It’s never been easier to jump on the eCommerce bandwagon but finding the best eCommerce platform as a merchant has never been more critical.
But deciding on the perfect eCommerce platform can be time-consuming. There are so many things to consider, not least the cost.
The good news is your search ends here! We’ve got your eCommerce solution.
We’ve compiled the best eCommerce platforms for 2022 to help you decide which best suits your business and its needs.
What Is an eCommerce Platform?
An eCommerce platform is a platform that allows you to build and create an online shopping experience for your clients and customers—meeting them wherever they are. Although the processes and eCommerce functionality vary, the constant is to make sales and fulfill orders.
The perfect eCommerce platform for you will offer a seamless buyer journey that is beneficial to both the buyer and seller. It should simplify the process from taking an order to payments to follow-ups and even marketing.
When set up correctly, these sites serve as the business’ command center with a broad range of functions.
Every business is unique. So, you must pick a platform tailored to serve your business goals. For example, if you’re selling a digital download, you need an eCommerce platform best suited for digital products.
Ultimately, there is no one-size-fits-all eCommerce platform. So, it’s more effective to look for a platform that best enables you to excel at providing excellent online shopping experiences for your customers.
Now that you understand what you’re looking for let’s look at what to consider when choosing an eCommerce platform.
Things to Consider in Choosing an eCommerce Platform
By 2024, about 187.5 million Americans will shop through their smartphone. So, it’s essential to integrate a shopping cart platform that is optimized for mobile phones and makes it easy for customers to shop on a mobile device.
Analytics is table stakes for any eCommerce platform worth its salt these days. The more data you have on your customers, the more you can offer personalized product offerings. You are also able to build loyalty by providing tailored experiences to your customers.
3. Easy to use
You’ll probably be the primary operator, so it’s essential to consider the platform’s ease of use. While setting up, it’s pertinent to look out for processes that are difficult to navigate—if they are way more than a straightforward process, you may need to use a different eCommerce platform.
4. User experience
It is not enough to have a functional eCommerce store with top-notch integrations. Customers need to easily navigate the platform—from the product page to the checkout page without feeling like they are in some Victorian-age maze.
5. Payment options
A wide range of payment options guarantees that you can collect payments no matter the customer’s location. You don’t want potential customers bouncing off your eCommerce website to the competition because your website doesn’t accept their payment methods.
6. Platform support
Customer support is a crucial factor in the success of your business. You want a platform with reputable support 24/7 in case of any issues- such as a security breach or failure of your payment integrations.
Considering how fickle most online shoppers can be, customer support is probably one of your most important considerations when deciding on the best eCommerce platform.
Best eCommerce Platforms
1. Adobe Commerce
The Adobe Commerce platform (powered by Magento) has dozens of unique features waiting for you to harness. But you need some web development expertise to set it up.
- Scalability: The system can be scaled to support thousands of listings. And with extensions, you can scale it further if you need to.
- Versatility: Magento can do almost anything you want. But this versatility also means some processes can be pretty complex to execute.
- Theme customization: Magento enables brands to create brandings using the themes on the platform. This allows brands to have a consistent style and tone.
Who’s Adobe Commerce best for?
Medium/established companies that have technical resources and developers.
Magento Commerce pricing starts at $1988.00 per month.
Available on Android and IOS.
2. Big Cartel
Big Cartel is an easy-to-use platform—especially when you don’t have a lot of products. You also don’t need technical skills to get your store up and running. Plus, the navigation is seamless. This makes it a favorite of many eCommerce store owners.
- Affordability: Big Cartel accommodates different types of sellers. They have no listing fees—just a subscription-based method.
- Tax reports: During checkout, the platform automates calculating and collecting sales taxes on US orders, subsequently enabling you to prepare tax reports faster.
- Multi-channel sales: The platform incorporates Facebook, Instagram, and in-person sales into one. For in-person sales, there’s an option to connect your account with Stripe or take payments in cash.
Who’s Big Cartel best for?
Merch creators, painters, photographers, crafters, bakers, authors, and other creatives & designers.
- Gold: To display five products—Free
- Platinum: To display 50 products—$9.99 per month
- Diamond: To display 500 products—$19.99 per month
Big Cartel’s app is available on both IOS and Android.
BigCommerce is a website builder that caters to large online stores. These stores often need advanced features to manage an extensive product range, many clients, and a high sales volume. With a customer base of over 60,000 stores, the platform offers tons of customization options.
- Payment integration: BigCommerce has a wide range of online payment processors like Stripe, PayPal, and Braintree.
- SEO: The SEO features on the platform are robust and easy to manage. It is easy to edit the page titles, headers, and meta descriptions. Creating, changing, and shortening URLs are also put into consideration and made easy to navigate.
