If you’re planning to take your business online, than choosing an right eCommerce platform will be one of your biggest decisions. The reason is there are number of factors you need to consider while choosing one.
Now once you start researching about available eCommerce platforms in the market, you’ll find dozens of them. But the harsh truth is there is no one-size-fits-all eCommerce platform. Each of these platforms has its own set of benefits and drawbacks depending on the functionalities you want to add on your online shop.
However, if you’re beginner and looking for beneficial suggestions below are the main 3 factors that you must keep in mind when choosing an eCommerce platform.
What is Your Product All About?
Depending on your product, you can determine what eCommerce platforms you can and cannot use. For example, some platforms are built to develop to sell digital products, while few are for selling physical products. Some platform will also allow you to sell both of them, while others won’t. So the first you should do is, define your product options.
Along with this please keep in mind that certain products such as adults, alcohol, etc… are not allowed by some eCommerce platforms. Therefore, you should always read the terms and conditions when looking for eCommerce platform.
What should your online shop look like? This is the second huge factor. Most eCommerce platforms come with prebuilt themes to choose from. In these themes, you can do minor tweaks and use it for free.
However, some platforms also recommend to create a custom theme especially for your online shop. Therefore, decide whether you’re comfortable using inbuilt themes or you want it fully customized.
Which payment gateways you want your customers to use? Is it Paypal, stripe or any other specific payment gateways? Make sure that your eCommerce platform supports most of the payment gateways and integrate them.
So, now that you about the main 3 factors, let’s move forward and understand about top eCommerce platforms.
Magento is one of the most flexible and feature-rich eCommerce platform available on the market currently. Why? Well because it’s for any type of business. And since its open source, you can either do slight tweaks or tailor it completely as per your needs.
This particular eCommerce platform provides endless number of extensions and plugins. You can also have the options to choose between the free, the enterprise version and the community version which caters for large businesses.
Another great option is WordPress. It is also open source and maintained by a large group of volunteers from the community. This means, you can get free support from the community members, download and integrate free plugins and once you gain little experience, you can also contribute back to the community.
However, the main reason why it is so great to use is because there are thousands of free templates to choose from. And with the use of these templates, you can give your online shop any look you want. Also, WordPress is very SEO-friendly and you can also use WordPress SEO plugins to make it even more SEO-friendly.
Moving to the last but not least option, OroCommerce. This platform is mainly developed for B2B organizations like distributors and wholesalers. This eCommerce platform has been developed to address the additional needs such as contract pricing, personalized catalogs, and configurable payment term levels.
However, it is currently in the Alpha testing, but you can absolutely try the demo version if it suits your requirements.
Choosing the right platform for your online shop requires time, research and in-depth consideration. But, if done right, you eCommerce platform can surely help you achieve success both, in short term as well as in long term.