If you want to create your e-commerce site, you will have a lot of choices. There are free solutions, and others paying. In this article, we will try to list the most popular platforms and, based on our experience, the advantages and disadvantages of each.
Create your e-shop with WooCommerce on WordPress
WooCommerce was launched in 2011 and it is the first e-commerce solution in the world. It is actually a free WordPress plugin. That is, by adding this extension, the site converts into an e-shop.
The plugin provides more than 5000 templates, so you are sure to find your happiness. Some templates are free and others are not.
On the interface, there is a menu to configure the store and a product menu to configure the products and categories.
You will find all the essential features, order management, delivery, payment methods, statistics; in short, a very complete configuration.
Why choose WooCommerce?
WooCommerce works via WordPress, a very powerful CMS that has only progressed in recent years (understand: seduce more and more people).
The customization is almost unlimited and the features are very numerous. What to create an e-commerce platform according to a precise need.
Reasons not to use WooCommerce
If there is a reason to look for another e-commerce solution, it is the technical knowledge required: beginners, this solution is not the best for you.
Be careful when choosing your WordPress theme: it must be compatible with WooCommerce; don’t forget to check this parameter beforehand.
What type of e-merchant should use Woocommerce?
Companies with advanced customization needs and resources capable of mastering the plugin or who use an expert WordPress agency like ours!
Create your e-shop with Shopify
Shopify was created in 2004 and quickly became an easy e-commerce solution to create an online store. It is suitable for beginners as well as professionals.
At the price level, it works as a monthly subscription to which you have to add commissions on sales.
There are free and paid themes (more than a hundred). The choice of the paid or unpaid theme is made according to your needs (type of product to sell, number, brand image, proposed graphic options…).
Bonus: the platform is free for 14 days to give you time to test it.
Why you should choose Shopify?
- The platform offers a back-office with many options.
- Shopify is available in several languages.
- You can create several types of pages: contact, about us, legal, FAQ, etc.
- You can add products, product categories, price, shipping, payment methods, etc.
- The templates are very qualitative as well as the e-commerce functionalities are qualitative.
- The handling is considered easy.
Why not turn to the Shopify platform?
This ecommerce platform is not open-source (unlike others listed below). You don’t own the code and your site is online as long as you pay the subscription fee.
Shopify is a SaaS solution. The site and its administration interface are therefore accessible online and hosted on Shopify’s remote servers.
The price may make you cringe, since it is composed of a subscription and commissions on sales.
There are limits imposed on the tree structure of the site (you can not create the navigation you want).
What type of e-merchant should use Shopify?
- Companies with little or no technical knowledge
- Those who want an all-in-one platform (website, hosting, etc.)
- People who have and will always need classic e-commerce features, without customization.
Note: Shopify indicates that it is aimed at beginners, entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized businesses.
Choose Magento to create your e-commerce site
Magento is a CMS, a content management system, specialized for the design of e-commerce sites. It is particularly famous and widespread.
It is an open-source solution, usable by anyone and adaptable to all needs. Any developer can propose an extension that can be used by anyone.
The solution offers many features to customize its online store in an advanced way.
At the same time, and due to its wide use by companies, hosting companies offer adapted hosting for online stores designed on Magento.
Magento is a powerful and scalable CMS.
Magento, why is it good?
It is a platform that offers a high level of customization.
Advanced features (multi-site, multi-languages, SEO optimization, among other assets) make it a powerful tool.
The disadvantages of Magento
The administration interface lacks ergonomics and the platform requires technical knowledge.
Development costs are high, Magento experts are not numerous and the creation of a platform as well as its maintenance are expensive.
Magento, for which type of merchant?
It is not a platform for beginners and it is rather intended for structures that want a robust e-commerce architecture, and who can afford it.
Create your online store with Prestashop
- Prestashop is an open source e-commerce CMS. It was launched in 2007.
- There are more than 2000 graphic themes, many of which are responsive. Many themes are paid but there are still free. In the same way, some extensions are free, others are paid.
- The basic functionalities are sufficient but it is possible to add advanced modules (about 300 available) to meet more needs (many of these modules are not free).
- The back office interface is easy to use and is similar in design to WordPress.
- You can create very detailed product sheets with statistics, divided into customizable categories.
- You can connect your Google Analytics account and the SEO settings are satisfactory.
Why choose Prestashop?
The basic brick is free.
The CMS is very complete and the interface is rather simple to use.
This platform offers many themes and extensions that will allow you to customize your project.
The disadvantages of the Prestashop solution
Yes, the software is free. But on the other hand, you will have to pay additional fees to buy themes and modules.
Despite a relatively easy handling on the back-office side, technical skills are required for advanced customization.
Prestashop, for which type of business?
For companies that are looking for a customizable, complete and scalable solution (that will accompany their growth)
Companies that have a large budget for the development of their e-commerce platform
And technical knowledge