- Templates: With 12 free mobile-responsive design templates and a broad range of paid customizable templates, your store has a lot of options to sell either a physical or digital product.
Who’s BigCommerce best for?
It’s well suited for large-scale sellers and a safe play for stores with a sizable and sophisticated inventory.
- Standard: $29.95/month
- Plus: $79.95/month, or $71.95/month when paid annually
- Pro: $299.95/month, or $269.96/month when paid annually
- Enterprise: Custom pricing
BigCommerce is available on both Android and iOS.
The Bluehost eCommerce platform is excellent at simplifying the eCommerce website setup process. With over 2 million websites under its wings, it’s reliable and beginner-friendly, especially for people familiar with WordPress.
- Ease of use: Bluehost boasts of an intuitive interface that makes onboarding easier and faster, getting the store running in no time.
- Customer support: Its live chat support team is available 24/7, so time zones are not a hurdle to cross. Bluehost also offers phone and email support, but the waiting times vary.
- Security features: It has an efficient security feature that reduces time to be potentially spent on safety tweaks.
Who’s Bluehost best for?
eCommerce merchants familiar with WordPress.
- Basic: $4.95/month on an annual term; $2.95/month on a 3-year term
- Plus: $7.45/month on an annual term; $5.45/month on a 3-year term
- Choice Plus: $7.45/month an annual term; $5.45/month on a 3-year term
- Pro: $18.95/month an annual term; $13.95/month on a 3-year term
Available on iOS and Android.
With Ecwid, sellers can add an online store to an existing website. Ecwid also enables merchants to set up a standalone store called an “Ecwid Instant Site”.
- Multi-language options: While on a Business or Unlimited plan on Ecwid, you can have localized storefronts. There are about 53 languages available based on the visitor’s browser language, with the option of translating store labels.
- Drop-shipping: A drop-shipping feature allows you to use an order and fulfillment method to sell. It removes the seeming necessity of stocking up and leaves it to a drop shipping officer to handle supplies.
- Easy setup: Building a platform with Ecwid is easy. With the ready-to-paste HTML code, anyone can use the provided code to create a new page and manage the backend.
Who’s Ecwid best for?
Small businesses and web design novices.
- Free: $0 per month, letting you sell up to 10 products.
- Venture: $15 per month, allowing you to sell up to100 products.
- Business: $35 per month, allowing you to sell up to 2,500 products
- Unlimited: $99 per month, letting you sell an unlimited number of products.
Ecwid is only available on Android.
OpenCart is an open-source eCommerce platform—meaning it’s a self-hosted eCommerce platform—and doesn’t require monthly fees. You can tailor the platform to your specific needs. And all the metrics can be seen at a glance on a dashboard.
- Low recurring costs: No extra fees are required to keep OpenCart up and running. It’s a catch for brands that are on a budget.
- Straightforward: People without technical know-how can easily design new themes with plug-ins.
- Interface: Its modern dashboard serves as an easy-to-manage panel for managing products, installing extensions, etc.
Who’s OpenCart best for?
Businesses that have some experience with fundamental web development.
- Bronze: $25
- Silver: $50
- Gold: $150
Available on iOS and Android.
PrestaShop is another free, open-source eCommerce platform. One of its strengths is creating product listings—categories, subcategories, and the like—with ease.
- Analytics: You get reports of orders, sales, product insights, segment customers, and products with high conversion rates.
- Multi-channel selling: Platform users can set up and run multiple stores using the same administration panel and social media platforms.
- Inventory management: Users can take advantage of inventory management to track, manage and deal with inventory and restocking.
Who’s PrestaShop best for?
eCommerce merchants familiar with PHP, CSS, and HTML or can afford to hire a developer.
PrestaShop is a 100% free plan. No monthly fees. No commissions on your sales.
Available on iOS and Android.
Shift4Shop, formerly 3dcart, offers an all-in-one solution for everything to be sold online. The SaaS platform enables its users to take ownership of every detail of their online store seamlessly.
- Marketing: With its marketing tools, merchants can expand their businesses through promos, coupons, gift cards, gift registries, autoresponders, etc.
- Reliable book-keeping: There’s a 24/7 monitoring service that keeps sales performance in check, including profits and losses.
- SEO: Every brand can leverage SEO. Shift4shop provides an online store that is optimized effectively and access to advanced tools to increase reach.
Who’s Shift4Shop best for?
eCommerce sellers with sales experience.
- Basic: $29/month
- Plus: $79/month
- Pro: $229.99/month
No mobile app available.
The Shopify platform is one of the most popular eCommerce platforms. Its interface caters to both beginners with no coding experience and developers with CSS and HTML experience. The pricing plan also accommodates both small businesses and established businesses.
