The Best Ecommerce Platforms For Startups In 2021

ecommerce platforms

What are the best eCommerce platforms for startups? Want to jump straight to the answer? There are thousands of best eCommerce platforms.

But the best for most people is definitely Wix.

Choosing the right eCommerce platform can either make or break your online store’s success. So this article will help you choose the best platform.

I will compare the best eCommerce website platforms.

Ready to start selling online? Then you need an eCommerce platform.

What Is An ecommerce Platform?

An eCommerce platform is software that allows you to create and manage an online store. It is used to manage products, sites, operations, and everything else related to online sales.

Finding the best eCommerce software is not always easy. The market is full of eCommerce solutions of all types. What do we choose as the best eCommerce platform?

Let’s look at the features we need to look out for in an eCommerce platform.

How To Find The Best eCommerce Platforms For Starups

There are tens of thousands of eCommerce platforms out there. With so many options to consider,  It is extremely difficult to choose the best eCommerce platform for your business.

I did thorough research about the best eCommerce platform by analyzing its features. You can do the same. Consider these features also to make your decision easier.

I will explain the very crucial features, which ones don’t, and break down the details of each element below. Here are the key features:

Setup And Ease of Use

It should be easy to set up. The platform makes it easy for you to start your store. You should be able to manage your products, edit your website and collect payments online without third-party requirements.

Type Of Ecommerce Platforms That Startups Can Take Advantage Of

There are eCommerce website builders, plugins, and extensions. If you already have a website, you need to make sure that your solution is compatible with whatever CMS you’re using.

Type Of Website

If you already have an existing website and you just want to convert it to an online store, a plugin or an extension would be better than a website builder.

Value

The cost should match with the features offered. Some eCommerce platforms are free, but you’ll be charged as you add certain extensions. Look for eCommerce platforms offering a free trial and some type of money-back guarantee. This will give you a chance to try everything out to see if you are getting the best value.

Top 13 ecommerce Platforms For Startups Ranked

  • Wix
  • Shopify
  • Zyro
  • Squarespace
  • BigCommerce
  • Square Online
  • 3DCart
  • WooCommerce
  • OpenCart
  • Ecwid
  • Magento
  • Volusion
  • J2Store
  • Salesforce Commerce Cloud
  • Easy Digital Downloads

Below, I’ve highlighted the top features, benefits, prices, and potential drawbacks for each one. I’ll also explain which platforms are best for specific types of online stores.

1. Wix

Wix has more than 500 eCommerce templates for you to choose from. With Wix, you can manage inventory, track orders, and communicate with customers with the aid of its store manager. Wix has a drag-and-drop website builder.

It is used to create an eCommerce website from scratch. Wix is an eCommerce platform that is simple to use. Your eCommerce site will get the same drag-and-drop benefits as a traditional Wix website.

You just need to choose an eCommerce plan to accept payments online. You can customize your storefront with collections, galleries, and related products.

Key Features:

  • It has a drag and drop editor
  • It is easy to use
  • It has ability to track orders and communicate with customers
  • It’s storefront can be customized with collections and galleries
  • It has more than 500 ecommerce templates for you to choose from.
  • It has ability to target abandoned shopping carts.

Pricing:

Wix offers four different eCommerce plans; all of which accept online payments:

  • Business Basic — $23 per month
  • Business Unlimited — $27 per month
  • Business VIP — $49 per month

All plans come with unlimited bandwidth. You’ll get extra storage at each pricing tier.

Get started with Wix

2. Shopify

Shopify is one of the awesome eCommerce platforms for startups which powers over one million websites globally. It is an all-in-one eCommerce platform though it is extremely easy to use and set up right out of the box.

It’s a great option for beginners or organizations without a lot of in-house tech solutions. Shopify is very versatile. It is used by small businesses and larger-scale operations also. But you could use it as a small startup as well. Technical support is 24/7.

The support is offered before signing up for any Shopify plan. Shopify makes it easy for you to sell products from your online store, as well as through social media platforms and online marketplaces. It has a drag and drops builder.

All its themes are optimized for mobile devices. The Shopify drag-and-drop builder is a convenient way to build a new eCommerce website from scratch.

All themes are optimized for mobile devices, which is necessary to maximize your conversions. It has a built-in payment platform.

