The Best E-commerce Platforms to Grow Your Online Business

Do you want to make money online? Do you want to grow your current online business?

E-commerce has quietly taken over our lives, free shipping is the norm, two-day shipping is becoming one or two-hour shipping; things have taken quite a steep turn. Building a successful business online starts with choosing the best e-commerce platform for you and your business. There are over 477 different e-commerce platforms options on the market so choosing the right one for you may seem overwhelming. Each platform has a different set of specifications that will suit various online businesses in a different way. 

We’ve done the hard work for you and simplified each e-commerce platform into a chart alongside its features and specifications for you to see. The right or ‘best’ platform will depend on which one is best suited for you. 

 

Before we dive in we want you to consider 3 questions:

 

 

  • What features do you need to grow your business?

 

  • What is your budget to grow your business?


 

In no particular order, here are our nominations for the best e-commerce platforms:

 

Shopify

Shopify is one of the most popular choices to grow your online business because of how easy it is to launch a new store. A popular choice with smaller brands who have a lower volume of products. Shopify offers simplicity in its e-commerce platform and its goal is to make it possible for everyone to launch their own e-commerce website, even without having any design or development skills. 

 

 

Key Features:

 

  • Unlimited products

  • Unlimited bandwidth

  • Fraud analysis

  • Discount codes

  • Customer support

  • Finance reports 

  • Manual order creation

  • Staff accounts

  • Online sales channels

 

Pricing range: $29-$299 per month (Shopify also offer a free trial to get you started and see if its right for your business).

 

BigCommerce

BigCommerce is another large and reliable e-commerce platform that offers a clear dashboard and direction for getting your online store underway in minutes. The dashboard is similar to Shopify’s, with the ability to customise your store along with many other fantastic features. 

Everything you need is clearly displayed in the sidebar menu so you can access features such as products, orders and customer information easily without any hassle. You can also take control of BigCommerce’s marketing settings, analytics and many other features to optimise your stores appearance. 3

BigCommerce is a similar price to Shopify and offers an impressive feature set.

 

Key Features:

 

  • Migrate your store and import products

  • Optimised for conversions

  • Customer support

  • Featured e-commerce CMS

  • Acceptance of leading payment providers

  • Manage orders and inventory

  • Easily customise your platform 

 

Pricing range: $29.95-$249.95 per month

 

Weebly

Weebly provides a very intuitive platform which is easy to use as it uses a simple drag and drop system which is very effective. This feature makes it easy for everyone to build websites in an effortless and painless manner. 

Alongside Weebly’s paid feature, this easy to use offers a paid feature that grants you access to more interesting website building tools. However, you don’t need the paid feature to build interesting and engaging websites. 

 

 

Key Features:

 

  • Drop and drop website builder

  • E-commerce store 

  • Domain registration

  • Free sub-domain 

  • App integration

  • Customer support

  • Easy publishing

 

Pricing range: £4-18 per month

 

Squarespace

Squarespace is another platform that offers a sleek design which also offers a drop and drag system. It offers the tools and features that are very popular in the creative industry, especially those with an artistic product catalogue. 

What makes Squarespace a popular choice is its flexibility with payments, offering multiple subscriptions that are very appealing for personal or business use. Squarespace is a very appealing platform to grow your business. 

 

 

Key Features:

 

  • Custom CSS

  • Mobile information bar

  • Drop and drag management

  • Gallery blocks

  • Modern templates with switching if needed

  • Social links

  • Direct editing

  • Content downloading

  • Squarespace analytics (Linked with Google Analytics)

  • Optimised on all devices

 

Pricing range: £10-£30 per month / with an option to pay annually

 

Wix

Wix is a very popular website that serves millions of users worldwide. It prides itself on being a basic e-commerce platform to use, especially for brand new shops. With an extensive range of themes and features its a simple process to quickly set up your online business. Being one of the most affordable platforms, Wix offers just enough for you to start and more importantly succeed online without having to offer extravagant features to stand out.

 

Key Features:

 

  • Site analytics - Google analytics

  • HTML embed code

  • Social feed

  • Optimised mobile view

  • Image editor

  • Live chat

  • Wix app market

  • Easy- to-add blog

 

Pricing range: £13-£22 per month 

 

Best E-commerce Platforms By Product, Service or Industry 

Here we have categorised the best e-commerce platforms by industries to help you decide which one is right for you. 

Start-ups

  • Wix 

  • Squarespace

 

Small Businesses 

  • Shopify 

  • Squarespace

 

Large Businesses 

  • Shopify 

  • BigCommerce

 

Fashion

  • Squarespace

  • Wix

  • Shopify

 

Artists or Photographers 

  • Squarespace

 

Digital Products

  • Shopify 

  • BigCommerce

  • Weebly

 

Books

  • BigCommerce

  • Weebly

  • Squarespace


 

Electronics

 

  • Shopify

  • BigCommerce

 

How Do You Choose The Best E-commerce Platform?

In order to find the right platform for your business, you need to think of things like ease of use, apps and extensions and how far you want your shop to grow. 

The key features you should be looking for to grow your online business are:

 

Ease of use 

Whether you have just started your online shop or you have been established for a few years, your shop needs to be easy to use. You need to put yourself in the shoes of the customer and see if your website is user-friendly and easy to navigate around as this is crucial. The best platforms are intuitive and simple to use.

 

Scalability 

Your platform needs to understand what your business scale is and whether it can handle your customer base. It also needs to be able to handle if you need to add more products to your inventory. 

For example, all Shopify plans come with unlimited bandwidth and unlimited file storage.

 

Payment options

The best e-commerce platforms have a wide range of payment options, such as: 

  • PayPal

  • Visa or Debit card 

  • Amazon Pay

  • Apple Pay

  • Cryptocurrency

 

Giving more options to your customers will increase your chances of selling. 

 

Mobile Optimisation

The best e-commerce platforms make sure that your website is optimised for all devices to make it as accessible for customers as possible. Making sure your website is mobile-first is a priority as the number of customers who are using mobile devices has vastly increased in recent years. Google has now said that your website has to be tailored towards a mobile device as a first priority.

 

Conclusion

Whether you a start-up, small or large business, there is an e-commerce platform to suit all of your needs. By now you should be more knowledgeable about which platform is best suited for your business. E-commerce platforms can provide an extensive range of features to help either your current online shop or your new idea which you are hoping to get underway. No matter what comparison guide you read, the only person that will know which platform is right, is you. 

Based on the platforms we have suggested, we encourage you to take a closer look and thoroughly take some time to see which one is right for your products. 

Here at Parcel2Go, we work with some of the best e-commerce platforms to integrate your shipping needs. By using Smart Send, you will be able to integrate all of your e-commerce platforms and easily manage your orders in one place. Head over to Parcel2Go to get your free quick quote today! 

 

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