Which eCommerce Platform?
If you’re asking yourself the question, “which eCommerce platform is right for me?”, we think the simple answer is Shopify. If you fall into the category of a “small business” then the answer is even easier then you might think. It’s true, there are many eCommerce platforms from which to choose. You may have even heard some of the names, Shopify, Big Commerce, Yahoo Stores, Magento, Squarespace, WooCommerce, Volusion, Wix. Those are just the trendy solutions available today, but there’s many more, making your decision potentially that much tougher. Over the years, we’ve built client sites on several of the aforementioned platforms, from Shopify to Magento. We’ve figured out what works and what doesn’t. If you’re looking for a hosted eCommerce solution, hands-down, Shopify leads the pack.
Difference between Hosted and Open Source Solutions?
In today’s eCommerce market, there are two main types of platforms available:
- Fully Hosted
- Open Source
For the vast majority of small business owners, they are likely looking for a hosted solution. While it’s true that Open Source platforms (like Magento) offer unlimited customizations, having this degree of control is often overkill for smaller businesses with less of a budget and less of a team to implement and manage the site. Also, there’s often a considerable price tag attached with a fully hosted solution. Plus, there’s going to be a fair amount of learning before your team can astutely work their way around the backend.
Why Choose a Hosted Solution?
Hosted solutions take a lot of the guesswork out of managing your eCommerce website. Hosted solutions can make the most sense and there are 3 main reasons why:
- Easier to create
- Further optimization at your finger tips
- Store Maintenance – highly simplified
A hosted solution is often referred to as a “turnkey” solution. Many of the difficulties associated with creating an eCommerce website are negated with a hosted solution. Challenges such as finding the right hosting provider, importing products or images, creating a site’s navigational structure, adding discounts or enhancing SEO attributes, aren’t really challenges at all. The backend of a hosted solution, like Shopify, already contains a well-thought-out User Interface (UI) which takes much of the guess work out of the equation.
You’ll find that hosted platforms also provide the ability for businesses to scale. As your business grows, so too can your website. With open-source platforms scalability can often be a painful and expensive experience. With hosted providers, they often will have an App “library” which provides users an almost unlimited number of additional features and functionality that already work with the existing backend.
The provider (Shopify) takes care of the day to day store maintenance. Things like security, server quality, SSL availability, mobile responsiveness, platform expansion – are all taken care of by the host. That means more time can be spent on what really matters – running and growing the business.
There’s a lot of reasons why we’d suggest Shopify above other hosted-solutions but we’ll try to keep this short and sweet. Shopify is a cutting-edge platform that is constantly evolving. At this point, other platforms are trying to keep up with the high degree of innovation and performance that Shopify is excelling at. The perfect hosted solution is Shopify and here’s why:
- No product limits
- Lot’s of themes to choose from
- Offers FULL storefront customization
- Great backend analytics
- Tons of sales channels available
- Lots of Payment Gateways
- Industry-leading platform secuirty
- 99.9% uptime
- Scalable functionality via Apps
- Integrates with most popular 3rd party software such as MailChimp, Quickbooks and more
If you’re looking to start your fist eCommerce website or looking to migrate from an antiquated platform to something entirely new, we’ll hope you’ll give Shopify a try. Shopify is so convinced you’ll end up wanting to stay on the platform, they offer customers a 14 Day Free Trial period. This gives you a chance to really dig into the backend to find all the amazing features they offer. If it turns out you’re looking for a more customized Shopify store beyond what’s offered or you’re looking for help with migrating your products to the platform, C Dev Web Design can assist you. Here’s a few Shopify Stores we’ve created: