerce experience even better not only does shopify handle things like making your site look beautiful and dealing with abandoned cart recovery and all that good stuff we also have an entire extension library of thousands of apps that can make your store even better whether that's drop shipping or print on demand or anything you could possibly want and it's a fully hosted platform which means that you as the business owner never are going to need to worry about bug fixes or security improvements or any of the things that come with a self-hosted option it's fully taken care of and you have an amazing customer service team to help you if you run into any problems our goal at shopify is to make it as easy as possible for anyone to run an online store even if you're not very tech savvy so our payment processor and our mobile app are designed to be super user friendly and accessible at any skill level so that you can take orders and ship those orders without any problems and we're a great option to choose if you're looking to grow your business because as i mentioned we have tons of available add-ons that will make your store even better so if you want to include photo reviews or chat bots or a loyalty program those are all options that you can integrate into shopify and best part we offer unlimited bandwidth and online storage so you'll never need to pay more if your store suddenly gets a lot more traffic even if you already host your website using a service like wix or squarespace you can use our shopify buy button which embeds into your existing website but gives you access to all of the shopify features for only nine dollars a month but you don't have to take my word for it you can try shopify for yourself using our 14 day free trial click the link in our description box below to start building your store today bigcommerce is primarily designed and marketed for enterprise level companies like ben jerry's clarks or skull kindy but their essentials product is open to everyone like shopify and wix this is a hosted platform with a lot of support and many options for customization some of the most useful ecommerce features that bigcommerce offers are advanced product filtering great search engine optimization targeted customer marketing minimal downtime and the ability to sell across multiple social media and third-party marketplaces bigcommerce is a very powerful platform but that also means that it can be kind of complicated and inflexible some people complain that there aren't a lot of templates to choose from and the actual editor to build your site is not very customizable not only that but bigcommerce surprisingly has far fewer integrations than other platform options on the market so it's harder to expand your store's capacity beyond their built-in features and even though bigcommerce is ostensibly built to support bigger businesses one of their policies is to charge you if you go over your yearly sales limit which obviously is a disincentive to grow your store luckily bigcommerce offers a free trial so i highly recommend that you try before you buy to make sure that this platform is the right one for you if you're an entrepreneur or a developer who wants the ultimate in flexibility and customization then magento also known as adobe commerce could be a great option for you now one thing to note is that this is a self-hosted e-commerce platform so that means that it's fully customizable as long as you have the skills in order to do so but if you run into any issues it's going to be on you to fix them if you're up for that kind of challenge then magento commerce will offer you a lot of features to grow your store globally including things like customer segmentation the ability to stage your site before it goes live in-depth inventory management and integration with lots of sales channels including amazon but this great functionality comes at a cost because unless you're a developer this platform is not at all user friendly it has a very steep learning curve and because you're self-hosting as i mentioned you're going to be responsible for all of your site upkeep security and backups which can be a giant headache nothing here is plug and play and you'll need a lot of expertise to even get your store up and running but still if you're a rapidly growing business with at least one developer on your team and pretty good cash flow then magento can be a great tool to help you scale up your business and expand your store's reach woocommerce is an add-on plug-in for wordpress which means you can add e-commerce functionality directly to your wordpress self-hosted blog or website this makes it really easy to add e-commerce functionality to your site especially for beginners because everything is pretty plug and play you just set it up and you're able to accept your first sale and the fact that you're building on top of your existing site will mean that your store has the right look and feel automatically and will be easy for your customers to access plus woocommerce has a huge library of extensions so you can continue to grow and build your store over time trusting that the features you need will probably be available to you if you're a wordpress user you're used to paying for website hosting fees domain registration and premium website themes and while woocommerce itself is free you need to watch out for the hidden costs of this platform many of the extensions you're going to want to add to improve your stores such as subscriptions or product add-ons or creating bundles they all will come with a cost usually at least 49 per year per extension woocommerce like wordpress is a self-hosted option which means that if something breaks down you're responsible for finding the problem and fixing it and what's worse the e-commerce add-ons that you install to improve your site will also make your site more fragile and require more maintenance and unfortunately woocommerce does have a bit of a reputation