Choosing the ‘right’ e-commerce platform for your business is not the easiest thing to do because there are so many available. It is very similar to Social Media Management tools in that respect. Few people (if any) have the time to assess all available e-c0mmerce options. Even if you had time to visit their websites that would not be enough to get a true understanding of their strengths and weaknesses. Really you should ‘try before you buy’. After identifying your e-commerce requirements, identify your top two choices and sign up for a free trial. This post is not a review of all possible alternatives, instead it is an explanation of why we recommend Shopify as an e-commerce solution for small and mid sized businesses.
Why do we Recommend Shopify?
Shopify is an affordable e-commerce solution, the entry level package which enables you to sell with a Buy Button for Facebook is only $9 USD per month. This level does not give you a full store, the basic plan for a store is $29 per month. The cheapest option on another platform comes from Big Cartel in the form of its most basic Gold package which offers (5 products, 1 image per product, basic stats, basic customization and no discount code functionality) for free. Despite this free offer from Big Cartel Shopify still represents great value.
Ease of Use
Shopify is very easy for the non techy individual to use. There are e-commerce platforms available that require a reasonably high level of technical proficiency, Magento is a good example. Shopify is not like that. An e-commerce newbie can set up a store on Shopify in around 30 minutes.
Design and Apps
If you are intending to sell online then aesthetics are important. Shopify has the best range of themes and customizeable apps in the marketplace. Themes range from free to $180.00 USD and there are also over 1000 customizeable apps that include many free and paid options.
Imagine choosing a cheap e-commerce solution and then realising that it does not have the bandwidth to scale up quickly if you find that you have category leading best selling items. That would be immensely frustrating. Fortunately Shopify is very versatile and can cope with surges in web traffic and demand. You really can start off small and grow quickly. Here’s a great example of that from a company called Mama & Little, click here to read their story.
There are currently over 370,000 Shopify stores and while we would never suggest that you blindly follow the crowd this level of popularity is significant. This makes it the most popular consumer e-commerce solution. When you launch your e-commerce store on Shopify many consumers are reassured. It is a great foundation on which to build your online store.
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This is blog post post number 396.
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