(This post was originally published on June 8th, 2012. We’ve updated it for accuracy and completeness.)
When running an online retail business, you need a reliable eCommerce shopping cart solution. Luckily, there are plenty of eCommerce platforms out there to choose from.
So how do you choose the best option for your business?
There are a wide variety of eCommerce shopping carts on the market. Each one comes with a whole host of features built to make your customers have an easy and stress-free experience on your site. The key is determining which online shopping cart best suites your needs based on the technical resources you have available, how much web selling experience you have, and your web development skills.
Here are some of the top eCommerce shopping cart solutions.Magento Shopping Cart
Some of the largest and most successful brands in the world use Magento. Magento offers solutions for small, medium and large companies, providing plenty of options in each package. Their first package is Magento Community, while Magento Enterprise is for bigger companies that need to host multiple sites.
Magento prides itself on being able to offer full customization opportunities for your site, along with targeted marketing tools, easy search functionality, and flexibility through an open-source program. Accounting, payment processing, shipping, logistics and more become exponentially more manageable through Magento’s services and, depending on your budget, it is easily one of the best options you can utilize in your online business.
Check out some of other resources regarding Magento:
- How to Get Started with Magento
- The Need-to-Know Basics of Magento B2B
- Shopify vs Magento Community: An Unbiased Comparison
- How to Use Magento to Improve Customer Loyalty
- The Top 5 Magento Hosting Providers
Shopify Shopping Cart
While Magento is the most popular platform, Shopify has the fastest growing customer base. Shopify is a fully-hosted solution that allows you to get your new business up and running quickly. For enterprise companies, Shopify also offers Shopify Plus.
Shopify covers basic eCommerce functionality such as managing inventory and orders. They also have an Apps marketplace that allows you to enhance your store with add-ons such as customer service, marketing, shipping, and POS integration. Shopify also makes it easy for you to expand to new sales channels such as Amazon, Facebook, and Pinterest’s buy pins.
Shopify starts are $29/month and increases to $299/month for advanced features. Along with monthly pricing, they charge transaction fees. Overall, Shopify is usually less expensive than solutions like Magento. With Magento, your site might be free, but you’ll pay for hosting, security, and web design.
Check out other articles about Shopify to learn more:
- Shopify vs WooCommerce: Which One is Right for You?
- How to Find and Sell Wholesale Products on Shopify
- Shopify vs Volusion: Start Your eCommerce Business Right
- Shopify Multiple Stores: How to Overcome Common Challenges
BigCommerce Shopping Cart
BigCommerce is an especially enticing eCommerce option, mostly due to its unique capabilities, from allowing your business to sell on Facebook, eBay, and Amazon to increasing your position on Google, selling products on iPhones, and easily sending automated emails.
A network of designers is available to help design your online shopping cart, giving you a layout that is sure to attract potential customers. And better yet, BigCommerce offers four different payment plans that will fit the budget of any business.
If you’re leaning towards BigCommerce, here’s some ways to improve your store:
Volusion eCommerce Software
Like every successful eCommerce platform, Volusion provides all of the essential services, from credit card processing and marketing services to SSL certificates, domain names, design services and more. Volusion also offers live chat assistance for immediate help and a fraud score tool that protects your business from fraudulent orders.
With easy-to-install templates, certain affordability and plenty of support, Volusion is a great option for a business that is just beginning to develop its online presence.
Trying to decide between Shopify and Volusion? Check out this article.
WooCommerce Shopping Cart
WooCommerce is often a popular choice for new eCommerce sellers. It’s an easy to use, open-source shopping cart solution.
Since it is an open-source platform, WooCommerce gives merchants the creative freedom to build the site they need. Like Magento, this is mandatory to some merchants.
It’s also important to point out that WooCommerce is plug-in to the content management system WordPress. WordPress is a worldwide-known site used to host websites for businesses and bloggers. We use WordPress for our own site here at nChannel.
WooCommerce has an advantage of being able to offer merchants more beyond just eCommerce. You’ll be able to easily build out a site that is more than just a shopping cart. However, for some merchants, these are features you might not want or ever use. It just depends on your business type.
Learn how WooCommerce stacks up against other eCommerce shopping cart solutions:
- Magento vs WooCommerce (WordPress): Open Source eCommerce Showdown
- Shopify vs WooCommerce: Which One is Right For You?
Finding the Best eCommerce Software for You
Many of these eCommerce shopping carts share some of the same tools and features. The key is finding one that best suits your needs. You can determine that by considering the size of your business and how much you know about essential aspects such as design and marketing. Narrow it down to two or three choices then use our articles to get into the specific differences of each.
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