Comparison of e-Commerce Application Platforms – Shopify Vs. BigCommerce Vs. Magneto Vs. WooCommerce Vs. Volusion

It can be tough when you’re trying to decide on the particular e-commerce platform to choose for your business. It’s a big decision and whichever platform you choose is definitely going to impact on your business going forward.

Almost everyone had this dilemma when they were starting out. However, know that there is no such thing as the best e-commerce platform out there, as this is entirely relative. Just to give you an idea of the number of e-commerce applications out there, here is a list of a few of them; 3dcart, BigComemrce, Volusion, Shopify, Magneto, Gumroad, Wix, WooCommerce, Magneto, Big Cartel, Ecwid, and many more! And each of these applications ‘claim’ they are the best! But that’s how it goes, isn’t it?

In any case, our focus here is on Shopify, BigCommerce, Magneto, WooCommerce, and Volusion. At least, these are the mostly used e-commerce platforms. We will be comparing them in terms of these three parameters; pricing, features, and ease of set up.

This is the first thing most merchants consider when deciding on an e-commerce platform. Price is a factor, but may not entirely be the deciding factor.
Shopify – $9/month, $29/month, $79/month, and $299/month. These price ranges depend on your choice of package during subscription.
Magneto – $0 for the open source software, $100/year for hosting, up to $15,000 or even $50,000/year for premium edition. The premium version is used by bigger businesses that need customizable options and more advanced features.

BigCommerce – $29.95/month, $79.95/month, $249.95/month, and premium edition up to $900/month.
WooCommerce – $0 for the software, $100/year for hosting.
Volusion – $29/month, $79/month, $299/month, and custom price plan.

Shopify – Subscription-based application that comes with a subdomain and hosting space for your store, multiple payment getaways, order management features, product management features, different sales channel, free 100+ professional themes, unlimited bandwidth, good report on store and sales activity.
Magneto – Subscription-based application that comes with a subdomain and hosting space for your store, multiple payment getaways, order management features, product management features, unlimited bandwidth, free 100+ professional themes, excellent analytics module (purchase funnels, reports, abandoned carts statistics, etc.), you can sell on other marketplaces and social media.
BigCommerce – Stand-alone and subscription-based application, multiple payment getaways, order management features plus shipping charges, product management features, bandwidth depends on host, some themes available on the web, up to 5,000 extensions available, multiple channel support.
WooCommerce – Stand-alone application but needs to be installed on a web server, deeply integrated with WordPress website, multiple payment getaways, order management features, product management features, thousands of available extensions, bandwidth depends on host, free and paid themes available on the web, geo-location support.
Volusion – Subscription-based application, multiple payment getaways, order management features, product management features, integrated dropshipping app, checkout on your own domain, great analytics tool.

Ease of set up
Shopify – This e-commerce platform is probably the most popular among all the e-commerce applications in the marketplace. Sign-up process is a breeze with user guided every step of the way. Your email address, store name and password are all you need to get started. After which, they guide you through a series of questions to understand your business so they can fully optimize your store accordingly. Once you’re done with sign-up, you’re re-directed to your dashboard. It does a great job of pointing you to the most important tasks you can perform as you manage your store.

Magneto – One thing about Magneto is that sometimes it’s problematic to get your store launched. Firstly, to get started, you’ll have to use a one-click installer with your host (GoDaddy, SiteGround, Bluehost) or get the main software pack and install it manually on the web. Although, there are lots of tutorials on how to install magneto manually, it’s not recommended for a total novice to the e-commerce landscape, as it’s rather a technical process. Once set up, you’re taken to your dashboard, which is packed with all the e-commerce features you can imagine.

Getting started with Magneto might be hard for someone just getting into e-commerce. It’s provides with all available features and let’s you choose the ones you need. This can be a problem for newbies. The platform is best suited for bigger businesses, as it’s learning curve is steeper than Shopify.
BigCommerce – BigCommerce is somewhat similar to Shopify. Sign-up is easy. No need to download and install anything. It just asks you a couple of questions about your business to get you properly set up and that’s it.
WooCommerce – It’s a WordPress e-commerce application, so setting up a WooCommerce store is more than easy. All you need is host your domain with a good hosting company, set up WordPress and then install the WooCommerce plugin with one-click installs for WordPress.
Volusion – An easy to set up and use e-commerce platform with a good UI design. If you don’t want to bother with the design of your website, then Volusion is a good choice. Plus, there is nothing to install, everything is web-based.

Like mentioned earlier, there is no ‘best’ e-commerce platform. You just have to choose what works for you. Let the above comparison be your guide!

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