for breaking down this platform can be notoriously clunky and slow to load and it's tricky to customize beyond some basic elements without at least some coding knowledge but for those who already have a site they love on wordpress adding on woocommerce to sell some products could make a lot of sense as long as you're prepared for the work it'll take to maintain this system and the potential costs of expanding your store you can rest easy knowing that you have lots of room to grow your business over time prestashop is a great option for entrepreneurs with a little bit of coding experience it is free it's open source which means you can download it and start using it right away as long as you know how to use it it comes with some community forums and technical documentation for support if you run into any issues and it will have your standard basic ecommerce features like inventory management international selling good store analytics and then you get access to lots of extensions and third-party add-ons unfortunately there is no built-in customer support and the paid support plans that they offer can be very pricey so this option is best for entrepreneurs who feel comfortable managing their site independently it's not the best choice for total ecommerce beginners or those who struggle with site design and maintenance other user complaints include slow website load time instability of add-ons and a pretty outdated dashboard but since this software is free for everyone there's no cost or commitment to trying it out so if you're considering this self-hosted option take it for a test run to make sure it'll fit your needs for the long term next up we have another popular ecommerce option squarespace commerce so squarespace is a great option for beginners because it is totally drag and drop and it is a hosted platform which means that all of that website maintenance will be taken care of for you and even though e-commerce is not available on most of their basic website plans it's a very easy upgrade to start being able to accept sales on your website in just a few minutes not only that but when you upgrade you'll get access to all of squarespace's features including cross-platform selling express checkout and customized order notifications and just like other platforms squarespace has a pretty big catalog of extensions so you can further expand your store but while these basic options are built in you'll need to upgrade to a more expensive commerce plan if you want to access more advanced features such as gift cards abandoned cart recovery or subscription products options that are typically automatically included with other platforms you'll also be limited in terms of payment options since squarespace only integrates with stripe and paypal squarespace offers good customer support and is always being updated with bug fixes and enhancements which makes it a breeze to manage and it comes with lots of beautiful templates that are easy to customize to match your branding if you already host your website with squarespace but want to create a store upgrading to a commerce plan could be a very easy way for you to start selling online right away big cartel is designed for makers and creative types to sell their products online in a simple store they make it very easy to set up your shop and quickly customize it to fit your brand's aesthetic their goal is to streamline the process of selling online for their creative clientele and they have lots of great features like product variations real-time statistics custom domains and beautiful minimal templates they're known for their fast and reliable service ease of use and affordability they have a free forever plan for selling up to five products and only charge 9.99 per month for up to 50 products of course this simplicity also comes with some trade-offs big cartel offers pretty limited customization options so it's hard to make your website feel totally personalized and there is a limit on how many products you can sell the maximum is 500 products even on their highest plan so this option won't work for very large stores there is no import option so you have to manually add all your products to your store and you can only include a maximum of five images per product they have limited payment processor options and no advanced features like abandoned cart recovery or capturing custom product data from your customers and while they do offer integrations the options are limited to just 25 services which may or may not work for all users i think big cartel is a great option for creative business owners who value simplicity and ease and don't need access to many advanced features and since their free plan is free forever you can try it out for yourself and make sure that you love it before you commit weebly is a very simple online website builder that's owned by square which means that all sites come fully integrated with square's pos system this means that it's super simple for you to sell both in person and online in a fully integrated way not only that but weebly comes with a very easy to use drag and drop website builder which means that it's intuitive even for people who have never built a store before all sites also come with great features like customizable email templates abandoned cart recovery gift cards and product search and it's pretty affordable you can start for free and then upgrade to a paid plan that is reasonably priced if you want to eliminate ads on your website or add in your own custom domain the downside is that you don't have a lot of options for customizing weebly stores and they don't offer that many integrations with other tools or extensions weebly also won't give you very many advanced features like support for multiple languages or currencies advanced search engine optimization or the ability to create backups of your store but if you already use and love square as your payment processor setting up a simple store on weebly