- SEO & marketing tools: With Shopify’s SEO features and a broad range of marketing tools such as email marketing, product reviews, and discount codes, the platform covers the essential aspects of digital marketing for eCommerce.
- Abandoned cart tracking: The platform automatically tracks and emails potential customers who added to the cart but abandoned the process, reminding them to complete their orders.
- Customizable: Although there are over 150 designs/templates to choose from, Shopify allows the store owner to customize the templates to suit your brand.
Who’s Shopify best for?
Small and medium-sized businesses.
- Shopify Lite: $9 per month
- Basic Shopify: $29 per month
- Shopify: $79 per month
- Advanced Shopify: $299 per month
- Shopify Plus: custom pricing
The Shopify app is available on iOS and Android.
Square, previously known as the Square Online Store, this eCommerce platform provider allows store owners to set up their stores based on the cost of their payment processing. Set up is straightforward, intuitive, and easy for beginners.
- Product stocking: The platform allows store owners to display an unlimited number of products, whether imported from your in-store selection or created just for website visitors.
- Custom shipping rates: Merchants can offer various shipping rate options—flat-rate, free shipping above a specific cost, free shipping based on order quantity, weight, or total cost.
- Payment options: The site ensures a secure and fast payment process and integrates with popular payment options like Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Cash App.
Who’s Square best for?
Small and medium businesses.
- Professional: $16 per month, or $12 per month annually
- Performance: $26 per month, or $29 per month annually
- Premium: $72 per month, or $79 per month annually.
The app is available on iOS and Android devices.
Squarespace offers flexible cost options and easy usability for beginners. Squarespace allows beginners and freelancers to build their sites with flexible and free templates with a straightforward interface.
- Customizable templates: Website developers can change site templates and styles.
- Zero transaction fees: Sellers can be sure that their sales are all theirs with no hidden fees.
- Mobile optimized website and checkout: This feature allows you have a hosted platform on social media so customers can buy directly on their mobile or tablet device.
- User-friendly: Squarespace enables customer account creation and self-checkout, with a 404-error page inbuilt.
Who’s Squarespace best for?
Beginners and coding novices.
- Personal: $16 per month or $12 per month annually
- Business: $26 per month or $18 per month annually
- Basic Commerce: $35 per month and $26 per month annually
- Advanced Commerce: $54 per month and $40 per month annually
Available on Android and IOS devices.
Volusion’s web-based storefront eCommerce capability is perfect for one-person businesses and small businesses. It’s also easy to set up.
- Security features: Store owners can trust that their store, customers, and payment information are safe with the PCI and CISP protection included on the platform.
- Marketing and SEO: The platform allows your store to rank on Google and other search engines.
- User-friendly: The platform allows buyers to zoom in on products and view from all angles before they commit to a payment. Users can also check out and set up accounts themselves.
Who’s Volusion best for?
People who are new to online shops, image-heavy eCommerce pages like fashion and cosmetics.
- Personal: $29 per month or $26 per month annually
- Professional: $79 per month or $71 per month annually
- Business: $299 per month or $269 per month annually
Available on iOS and Android devices.
Weebly is one of the cheapest “freemium” eCommerce platforms with a lot of flexibility for beginners. And it doesn’t cost much for you to move to a paid plan.
- Easy interface setup: Weebly’s drag-and-drop interface is handy for tech newbies and allows users to customize the website’s look without knowledge of coding or web-design
- Website import: The Weebly site builder allows you to import elements from your old platform for a more straightforward setup for stores migrating from another platform.
- Reporting and analytics: Site owners can see how their pages perform and other critical site information for easy tracking.
Who’s Weebly best for?
One-person businesses and freelancers.
- Free: $0/month
- Starter: $4/month
- Pro: $8/month
- Business: $25/month
Available on iOS and Android devices.
Wix is an excellent option if you have a small store or unique design requirements. They have plans for online websites of any size.
- Email marketing: You can create emails, schedule, and collect email addresses for your store on Wix.
- Custom branding eCommerce tool: Wix allows stores to select their brand colors and fonts and customize the page to their unique brand specifications.
- Marketing suite options: With Wix, sellers can add marketing automation to their sites like Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel.
Who’s Wix best for?
A small business owner or one-person entrepreneur.
- Business Basic: $23/month
- Business Unlimited: $27/month
- Business VIP: $49/month
- Enterprise: Custom pricing
Available on iOS and Android.
WooCommerce, a WordPress plug-in, has become so popular that it controls 23% of buildable eCommerce pages. WordPress-built sites powered by WooCommerce have easy-to-navigate shopping carts and quick checkouts.
- Inventory management: Sellers can control their site autonomously. This comes complete with orders, payment management, inventory, and customer support.
