If you are starting your own online business - whether to sell a product or a service - the best way to do it is to take advantage of eCommerce platforms. Such platforms have been designed to help new entrepreneurs build their startups from scratch. Using an eCommerce platform makes it easier for you to start, manage, and grow an online business. But, you need to choose the platform that suits your product, your service, and your audience. The good thing is, you have a lot of choices as far as eCommerce platforms are concerned.
If you are unsure which platform you should pick, here’s a quick overview of the best eCommerce platforms today:
When it comes to eCommerce platforms designed for the dropshipping model, not many can come close to the quality of services that Shopify offers. That said, if you are building a dropshipping business, you should definitely go with Shopify. Or, at least give the platform a try. Shopify offers several plans and packages for those interested in using the platform’s tools, programs, software, and resources. You can avail of the basic plan which will cost you just $29 per month. But, if you want the best features and functions of Shopify, you should get their advanced plan which is worth $299 per month.
If you use Wordpress for your business websites, you should consider using WooCommerce if you decide to build your own online business startup. This is a self-hosted application for Wordpress that makes creating and managing an online store easy and hassle-free. It provides a lot of very important features and functions like secure payment systems, shipping integration, inventory management, and even tax management. There’s a reason why WooCommerce is the most popular eCommerce plugin for Wordpress. Nearly three million online stores currently use the platform.
If you want to go big right away with your startup, Magento is the platform you need. Although this platform targets retailers who are already established and successful, this doesn’t mean that new entrepreneurs can’t use it. Magento is more complicated compared to the other platforms mentioned here. But, it’s not that difficult to learn the features and functions of the program. Magento is open source. This means you have access to a lot of free tools and resources that you can use to improve your online store. As open-source software, it also means you have the support of an active and helpful Magento community.
Although Squarespace is marketed as a do-it-yourself website builder, it’s actually more than just a website builder. You can also use it to build and manage online businesses like online shopping stores. The platform even provides you with a wide array of professionally-made eCommerce store templates. Squarespace also offers business owners all the tools they need to manage their business website. These include marketing tools and data analysis programs. If you are building an online store with Squarespace, you can use either the basic plan ($26 per month) or the advanced plan ($40 per month).
Volusion simplifies its services in three steps. One, they help you create a professional business website. Two, they provide you with tools, apps, programs, and software that you can use to sell your goods or services. And three, they help you grow and expand your business with state-of-the-art SEO tools, social integrations, sitemap indexing, detailed reports, newsletters, and gift card creators. Volusion’s business plan costs $299 per month. However, if you want to test the platform first before committing, you can always avail of their 14-day free trial offer. For two weeks, you can use and test the platform to see if it’s the right one for your online startup.
This eCommerce platform enables you to create a multi-vendor online store. What does this mean? This means that you can create your own marketplace that will be open for multiple vendors. In other words, YoKart enables you to create your own mini-version of eBay and Amazon. You are basically building your own eCommerce platform that other online entrepreneurs can use to sell their products or services. For these reasons, YoKart is a more expensive platform. The company’s service packages range from $999 per month to $6999 per month. Managing users is painless with YoKart. You are provided with all the admin tools you need to manage buyers, sellers, and even affiliates.
The bottom line here is that you have several eCommerce platforms to choose from. Each platform has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. With that said, it’s important that you take the time to research the platforms, their features, their pros and cons, their reputation, and their track record. You should also read reviews about the platform you are considering to hear about the experiences of those entrepreneurs who have used it.