Select the Best eCommerce Website Builder for Your Business
The only problem with creating an online store today is an excessive choice of site builders. Each brand promises growth and success, but choosing the exact platform is not an easy matter.
Here, everything depends on a project’s type and goal. Still, knowing the best website builders offering the most advanced solutions for eCommerce sites is half the deal.
In this review, I gathered the eCommerce website builders I’d recommend as the best platforms for developing and launching online stores:
I’ll try to give a compact but informative profile of each of these builders so that you can select the optimal site builder for your eCommerce project. But first, let’s compare their essential options:
Quick Comparison of Top 5 eCommerce Website Builders
Now, I’m ready to outline each builder’s strong and weak points uniquely from an online store perspective. You’ll get to know how easy it is to build an eStore with its help, which must-have eCommerce features it offers, and how costly the website, based on it, will be.
Shopify – For Large eCommerce Project
If you are searching for an all-in-one solution for creating and managing an online store, Shopify must be the #1 site builder in your search list. The platform has everything to launch and grow all-size eCommerce.
Shopify Ease of Use
The key benefit of Shopify is its high usability. It takes little time to create an online store of any complexity with its help. The building process is based on a drag-and-drop builder, in which no coding knowledge is required. Other procedures like signup, your website maintenance, upgrading, migration, etc., are easy to carry out here.
Shopify eCommerce Features
In terms of features, Shopify doesn’t offer anything irrelevant, and it does offer everything an online store of any size and specification might need for proper work and stable growth. The minimum set to get on Shopify includes the following eCommerce features:
- A smart dashboard – to access relevant statistics and rule your online store properly;
- the Shopify inner payment system with no fees;
- unlimited products for all plans;
- 100+ payment providers available;
- built-in, quality SEO features;
- automated marketing features;
- POS tools;
- Shopify mobile app – to maintain your eStore on the go;
- the Shopify built-in shipping platform, and more.
Although Shopify itself can supply you with all the features you need for successful sales, the platform offers an extensive App Store with 6,000+ eCommerce-oriented extensions.
Shopify Online Store Design Features
At present, there are 70+ professional online store themes on Shopify. A number of them are available for free. There’s a blank theme, too, to let you build your unique website from point zero.
Shopify’s design possibilities will satisfy experts and beginners. The platform allows access to HTML/JS/CSS code. If you are a non-coder, you can easily customize your store’s design, too: themes, styles, colors, fonts, etc., can be changed with a couple of simple clicks.
Shopify offers five plans, the most interesting of which are Basic ($24/month), Shopify ($69/month) and Advanced ($299/month) The Starter plan incorporates the minimum of features (enough for a startup), but its cost is only $5/mo!
Shopify Plus is addressed to large enterprises, and its cost is $2,000/month No free plan is available, but the company offers a free trial for all the packages.
Shopify Website Examples
What will your Shopify eStore look like? Let’s overview several examples of the existing Shopify websites:
WooCommerce – Open-Source Store Builder
When you plan to turn your WordPress website into an online store, WooCommerce is the exact website builder you need. Like WordPress, this is an open-source platform that can rather be seen as a WordPress extension than an independent website builder.
WooCommerce Ease of Use
WooCommerce allows unprecedented freedom in building and maintaining your online store, but it’s not a beginner-friendly platform. Certain coding skills and web design knowledge is required here.
WooCommerce eCommerce Features
WordPress and WooCommerce are plugin-powered platforms. That is, your online store’s functional capabilities will depend highly on various plugins, available for free and for an extra cost. Do not expect ready-to-use solutions. But when you have a crisp plan and are ready to invest funds in your project, your eCommerce possibilities will be endless with WooCommerce.
WooCommerce Online Store Design Features
WooCommerce has 800+ templates professionally designed for online shops. Full access to code will let you create an online store just the way you plan it. Its view can be 100% unique. However, you need to know how to do it! Another way is to hire a WordPress specialist who will do the entire job.
WooCommerce WooCommerce Cost
The platform itself is free, but you’ll definitely need to pay extra costs anyway to make your online store workable. The first thing to think about is hosting – it doesn’t go as a built-in feature on WooCommerce. Then, be ready to pay for premium themes, eCommerce extensions, etc.