- Third-party integrations: Sellers can add third-party applications such as Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel to optimize their store. You can also connect your social media platforms.
- Marketing features: It enables email marketing to drive customer engagement and loyalty.
Who’s WooCommerce best for?
Newcomers to eCommerce sites, small and medium businesses with some experience with WordPress.
WooCommerce is free to install, but the plug-ins for merchandising, payments, and delivery are priced separately according to your business needs.
Available only on the iOS store for iPhone and iPad.
With Zyro, you can build fast and customizable online stores with a beginner-friendly interface. Plus, the platform hosts your store on the commerce cloud.
- Drag and drop editor: Sellers can customize their stores from the front-end with a visual editor, so your final result is what you see. You can start with a fresh slate or use a template and customize it for your brand.
- AI builder: Input your unique brand kit and website specifications, and Zyro’s AI-builder will do the rest. This is handy for beginners who have no idea what they want their website to look like.
- Third-party integrations: Allows you to track your website traffic and manage your inbox (i.e., Google Analytics).
Who’s Zyro best for?
Zyro is perfect for freelancers, small businesses, and startups.
- Basic: $2.90/month
- Unleashed: $3.90/month
- Ecommerce: $10/month
Zyro is not mobile-enabled—it is only available on Windows and Mac.
Tips to Find the Best ECommerce Platform for You
1. Be mindful of your budget
Your eCommerce business must have a solid plan before launch, and the budget is the foundation of that plan. When planning your budget, consider website building costs, product pages, operations, and security protocols.
Budget planning also includes the cost and pricing for the customer-facing side of your eCommerce business. Include processing fees, shipping, and taxes in your pricing.
2. What (and how) are you selling?
Before choosing an eCommerce site, research what sites are best for your industry and product type. Some sites are better for image-based businesses, while others are best for selling product brands.
If you already have a website, use it as a template for how your store should look and consider eCommerce sites that will let you integrate your website or blog and optimize for SEO.
3. Make sure your sales gateways are legit
Once your business goes live, it’s more challenging to correct backend mistakes like payment integrations. So, make sure your payment gateway is optimized and tested, and you have multiple payment methods so your buyers can have options.
An important consideration is the security and privacy of your payment channels. Whatever payment solutions you choose should have built-in security systems. This assures your site visitors that their details are safe with your eCommerce platform.
4. Easy to use and set up
Ease of usage and navigation should be the top consideration for the UI of your eCommerce site. And that means that whatever platform you choose MUST have those qualities as well. The platform has to allow you to quickly set up your site yourself and keep up with future maintenance.
5. eCommerce platforms are not created equally
When it comes to choosing a platform for your eCommerce site, it can get complicated. You will have to consider different features that make each platform unique, based on your criteria for your site.
There is no perfect platform, which is why your choice has to be whichever platform gives you the best of what you need for your site. This includes the plug-ins and extensions available to enhance the page UI and UX for your visitors.
6. eCommerce features
Your brand’s core needs determine your choice of an eCommerce platform. If possible, make a list of features your eCommerce store needs and cross-reference that with your budget and the sites available to you in that range.
7. Bang for your buck
Just because some platforms are free does not mean that you have to be stuck with a sub-par eCommerce page. If you can’t afford a paid site, maximize the free features available.
You can adopt a cheaper method by getting paid extensions for your free eCommerce site. Paid extensions allow you to take free features to the next level with more flexibility on what you want for your site.
8. Managing the day-to-day stuff
Ease of use goes beyond setting up your store. You also need to consider long-term maintenance. There should be easy flows for adding new products, updating order status, onboarding new logins, and other operations that make up the day-to-day of running an eCommerce site.
Your site should also be accessible to multiple people from the backend so that you can outsource site maintenance.
9. Design options
What’s your vision for your eCommerce brand? That might influence the eCommerce site that would be a better fit for your business.
Try to keep your page design simple. Keep the user in mind. They should be able to browse your site without too many taps. Optimize your site to answer questions, give information, and, most importantly, sell.
People shopping don’t want too many touchpoints before the final purchase decision.
10. Advanced features
Your eCommerce page should support extra considerations like email marketing, promos and discounts, and Google Analytics integrations so you can have a rounded picture of your store’s performance.
It’s Time to Sell!
When choosing an eCommerce platform to build your store, shop, or website, your brand’s core needs must come first, and you must clearly define your goals.
We have outlined 16 of the best eCommerce platforms for people of all expertise levels to build fast, cheap, and responsive sites.
From entrepreneurs, small businesses, big businesses, and even corporations, we’ve got you covered.
So what are you waiting for? Jump on the eCommerce bandwagon and get to selling already!