Key Features:

  • It is versatile.
  • It has a built-in payment platform
  • It has a drag and drop editor
  • All its themes are mobile responsive
  • It has 24/7 technical support and it is offered before signing up for any plan
  • It is extremely easy to set up

Pricing:

There are three different base plans offered by Shopify:

  • Basic Shopify — $29 per month
  • Shopify — $79 per month
  • Advanced Shopify — $299 per month

Shopify offers a 14-day free trial for all of its plans.

Get started with Shopify

3. Gyro

Zyro is one of the world-class eCommerce platforms for startups. Their drag-and-drop website builder allows you to create a perfect online store and customize it to fit your brand. It is highly responsive so you will be able to see your changes in real-time.

Zyro is another easy-to-use website builder that allows you to create a fantastic website in minutes. Zyro offers tons of beautiful templates for you to choose from to help.

Key Features:

  • It’s functionality is world class
  • It has a drag and drop editor
  • It offers stunning templates
  • It is easy to use
  • It is highly responsive

Pricing:

Get started with Gyro

4. Squarespace

Squarespace is a fully integrated eCommerce platform built in ideal for all plans except for the entry-level options. It allows the installation of multiple templates to one website and switches between them at any time.

With Squarespace, building a beautiful website is easy. Its templates are modern and fully customizable. It’s suitable for new eCommerce shop owners who will be required to scale up their sales strategy.

Key Features:

  • It has unlimited products
  • It has flexible product varients
  • It is used to sell physical and digital products
  • It has the ability manage subscriptions
  • It has multiple payment methods
  • It’s check outs are optimized for mobile devices

Pricing:

These are the Squarespace plans and prices:

  • Personal. $12 per month
  • Business. $18 per month
  • Basic Commerce. $26 per month
  • Advanced Commerce. $40 per month

 You can sell online using the Business plan. At a minimum, I’d recommend the Basic Commerce plan.

For gift cards, abandoned cart recovery, subscriptions, and a few other higher-level features, you’ll need to sign up for the Advanced Commerce plan.

Get started with Squarespace

5. BigCommerce

BigCommerce is a robust all-in-one eCommerce platform that offers everything you need to sell online.

The platform is outstanding when it comes to uptime, loading speed, security, and other performance metrics. They offer unique solutions for B2B stores, wholesale shops, and WordPress users.

BigCommerce makes it easy for you to manage sales across multiple channels as well. Do you want to start a new online store from scratch, or scaling your brick-and-mortar small business into the eCommerce world, then consider BigCommerce?

Key Features:

  • An all in one ecommerce platform
  • Has an amazing uptime, loading speed and security
  • It’s easy to use
  • Scalable
  • Has specific options for ecommerce stores in different industries.

Pricing:

Here’s a quick overview of the Big Commerce plans:

  • Standard — $29.95 per month
  • Plus — $79.95 per month
  • Pro — $249.95 per month

Its stores will automatically be upgraded to a new plan when they reach certain sales milestones in a year.

The 12-month sales limits are as follows:

  • Standard — Up to $50,000
  • Plus — Up to $150,000
  • Pro — Up to $400,000

So for example, if you sign up for the Standard Plan, you’ll automatically be switched to the Plus plan if you eclipse $50,000 within the last 12 months.

Get started with Big Commerce

6. 3DCart

3DCart is a good option for advanced eCommerce users.

It stands out as one of the best eCommerce platforms for startups. with built-in SEO tools. They have 20 years of experience with 22,000 merchants. However, they don’t offer a drag and drop editor.

Key Features:

  • It doesn’t have transaction fees
  • They offer 24/7 customer support
  • It has more than 200 payment gateways
  • Provision to integrate with third-party online marketplaces
  • It has unlimited bandwidth
  • They offer free domain for one year

Pricing:

All 3DCart plans come with a 15-day free trial and are backed by a 30-day satisfaction guarantee.

Get started with 3Dcart

8. Ecwid

Ecwid specializes in eCommerce sales from multiple marketplaces.

Ecwid has a free plan although it is limited to just 10 products. Ecwid is compatible with other platforms as well. In addition to WordPress, Ecwid can be added to:

  • Wix
  • Weebly
  • Squarespace
  • Joomla
  • Tumblr
  • Blogger

With Ecwid, any website can be turned into an eCommerce platform.

Key Features:

  • It has a free plan
  • It is compatible with other plans
  • It is scalable.

Pricing:

To get the most out of Ecwid, you’ll need to sign up for a premium plan.

  • Venture — $15 per month
  • Business — $35 per month
  • Unlimited — $99 per month

The Venture and Business plans are limited to 100 and 2,500 products, respectively. As the name implies, there aren’t any restrictions on the Unlimited plan.

