In the past, merchants had to pay a fortune for bespoke software to power their online stores. That's all changed, however. Thanks to advancements in technology, there are now plenty of ecommerce platforms capable of selling products and services online. But which ones are the most popular? Here, we're looking at the best and most-used ecommerce platforms available to merchants.
Let's start with Shopify, arguably the most recognisable ecommerce platform. So far, more than one million merchants use Shopify across nearly 1.5 million websites. Its popularity is largely down to ease of use – Shopify is flexible and offers different tiers catering to the needs of merchants, meaning the smallest business can easily set up an account, as can a large enterprise. It provides a quick and easy way to deploy an ecommerce backend for your business and has features like a built-in CRM, several themes to choose from and blogging functionality for your marketing needs.
Magneto is a powerful ecommerce platform allowing merchants to work off open source technologies. From a flexible shopping cart system to controlling the aesthetics, content and functionality, Magento makes life easier so you can focus on what really matters – selling products and services. It's owned by Adobe and currently powers around 1.2% of all websites on the internet. More than 250,000 merchants implement Magneto for their ecommerce stores, including the Ford Motor Company, Tommy Hilfiger, HP and Coca-Cola.
For many merchants, BigCommerce is the best overall ecommerce platform. Thanks to its thorough product search engines and customisable interface, BigCommerce gives users a high level of control over the look and feel of their digital store. It’s used by many larger retail brands, as well as brick and mortar stores looking to expand their sales to the internet. Best of all, you don’t need to know how to code because BigCommerce is designed for anyone who doesn’t have web dev skills. At the same time, tech-savvy people can tweak the HTML and CSS if they so wish.
Wix garnered its reputation as a website builder where you can use flashy templates to create stylish sites without having any coding knowledge. It also offers helpful tools that empower merchants to sell products and services. The platform lets you track orders, accept online payments, sell products on multiple channels and create abandoned cart campaigns. While it’s not the most in-depth ecommerce platform, you can get set up quickly and start selling with minimum fuss.
Salesforce commerce cloud
Salesforce is known for its powerful CRM that allows businesses to track leads through the sales funnel. It also offers a commerce cloud option where you can tailor the platform to B2C and B2B customers. As part of the Salesforce product suite, it integrates with the CRM and marketing services, meaning you can grow your business using different approaches all on one platform. Key features include order management, commerce personalisation with smart AI, global solutions for international brands and categorising by business type, needs, and industry. The only downside is its high price, which dampens Salesforce's appeal to smaller companies.
As far as open-source ecommerce is concerned, it’s hard to beat WooCommerce. You can customise the platform, which is built on WordPress, and run it behind your existing WP site. That means you get the benefits of WordPress’s powerful SEO capabilities while having a sleek platform to sell products and services on. WooCommerce offers plenty of extensions, including payment gateways, like Stripe, PayPal and Deko, as well as plug-ins for your shipping and email tracking.
Shopwired is priced similarly to Shopify and BigCommerce, making it a direct competitor to those platforms. Over the years, its popularity has grown thanks to one-click upsells, digital products and personalised features. You can also get add-ons like abandoned cart recovery and ratings and reviews. Shopwired has specific B2B features, which makes it easy for businesses to create trade and credit accounts, as well as bulk discounts and provide unique quoting systems for clients.
If you're after an affordable open-source ecommerce platform, then PrestaShop is well worth a look. It's ideal for new businesses thanks to features like inventory tracking, online shopping cart, international selling and analytics reporting. Even better, you don't need a tech background to use PrestaShop. There are also many third-party add-ons.
Squarespace is another ecommerce platform where you can get up and running without any coding background. It lets you build a website from scratch and implement an ecommerce system that sells products and services. For example, businesses selling their services can schedule appointments with online bookings and calendars, collect customer emails and build mailing lists, announce the latest news with integrated social channels and easily embed maps to help customers find your business.
The most popular ecommerce platforms
Fortunately, merchants have plenty of choices when it comes to selecting an ecommerce website. No matter your business needs, there's likely to be an option out there. The platforms on our list offer a great starting point so you can get up and running and sell your products and services on the web.
Don’t forget that you can implement platforms like Deko into your ecommerce platform and offer a simpler, more flexible way to pay for your shoppers.
Find out more about Deko and increase your sales by reducing checkout friction.