WooCommerce Website Examples
WooCommerce websites usually impress with their originality and functional diversity. You may judge the site builder’s power by observing the following example of WooCommerce online stores:
Ecwid – Free For One Product Store
Go for Ecwid if your goal is to convert an existing site into an online store. This is an ideal solution for low-budget projects. The platform offers a free plan, and its strong points are crucial for eCommerce: no ads and up to ten products allowed.
Ecwid Ease of Use
Ecwid is an easy-to-use platform with a clear interface and a convenient cPanel. It takes minutes to create an account and start selling your goods on your existing website or through social media.
Need to build a new online store? Want to launch an eCommerce mobile app? Ecwid’s intuitively manageable builder is at your disposal, and no coding or web design skills are necessary.
Ecwid eCommerce Features
Ecwid is a powerful instrument for managing online stores. Its most useful features include the following:
- Fast connection to eBay, Google Shopping, Amazon, TikTok, Facebook, and many other social media platforms;
- digital goods supported;
- the ability to create a dedicated mobile app;
- 40+ payment gateways, including Stripe, PayPal, Vend, Square, and more;
- automated marketing tools;
- your website available in up to 45 languages, etc.
So, Ecwid might be the fastest way to launch an online store. You can use it as an eCommerce plugin and start sales at once.
Ecwid Online Store Design Features
The Ecwid Instant Site Builder is beginner-friendly. It allows adding CSS code to your website. However, if coding is not your cup of coffee, you can easily build an Ecwid eStore without touching a line of code.
You only need to choose one of the 70+ templates available on the platform and customize it according to your project’s concept. Its predetermined features will include mobile responsiveness, SEO, and more. Plug in marketing specialties to your newly-created site, and it’ll be ready to serve your customers.
Ecwid has a free plan, and it’s a workable solution for small-budget projects. The paid packages are Venture ($19/month), Business ($39/month), and Unlimited ($99/month) Prices are attractive. However, be ready for several limitations. For instance, only the most expensive plan will let you sell an unlimited number of products.
Ecwid Website Examples
Ecwid can help you build a spectacular online store with an engaging interface. Here are some of the best examples:
Zyro – For Small Online Stores
Zyro is tailored for individual entrepreneurs and small companies. The platform offers just enough eCommerce features for managing the simplest online store. Zyro belongs to the cheapest solutions available in the market.
Zyro Ease of Use
Zyro is based on drag-and-drop tech so that a new site can be created in minutes. The builder contains a smaller number of features, so managing them – as well as maintaining the whole website – won’t present any problem even to a total beginner.
Zyro eCommerce Features
Zyro will supply a small online store with all the necessary tools. Among them, you are sure to find:
- a compact dashboard to manage all things from one place;
- a minimum of marketing and SEO tools enough to boost simple eCommerce;
- a convenient and easy-to-manage CRM;
- good instruments for statistics and reports;
- integrations with Google Analytics, MoneyData, and more.
Zyro specialties include multiple currencies, easy shipping tools, and a logo generator.
Zyro Online Store Design Features
Zyro has over a hundred templates. Besides the blank one, it offers professional themes in about 20 categories (Photography, Travel, etc.) About 30 templates can be found in the eCommerce folder. Editing any of them is a simple matter. Additionally, you can engage the Zyro AI builder to help you automatically generate a proper design for your online store.
Zyro offers two paid plans at present: Website ($11.99/month) and Business ($14.99/month) Frankly, only the Business package is a proper solution for an eStore since it incorporates features for selling products online. The platform is famed for its discounts. It guarantees 30-day money back for all plans.
Zyro Website Examples
For a visitor, a Zyro website’s functionality is enough to order a product, process the payment, contact support via online chat, etc. You can view several Zyro online stores using the links below.
BigCommerce – Optimal Combination Price/Quality
Among BigCommerce clients, you can find widely-known brands. No wonder. The platform is addressed to large businesses in the first place. This is a great tool to sell products and optimize your website for stable growth.
BigCommerce Ease of Use
BigCommerce is great for skilled developers while tricky for beginners. A website based on BigCommerce won’t be easy to maintain either. Although the platform offers a drag-and-drop website builder, you’ll need to deal with code to bring your online store’s design and functionality to perfection.
