It was not possible to sell goods or services online without having a physical location. Customers who wanted to buy your products had to travel to your brick-and-mortar location in order to find it. You can now find anything you need online in just a few clicks. eCommerce platforms allow you to order movies, items, and even food directly from your mobile device or laptop.
eCommerce platforms simplify the lives of customers and make it easier to start new businesses. There are many options available if you’re looking to start an online shop in 2022.
What are you looking for in an eCommerce platform?
You are likely familiar with Amazon and eBay if you’re weighing your options for an e-commerce platform. There may be better options depending on what type of store you want to open. there may be other eCommerce platforms that are a better fit for your business.
These are the top features to look out for when reviewing eCommerce platforms.
E-commerce can cost you anywhere from nothing to thousands of dollars depending on the size of your business. Most sites allow you to test them for free, so long as your credit card information is not required.
Take the time to think about all the features available when you are taking advantage of these free trials. Don’t forget to include extensions and hosting.
If people cannot find your store, you won’t have customers. The SEO tools you use should be built into the e-commerce platform that you choose.
Your search engine optimization will be improved if you can customize your URL with your name or products. This will make it easier for customers to find your store. Some platforms include enhanced SEO tools as part of their plans.
Your online store may start small, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it will grow. You need an e-commerce platform that can grow your business.
Even at the beginning of your e-commerce journey, you might need more than a simple solution. You need a platform that will not keep you locked into a plan that’s not right for you.
OuterBox, an e-commerce platform, claims that more than 125,000,000 Americans own smartphones. More than 60% of smartphone owners have made purchases using their smartphones.
Mobile responsiveness is a must for any platform. Mobile devices will make up the majority of your sales, so your online store must be mobile-friendly in order to maximize your potential revenue.
If you sell physical products, you will likely include many photos and videos on your storefront. This means that you need an eCommerce platform that is reliable and fast. You will lose sales if customers wait for images and videos to load.
Also read: How to Build a Website Redesign Strategy
It is important to select an e-commerce platform that offers a great user experience for both you and your customers. Your online storefront should be easy to set up with minimal programming knowledge. Once the store is up and running, customers should find it easy to navigate and search for products.
Integration with third-party apps is a must for your online store. Even if you don’t know how to code, you should be able to add these applications and tools to your online store.
Many platforms make it easy to add “buy buttons” to social media channels such as Pinterest. Some plug-ins can be integrated with an existing WordPress site.
Top 5 eCommerce Platforms For Small Businesses
Let’s take a look at some of the options available to you now that we know what you should look for in an online eCommerce platform. These are our top five choices for the best eCommerce platforms in 2022.
Also read: Top 10 eCommerce Agencies
1. Shopify – The Best eCommerce Platform For Small Businesses
Shopify is the best e-commerce platform for small businesses. There are many options, but Shopify has the greatest value. Shopify can be a great choice for any stage of your business’ growth.
Because how can a small business plan to remain small forever?
Shopify provides a single-stop shop for setting up an e-commerce site. You can select a domain name, create a logo and search for products through their vendor relationships.
Their free stock photo library contains product photos. Shopify can also be used to purchase an existing online shop if you don’t want to start a business.
Shopify gives you a 14-day trial for free. You don’t even need a credit card to get started. It doesn’t matter what plan you choose, just sign up to start building your store.
Their “Lite” plan starts at $9 per month. You can add a “buy” button to any existing website, blog, or Facebook page.
Shopify allows you to communicate with customers online, track orders and send invoices. You can also accept payments in person through the point-of-sale application of the Lite plan.
The plans can be upgraded and added features are available at a cost of $29 to $299 per month. For large retailers, there is an enterprise option.
All plans include unlimited file storage, endless product options, hosting, security, abandoned-cart recovery, 24/7 support, and unlimited file storage.
2. Wix – The Best eCommerce Platform For Startups
Wix is most commonly known as a free website building tool. However, it also offers e-commerce plans for new entrepreneurs. You can get a free domain or $300 worth of ad vouchers if you sign up annually.
Wix’s most expensive plan is $25/month. It includes the following features:
- Telephone support
- Priority service
- Support for tickets
- An evaluation of the interface and SEO of your site
Wix, like most e-commerce platforms, allows you to sell digital and physical products. It also has features that will appeal to a range of businesses.
There are also booking tools that enable customers to make appointments and sign up for classes. Wix Music allows you to build a custom music player, sell digital files, and track sales and performance statistics.
Online ordering for takeout and delivery, as well as accepting reservations, can be done by restaurant owners. You can also send reminder emails to your guests. The platform isn’t limited to online shops.
3. Squarespace – The Best eCommerce Platform For Mobile
Squarespace is mobile-friendly for every e-commerce platform, however, Squarespace is extra careful to ensure a great user experience on mobile devices.
Each template design is unique and reflects the store’s overall style. This feature is built-in, but you can disable it in the Website Manager.
Images can take some time to load. Squarespace has a responsive image loader that creates multiple scaled versions for each uploaded photo.
It can detect which type of device is being used, and load the appropriate image for optimal viewing. It works even for Apple devices equipped with Retina Displays.
The responsiveness does not stop at the imagery. All aspects of the site, including charts and graphics, are optimized for mobile devices. Emails are also optimized for mobile devices so that marketing campaigns can be read on tablets and smartphones.
Also read: Top 9 Link Tracking Software for Marketers
4. Magento – The Best eCommerce Platform For Retailers
Magento is the best platform for established retailers who are ready to sell online. You can see that Magento is used by some of the most recognizable brands in the world.
Although the software can be downloaded for free, it requires a developer to create something truly amazing. Magento is in touch with many partners that can help you set up an online store that integrates seamlessly with your brick-and-mortar location.
Magento allows developers to create tools on its open-source platform, but they are very selective about who they allow doing so. This company offers enterprise-level solutions that allow you to create an omnichannel strategy.
Customers can place orders online and pick them up at your store. Inventory control is also possible in real-time.
One theme is included in your online store. The rest cost $29 to $500. Extensions can be purchased to help you manage the following areas of your business.
- Content Management
- Customer support
5. WooCommerce – The Best eCommerce Platform to Integrate Software
WooCommerce, an e-commerce platform built on WordPress, is WooCommerce. It integrates with popular content management systems, making it easy to incorporate your eCommerce business into your content.
WooCommerce offers plug-ins to your WordPress blog. Nearly 300 extensions are available for the open-source platform, including those that deal with shipping, marketing, and accounting.
These extensions can be added to the platform by simply clicking a button. Some shipping and payment solutions may incur additional fees.
Storefront is a free WooCommerce theme. It comes in several versions that will fit your store. Storefront, like WordPress, can be customized, so your coding skills are not the only limitation.
You will need to choose the right hosting solution for WooCommerce. Hosting and domain registration are both additional costs.
There are no perfect eCommerce platforms. Only the one that works best for you. When weighing your options, you need to consider cost, scalability, and responsiveness on mobile.
You should take advantage of the free trial and try out all the features. These details will allow you to evaluate your options and help you choose the best e-commerce store for you.