Shopify is a great eCommerce platform but you cannot be sure of its greatness until you make a comparison with its competitors or alternatives. If you are wishing to present your product on an eCommerce platform, Shopify seems to be the best option to choose considering its ease of development and the kind of value added features you can expect with so little expenses.
But until you make complete competitive evaluation of the various platforms available, you just cannot be sure of which platform to suit your purpose best.
To be honest, there are number of similar features that other platforms provide you and in these respects Shopify doesn’t differ much from others.
But in respect of many other features and qualities Shopify is really a great platform to choose. To explain the competition let us feature here the competitors of Shopify and evaluate their pros and cons.
BigCommerce is a very well known eCommerce platform which like Shopify does not need to you to be very tech savvy or experienced in programming. Being a platform to provide hosting services simultaneously BigCommerce is one of the most comprehensive platforms.
The platform allows you set your business by uploading the products and adding a payment system quicker than you think. The platform also offers round the clock support over phone, email and live chat.
Magento is also one of the most powerful eCommerce platforms that can easily be considered as a Shopify alternative. Being a free open source platform the community edition is actually not a “full service” platform in the way Shopify or BigCommerce is.
Though you can avail Magento Community Edition for free you need to be quite a programmer or hire a developer to put together all that are required to work as an eCommerce platform. You also need to have your own hosting services and configure the tools. The most demotivating part is, there is no round the clock customer service to help you troubleshoot issues.
On the other hand there are few upsides as well. For example, being a very flexible eCommerce builder you can easily incorporate many features needed in modern eCommerce websites. But if you do not want to spend money on developers and want a simple platform that allows building on your own Magento may not be the ideal choice for you.
WordPress, world’s most popular blogging platform now came up with a feature rich eCommerce platform as well. In fact WooCommerce has powered quite a few eCommerce stores. If your business website is built with WordPress, you can further avail the WooCommerce tools and turn it into a feature rich eCommerce website.
A vast array of Woo Themes working automatically and seamlessly with WordPress.com can just allow you creating the custom look and feel of your eCommerce store.
To explain the power of the WooCommerce we can cite many business websites powered by this. More than 29% of all online stores are now powered by WooCommerce.
The only minus point is that it is a free and open source platform and this is why you cannot avail the automatic development help as in other platforms like BigCommerce or Shopify.
You need to hire a developer with experience in working with the platform to build a shopping site with all the features you require.
Wix is another easy to use drag and drop website builder. The big advantage of using Wix is that you can place content anywhere on the website and can customize the layout to your liking. Wix eCommerce is an easy to use platform requiring no technical knowledge or programming skill.
There are some new features like Wix Code and SEO Wiz that will allow you creating web page dynamically and help finding the web pages easily in search ranks. Wix offers a comprehensive range of features with everything you can find to build a sophisticated eCommerce store.
Weebly by many considerations is one of the easiest drag and drop builders of websites available in the present day market. In comparison to Wix, this platform has fewer tools but they are more user-friendly than ever.
Their eCommerce platform is equipped with ready to deploy features making it very easy to use for non-technical persons as well. Though by many considerations there are not many features in Weebly that can be compared to BigCommerce or Shopify.
But when it comes to intuitive and user friendly features, Weebly comes as a strong alternative. Though you do not have a strong support as with paid platforms, the simplicity and user friendliness make it an ideal tool.
Finally, to make your choice you need to have few considerations clear, For people who already tested Shopify and found that it does not fit for them, can go for any of the alternatives mentioned above.
While using Magento and WooCommerce, you are required to manage the technical aspects yourself or you can go for hiring developers with technical knowledge. But positive thing about these platforms is that you can customize them more and often.
In contrast, Wix and Weebly are mainly drag and drop website builders that allow building a website without writing a single line of code. Without least technical skill or knowledge you can create these websites.
From the above mentioned comparison it is clear that you need to choose your eCommerce platform based on your priority, budget, technical skill, customization needs, etc.
While using Magento and WordPress you may have a complete free and open source platform, but building your eCommerce store with them may require more time and resources.
In case you have no technical skill and just want the simplest way to make your eCommerce website live in quickest possible time, then strike out Magento and WordPress from your scheme of things.
From all these considerations it is clear that you have few credible alternatives to Shopify and your final choice depends upon the cost factor, customization needs and your technical skills.