BigCommerce eCommerce Features
The feature set of BigCommerce is truly massive. I’ll list only the most significant of them:
- B2B solutions for easy payments, creating price lists, customer groups, and many more;
- several POS systems, including Teamwork Commerce;
- checkout API & SDK;
- integration with marketplaces like Google Shopping, eBay, and Amazon;
- social media sales (Facebook, Instagram, etc.);
- an extended set of instruments for international eCommerce;
- fast-loading sites thanks to global CDN tech;
- SEO built-in and third-party tools;
- tools for advanced analytics, and more.
So, you can hardly figure out a feature that BigCommerce doesn’t have within its plans. The only necessity is to know how to manage all this.
BigCommerce Online Store Design Features
You’ll have a choice of 200+ commerce-oriented themes on the platform. 12 of them are available for free. All themes are mobile-responsive and easy to customize with the help of the drag-and-drop editor.
When looking for 100% unique design solutions, you’re welcome to edit CSS/HTML/JS code. You can build your online store on WordPress and then integrate it with BigCommerce. The platform has the Preview option, so you’ll be able to watch your website before publishing it.
There are four plans available on BigCommerce: Standard ($29.95/month), Plus ($79.95/month), Pro ($299.95/month), and Enterprise (custom pricing). Similarly to Shopify, the prices here are higher than with other competitors, but BigCommerce does offer good value for money. All plans go with a 15-day free trial.
BigCommerce Website Examples
Many BigCommerce-based websites look truly gorgeous. Take several examples to test their functionality and convenience:
How I Compare eCommerce Website Builders
Comparing website builders is a multi-stage procedure. There’s no point in writing a review on a site builder for me if I haven’t created at least one real project with its help. After the website is launched, I can say for sure if the website builder has enough for the offer price.
The vital factors to pay attention to in the first place include the platform’s usability, template quality, SEO options, and the range of eCommerce tools. Today, social media connections and payment gateways also play an important role. Only after checking all this shall I go to the pricing section of the platform I’m working with.
Yes, for most clients, pricing does matter. However, in my experience, basing their choice on price affordability leads to problems in the following stages, thus requiring even more expenses than they could have had with a more expensive but well-equipped plan.
How to Choose the Right Site Builder for an Online Store?
Together with generally important options, you should also take into account specific functions your online store might require. First of all, the choice of the best site builder depends on the product or service you’re going to sell.
For Selling Digitals
Here, it’s crucial to find a platform with low or absent transaction fees. A good site builder for selling software, music, educational courses, and whatever should offer the broadest choice of payment gateways. It should also contain templates – easily customizable according to the digital product’s nature.
For Selling Clothes
When you sell apparel, having a well-organized catalog is a must. Your website should allow customers to pick the very item they want and easily purchase it using a convenient payment method. So, the first things to check are Inventory & Customer Management tools, the number of allowed products, and Order/Shipping instruments.
For Selling a Single Product
For a one-product online store, it is important to find a way to reach its audience. So, the ideal site builder for it is the one offering good analytics and reports. Moreover, the site should be integrated with the top-popular social networks and marketplaces.
For Selling Art Pieces
An artist who wishes to sell their artworks online needs an easily-manageable website with an impressive portfolio/gallery. A perfect site builder will offer them an easy-to-use editor with quality templates and enough customization options. An easily connected shopping cart, a blog, and seamless social media integrations are the main components the site builder should offer in this case.
There might be loads of nuances important for your choice of a site builder. However, I’m ready to advise a universal solution that can suit almost every project, regardless of its complexity and budget. In my experience, this solution is Shopify. The platform is designed for one general purpose – selling products.
A person with any level of expertise can build a successful online store with the help of Shopify. The platform can supply a store with all the necessary features to manage and promote goods, accept payments, offer campaigns, etc. Its prices are not the lowest. However, all Shopify plans offer the best value for money in the industry.
The other competitors included in this comparison can also serve as workable, quality solutions in certain specific cases. Thus, WooCommerce is the best option for WordPress websites, while Zyro is ideal for small shops with minimum requirements.