With over 1 million businesses using the platform in 2020, Shopify has become the go-to solution for many e-commerce store owners.
The platform has grown considerably in recent years, with a vibrant app store helping to take stores to a new level. Yet, there are many excellent Shopify alternatives that may be a better fit for many online entrepreneurs.
Even with the many Shopify plugins available, Shopify won't be for everyone and it can be wise to look at the competition before you make a commitment.
The following e-commerce solutions all have their merits, helping to make them viable Shopify Alternatives:
WooCommerce is a plugin that turns a WordPress site into an e-commerce store. It is one of the most popular free e-commerce platforms used by businesses online today.
The plugin is both free and open source, so was quickly able to grow in popularity. Although there are plenty of free content management systems out there at the moment, WooCommerce is probably the one with the best
It also offers a huge number of plugins, so it‘s easy to customize WooCommerce to suit your specific style and requirements. They also provide plenty of analytic tools so you can easily collect data about your sales.
To get the absolute best functionality, though, you will need some additional paid add-ons.
There are numerous add-ons that can be used to simplify tasks, including email marketing, payment integration, and dropshipping.
Users who like WordPress will often choose WooCommerce to continue with a familiar platform.
BigCommerce is a hosted solution used by many different stores from smaller businesses through to large brands.
Along with the attractive store themes you would expect, BigCommerce includes many more advanced features.
You can integrate with payment processors like Braintree, Square, and Stripe, while advanced shipping features ensure you get up-to-date shipping costs.
Additionally, the reports and metrics help you make the right decisions about your business based on analytics.
Zoey is accessible to beginners, but comes with enough functionality to satisfy more experienced users.
The included templates are attractive and professional, with the ability to adapt them to your needs.
While it may appeal to beginners, the pricing may be prohibitive to newbies without a sales track record.
Similar to the previous options, there is an app marketplace featuring a variety of quality extensions.
Volusion aims to make building and operating a store as easy as possible.
Site design can be performed without any knowledge of code, while the sites are all hosted on Volusion servers.
The tool also includes features for SEO and social media management.
Volusion integrates with the major payment processors, allows for easy inventory management, and has an optimized checkout experience.
SquareSpace is an adaptable product that lets you develop an entire sales process.
This includes making comprehensive design changes and building a custom checkout process.
You can make much more than a simple store, adding options for digital products, recurring subscriptions, and blogging.
Similar to previous products, you can choose to integrate many extensions for payment processing, email marketing, and more.
Big Cartel is one of the simpler e-commerce solutions, suited for smaller sellers who won't need to scale up.
The tool is often used by artists and musicians to sell their products, with a free option to get started.
When you intend to grow a large store with complex inventory, payment, and data requirements, Big Cartel won't be the solution for you.
However, smaller sellers can get started immediately using the simple design and store management tools.
Shopee is a regional focused alternative to Shopify that has been gaining a wide user base over the past few years in Southeast Asia and Brazil.
With it's sales and development in based Singapore, since 2015 the Shopee e-commerce platform has been spreading across the region and takes pride in its mobile first focus.
To get up to speed on the platform, Shopee University is the place to go to find out if this e-commerce up-and-comer is right for you.
Magento is a feature rich highly customizable alternative to Shopify that is open source and tends to be used by mid-to-enterprise users with in-house programmers because the advanced customization enabled by Magento takes coding skills.
Magento has a large and growing community that can help you to maximize your e-commerce options using the platform. It offers a huge number of plugins which you canuse to add functionality to your online shop, many of which are extremely cheap.
Magento is also extremely SEO friendly so you can easily rank highly in search engine results.
You can use their free community edition to start your store without any financial
commitment. The free and open-source version of this Adobe product will incur costs when the fact that it requires self-hosting, themes, plugins and development.
With that said there is a cloud hosted version, Magento Commerce - which entry level cost start at nearly USD $2,000 per month.
So, if you are a big brand in need of highly customizable platform and features similar to PrestaShop, another open source platform, then Magento can work for you.
PrestaShop is another open source alternative to Shopify that launched in 2005 based in Paris, France. Nearly 680,000 businesses use PrestaShop and they offer a forum with millions of posts to help you master the platform.
PrestaShop is free and it's relatively simple to install and set up. There is also a sizable community of PrestaShop users on the official forum - over a million in total - who can help you troubleshoot any issues you might have.
Although PrestaShop boasts a large and active forum, they don't have any official support team. This means that if you can't find a solution to your problem in the forum, then it's up to you or your developer to fix it. It can be expensive to implement fully functional themes and extensions, and you will likely need a skilled developer to get it working properly.
Choose PrestaShop when you want to get started quickly and don‘t mind studying or hiring a developer if you want to expand your store.
Wrapping Up: Shopify Alternatives
When you want to start selling online, you need to pick the best e-commerce platform for you so your customers can purchase products and services from your online store.
While Shopify will be the perfect solution for many businesses, others may prefer to choose a different path.
All of the solutions mentioned can work for the majority of e-commerce stores, allowing them to grow as their sales increase.
Choosing the right platform is important as it can be frustrating making a change to an established business.
Finding the platform that offers the appearance, functionality, and features you require will ensure you are set up for maximum success.
Author: Kais Khadhraoui
I'm the CEO & Founder at Fulfillment Bridge. I spent more than 12 years providing cutting edge financial solutions to global banks and stock exchanges and running successfully Multimillions projects at global scale. I decided 8 years ago to start my entrepreneurial adventure in the eCommerce industry. I discovered similarities in both fields which made it easier for me to provide high quality eCommerce related services inspired from the Fintech world. My ultimate goal is to create a leading eCommerce solution following the high standards adopted in the financial industry. When you are looking to take your ecommerce to the next level and partner with a logistics provider that specializes in global ecommerce solutions, you can get in touch with me on LinkedIn.