Get started with Ecwid

9. Magento Commerce

Magento is an easy-to-use page builder with drag-and-drop capabilities. It offers content staging and previews, instant purchases, and merchandising.

Magento is an eCommerce platform designed for enterprise-level online stores. It has specific solutions for businesses that operate as a B2C, B2B, or both.

Magento has powerful eCommerce capabilities for any type of website across all industries. Magento is ideal for big online stores. It’s not suitable for small businesses or eCommerce startups.

It has customer segmentation features that personalize the customer experience. It can be used to sell products through any online marketplace.

It has more than 1,000 extensions and themes. Magento is an industry-leading mobile commerce solution.

Key Features:

  • It has a drag and drop page builder
  • It has more than 1000 extensions and themes
  • It has customer segmentation features
  • It offers content previews
  • It can be used to sell products on any platform

Pricing:

Pricing for a Magento enterprise license starts at over $20,000 per year.

Get started with Magento

10. Volusion

Volution is only designed for stores selling physical products. Volusion is a great choice for startups that eCommerce platforms offering lots of products.

With Volusion, you can create your store, sell your products and scale your business. Volusion offers exceptional customer service though it depends on your plan.

For example, the entry-level plan does not come with phone support.

Key Features:

  • It designed for selling physical products.
  • It offers a lot of products
  • Exceptional customer support is offered
  • It is scalable

Pricing:

Here’s an overview of the plans and pricing:

  • Personal — $26 per month
  • Professional — $71 per month
  • Startup — $161 per month
  • Business — $269 per month

Try Volusion free for 14 days. All plans are backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

11. J2 Store

J2Store is a shopping cart extension for people using Joomla as a content management system. For this reason, it is not an all-in-one eCommerce platform. You need to have a Joomla website to use J2Store.

It is only made for websites that belong to a very specific category. It supports the sale of physical products online. J2Store also supports subscriptions, memberships, digital downloads, partial payments, and deposits.

You can manage bookings and reservations using the Joomla shopping cart extension.

Key Features:

  • It supports the sell of physical products online
  • It supports memberships, subscriptions and deposits
  • It has provision for managing bookings and reservations using the Joomla shopping cart extension
  • It has more than 60 app integrations
  • It is compatible with more than 75 payment gateways.

Pricing:

You can download and install J2Store for free. But to start selling, you’ll need to upgrade to one of the two premium plans:

  • Professional — $49 per six months
  • Developer — $99 per year

The developer plan supports five sites while the professional plan supports unlimited sites. Both premium plans are backed with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

12. Salesforce

Salesforce is the best solution for those of you who want a CRM and eCommerce platform in the same package.

In 2016 Salesforce acquired Demandware, which is a cloud-based eCommerce solution. They rebranded Demandware and named it the Salesforce Commerce Cloud.

Salesforce is one of the best CRM platforms on the market today.

Key Features:

  • It offers an ecommerce in the same package
  • It has the best CRM platforms on the market

Pricing:

Pricing for the Salesforce Commerce Cloud is not transparent on their website. But it’s based on “gross merchandise value.”

You need to contact Salesforce to request a quote. Try Salesforce Commerce Cloud and Salesforce CRM for free with a trial.

The length and terms of the trial depend on your unique situation.

13. Easy Digital Downloads

Easy Digital Downloads is designed for selling digital products online. This plugin is made specifically for WordPress sites.

It is the best plugin for selling digital goods from your WordPress site. You can add discount codes, restrict file access to authorized users, and track downloads with full data reports.

Key Features:

  • It has more than 100 themes and extensions
  • It is designed for WordPress
  • It has the ability to add discount codes

Pricing:

Here’s an overview of the plans and rates for Easy Digital Downloads:

  • Personal Pass — $99 per year
  • Extended Pass — $199 per year
  • Professional Pass — $299 per year
  • All-Access Pass — $499 per year

If you have a WordPress blog and want to start monetizing your site by selling guides or ebooks, Easy Digital Downloads will be your best bet.

Get started with easy digital downloads

Summary: Best Ecommerce Platforms For Startups

If you run a large eCommerce business, you may want complete control and server autonomy. In that case, buy a dedicated server or VPS from a web hosting company and set up your platform there. As such, SAAS like Shopify will not satisfy you.

However, if you’d rather set it up and not bother yourself with web hosting technicalities, then a platform like BigCommerce could be it.

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