could be a no-brainer since it integrates with your existing tools if not you can access the entire service for free forever which makes it a great candidate for testing out before you make your final choice 3d cart is the known e-commerce option but it's a fairly inexpensive hosted platform that allows business owners to easily create an online store their sites are mobile friendly optimized for search synchronized with lots of shopping channels like amazon and facebook and give you access to third-party tools and apps to extend your store unfortunately there are some downsides to the service including very few options for customization and a pretty unintuitive page builder their lack of basic tools also makes it hard to manage your store without using lots of add-ons which can be expensive users also report pretty poor customer service and technical support as well as weak analytics and reporting but as always the key is to try it out for yourself and fortunately 3d cart offers a 15 day free trial with no credit card required volusion was founded in 1999 which makes it one of the oldest ecommerce platforms on the market but this platform comes with beautiful and responsive themes a drag-and-drop page builder great inventory management and product options built-in email marketing and integrations with tons of other great apps and it's a fully hosted option so it has all of those built-in advantages as well and you can expect 24 7 customer support but while you can sell unlimited products through volusion unfortunately you can't sell digital products files or downloads you also can't create a blog and you'll be limited in terms of some of your website design options and the number of free templates available to you you may also experience slow load times or general bugginess and worst of all you might be hit by additional fees for exceeding your online sales limits depending on your plan so there you have it the 11 most popular ecommerce platforms you can choose from when building your online store now if you're still feeling overwhelmed by your options don't worry here's a quick recap of what to think about when you're making this decision first think about your unique business needs and values and what's most important to you as a company whether that is simplicity or speed or scalability or something else entirely second anticipate your future needs and make sure that you're going to be able to add on new features as your store grows you never want to feel limited by the platform you're using third make sure the tool you choose offers great customer support or good help resources to troubleshoot any issues you encounter prioritize companies that consistently work to improve their product so that your store will like automatically keep up with changing e-commerce trends fourth make sure that you're evaluating the full cost of the product not just the initial setup and monthly fees but also the cost of any important integrations or add-ons whether you'll need to hire a developer or what you might pay for exceeding your sales limits on certain apps no matter how great the tool your business still needs to make a profit lastly don't skip the testing stage unless you actually try the platform out for yourself you cannot know if it'll be the right fit so start a few free trials and make sure that the process of building your store feels intuitive and manageable before you put down your credit card and as promised here's my very quick rundown of which options could be best for you depending on your situation shopify is the best all-around platform for entrepreneurs and retailers wix is best for building a content-focused website like a portfolio that also includes e-commerce bigcommerce is good for big businesses and enterprises though shopify plus is the enterprise version of shopify and has a lot of advantages over bigcommerce magento is best for companies with technical resources and developers on staff woocommerce is best for wordpress website users who want an integrated ecommerce solution this is a really good option if you primarily run a blog or online magazine prestashop is best for technical founders who want a self-hosted ecommerce platform squarespace has the best drag and drop functionality and very beautiful designs big cartel is the best budget option for creative types who want simplicity in their smaller stores if one or two of these options appeals to you but you want an even more in-depth comparison click the playlist right here where we have dedicated videos for each platform such as shopify versus wix shopify versus woocommerce and shopify versus squarespace okay so now that you've gotten a good sense of all the ecommerce options out there i think you're ready to dive in and get started when it comes to e-commerce it's going to totally depend on your unique situation but if you're looking for a great all-around platform that allow you to grow and build your business over time i think shopify is an amazing option for beginner and advanced entrepreneurs i think shopify has definitely helped us and many businesses get started actually my wife she was the one that brought it to me i was going hand in hand between different platforms when it comes to choosing an e-commerce platform there is no one right answer that's going to work for every entrepreneur this decision is very personal to your business and needs to make sense for both your company values and your goals over time so it's not a decision that you should take lightly take your time with it and choose wisely if you're an online store owner what are the favorite features of your ecommerce platform that you use every day or if you haven't chosen one yet which of these options are you the most excited to check out for yourself drop your answers in the comments below until then thank you so much for watching and i'll see you next time [Music]

2022-03-10 13:20

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