Best E-Commerce Platforms For Small Businesses.
In this blog we will discuss the best E-commerce platforms for small businesses, for you to host and build your e-commerce website. This includes Shopify, GoDaddy and many more. At the end I will recommend the best for a small business.
E-commerce is such a diverse business industry, to put it simply these are businesses who only operate online. They often don’t have a physical building or premises, but may have a warehouse for products.
This means e-commerce businesses must have the best system in place to sell products, that ensures the best customer experience.
To deal with the diverse range of businesses, many e-commerce platforms have been created, we have SAAS, wordpress plugins, along with many other platforms.
So what are the best e-commerce platforms for small businesses.
Let’s start with SaaS (software as a system), which is software created to ensure e-commerce websites can be set up, payments taken, custom designs and often the ability to accept payments in person.
First in the SaaS category is Shopify, as a Shopify partner I cannot recommend this software enough. Shopify allows businesses to set up their own online store, market your website and accept many different one click payments. All these features allow for increased sales capability, and ensuring the customers enjoy their time on your website. By the same token, I can also share some weaknesses for small businesses. This includes the steep learning curve.
Along with all these features, the simple to use platform allows for small business owners to quickly update, change and update prices on the website.
The best feature for e-commerce is the broad range of apps on offer, these apps help to make your business the best success, such as SEO, thank you emails and referral rewards for referrals.
Shopify is also great for scaling up small websites. So if your e-commerce business has an unexpected demand, you can quickly add all your products to the store in a matter of minutes. This is due to the amount of power that Shopify packs, this means your website will not struggle with site speed.
Which are the next best e-commerce platforms for small businesses?
First Of All, Squarespace is very competitive in the e-commerce industry, again following suit with shopify as being a SaaS company. Whilst, Shopify is very good all round, squarespace offers the best range of templates in the e-commerce platform industry. Therefore, allows for great diversity within the design aspect of each website.
Again, the other advantage is the wide range of features, that don’t come as apps, allowing for that ease of use score to be lifted. With the e-commerce tool, the appointment booking, along with restaurant reservations being very simple to install. They, also offer social media templates and email marketing. Along with the great feature of in-person payments.
In terms of pricing they offer 4 different packages, with the last two options allowing for selling online without transaction fees, which is a really good deal.
The best part is on the go website editing and store customisation, this allows for quick editing when not at the desk.
The offer of support for you really helps with the difficult steps, but also means if you use a specialist you have the ability to make your own adaptations of the website. However, the major issue with Squarespace is the low page speed that often occurs, this results in poor user experience. But I hear that continues updates are in force to try to reduce this impact.
Squarespace is highly recommend for small sized e-commerce businesses, those who require minimal pages, such as a blog, home page and product pages. If you’re quick this month they have a special 10% off discount.
That concludes the best SaaS platforms for e-commerce. Both offering very different options in terms of design, ease of use and analytics. I recommend you check both out.
One of the more expensive e-commerce platforms is Bigcommerce with prices starting at: 29.95 for the starting deal. This limits your income to £50k per annum. However this price allows for improved features compared to others. This includes the POS integrations, which is great for those businesses with a physical shop.
We then get onto templates, these are some of the best templates out there, this is because they are designed by some top class designers. However, BigCommerce only offers 12 free themes, but does have a lot of paid for designs, ranging in price for $145 – $235. This results in a higher cost for your website, however this can save you some time.
BigCommerce has a very large amount of payment methods to choose from, this includes Apple Pay, PayPal and Amazon Pay along with your normal payment methods, this means all types of payments can be taken.
A lot of users for Big Commerce mentioned that it was a steep learning curve when learning to build an online store with BigCommerce, however, many tutorials can be found online.
If you were to use BigCommerce I would ensure you can use the features on offer, but also ensure your business will make enough income to cover the rather expensive startup costs, associated with BigCommerce.
Best e-commerce platforms – General
Wix have two different platforms to choose from, with the newest addition of editor X. However, this review is specific to WIX’s main platform.
Before we start this information, I must say WIX is not an e-commerce specific website builder. Instead focuses on all aspects of websites, include blogs, portfolios and many other templates.
With WIX offering over 800 templates on their site, only 500 of which are e-commerce with some being better than others. But this expected with the wide range of designers they have on the platform.
Again, WIX has a mobile app, similar to Squarespace which allows for on the go changes. This includes blogging and discounts for those times you’re away from the desk, which I know isn’t very often! These apps are a game changer for running a business,
One great advantage of wix is the ability to make your site multilingual. This means you can offer to a global audience with the user not having to translate your page. All this is done with a few click of the mouse! This is great for all global businesses.
With WIX having a What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG). This means you can create an e-commerce website in hours. This results in being able to sell in the same day you purchase your domain.
This platform falls under the basic category. However, this results in a better user experience when designing. This ensures your website is ready to go in minutes.
GoDaddy is the number one to buy and run domains. But did you know they offer a website builder + marketing package?
This platform boasts the best ADI in the website design, which means you can have a website design in 30mins, which is great if you have limited time. However, this results in a limited customisation for any who wants something bespoke or top of the range. Make sure this is something that has been considered when creating a website.
Now, when we get to different features of your products, such as colours, size and different prices, we fall into difficulties, this is because GoDaddy limits the amount of product variations you can have. This means a simple website will flourish on GoDaddy, but anything like drop shipping will not work.
Where this platform stands out is the marketing tools, they offer full emails marketing, social media marketing and selling through eBay, Etsy and many more is made so easy.
This is because GoDaddy will keep you inventory synced on one location. Thus, meaning you can track where products are and how many are in stock. Along with emails for abandoning cart means that your business can run smoothly with no errors.
The best e-commerce platforms for small businesses.
As discussed in the section above, we have decided which platform does what, why it does what it does. Along with, how complicated each platform is to use. So which platform is the best e-commerce platform for small businesses?
Based on which platform is best for a small business. The crew have decided that for e-commerce the best platform is: Shopify. This is due to the great features available online, the price range along with the quickest to pick up, and has the best features available. Find Out More Here