E-commerce platform can make or break your online business. In this article we will present three shopping carts, which are, in our opinion, the best in terms of quality and most competitive in terms of prices.
Volusion is a hosted shopping cart. The minimum package at Volusion costs $15 per month and it includes unlimited number of photos and over 30 payment gateways. The storage space is unlimited, but bandwidth is limited to only 1GB. Volusion users can add up to a hundred products to their catalogs and they can choose between 80 free templates, with 350 more available for an extra fee. The shopping cart provides all of the most important and most useful functionalities, such as Google Analytics, built-in credit card processing, backorders, upsell, cross-sell, partial shipment and many more.
Online store is mobile friendly, with easy sharing to social media, and it is available in different language versions, however, customer reviews and multiple currencies are not available in the $15 package. The shopping cart is secure and you can make backup copies of your store, but Secure Socket Layer is not available in the minimum package. To sum up, with its multiple useful options, Volusion is the perfect solution for beginners and small retailers. However, the more you grow your business, the more you are going to need these extra functionalities provided with more costly packages.
Shopify is one of the most popular shopping carts with packages starting at $14 a month, however the minimum packages contain only the most basic features. In this article we will review the more expensive and more encompassing $29 a month package. In theory, you can add unlimited number of photos to your Shopify store, but in practice the storage space is limited to only 1GB, which severely reduces your options. On the other hand, the bandwidth is unlimited and you can add as many products as you like.
On the downside: you can have only 5 payment gateways and the number of free templates (only 20) is not enough to have a truly unique store. For an extra fee, you can gain an access to 150 new templates. In its $29 package Shopify offers similar functionalities to Volusion and a few more: multiple currencies, customer reviews and Secure Socket Layer. To sum up, Shopify is extremely easy to use and offers many options for beginners and more advanced retailers. The biggest downside of Shopify is the fact that for many functionalities (more templates, more storage space) you will have to pay extra, which will increase the cost of running the business.
Magento is the perfect choice for professionals and it is highly recommended for medium and large online businesses. Magento is not a hosted shopping cart, which means that you have to pay extra for hosting services. The advantage of this solution is the fact, that with the right choice of hosting services your storage space and bandwidth can be unlimited. Magento is free, but you will have to pay for some advanced plugins.
The design and functionalities of your Magento store are 100% customizable and you have almost unlimited options to choose from. The biggest downside of Magento is the fact that the platform requires good understanding of HTML and CSS, so less experienced retailers should order Magento web development services, instead of trying to create a Magento store on their own.