If you want to be successful with your retail store these days, you almost need a website. Fortunately, you no longer have to pay thousands of euros to professional web developers to program an online shop for you. Thanks to modern website builder, you can now do it yourself quickly, with little effort and a reasonable budget.
In order to help you choose the right platform, we evaluate the following criteria:
- Setup process
- Feature of the individual tariff levels
- The quality of e-commerce templates
- The availability of modern tax calculation, inventory management and shipping tools
Let’s look at Wix first . In addition to WordPress, Wix is currently one of the most popular website development platforms. They look after the remarkable number of around 100 million users and in particular the simplicity of the registration process and the user-friendliness really convince.
All you have to do is go through the short registration process and answer a few questions before you choose your template and start designing your page. First contact with the Wix editor to customize the website can be a little intimidating for beginners. However, there are many tutorials and tips that will help you. After a short familiarization phase, it is almost child’s play.
With a total of over 450 templates and 60 online shop templates, there is no shortage of design options. Some time ago, not all Wix templates could convince with their high quality. However, this has now changed.
As far as pricing is concerned, the e-commerce functions must be activated with either the eCommerce or the VIP tariff. Both then offer all of Wix’s e-commerce functions. This includes a wide selection of payment gateways, discount functions, shipping and tax calculators, inventory management and – of course – a fully functional shop system.
They do not offer such unusual and hyper-modern functions such as POS integration, freight forwarding integration and omnichannel retailing, but apart from that they really offer everything a modern online shop can use.
As you can quickly guess from the name, this platform is very strong in e-commerce. Bigcommerce is currently the most popular development platform for e-commerce websites and sets standards with many modern functions.
Unfortunately, there is no free plan, but you can try the basic functions for 15 days and easily create a ready-to-use shop during this time. As expected, all tariffs are equipped with e-commerce functions. Regardless of the tariff, no sales commission has to be paid here. There are also no restrictions on the number of products or user accounts. All tariffs cover the basic features, with the more expensive tariffs allowing more flexibility and advanced features (such as resuming canceled purchases, custom SSL / product filters, etc.).
The biggest limitation is that you can only make a certain amount of sales per year before you are forced to upgrade. There is an enterprise tariff for large companies without borders and with premium support.
You can expand your e-commerce functions at any time with some of the numerous apps from BigCommerce.
BigCommerce is an all-in-one solution for advanced features. Particularly noteworthy is the deep integration with the existing shops, other online sales channels, inventory management systems and shipping services (via ShipperHQ). It’s really easy to integrate your existing business into your BigCommerce site.
If you are looking for a beautifully designed, minimalist and modern online shop, there are few better platforms than SquareSpace . The main reason that there are only 90 templates is that they are checked very strictly for quality.
The main disadvantage of using Squarespace is that the website builder is not really intuitive and there is no real drag and drop functionality. The templates available are really fantastic, but your options for customizing them are unfortunately somewhat restrictive.
Despite its strong focus on e-commerce, Squarespace offers two types of tariffs – one for websites and one for online shops. The business website tariff also offers fully integrated e-commerce functionality – however, transaction fees are due and the selection of advanced functions is limited.
In the pure online shop tariffs, no transaction fees are charged and the following extended functions are also activated:
- Powerful key figure and analysis tools
- Inventory, order, tax and voucher management
- Print shipping labels via Ship Station
The following functions are then added to the higher online shop tariffs:
- Resumption of canceled purchases
- Real time shipping information
- More control over discount settings
- Possibility to integrate third party software
- The integration of the shops works really well and works similarly to Bigcommerce.
Squarespace offers excellent functions with which you can create a functional and interactive shop with a quick product view, express checkout, etc. You are a bit more restricted in terms of payment options, but instead offer a wide range of currencies.
As compare to Bigcommerce vs Volusion exclusively on e-commerce and online stores. It is one of the most accessible platforms and helps beginners to set up their first online shop with step-by-step instructions. The editor is also extremely easy to use and offers real drag and drop functionality.
Adding products and creating shops is not only easy, it’s also fun. In our opinion, it is the easiest to use platform among the platforms presented here. The template library is not particularly extensive, but considering that these are full-fledged online shop templates, 50 selection options are ok again.
Needless to say, each of the tariffs offers a certain amount of e-commerce features. With increasing price, the …
- Number of Products
- Intensity of customer care
The premium tariffs also offer the following features:
- Unlimited products
- 35GB bandwidth
- Priority support
- Own account manager
The area in which Volusion is weakening is the integration of any existing shops. There is only essential omnichannel integration and inventory management and no freight forwarding integration. Volusion is therefore particularly suitable for all those who want to create an online shop quickly and easily. For larger companies, however, the platform may not be interesting.
With the payment options, however, you can completely convince with more than 50 options. Pretty much any relevant payment option is available to customers.
WordPress does not have to be presented big, which is why we start with our assessment directly. Signing up to WordPress is a bit lengthy as they try to sell you a number of features and ask a number of questions about your website. As soon as you have completed these steps, everything will (almost) go by itself.
All settings are made in WordPress from a central dashboard. Since WordPress has always focused heavily on bloggers, it is perfectly optimized for posting content.
The WordPress personal tariff does not offer e-commerce functions and even the premium tariff can only accept simple payments. The business tariff gives you access to all WordPress plugins and themes from third-party providers. This drastically improves WordPress’s e-commerce capabilities.
Plugins like WooCommerce can single-handedly convert WordPress into a fully-fledged online shop with some very advanced features. Even if these plugins do not offer the storage and shipping integration that you get from BigCommerce or SquareSpace, they at least allow you full control over shipping costs and taxes and provide your customers with a variety of payment options and useful functions.
It’s best to combine the WooCommerce plugin with the storefront theme to get the best of both.
Which e-commerce website builder was able to convince you?
As you can see, there are a variety of options that meet the needs of different online sellers. If we are to choose an overall winner, the choice must inevitably fall on BigCommerce. Squarespace can keep up with the features, but BigCommerce offers an easier-to-use platform, a larger collection of templates, and better integration with other sales channels and stores. With the top tariffs, Squarespace scores with a significantly lower price and is therefore a good alternative.
But compared to the other platforms, both are quite expensive. Of the cheaper options, we would recommend Wix. It is a great product that offers many pretty good ecommerce features.
Mark Jack Smith
Hi, I’m Mark Jack, your web guru works at Folio3 Ecommerce Development agency. The only two things you need to know about me: I love creating websites and I like to write tutorials about them – because I want others to have fun with web design.